Monday, December 24, 2012

Build-A-Grimmer-Story ~ CLOSED

Happy Birthday, Brothers Grimm!

Last week, we celebrated the 200 year anniversary of Grimm's Fairy Tales, that collection of folk tales that has inspired generations of imaginative children and children-at-heart. 

Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm were German academics, linguists, cultural researchers, and authors.  Their accomplishments were many, including a German dictionary published in 1852.  What they are most remembered for, however, is the work Kinder- and Hausmärchen (now known as Grimm's Fairy Tales), first published in 1812. This compendium of folk tales was the result of research conducted while at the University of Marburg.  (A fairy tale town in itself, I might add!) Later editions were expanded to include over 200 stories, and today, Grimm's Fairy Tales has become a standard introduction to fantasy for children the world over. 

As an author, I'm accustomed to hearing voices in my head, and so I wasn't surprised in the least last week when Jacob and Wilhelm decided to contact me on the occasion of the 200th anniversary of their most famous publication.

"Karin!" they said. "We want to celebrate our 200 year anniversary with a guest spot on Heroines of Fantasy!  Our folk stories are full of great female protagonists!  Courageous women who rescue their fathers and brothers, bring heinous criminals to justice, break wicked spells cast over handsome princes, and all-in-all have amazing and admirable adventures."

Well, of course, I couldn't resist this opportunity.  After all, how many bloggers get to have famous -- no, legendary -- guests, especially guests who have been dead for 150 years? 

So I invited the Brothers Grimm to lead our holiday build-a-story event, and they graciously agreed to do so.  Now all of us get to write a story with the Brothers Grimm!

Here are the rules:  Jacob and Wilhelm will give us five lines to start.  Everyone who participates can add five more lines to the story -- NO MORE THAN FIVE. 

Each contributor MUST build on the previous five lines, so that the story is a cohesive thread woven by all of us together.  Please pay attention to what the previous person wrote, and go from there. Don't try to invent the story all over again, or Jacob and Wilhelm will, in the best tradition of 19th century German professors, strike your fingers with a phantom ruler!

You may add to the story as often as you like, but again, no more than five lines at a time, and you must allow at least one other person to add their part before contributing another piece of your own.

Posting will end at midnight on Monday, December 31.  Jacob and Wilhelm will wrap up the story with five final lines, and I will post the whole thing on Tuesday, January 1. 

This build-a-story event is extra extra special, not only because you will be rubbing shoulders with the spirits of the Brothers Grimm, but also because every addition you make to the story earns you a chance to win the Heroines of Fantasy Holiday Giveaway, a FREE ebook bundle of four great novels by HoF authors!  So let your imaginations run wild, write away, and enter the giveaway to boot. Giveaway winners will be announced on January 1.  Good luck!

Now, here are our first five lines, courtesy of Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm:

There once lived a princess so very haughty that, when a suitor came, she would have nothing to do with him unless he could solve one of her riddles; and if he tried, and did not succeed, he was dismissed with mockery and contempt.  She allowed it to be generally known, however, that the man who could find out her riddle should be her husband. 

Now, it happened that three tailors came to the town in which the princess lived.  The two eldest, who had done so many fine stitches and guessed all sorts of puzzling riddles, were sure of being able to guess what the princess propounded; it was not possible such clever people could fail. 

The third tailor, however, was a useless little fellow, who knew scarcely anything of is trade; yet he fancied he might be lucky as well as any of them and wished to try. . .

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Posted by Karin Rita Gastreich


Terri-Lynne said...

But the third tailor, while useless, was wily.
"Oh, eldest brother-mine, I am but a simpleton and could never guess the fair lady's riddle. But for you, pah! She will barely have to give her clue for you to guess the answer and win her hand, her kingdom, and all the finery that comes with it."
And thus he listened carefully to the clue the princess gave.

Karin Rita Gastreich said...

The eldest brother mocked the third tailor. "This is why you did not learn your trade! A clue can't be given 'til the riddle is made."

Then he bowed to the princess, "Tell me your riddle, lady most fair."

The clever princess smiled and said, "I see something that gets bigger day after day, but only if a man takes what he can away."

Karin Rita Gastreich said...

Well, it looks like build-a-story didn't take off this time, but that's okay. I'm sure Jacob & Wilhelm will be back again sometime.

I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday, and may 2013 bring you many blessings!