Saturday, 02 July 2022

G Guest Editorials

Celebrate Lit: Madness in Wonderland

By Tabitha Bouldin

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I read my first Alice in Wonderland retelling before I read Lewis Carroll’s classic. I often do things in reverse, so for me it wasn’t surprising. What did surprise me was how much I enjoyed the original tale. The whimsy and mayhem drew me in once I was willing to give the story a chance.

However, it’s the retelling that sticks out in my mind more than the original. I read it once, and then a year later, I read it again. And even the second time, I thought, “This. This is an amazing story.”

I wasn’t an author at the time. I simply knew that I could not stop thinking about how the author took me on this absolutely breathtaking adventure that felt familiar yet so unique.

When it came time to write my own retelling, I knew for sure and for certain that I needed an Alice story. The only problem was what I would combine it with. So many options, so few hours of typing available per day. Fantasy was a must, but again, there are hundreds of possibilities. That’s when I found steampunk. This zany fantasy world based on the Victorian era but with airships and machines that run on steam became my ticket to another world.

It wasn’t long before I had a Pinterest board filled with costumes, characters, weapons, and all manner of castle ideas. The world of Wonderland came alive but with a twist all my own. I’m not certain when I’ve had as much fun writing a story as I did when working on Madness in Wonderland. It challenged me in ways I never expected while telling a story that I wanted to write forever.

The Alice in my story is a bit older than Carroll’s classic. She’s a bit world-weary, even though she’s hardly in her 20s. But she’s focused, and she’s determined to find her happily ever after, even if she must fight an evil queen to obtain that sliver of life that was taken from her.

I want to be like Alice when I grow up.

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Tabitha Bouldin is a student at Southern New Hampshire University, where she is currently pursuing her Bachelor’s in Creative Writing. As a member of American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW), she works with critique groups and provides endorsements for other authors. Tabitha’s genre of choice is Contemporary Christian Romance which she describes as: Adventure with heart. Tabitha spent ten years working as a Medical Assistant before God opened the door which allowed her to become a stay-at-home-homeschooling-mom and author.

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