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Welcoming 2013 with KISSED

By Cameron Dokey - January 30, 2013

Yikes! I've been ... KISSED. Not a bad way to start 2013, huh?

Seriously, though, Happy New Year everyone! And please allow me to introduce my newest title (the name of which you surely know by now). It's a collection of three of my fairytale retellings, Belle, Sunlight and Shadow, and Winter's Child. I'm proud of all my fairytales, but I must confess I have a particular fondness for KISSED as it includes one of the stories I was most delighted to be given the opportunity to put my own spin on, Mozart's fabulous opera, The Magic Flute. Better known to you as Sunlight and Shadow. Not only was it a wonderful tale to work on in and of itself, it also brought back memories of one of the happiest times of my life: the days when I had first become a member of the acting company at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival and moved to Ashland, Oregon.

I was 20 years old. The youngest person ever hired to be a regular member of the acting company. And I was absolutely thrilled, and absolutely terrified.

Fortunately for me, I lived for a period of time with Hilary Tate, who had a small house in a town just north of Ashland with the remarkable name of Talent, Oregon. (This is true, you know. I am not making it up.) As I recall, we were pretty much broke all the time. We lived on the oatmeal bread I baked non-stop, jam, and smores. And we listened to The Magic Flute and I totally fell in love with the story and the sound. Years later, still at the festival, I lived with yet a different friend who remarked that she could always tell what kind of mood I was in by which section of the opera I chose to put on. Because, just as my title suggests, there are happy things and not-so-happy. There is sunlight and there is shadow. Getting to reimagine that world was a very great joy. My ongoing thanks to my then editor, Lisa Clancy, for giving me the chance to do so.

But KISSED is just the beginning of 2013. There will be many new things coming down the road this year. Come back and visit this site to see what they are.