Feb 17 2017 8:06am

How Do You Like Your Retellings: Close to the Source or Just Inspired by It?

Retellings and reimaginings can be tough. You're taking a pre-established story line and making it your own. Personally, I love a Beauty and the Beast reimagining or a Pride and Prejudice. However, how the retelling is handled—and how much the reader likes it—can depend on how close to the source material the retelling is. 

Can something be too close to the source material? Do you like it when a retelling is just inpired by the source material and do you prefer and beat-by-beat retelling? 

Let me know in the comments!

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Jen Wattley
1. JenWattley
My favorite "retelling" of P&P will always be The Lizzie Bennet Diaries. It's so true to the source, but fresh and new. It's the same thing, but different. Which is what we tend to gravitate towards, I think.
Jennifer Proffitt
2. JenniferProffitt
I like mine to have nods to the source material and follow the structure, but not be a beat by beat retelling. I've experience some where you can't see the source in there at all (thinking more of published fan fiction) and others where you're reading the Pride & Prejudice retelling and see Elizabeth, see Darcy, see Lady Catherine, and so on and so forth. I don't like to be able to see the original characters. It's a fine balance!
3. PhoebeChase
My answer is boring: I don't care as long as the story is good.
EC Spurlock
4. EC Spurlock
I'd like the author of a retelling to bring something fresh and new, or see the story from a different perspective. Why do a beat-for-beat retelling when the original author has already written a classic? If you're nor bringing something of your own to the story, you'll never measure up to the original, so there's no point.
5. lauralee1912
I also like nods to the source material and a good story.

One of my favorite re-tellings of Beauty and the Beast is The Vixen and the Vet by Katy Regnery. There are many ties back to the original story, especially the movie, but the story is still original. And the hero has a library.
EC Spurlock
6. Lolane
I like both. Beat by beat retellings can still do something original. I'm thinking of the undersung '89 slasher retelling of Phantom of the Opera which really is a beat by beat remake, but still manages to squeeze time travel and a Faust reference in there despite that. Inspired by can also be very good though, taking what was great about the original and spinning a new story out of those elements. Like the new Archie TV series, for example. I think the key is to keep what makes people nostalgic and add new elements to surprise.
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