One evening, all of these elements just kind of coagulated into a story in the space of about an hour. Images flashed through my mind of a young, ragged urchin girl with windblown curls, and of a grand but earthy man in a palace made of living trees. These were the seeds of the characters that would become Anya and the Fairy King.
I wanted to explore what would happen if a creature such as this began to feel, for the very first time, a selfless, parental love. To learn what it means to care for someone else, and be a protector rather than a tormentor.
I spent the three days before Christmas planning out the words I would use to tell this fairy tale, and then stayed up far too late on Christmas Eve actually writing it. By the evening of Christmas Day it was finished, and went through no further changes other than the correcting of spelling mistakes.
After I finished writing the story, I was at first concerned when I could find no clear moral. Most fairy tales have a moral after all... and this one just didn't seem to have one. The character's motivations were clear, but what did they learn from their experience? The Fairy King became a safe haven for Anya during her time of need, but his influence was not what she needed in the long term- it was her real father that she really needed. Anya, in turn, was a positive influence on the Fairy King, helping him understand love. But in the end, her presence did not bring happiness put pain... so what was the point of the story?
I think, after all that, the story is about love at its core. Love changes people for the better, but it isn't always easy, and you have to work at it. Love requires sacrifice and wisdom, and faithfulness. The characters of the story each have a different affect on each other, and must learn to deal with the consequences of both their own actions and the actions of those around them.