As near as I can figure out, fables are about trying to change the world through the power of words.
Here’s how to go about writing your very own fable (my example in brackets):
- Pick an aspect of life that you want to criticise or give advice about (people who try to make a situation better by attempting to change others rather than working on their own sh..tuff)
- Nominate a couple of creatures to represent the characters. Try to match the attributes of the animals to those of the characters. (a china shop owner who wants everyone to be gentler, and a bull, who is naturally big and awkward)
- Give your fable a suitable title (The China Shop Owner and The Bull)
- Choose a setting for your tale (a china shop)
- Start with one state (a tired bull)
- Finish with another state (a wrecked china shop)
- Figure out how to get from the start to the finish whilst incorporating the aspect of life you want to change (A china shop owner is out walking and meets a bull who is looking tired. The china shop owner, feeling sorry for the bull, takes him home to his living quarter at the back of his china shop for a lovely meal and a rest in his own luxurious bed. Knowing that he has been kind to the bull, the china shop owner reasons that the bull will be kind and thoughtful in return, and so makes no changes to the shop that he proudly plans to show the bull around later that day. When the bull wakes up, the china shop owner impresses on the bull that he must be very careful whilst walking through the narrow aisles of the china shop as he looks at the delicate and valuable items on display. The bull walks slowly around the shop knocking down display after display with his wide horns and huge backside.)
- Attach a suitable, pithy moral to the fable (Those who expect others to change will suffer loss.)
There you have it – an a to z (well – 1 to 8) on how to write a fable. What do you reckon – could you write one of your own? I’d love to know what you want to change about the world.
If don’t want to, or you’re happy with the way things are, then that’s okay too – just have yourself a great day.