Introduction: Exquisite Rainbow Stories

About: I'm a maker: I solder, photograph, draw, dye, write, cook, bake, garden.

Hello everybody!

This is a fun and simple project.

The idea is to take well-known stories, cut them up in pieces, mix the pieces and create a brand-new story!

The result is often non-sensical, sometimes hilarious.

It is based on the Surrealist game of "Exquisite Corpse" where people would in turn write part of a sentence on a folded sheet of paper. After several turns, the whole sentence was read aloud and everyone laughed.


Strips of paper: I used perfumers' sample paper, but it can be anything. My booklet had 5 times 10 strips.

Fine color markers: as many colors as you have stories. You color-code them: My Cinderall is teal, Red Riding Hood red and so on.

White-out for correcting mistakes.

Pencil if you want to pencil in your phrases before going to the marker phase.

A notebook to work out the stories' wording.

Step 1: Editing the Fairy Tales.

Since my booklet was 5 strip-long, I edited all the stories I wanted to use in 5 sentences.

That's a lot of editing, but part of the comic relief comes from the shortening of those famous stories.

I strongly suggest writing them down in a notebook first.

Since you want to mix and match at the end, you want to start a story from top to bottom

and then go on to the following strips.

My booklet was 10-strip deep so I chose 10 stories.

In this version, I have Cinderella, Hop-O'-My-Thumb, Jack & the Beanstalk, Sleeping Beauty, Puss in Boots, Red Riding Hood, Ugly Duckling, Three Little Pigs, Beauty & the Beast and the Boy Who Drew Cats.

Folklore is rich on all the continents. I'm very fond of Anansi the Spider, an Ashanti tale. And also, Coyote the Trickster of Native American mythology, Nasreddin of the Sufi tradition.

I suggest starting with stories you are very familiar with for easier editing.

Step 2: Writing Down the Sentences.

Chose a color for each story.

Make a rainbow sequence so that each story color follows another well.

Ideally, each strip is a complete sentence.

At the very least, they should be autonomous propositions so that there's a flow from one strip to another.

Step 3: Make Up a New Story From Existing Ones!

And now the fun part:

Once you've written down all the strips for all the stories in all the colors:

Chose a starting point then

flip the strips to chose one after another or let chance decide.

Read it aloud and laugh!

There are many, many possibilities. Some won't work out too well because of gender or number issues (She/he or he/they) or other reasons, but it won't be hard to find one that makes some sort of non-sensical sense!

Enjoy and have fun!

Step 4: The End Is Just the Beginning!

The last duckling to hatch is ugly.

He goes to the Prince's ball,

He steals a golden-egg laying hen

And tricks him into eating his own kids!

Don't talk to strange wolves.

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