Coyote Dances with the Stars

AliDrawings for Fairy Stories

Ah, Coyote.  He’s one of the many glories of Native American folk stories and, for me, perhaps the prime glory.  He’s a lot like the fox in European folk stories, in that he can be good or bad, wise or foolish, or all of these things at once.  In short, he’s very human, and that’s why I love him.  Now, after seemingly endless airbrushing, I’ve finally finished work on one of my favourite Coyote stories.  It’s a Cheyenne tale, and one of the places you can find it is in the fantastic American Indian Myths and Legends. Originally I was … Read More

Stars, Turned Inside Out

AliDrawings for Fairy Stories, Recommendations

The book industry’s an odd one.  About three weeks ago I finished handwriting the first draft of my third novel, which I’ve since been typing up to see what I’ve got on my hands.  In the meantime my second book, The Man who Rained, is at the printers being turned into something glossy and pretty and ready, come January, to go out into the big wide world.  Always as a writer you’re working on something a step ahead of where it appears you are now.  I was writing The Man who Rained when The Girl with Glass Feet came out, … Read More

Godfather death

AliDrawings for Fairy Stories

This was meant to be a post about Prince Faithful, a Swedish fairy tale you can read in English in this great book. The hitch in the plan was that the story is about a genius talking horse, and that all the horses I tried to draw were too appallingly bad to post on this blog.  So there you go, one for another time perhaps.  I’d still encourage you to grab a copy of Swedish Folktales & Legends.  The stories have a very mythic, very epic feel.  So if you’re a fan of Thor or Odin or Bilbo Baggins or … Read More

The Feathered Ogre

AliDrawings for Fairy Stories

So, as promised and in celebration of La Ragazza dai Piedi di Vetro being available in Italy, here are some pictures for a great folk story collected by the legendary Italo Calvino in his book Italian Folktales.  This one is from the same family as The Griffin and The Devil With The Three Golden Hairs (the latter of which in particular is great fun, as are all the stories about the Devil’s long-suffering mother). Having done some drawings for it, I was unable to find a version of this one on the internet.  So, with apologies for my lack of forward planning, … Read More

Snow White And The Seven Dwarfs

AliDrawings for Fairy Stories

…although I would rather we call it The Seven Dwarfs And Snow White here. Needless to say, this is one of the fairy tale heavyweights.  Whole libraries have been written about it, which makes even typing this sentence daunting.  You only have to enter Snow White into Wikipedia to get a sense of how many adaptations and interpretations have been attempted down the years.  With that in mind, I’ll keep the words here brief.  The reason I wanted to post about Snow White was because of a single sentence I found in my copy of Vintage’s The Complete Fairy Tales of … Read More