The new literary/fantasy journal, Wild Musette, recently accepted my story, “Piper: A Song for Flute and Chorus.”
It’s a retelling of the Pied Piper of Hamelin, told from the perspective of a woman who fell in love with the piper. It also has a Spoon River-like choral aspect where various townspeople give their views of the piper and tell of their experiences with him in their own voices.
I always liked the idea of the Pied Piper of Hamelin but never liked the motivation for the story’s tragedy — the piper not being paid for his services in ridding Hamelin of rats. I wanted to like the piper more, to have sympathy for him. But I found him unlikeable because his punishment of Hamelin, taking away the town’s children, seemed disproportionate to the wrong of one official not paying a bill. I found what I consider a deeper motivation for the piper in the re-telling and a greater wrong on the part of the town.
When I wrote this story a few years back, little did I know that the greater wrong I chose would become timely now. I won’t say what so as not to spoil the retelling.
I found Wild Musette through some folks who posted about it in a private writing forum. I read the guidelines. Wild Musette was looking for:
Stories with music in them (check)
Stories about womens’ relationships (check)
I figured I’d give submitting there a shot. I’m glad I did.