Wednesday, 17 August 2011

Spreading the love

I forgot to link back to Misha who gave me the award.  Sorry about that!

I am spreading the love to the following people.
Laughing Wolf
Michael Offutt

Thanks for being interested.

I got an award!

I got a pretty award!  Look:

So now I have to answer the following questions:

1) Are you a rutabaga?
2) Who is your current crush?
3) Upload a heartwarming picture that makes you smile.
4) When was the last time you ate a vine-ripened tomato?
5) Name one habit that causes other people to plot your demise?
6) What is the weirdest, most-disgusting job you've ever had to do?
7) Where da muffin top at?
8) What author introduced you to your genre?
9) Describe yourself using obscure Latin words.

Please see the answers below:
1) Are you a rutabaga?

Am I a Brassica napus? Not last time I checked.  I am neither yellow, nor round.  I am not even buried in soil.  And yet, I have been wrong in these matters before.  I defer to the greater knowledge of the organising committee.

2) Who is your current crush?
Ice.  With lemon peel and strawberries.  And a dash of Klein Konstantia (Small Constantia) muscadel.

3) Upload a heartwarming picture that makes you smile.

4) When was the last time you ate a vine-ripened tomato?

All tomatoes are ripened on a vine up to a certain point.  The last tomato I had was certainly ripened to an edible stage on a vine.  The rest, the part that happens in the cooling chamber, is just chemistry.

5) Name one habit that causes other people to plot your demise?
Just one?  I finish other people's  sentences.  But that's just because I'm smarter than them and when I say it, it has more credibility.  Mwuhahaha!

6) What is the weirdest, most-disgusting job you've ever had to do?
I had to wash the plastic sheet the baby-ish ostriches slept on.  It was a crappy job.

7) Where da muffin top at?
Muffin top?  I don't know nuffin about no muffin top.  Go to Dreary Lane, there you can find a related person who might know where to find the top of the muffin.

8) What author introduced you to your genre?
J.R.R. Tolkien (duh), C.S. Lewis, Terry Pratchett, Oscar Wilde.  To name a few.

9) Describe yourself using obscure Latin words.
Urderousmay gainstay eoplepay howay inkthay atthay ancay elltay emay ymay objay.

Monday, 8 August 2011

I have an idea

A shiny new one apparently.  And it is both exciting and getting me down.

I sometimes wonder when I'm going to get on with it.  You are probably quite bored with me falling around every other week to a different new story.  Every time I am SO super excited about it.  I get my knickers in a knot just thinking about it.  It is new, it is shiny and it is so awesomely super cool.  For a little while at least.  Then it starts petering out and eventually it dies of starvation.  Lovely aint it?

I don't suppose I am the only new writer who experiences this.  And I don't even think it is a bad thing.  For one thing, how terrible would it be to have a new idea and not be excited about it?  Would you ever actually write?  So yes, the excitement of a new idea is paramount.  But what do you do when you get around to the not-so-exciting part?  The part where you have to sit down and plan, or at least think about what you are writing?  The excitement starts to die off.  What then?

I think I might have found the elixer of life for my writing at least.  Don't plan, don't even think.  Just write.  To start with, anyway.  Obviously later you will have to plot, think, measure twice, cut once.  But for now, to start with, I just write.  No thinking "is this a good name?" not even thinking if your setting or story is good.  Right now I'm like "what story?"  Yep.  No story, just writing.

You're probably thinkin why I only now realise this.  But the truth is that I've been so caught up in writing the right story (and that is very important and still very high on the list of priorities) that I forgot to practise writing.  Just writing for the heck of it.  I used to love just stringing together a bunch of words and seeing what comes out the other side.  Somewhere I lost that.

I couldn't get to writing my main work seriously becasue I couldn't remember what it is like to write creatively.  Everything I wrote was ordered and structured "just right" but all in all quite useless.

I love my shiny new idea.  I love it to bits.  It is nonsensical, silly and stupid.  It will probably never be published.  But it keeps me entertained and somewhat sane.

Do you write something silly or off topic sometimes?  Or do you focus on your main WiP and keep going at it?  How do you keep focus?

Wednesday, 3 August 2011

A fangirl goes "squee!"

I am a Lord of the Rings fangirl.  More so than an Assassin's Creed fangirl.  I nearly hijacked a blog's comment section.  I realised my mistake.  But to satisfy my need to blog about my favourite book (and to un-officially take part in the Novel Films Blogfest), I would like to continue the discussion.

Please go read Misha Blog "Novel Films Blogfest Part 2: What makes a good adaption?"

It should give you a better idea what I'm rambling about.

"Nice post!  But I think you left out one of the book/movie combinations that should always be mentioned.  Maybe I'm biased...  "

Maybe?  I like lying to myself it seems.

The Lord of the Rings fall into the same category as The Chronicles of Narnia when it comes to movie adaptations.  The book is written is such exquisite detail that you can't go wrong if you follow it closely.  Great descriptions of breathtaking views and of clothing and armour in the minutest detail.  The filmmakers spent quite a lot of time perusing The Lord of the Rings and other books by Tolkien concerned with Middle-earth.  It is to their credit: it took seven years to film all three movies.  And they did an excellent job.  From the level of detail in the movies you can see that they took it very seriously.  It was truly a job well done.

And yet Peter Jackson decided to move away from the book at some points. For example, in the movie Faramir takes Frodo to Osgiliath (on the way to Minas Tirith to take the One Ring to his father, the Steward of Gondor).  In the book it does not happen because Faramir states "I would not take this thing if it lay by the wayside".  Jackson had a good reason for doing this.  In the book it is made clear that Faramir is very different from his brother, who tried to take the Ring by force.  It is a very important sub-plot in the book.  However, it would be impossible to create a sub-plot of the same strenth in the movies without extending the already lengthy movies (about 12 hours in total) quite a bit more.  The problem then arose that the Ring is a powerful seductress.  How is it possible that a man would just say "nah, not for me"?  Without the backgroun in the book, the movie had to make a different plan.  And it all worked out all right: Frodo still went on his journey and completed his quest.  He just took a bit of a different road to get there.

Did it lessen the story?  I think it did, actually.  But not in such a way that I don't like the movies.  I love the book, and I read it once a year.  And I love the movies.  I love them for different reasons, though.  The book I love because it is an absolute masterpiece of writing.  I love the movies because people spent such a long time with the sole purpose of carrying accross a much loved story as faithfully as possible.  They made the movies in honour of Tolkien, not despite of him.

The things in the movie that I disliked was thoroughly made up for.  There are certain passages, sometimes whole paragraphs in the movie that are direct quotes from the book.  The same detail that is in the book is carried over to the movies.

I dream of writing a book that will have the same impact on movie makers one day.  The Lord of the Rings is a book with no equal.  No-one can improve on it.  Jackson and his team didn't try to.  I think that is what goes wrong with adaptations.  People think they can make the movie better than the book.  Maybe they can.  In this case, they didn't have a chance.  Well done to them for not trying.

Do you aspire to write a book that can be made into a movie?  Does that influence your writing style at all?

On a side note, how/where do I find out about these blog fests?  I hate getting on the back of the cart all the time.