Fairytale Therapy

Aim: To write a fairytale adaptation of a key event or issue from your life, as a means of self-therapy.

Think about the fairytales you already know. In writing your own tale, you must adhere to the rules of these classic fairytales; 

  • Fairytales have no clearly defined timescale. For example, “Once upon a time” “Happy ever after”.
  • They are set in a non-specific location. E.g. an impenetrable castle encased in thorns. (Perhaps think about symbolism here.
  • A good versus evil plot structure…in which ‘good’ ultimately wins out. You must create a scenario in which a ‘battle’ ensues between these opposing forces. Think about your life issue. Give it a 'happy ever after' outcome. 
  • Key moments throughout the tale can explain the good versus evil power struggle. For example, a wicked stepmother or evil witch who wants rid of the beautiful princess daughter and thus poisons her with an apple. An event such as this could provoke the ensuing battle. A key event could also cease the battle, an example of this being that of a sleeping beauty being kissed by a mysterious saviour to arouse her back to life.
Your fairytale can be as modern, traditional, or fantastical as you like, just think about the template,  and translate your personal 'story' within these template.  Think about the classic fairytales you know. Take note of their structure and style, and apply these rules to your own life ‘story’.

The intention of the fairytale writing is to confront a past event or unresolved issue from your life, to dissect it,  and to resolve it via the safety of a “happy ever after” fairytale. 

In writing the tale you will be working through the issues presented, finding a way to deal with them and being capable of moving forward through your life’s journey.

If you'd like to contribute a story please feel free to post it as a comment, or send in an email.  

Please note, should participants be willing, excerpts may be featured in "Hanging your Life on a Story..."a visual anthology part of the "In the Kingdom of Fiction" exhibition. 

Participants will be contacted in due course to discuss this further. 
Thank you, Pauline

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