Grace Neibel and Twisted Fairy Tales


Isabelle Harrel, Staff Writer

Many teenagers claim that they are passionate about writing. However, few actually channel their passion and write something that gets published at such a young age. Grace Neibel, a junior here at Mill Creek, is one of those few.

Neibel was published in an anthology called Twisted Fairy Tales, a collection of various young authors’ works published by Alternate Ending Publications.

Each of the works revolves around a traditional fairy tale that incorporates creepy elements.

For her portion of the book, Neibel wrote “Cheap Thrills,” a version of the classic Hansel and Gretel story where the characters deal with a drug addiction.

According to Neibel, the inspiration for the piece came from the desire to answer the questions that the original version raises about motives.

“The [original story] leaves a lot of questions as to motives and such,” she said. “I’ve always tried to answer questions to solve what I don’t know, and I think in taking Hansel and Gretel and twisting the story in a deliciously malicious way, I got to explore the motives of the witch, Hansel and Gretel, and why the story turned out the way it did.”

In June of this year, Twisted Fairy Tales was nominated for the Best Anthology of the Year Award, and it received any official nominee last month, granting them an invitation to the Ozarks Indie Book Fest as well as official signings and a panel. The convention lasted from the 21st to the 22nd of October, and Twisted Fairy Tales won the award.

While the whole event was enjoyable for her, the best part of Neibel’s trip was the book signing on the 21st.

“The best moment there had to be at the signing on Saturday,” she said.

“A woman walked up to us and bought the last copy, and while we were signing it, explained the importance of twisted fairy tales to her.”

Her child is in sixth grade (the same age as the youngest in the anthology) and has severe cognitive disabilities that impact her learning. However, she was so inspired by us, people her age getting published, that she began to write herself, and she is now reading and writing at an eleventh-grade level.

“She fought her disability because of me. That really reminded me why I write not only for me but for them. To inspire. To cause one to feel.”

“The whole experience was surreal,” she continued. “It’s one that I’ll hold very close to my heart.”