I began writing songs and stories targeting family entertainment. I fell in love with certain fairytales that had lasting messages, like the little match girl and the Ugly Duckling. I love the telling of stories and I was on fire with the idea that maybe I could write an original fairytale. With lessons of friendship, bravery, truthfulness and love. All tucked away in a story line full of adventure, humor and wacky characters.
Since most popular fairy tales are of European origin, I wanted to create characters of multiple ethnicities. As a young girl I used to read to my brothers and sisters. So… I created a storyteller who would narrate the tale as the reader turned the pages. A young, brown skin girl with dread-e-locks who, every afternoon climbs her favorite tree, followed by her favorite animal pals. Comfortably perched in a big, broad leafy branch, she reads the story, Beneath the Dragonwood Trees to her animal companions.
My next idea was to create characters in the story with genecology related to some known fairytale characters. I chose Rumpelstiltskin as my young hero’s uncle. I also decided that my young hero had to be black. A young Boy who’s love for his animal pals and the forest would transport us into a world of magical fun, humor and mysterious adventures. Every fairytale I’ve ever read has a forest in it and my story is no different.
A forest invokes mystery, beauty, and in the black of night, fearful characters and of course…. those who would protect us. In the tradition of all fairy tales, Beneath The Dragonwood Tree’s lessons, though fantasy driven…are about kindness, love, obedience honesty and bravery. A trilogy of adventures of a young black boy who has one dream… win a badge of honor in his village of Ficklewood Forest, by performing a deed of great valor.