At a recent book festival, an older lady came to my table and looked through my middle-grade mystery fairy story. When she handed the book to me for signing, I asked, “Is it a present for your grandkids?” She shook her head. “I’m going to add it to my fairy book collection.” (Apparently I’m not the only one with a collection of fairy books!)
Another woman at the festival saw my fairy book and started talking about a fairy movie she’d seen. “You mean, that documentary where they interview people who’ve seen fairies?” I asked. Her face lit up. “That’s it!” We started chatting about the film, The Fairy Faith, which is about real children seeing fairies in the woods. But as these kids grow up, most of them stop seeing the fairies, or forget they ever did.
I also told her about a woman I’d met, who’d witnessed colored orbs floating in the air around her house in the woods. (She never said they were fairies, but my imagination had other ideas…) Anyway, the fairy documentary and the memory of those orbs stayed in my mind for years, planting a little story seed in my mind. Someday, I decided, I would write about fairies…
Fast forward a few years…I was having a book cover designed for my short story, The Christmas Visitor, when I came across an illustration of a fairy tree. Ablaze with light, the tree had a cozy little door, snow-covered boughs, and old-fashioned windows tucked among the greenery. Without thinking twice, I bought the image, and told myself, Someday, I’m going to write about that tree…
Another year or two went by. While that beautiful fairy tree image sat neglected on my computer, I was working on other books. Then one fall day, I heard the buzz of chain saws, and the grinding of excavators. Loggers had moved into the deep woods near our home.
Before long, the tract of deep green woodlands about a third of a mile away was reduced to an unsightly snarl of dead trees and brush. Talking with other folks living close by, John and I found we’d all seen more wildlife out in the open since the forest came down: Owls, bear, even a mountain lion or two, and I’d recently laid eyes on the first skunk I’d ever seen here in the Foothills. I realized what happens when you take down a forest—the wild creatures must find new homes.
As Christmas approached, John and I watched another wonderful film, Fairy Tale: A True Story. (This movie is billed as fiction, but you never know…) Within days, my fairy story came together. I asked myself, “What if?” What if a band of woodland fairies live in a forest, and the trees get cut down?
This International Fairy Day, you can find out what happens…for free! Morgan Carey and The Mystery of the Christmas Fairies will be a free ebook starting Wednesday, June 22 though the official Fairy Day, Friday, June 24. I hope you’ll take a look…and if you get a chance, share your fairy tales here!