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Sources of Inspiration: The Nutcracker and the Mouse King

 

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One of my favorite sources of inspiration is research on old legends, tales, or classic stories.

I’ve always loved ‘The Nutcracker’. As a child, I went to see a version, which a friend’s sister was playing one of the Russian dolls in. This particular ‘Nutcracker’ was half play, half ballet. The play part featured the mouse king. He ran around, biting people, giving them ugly faces, until the Nutcracker stopped him.

I’ve seen many versions of ‘The Nutcracker’ since, but that was the only one with that particular storyline. When I did some research for ‘Seven Tricks’, I finally found where that idea came from.

‘The Nutcracker’ is based off of a story by A.T.A. Hoffman called ‘The Nutcracker and the Mouse King’. There’s a story within a story, which Dousselmeyer tells Marie, the heroine of the tale. It deals with how nutcrackers came into being and the curse of the ugly face, which the mouse queen inflicted upon a human princess.

Not only did this story inspire the play I saw long ago, but it inspired me. The details of this tale; the bite, the special nut, and seven heads of the mouse king gave birth to ideas, which I turned into ‘Seven Tricks’.

How about you, dear reader? Have you ever done research, which inspired you to write something, or in some other way?

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