1. punkyeleven

    punkyeleven Member

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    How to avoid cliche when adapting a fairytale?

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by punkyeleven, Jan 7, 2020.

    Hello, it's me again. I was thinking about taking some inspiration from Grimm's fairytales. I already have an idea for a plot, which is a little bit based on an original one, but I'm not sure how to avoid the cliche things than happen in fairytales in my story. For example, one of my characters is a prince cursed into the bear. It is "tale as old as time" and I was thinking how can I change it into a more original one? Should I maybe change the settings of the story? The world? The plot? The characters?
    Have any of you ever been inspired by fairytales and had the same problem?
     
  2. LastMindToSanity

    LastMindToSanity Contributor Contributor

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    When it comes to cliches, the trick isn't to avoid them, it's to write it well enough so that people don't care that it's a cliche.

    However, that isn't your question. On how to avoid a cliche, I would suggest keeping the theme of what you're writing and the theme of the original fairytale separate. Or, you could keep the theme of the fairytail and change how they get there.

    I have tried to rewrite my plot to avoid cliches I put in, but I never liked the end product. However, I love a well-done cliche, so I'm a bit biased.
     
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  3. Rockatansky

    Rockatansky Banned

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    Unavoidable, everything is a cliche!

    Just write and enjoy your spin on them. And anyone who says, that's so cliche, can bugger off.
     
  4. Arsel

    Arsel Active Member

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    Ooo I love Grimm fairytales!
    What often happens whith fairy tale cliches is that they're employed very benignly, focused more on magical than gory aspects.
    The original tales by the Grimm brothers were actually horribly violent grotesque. If you were to add those sorts of elements to your story, you might not be contributing something highly original but you'll cetrainly stand out amidst the bulk of fairytale cliches.

    My favourite twist on fairytales has to be the Witcher. If you haven't read that and are looking for inspiration, I highly recommend it.

    ...What if the prince is actually a bear cursed into a human?
     
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  5. Rockatansky

    Rockatansky Banned

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    Love it!

    Reminds me of Dragonheart 2
     
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  6. jannert

    jannert Who? Whooo? Staff Supporter Contributor

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    That sounds like a fun project. I know exactly what I'd do to avoid cliché. I'd develop the characters. Give them the background the tale demands (prince, woodcutter's son, etc) but give them a specific personality. Ditto the 'king' or the 'woodcutter,' or the 'stepmother,' etc. Think of all the fairytales that have been made into successful films. That's essentially what the filmmaker did. Drew Barrymore's character in Cinderella was not your typical 'Cinderella' and the Prince in that story wasn't typical either. That kind of thing.
     
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  7. Rockatansky

    Rockatansky Banned

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    In a sense, make individuals out of them! Make Prince Adam, Prince Adam and not just a generic Prince?
     
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  8. Naomasa298

    Naomasa298 Senior Member

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    Winter is a girl who lives with her step-mother. She's a bright, goth teen who's a smart computer hacker, smokes dope, listens to heavy metal. They don't get on.

    Her step mother buys herself a new smart spaeker with an AI that can be trained to tell the user whatever they want, and she trains it to tell her she's the most beautiful one in the family. One day, just for a laugh, Winter hacks the speaker to tell her that she's the prettiest one.

    Furious, her stepmother kicks her out. She wanders around the streets until she's taken in by a commune of hippies who initially mistake her for a prostitute and greet her ("Hi, ho!"). Meanwhile, her mother finds her father's will which leaves everything to Winter. She decides to murder her step-daughter. She hires a PI to track her down, and arranges for a drug-dealer to sell the hippies a bad batch of drugs laced with something Winter is allergic to. Winter smokes it, has a bad reaction and falls into a coma.

    The hippies get her to hospital. Eventually, a handsome young doctor manages to bring her out of the coma. The hippies get the drug dealer to confess, and the step-mother is thrown into jail for attempted murder. The doctor and Winter get married. The hippies get forgotten about.
     
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  9. Rockatansky

    Rockatansky Banned

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    Beautiful... I love it. :blowkiss::blowkiss::blowkiss:

    Now that is a prime example of making something your own
     
  10. punkyeleven

    punkyeleven Member

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    Ohh yeah I looove The Witcher and I adored the fairytale aspects in it! Especially "Snow White", that was a funny way to change original fairytale!
     
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