Forum: Prospective Challenges

Discussing: A Tale within a Tale

A Tale within a Tale

Here's another idea for a challenge: It's a common literary device to have a tale told within your main story. Tolkien himself has many examples of this in LotR, the most compelling being perhaps the tale of Luthien at Weathertop.

The device could be used in many effective ways: a tale-teller relating a story for entertainment, as Strider does; a mother telling a child a story; someone relating a tale of the past; a herald passing on information. It could be a character telling a story about himself, or retelling an old legend for any number of reasons. The tale could be an essential part of the story, or a side story to the main plot.

You could retell a story that Tolkien already wrote; take tales from, say, the Grimm Brothers and recast them in ME; or make up a new one that would fill a gap in Tolkien's mythology. It could be a poem or a story--or even a play! Traveling minstrels in Gondor or Rohan, perhaps (which reminds me that Shakespeare uses this device to good effect in "Hamlet"!).

DrummerWench, for one, has a wonderful story that uses this device, "The Green Flash." I used it in a chapter of "The Sword of Elendil." I'm sure others have as well.

Any takers?

Gandalfs apprentice 

 

 

Re: A Tale within a Tale

Yes, this device was often used in plays in the form eg a messenger or someone observing a scene like a sentinel. In German, this is called 'Mauerschau', that is 'looking over a wall'.

Oh, Strider's tales in the Pony! I have never read a story in which he tells a tale even though it is canon that he was a story teller. Halbarad's tale was precious, GA, I loved this interpretation! ;)

Or bedtimestories! This calls, but sadly I have so much to write yet...Really interesting idea.

~Vilwarin

 

 

Re: A Tale within a Tale

Or the Fellowship telling tales over the campfire--remember when Legolas tells the tale of Nimrodel? There are many such possibilities.

Or the tale could be in the form of a letter, or an old document from the past that has just been discovered.

Go for it! We could have a long deadline--I would need that too!

BTW, I'm glad you liked Halbarad's tale--I like it so much I'm tempted to use it again somewhere!

G.A. 

 

 

Re: A Tale within a Tale

I'm definitely up for that one! Sign me on. Big discussion around my house today has been what a complete nerd I am--but I am shamelessly recalcitrant. Just to prove it: I always liked the scene in "Little Women" where they put on the play. (OK, it's not Hamlet!)

Oshun

 

 

Re: A Tale within a Tale

Thank you, G.A., for your kind words!

Well, since I already have a story that fits this Challenge, I guess I'm in!   I'm also working on "The Tower Hills", which will contain an embedded tale (right now, it's a song) when it's done.  So I could volunteer that one, too.

I say, G.A., maybe you could put together a sequel to "Bedtime Nightmare", wherein Legolas tells Eldarion a story...

Vilwarin wrote:
Oh, Strider's tales in the Pony! I have never read a story in which he tells a tale even though it is canon that he was a story teller.

I would so love to read a fic about Strider telling stories at the Pony.

Oshun wrote:
Big discussion around my house today has been what a complete nerd I am

So glad I'm not alone.

DW

 

 

Re: A Tale within a Tale

Uh, oh, now I have a story idea in my head... that means I am in as well. We only need one more vic.. um taker. Anyone there outside?

And long deadline, I agree there.

~Vilwarin

 

 

Re: A Tale within a Tale

*bad words, bad words*

Yeah, I have a long dormant bunny for Faramir hearing stories about Thorongil. It would work quite nicely here. So as long as we have at least nine months to work on it, I'll be #5.

 

 

Re: A Tale within a Tale

Five now, juhu!

So the challenge A Tale within a Tale is up now with a deadline of nine months. The discussion an be found here .

~Vilwarin

 

 

Re: A Tale within a Tale

Marta wrote

Yeah, I have a long dormant bunny for Faramir hearing stories about Thorongil.

Oh, I want to read that one!

DW

 

 

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