When Your Hero Wants to Quit – Guest Author, Anna Staniszewski
A Huge Fairy Tale welcome to author and friend, Anna Staniszewski, who has just released the third installment of her amazing Unfairy Tale series. She is here to tell us about when a hero wants to quit. WELCOME!
“Thanks, Lynda! Happy to be here.
When I first started working on the UnFairy Tale series several years ago, all I knew was that my character Jenny was a reluctant hero. Very reluctant. The “I’m done and I never want to do this again” kind. Jenny had already been a magical adventurer for a few years and she was TIRED. I liked the idea of having a character who’s sick of magic and just wants to be normal again.
There was only one problem with this type of book: when the hero has pretty much quit before the story starts, it’s BORING. Who wants to read about someone quitting? So I had to start in a different place and show why Jenny was sick of being a hero, why she wanted to quit. Then we could really understand her frustration.
Of course, once Jenny quits being a hero, she discovers that a normal life isn’t necessarily any better, and she realizes that she can’t help saving the day when people are in trouble. I think that idea ultimately weaves through the whole series. Jenny has to be a hero because she can’t stand by and let fairy tale creatures be mistreated.
Jenny might not be the kind of hero who runs into a situation with her sword swinging (like Sir Knight does in the second book) but she’s a hero in her own way. She uses humor and cheesy sayings and crafty schemes. Jenny might not love being a hero, but that’s what makes her a good one; she saves the day because she knows no one will do it for her.
I’m not sure Jenny will ever be a non-reluctant hero, but I think over the course of the series, I’ve found ways to convince her to become a (mostly) willing one.”
Born in Poland and raised in the United States, Anna Staniszewski grew up loving stories in both Polish and English. She was named the 2006-2007 Writer-in-Residence at the Boston Public Library and a winner of the 2009 PEN New England Susan P. Bloom Discovery Award. Currently, Anna lives outside of Boston with her husband and their black Labrador, Emma.
When she’s not writing, Anna spends her time teaching, reading, and challenging unicorns to games of hopscotch. She is the author of My Very UnFairy Tale Life and its sequels, My Epic Fairy Tale Fail and My Sort of Fairy Tale Ending, all published by Sourcebooks Jabberwocky. Look for the first book in Anna’s next tween series, The Dirt Diary, in January 2014, and visit her at http://www.annastan.com/