A big thank-you to Rachel for kick-starting the Five Glass Slippers blog! All five of us are extremely excited to be able to chat with you about our stories. Like Rachel, I also took a little bit of inspiration for my protagonist from a real-life acquaintance.
I’m on the tall side--just enough to make compact cars annoying, but not enough to buy tall jeans with any sort of confidence that I won’t be stepping on the hems. All that is to say, I haven’t personally experienced the trials and tribulations of the vertically challenged.
My friend Christian, however, is just barely five feet tall on a good day, and she is forever climbing up on wobbly tables, rolling chairs, and other structurally unsound objects in order to reach items shelved by taller individuals. She is simultaneously one of the cutest and fiercest people I’ve ever met. (She once broke a man’s nose with a small skillet. He was 6’ 4”, so really the most surprising thing about that story is how she managed to reach his nose in the first place.) Somehow Christian manages to blend a no-nonsense attitude with boundless friendliness, resulting in a skillet-wielding spitfire who will make your favorite flavor of cake for your birthday.
Elsa, the protagonist of A Cinder’s Tale, is based in part upon my diminutive friend. Although there is no nose-breaking in the story (spoilers?), there is a good deal of climbing on top of objects to reach things. Elsa and Christian are both exceedingly tolerant of, shall we say, difficult working environments and even more difficult coworkers. Patience is a necessity, whether one works on a lava-strewn planet or in a cubicle farm. One’s odds of receiving a custom-made spacesuit to fit one's height, however, are considerably higher in the former place of employment than in the latter.
I can't wait for you to get to know Elsa properly. June isn't far away!