I used to have this section labeled “retellings,” because when I first began dividing my short fiction into categories, most of the things that went here recognizably built on the plots of existing stories. But over time they’ve grown more wide-ranging in their approach: some of them are sequels, or mashups, or riffs, or just use some existing piece of folklore or mythology as a springboard to tell a related tale. Now it seems more appropriate to simply nod in the direction of my academic background and call them my “folklore stories.”
- “The Twa Corbies”
Understanding the language of birds isn’t all it’s cracked up to be.
- “What Still Abides”
He died at harvest, and rose again in spring.
- “Mad Maudlin”
Even the experienced nurses didn’t want to deal with her.
- “Vīs Dēlendī”
Vīs faciendī is the most difficult of the three degrees, and the most rarely bestowed.
- “Cruel Sisters”
The harp is a gruesome thing.
- “And Ask No Leave of Thee”
I’m the kind of person who, soon as you tell me not to do something, I do it.
- “Then Bide You There”
The storyteller has ways of dealing with the blacksmith.
- “Oh, My Cursed Daughter”
You cannot trust him; you cannot trust them. You cannot ever trust them.
- Never After: Thirteen Twists on Familiar Tales
- “The Princess and the . . .”
Sixty years on, I’m amazed at what they’ve done to the truth.
- “Two for the Path”
Two strokes of luck bring a chance for a new life.
An ebook collection of flash-length retellings.
- Monstrous Beauty
An ebook collection of the following seven stories:
- “The Wood, the Bridge, the House”
She has come this way many times before.
- “Shadows’ Bride”
Their laughter is the silence of empty rooms, the hush of dust lying decades thick.
- “Kiss of Life”
In faraway lands, the tale is a romantic one.
- “Tower in Moonlight”
The hart leads them far into the woods.
- “The Snow-White Heart”
“Cut out her heart and bring it to me,” the queen said, and so the huntsman did.
She stands out like a rose, red-black as venous blood.
- “Waiting for Beauty”
He wakes before dawn to prepare her breakfast.
- “Silence, Before the Horn”
In the end, we all chose sleep.
- “The Waking of Angantyr”
She was lucky to have made it this far.
- “Serpent, Wolf, and Half-Dead Thing”
Only two of Loki’s children have a fate.
- “This Is How”
This is how a valravn is made.
- “For the Fairest”
For the fairest, the inscription read . . . .
- “The Wives of Paris”
They offered him a beautiful woman, power over men, victory in war.
- “Daughter of Necessity”
The strands thrum faintly beneath her fingertips, like the strings of a lyre.
- “Salt Feels No Pain”
She did not mourn the cities in their fates, for they were full of wicked men.
- “The Gospel of Nachash”
The bekhorim were made from air, and their spirits were more subtle than that of man.
- “The Me of Perfect Sight”
Having seen the trap laid for his feet, how could he fail to avoid it now?
- “Centuries of Kings”
For thousands of years I have brought chaos with me wherever I go.
- “Speak to the Moon”
In Kemuriyama’s heart, a poem.
- “The Old Woman and the Tea”
Who would be so impolite as to refuse her hospitality?
- “Ghost and Fox”
The doctor could save your life, but not your memories.
However long I searched, the one for whom I was reborn would still be there.