Saturday, May 22, 2021

The Best Clever and Funny Fractured Fairy Tales

Fairy tale retellings are one of my favorite kinds of stories. Whether written as picture books for the very young or novels for middle graders and young adults, there is something about fractured fairy tales that appeals to me as a reader and a writer. Certainly the magic and adventure at the root of the original stories is part of it. But it's fun to see how different writers make those classic stories their own. In picture books a clever twist or a new setting can give a classic tale fresh, new life even while the story follows the original plot closely.

Here is a list of some of my favorites (plus two of my own) to read if you enjoy fractured fairy tales that are clever and funny. 

The Great Gran Plan by Elli Woollard, illustrated by Steven Lenton

A funny story that blends Little Red Riding Hood and The Three Little Pigs, with clever and hilarious results. 

The True Story of the Three Little Pigs by Jon Sciezka, illustrated by Lane Smith

A classic that should be included in every library. This version of the story, told from the perspective of the wolf, just might convince you that the wolf was the victim. Or will it?

Twinderella by Corey Rosen Schwartz, illustrated by Deborah Marcero

This clever and charming retelling is twice the fun of the original story!

Little Red Gliding Hood by Tara Lazar, illustrated by Troy Cummings

If you enjoy puns and fairy tales, you'll enjoy this delightful romp!

Interstellar Cinderella by Deborah Underwood, illustrated by Meg Hunt

Cinderella in space! What more of a reason do you need to read this charming and empowering story?

Falling for Rapunzel by Leah Wilcox, illustrated by Lydia Monks

If you like mixups and misunderstandings--and hilarity--you'll love this delightfully silly fractured version of Rapunzel. 

Goldilocks and Just One Bear by Leigh Hodgkinson

More of a sequel than a retelling, this clever story takes the original and gives it a switcheroo!

Little Red and the Very Hungry Lion by Alex T. Smith

Little Rid Riding Hood set in Africa, with a delightful new twist on the traditional ending. 

A Cooked Up Fairy Tale by Penny Parker Klostermann, illustrated by Ben Mantle

This clever mash-up is sure to make you chuckle (and might make you hungry too!). 

And, naturally, I had to include my own books:

Hensel and Gretel: Ninja Chicks by Corey Rosen Schwartz and Rebecca J. Gomez, illustrated by Dan Santat

Hansel and Gretel, but as ninja chickens outwitting a fox rather than a witch!

Federico and the Wolf by Rebecca J. Gomez, illustrated by Elisa Chavarri

A gender-swapped, Mexican-American retelling of Little Red Riding Hood. 

What are your favorite fractured fairy tales?

Saturday, May 08, 2021

A Note to My Followers

If you follow this blog by email, you'll want to know that the "follow by email" feature will no longer be supported beginning in July. 

So, that's a bummer.

But there are a few options. One is to simply remember to visit my site once or twice a month. If you're a Blogger user, you can follow by adding my blog to your reading list (but you have to remember to actually go read the blogs on your reading list). Also, if you follow me on social media, you may see when I share links to my new blog posts, but with the way social media algorithms work, this is iffy.

So, the best way to make sure you see my content is to subscribe to my newsletter! For your convenience, here is a link that will allow you to do that:

Rebecca J. Gomez's Newsletter

If you do that, you'll not only see my regular blog posts, but you'll get some exclusive newsletter content and bonus entries when I do giveaways! Just be sure to confirm your subscription, then check your spam folder if you don't see a welcome email right away (those spam filters can get hungry).

Whether you've been with me since the beginning (in which case, wow!) or this is the first of my blog posts you've ever seen, thanks for reading! I hope you stick around for a while.

Monday, April 26, 2021

12 Social Media Tips for the Overwhelmed Author

Are you an author or aspiring author trying to figure out how to make social media work for you? Well, I am not a social media expert. But I've been using social media as an author for a long time, and I've learned a few things. So, if you're just starting out and are a little overwhelmed--as I was in the beginning--here are some things I have learned that could be helpful to you. 

  1. Social media should be fun. If it's fun for you, you'll be more consistent and will more easily grow your following. 
  2. Keeping fun in mind, remember that you don't have to do it all. It's better to be engaged and have a good time on one or two social media platforms than to spread yourself too thin and/or get overwhelmed.
  3. Social media is not all about you, especially if you're an author hoping to grow your audience. Always keep your followers (and potential followers) in mind when sharing content. What do they want to see? You can learn this with some trial and error, but also by thinking about the kind of audience you hope to attract, then post accordingly!
  4. Regarding content, keep the 80/20 rule in mind. Basically this means that 80% of your content should be helpful or entertaining for your followers and 20% should be content that specifically promotes you as an author. What kind of content is helpful or entertaining? It really depends what you answer for number 3, but here are some ideas: Pictures or stories about pets, links to resources, tips, book recommendations, observations about life, etc.
  5. Be original! It's not much fun to follow a person on twitter if all they do is retweet other people's content.
  6. But DO retweet or share other people's content in addition to sharing your own if you think it's something your followers would be into.
  7. Engage! Nobody likes feeling like they're shouting into a void, so when you see something online that you can relate to, say so! 
  8. Being friendly is just as important on social media as it is in person.
  9. Be (mostly) positive. It can be tempting to let your frustrations about the state of the world pour out through your fingertips and onto your social media, but keep in mind why you're there. Do you want people to read your humorous children's books? Do you want to support writers, teachers, librarians? Promote literacy? Make people smile or laugh? Then don't let negativity take over. You can be proactive about the issues you care about without letting your social media feeds become bogged down in despair. 
  10. Choose the right social media platforms for the kind of content you want to share. I enjoy taking and sharing photos, so Instagram is fun for me. I also love the fast pace and versatility of Twitter. It's great for sharing short, spontaneous thoughts and the occasional "Hey, check out my blog!" or "Hey, have you read my books?" kind of posts. I also find that I get the most engagement on twitter, and that is probably because I have the most fun with it! Facebook can be great for sharing all sorts of content, but can be frustrating because of their ever-changing algorithms. 
  11. Schedulers are your friend. They can be especially useful for spacing out the "20% content." I like using Buffer to schedule tweets and Facebook posts.
  12. Be yourself. Talk about real things, real life. Don't be shy about sharing your favorite dorky puns or quotes from your favorite movies, or those random musings about life that pop into your head. When people get to know the real you a bit, and grow to like you for you, they'll be interested in what you write. 
Are you on social media? What do you love or hate about it?