One of the burdens carried by children's literature is the expectation that it is supposed to be didactic, that it is supposed to teach a lesson. "What lesson do you want children to take away from your book?" is a question I get all the time about my children's books. Yet, I have never been asked that question about any of my books for adults.
When I was a child I resented the stories I read about the ugly mean older sisters. Why did the youngest have to be the kind beautiful one? And why did the eldest always seem to possess the worst flaws? I remember thinking, if I were a writer, I'd never bow down to that storytelling tradition. I'd write a story about the gorgeous gentle-spirited oldest daughter with the two dreadful younger sisters. If you haven't already figured it out, I'm a first born.