So it’s been a FEW MONTHS since I’ve written in here, and so much mermaidliness has piled up that I figure I better get some of it down now. I did mean to post on Saturday, which was not only the first day of summer and MY BIRTHDAY but also the gorgeous Coney Island Mermaid Parade, which I attended in spirit if not in sparkling body paint. But I didn’t as I was too busy becoming very old. So right now let me just catch you up on a few things involving yours truly and our favorite creatures from the deep:
1. I published an essay about my experience at Weeki Wachee’s mermaid camp in the April 2014 issue of Allure Magazine:
I talk about how scary it was for me to dive in after years of avoiding the water … but after interviewing all these mermaids (especially all those blissed-out Weeki ladies) for this blog, how could I not dive in myself? And a few months after doing the camp at Weeki Wachee (in June 2011) I went and got scuba certified in Nicaragua! It is all extremely uplifting and inspirational, so you should obviously go hunt down a copy right now. Thank you, mermaids!
2. I also published a little piece in the latest issue of Fairy Tale Review, a special Oz-themed issue edited by Timothy Schaffert and Kate Bernheimer that came out this spring. So what is my Oz story? A Little Mermaid/Wicked Witch mash-up of course! Here’s a snippet:
This should not have been my fate. When I lived in the upper world, I despised the water—seas, lakes, wells, rivers, rain-collecting buckets, even the dew drops on the petals of poppies—I hated it all. I was a creature of air, flying through it, feeling it split in my wake, my hair streaming out behind me and beneath me, a city that sparkled like emeralds below me. Often, my sister flew next to me, and we’d descend as low as we could, zigzagging around the spires of the great palace, laughing and singing. I try not to think about those days now, back when she was alive and we were free. I have rage, whole galaxies of it, but I have bidden my time down here, in the deepest ocean, where there is only darkness and light, tiny glowing creatures that illuminate this sad hovel.
But I am nearly ready. I have been collecting all their little parts for years now. I have teeth and tusks, scales and eggs, fins and spines, hearts and hides. Today I take the tongue of a mermaid who believes a prince will love her, when I can see well enough in my crystal ball that he already loves another. She thinks that her beauty makes her invincible, the way that she did, the way she still thinks she’s invincible with her ridiculous wand, that sparkly crown she fashioned herself. The mermaid, who looks so much like her, thinks she can move from one life to another and not feel the pain that comes with defying your own nature. Let her. Let her pain be but a taste of what she will feel, soon enough.
Glinda. The name alone makes me tremble.
3. I’m sure you guys saw that Sofia Coppola’s movie was greenlit by Universal–a live-action Little Mermaid movie with a script from the woman who wrote Edward Scissorhands, which is of course one of the best movies ever. This project was already in development (though with Joe Wright) when my own book was optioned by Sony in 2011, prompting a bunch of articles about Hollywood’s two Little Mermaids (like this one from Perez Hilton) when the news about my book came out. The second option of my book was up this past April (it had been renewed in late 2012), and Sony decided not to renew again. So even though my book had been in development for three years and there was a finished script from Shana Feste, who was also set to direct, and things looked pretty good as recently as January, a Mermaid movie is definitely off the table … for now! Please take note, movie producers with lots of dough!
Here is an awesome spoof of the Sofia movie from Funny or Die:
4. One thing that took up a ton of my time was putting together the special Mermaids edition of Faerie Magazine, which finally came out in December (and is on sale right now for $4.95). It’s really lovely and has tons of mermaid fiction, photography, interviews, destinations, and all kinds of other good stuff. I liked editing the magazine so much that I’ve gone on to edit two regular editions of Faerie (spring and summer 2014) and am working on the fall issue now. The regular magazine isn’t chock full of mermaids but they pop in; the spring edition featured an article on mermaid/lady knight Virginia Hankins, who was photographed by awesome mermaid photographer Brenda Stumpf, and the summer issue features a mermaid-y spread from Emily Soto. Here’s the image we used on the cover:
Also, the Faerie website sells jewelry, including this awesome mermaid pendant:
5. I hope you are planning on hanging out with me at MERMAIDS BY THE SEA in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, from September 18-21st! The fabulous Barbara Wynns will be hosting and the dashing Allen Sherrod will break a world record by staying underwater for 55 hours…! I know, my skin just wrinkled a bit when I wrote that, and it’s not like I need any more of those.