Two and Twenty Dark Tales:
Dark Retellings of Mother Goose Rhymes
Publication date: October 16th 2012
In this anthology, 20 authors explore the dark and hidden meanings behind some of the most beloved Mother Goose nursery rhymes through short story retellings. The dark twists on classic tales range from exploring whether Jack truly fell or if Jill pushed him instead to why Humpty Dumpty, fragile and alone, sat atop so high of a wall. The authors include Nina Berry, Sarwat Chadda, Leigh Fallon, Gretchen McNeil, and Suzanne Young.
Today as part of the Two and Twenty dark Tales blog tour, I have the lovely Leigh Fallon over for an interview. Leigh is one of the authors in this anthology, in addition to her novel, Carrier of the Mark–which you will have a chance to win! 🙂
Interview with Leigh Fallon
Yes, this is the first short story I’ve had published. I have to admit; it was a bit daunting writing a short story for the first time. Trying to squish background, plot, and interesting character that the readers will connect with, into three to four thousands words is no mean task. There’s no time for tension build up, so you have to be able to wham it all out on the table and hook the reader right from the beginning. I did a little research before I started writing and studied how different authors worked their story curve. So I had a good idea how I was going to tackle the retelling before I started.
Q. What does your daily routine look like?
The morning is crazy, I have to get my four kids out to school. Once they’re all up and gone, I settle into some writing time. I’m trying out a new writing schedule. I try to write 1 to 2 K a day, then catch up on my admin work, like interviews etc. before lunch. The afternoon is a chaotic mix of housework, starving children, cooking, editing and beta reading if I can squeeze it in, and all that dribbles into the evening, where I finally (once the kids are in bed) collapse on the couch with a cup of tea and the remote.
Q. After reading your bio I have to ask, convent school! What was that like?
Strict! All girls and never allowed to mix with the boys school down the road. We had to wear this maroon uniform, a pleated skirt (below the knee at all times), White starched blouse, Maroon, white, and blue striped tie (very Harry Potter), a maroon V-necked wool jumper (sweater), white socks (pulled up to the knee), black shoes (the more nunnish the better), grey gabardine (a woolen long trench coat that soaks up every bit of moisture – not such a great choice in a country where it rains 90% of the time), and a maroon, blue, and white scarf. Makeup was strictly forbidden, as was any sort of hair coloring or nail varnish. Teachers were either nuns or cloak wearing lay people, and some even wore mortarboards. Field hockey was the sport of choice, and we had to wear these little gymslips for all gym activities. Ugh.
Q. I also saw you moved to the US from Ireland, how much of an adjustment was that? Like, did you often find yourself driving on the wrong side of the road?
Actually, I adapted to driving on the other side of the road no problem, but there were a few things that I found a little harder to get used to. Did you know our light switches go in the opposite direction to the US ones, and that we write dates the opposite way to here? Even the way we tell the time is different. LOL! But the biggest change for me was that I had to change how I talk, and how I express myself so as not to offend people or leave them confused. It’s nothing major, but just little things can be taken up the wrong way. The Irish use language differently, we use sarcasm in every day conversation, and we’re always just a step away from cracking a joke. It can be really misinterpreted by people who don’t expect it. But I think I’ve gotten used to it, well that or people just know what to expect from me. LOL! I hope it’s the former.
Q. Is there anything else about you that would surprise your readers?
I’m not sure about surprised, but here are some lesser-known facts about me.
I was born in South Africa.
I got engaged at the summit of Mount Etna, Sicily.
I worked in Treasury for most of my career.
I worked all over Europe.
I have four kids including identical twin boys.
I used to be a soprano singer (and I use the words ‘used to’ very strongly).
Thanks so much for dropping by, Leigh! I think I may be Irish! I’m sarcastic on a daily basis >.< And I loved the facts! Soprano singer was definitely surprising and so cool!!
I was born in South Africa, raised in Dublin, Ireland and moved to Cork in my 20’s. While living in beautiful Kinsale, Co Cork I discovered a love of writing. I write mainly for the young adult market. My current book, The Carrier of the Mark, prompted me to abandon my ‘riveting’ career in corporate treasury and have been writing ever since. I have another three books in the Carrier series and a few other projects I’m working on. My family and I now share our time between Ireland and the US.
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