Announcement: Reading Ella Enchanted on Facebook

This isn’t really a post, though there will be one on Wednesday as usual. I just want to let you know, in case you’d like to watch or you have siblings or your own kids who’d like to. Starting tomorrow at 11:00 am Eastern Daylight Time, I’ll be reading a chapter a day of Ella Enchanted.

  1. future_famous_author says:

    Oh, that’s fun! Also, funny timing, since my cousin was just texting about how she watched the movie for Ella but thought the book was much better!

  2. Ms. Levine,

    Thank you for your work over the years. I grew up reading many of your books. I’m so impressed the way you write strong independent female characters in fairy tales. As someone who always loved a good rom com and fairy tale, it was amazing to actually read stories where women didn’t need saving from men. While I didn’t know it at the time, I’m so thankful I had that in my life from a young age to help learn what a healthy romantic relationship looked like in the 90/00s rather than the Disney idea. It was harder to find back then than it is today. To this day, whenever I need a birthday gift for a 8-13 year old girl I always buy them Ella Enchanted, and always recommend your books to parents of girls in elementary school to help teach them those skills subconsciously.

    Ella in particular meant a lot to me. I had a stroke at birth leaving me with limited use of my right arm. When I hit puberty I started having seizures. Ella’s symptoms disobeying an order, attitude, frustration and annoyance obeying orders were so similar to my symptoms and feeling whenever I had a seizure. It was nice to read I wasn’t the only one that experience those feelings, even if it was a fictional book. I was the only one I knew with any kind of handicap or seizures, so there wasn’t anyone to relate to in my life.

    It became my sick book aka. I would read it every time I was home sick from school. I think because it was a book that was easy to read, had a happy ending, and I could read the entire thing in one day and also had time to watch a movie. The only exception to this rule that I can remember was 9/11. Needless to say my copy of the book is only still in one piece because of a piece of duck tape.

    I grew up loving to read books, but I also loved movies. My family would watch a movie every Friday night, my mum would make homemade pizza and we would eat it on the floor as we watched the movie. I started seeing a movie adaptation play out in my head of books when I read them. When I heard they were making a movie of Ella Enchanted, I was so excited, until I saw the trailer. I was horrified and vowed that I would never see the movie, just based on the trailer. It was one of the reasons several years later I decided to be a film major in college. I wanted to write adaptions of books and turn them into good movies. So many of my favorite books had horrible movie adaptions I wanted to change how Hollywood ruined books singlehandedly. Oh, what you think you can do at 18!

    The summer after I took a screenwriting class in college, I babysat some girls, and their parents rented Ella Enchanted for us to watch. I tried to get them to watch something else, but we ended up watching it. It was even worse than I expected – no offense to you. (See tangent below if you want my apology on behalf of Hollywood on how they treated you and rant on how Hollywood treated your work.) In my anger, I went home and wrote an adaptation of how I pictured Ella Enchanted the movie. Never showed it to anyone, edited it, or did anything for with it. I just did it for me and to practice of writing screenplays.

    It’s been over ten years since I wrote that screenplay, and several years since I read any of your books, but today I was cleaning my computer and found the screenplay. I had a good time rereading it. I was curious what you were up to these days, if you wrote any new books, and stumbled on your website/blog. It made me so happy to see you’re reading Ella Enchanted on Facebook Live. I’ll enjoy watching/listening to you over the next few weeks. It’s been years since I read it, and will be a nice break from COVID-19.

    Since you have a contact form and can attach a link, I thought I’d send my screenplay to you. Since you’re the only person on earth who might enjoy reading it. I won’t be offended if you don’t read it, or honestly expect you to read it or reply. Your time is valuable and I’m sure you have more important things to do. I’m sorry this turned out as long as it did. I really just wanted to thank you for your books, and thought you might like to hear how your work played in my life story.

    Tangent: I’m so sorry the studio took the idea of a girl who was cursed to be obedient and threw everything else out the window, what was with the uncle, and even worse, made the prince save her if memory serves (it’s been a decade since I watched the movie, so I might not remember it correctly). I hope they paid you well for it at least. Stupid Hollywood producers. They take a good script and rewrite it so many times, based on their stupid opinion and what test audiences think, that it’s no longer a good movie. On behalf of Hollywood, I’m so very sorry!! I hope this doesn’t offend you at all.

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