My children’s story “Grace’s Kingdom” was inspired by classics like Alice in Wonderland, The Secret Garden, The Chronicles of Narnia all featuring protagonists exploring magical worlds hidden to all but them while escaping a harsher realities beyond the borders of the their fantasy world. I also drew on my own personal experiences, crafting a story I hoped would resonate with children experiencing bullying and coping with being different. “Grace’s Kingdom” channels the extremely difficult daily experiences for many children but highlighting how being different is a hidden strength.
My younger readers story “A Bargain of Shadows” was inspired by Swedish fairytale about siblings and the love they share for each other. When one is fatally ill, the brother bargains with a wizard to save her life in exchange for his shadow. Exiled from society for being different and having no shadow, he flees into the Otherworld of magic and becomes enslaved to the wizard. His sister goes in search of him, undergoing many trials to eventually outwit and save her brother. “A Bargain of Shadows” speaks to sibling rivalry and love and the undeniable importance of family.
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