Sunday, October 25, 2009

The frosty night was like a fairy tale...from The Poems of Doctor Zhivago

I scored the above book at the Literacy Book Store for 1.oo!

The poems were pulled from Russia's Paternak's book Doctor Zhivago. The translation in 1957 ended 25 years of literary exhile for Paternak.

I'll admit I never read the book but I LOVED the movie and the soundtrack.

here is the ending of one of his peoms...

Like luminous phantoms the trees

Come thronging out on the highway

To wave their farewell to Night

That knows what is fated to be

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

"The word aerobics came about when gym instructors got together and said: If we're going to charge $10 a hour we can't call it Jumping Up and Down."

The quote is from the very funny Rita Rudner.

The reason I'm using it here is to let you all know I joined a gym.

And like Rita I also found that

They call it Pilates because they can't call it 'The Stretching Rack' class.


They call it Zumba because they can't call it 'Jumping around to Latin Music' class

and I also asked myself

Why do I drive 20 minutes to the gym so I can walk on a treadmill for 30 minutes?

Actually I'm having fun and though I've only been going a little more than week and a half - I can now walk up a flight of steps without keeling over in a desperate attempt for air.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Originality can come only from what you bring of yourself to your story - Donald Maass

Since I’ve stalled a bit in producing word count for Love By Design, I’m going back to finish Donald Maass’ The Fire In Fiction. I was a couple of chapters in when my writing took off so I put it aside and now I’m hoping to re-light the fire. I decided to start at the back of the book instead of re-reading from the beginning.

I recommend this book highly - but I'll share just SOME of the ‘ahhhhs’ I’ve had from...

Chapter 9 Fire In Fiction

“Meaning lies not in the experience that you select to portray - but rather in what that experience means to your characters: and, before that, what it means to you”

“What is the truth that you most wish the rest of us would see? That is the purpose of your novel.”

Chapter 8 Tension All the Time

The secret of making backstory work is to use the past to create present conflict.

Tension in exposition - dig deeper into your character at this moment and find inside of him contradictions, dilemmas, opposing impulses, and clashing ideas. Put your character’s hearts and minds in peril. Use emotions in conflict and ideas at war.

More next time... 

Thursday, October 8, 2009

I'm a poet and I didn't even know it...


Sheriff of Storage Town
by Liz Matis

The golf cart
The motor
Under his mighty

An example of mankind’s
Like the stuff he

Unit after unit
Row after row
the cart putts along
spewing smoke
Into the atmosphere

Making his rounds
He puffs on a cigar
night after night
lonely and
cast off
Like the stuff he protects

An unlikely fellow
Sporting a gun
for who would want
what other people
Have abandoned

An unlikely fellow
who wonders
what’s behind
Each steel door

An unlikely fellow
who believes
he is not a human watch dog
but a guardian of memories

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Motivation is when your dreams put on work clothes. - Benjamin Franklin

The new issue of Writer's Digest arrived in the mail, but nothing really gave me an 'ahhhh' moment. This is probably tied to my general mood at the moment, which is 'the blahs'.
I didn't even make my Tuesday night critique group. (It's an hour away and I don't get home until after 11:00)

The writing is slow. I was riding high 2 weeks ago but then came to a halt, writing only a couple of sentences a day before becoming frustrated and turning off the computer.

So today I decided to go back and start revising the first 18,000 words - so at least I'm working. Also, I really, really must finish that sci-fi short story if it's the last thing I do. Maybe, this is the perfect time to do it.

So even though I've come up against a roadblock, I've turned around and took a detour. Who knows maybe it's just the scenic route. Either way I'll get to The End.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

"I have what I need," he said surveying his messy shelves, "Why bother chasing more?" Albert Lewis (Reb) from Mitch Albom's Have a Little Faith

Mitch Albom has done it again. Made me cry.
In his new book Have a Little Faith - a True Story, Albom is asked by his Rabbi to give his eulogy and so begins 8 years of meetings with the Rabbi to learn more about him and about faith. At the same time Albom is meeting with a Detroit pastor who has a sorid past.

It's a book about faith and about connection. And it made me cry.
Buy it, Read it, Love it.

So it got me thinking What books have made you a little teary eyed?
If you can't think of one - how about a movie?