In Pieces

•January 23, 2012 • Leave a Comment

The ocean

Eternal

Swallows me whole

Twirls me about

And spits me out on the other side of the world

In pieces.

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Read This Month

•January 23, 2012 • 2 Comments

Some months I read like a maniac – others I don’t take the time to. This has been one of those months where I’ve felt inspired and I’ve been reading a few interesting titles. I thought, anyway. Here they are:

The Great Gatsby (F. Scott Fitzgerald, 1925): As a movie is coming out, starring Brad Pitt as Gatsby, as far as I’ve read, I simply had to read this book. I enjoyed it. It had an absolutely stunning language with descriptions that really made me feel a part of those great parties at Gatsby’s estate and the flavor of the twenties is so intoxicating to me. It seems like such a time of change and yet it’s somewhat overlooked, especially in the movies. There’s a subtle, homoerotic note to the male friendships in the novel, as seen through the eyes of it’s narrator – Nick Carraway – and as with The Picture of Dorian Gray I always find those small hints of something else underneath the surface intriguing. Perhaps it’s just me.

One Day (David Nicholls, 2009): I thought this was a lovely book. There was an incredible UST with the unfulfilled love and the misunderstandings and the miscommunications. It was heart-wrenching, gut-churning, terribly, horribly wonderful. I’m looking forward to watching the movie. Sort of.

The Hunger Games Trilogy (Suzanne Collins, 2008-2010): I’m still sort of letting these books simmer in the back of my head. I really enjoyed reading the first book, I thought the second book was good and then the third one was just not told from the viewpoint that would have given me the most satisfaction, even though I thought the ending fitted the series and was quite moving. I though, perhaps, Ms. Collins got a little too hung up on the reality TV theme when I felt she could have eased up a bit in the third book, but then the ending wouldn’t have been as fitting as it is now, so… Yeah, I’m letting it simmer. Very good reads, either way, and highly recommended.

The Pillars of the Earth: I’ve only just started and am a little ways into the first chapters. I saw the BBC mini-series and simply wanted to get a closer look at the world and the characters. So far it’s not disappointing me.

Att Springa (To Run): This was a very sad, dark look at what really goes on in picture-perfect suburbia. It tells the tale of two young girls who are best friends and are just starting 7th grade, which means all sorts of changes. The biggest changes take place outside of school, though, as the underlying tone of violation in one home is highlighted by the love and companionship in the other. It was a good read, but not if you’re looking for a book that makes you smile on a Sunday morning.

I realize I’ve had a month of movie-driven reading, which amuses me. I’m really curious to see how The Hunger Games will translate on film, but I feel that it’s almost as though the part was written for Jennifer Lawrence – she will kick ass as Katniss – so I’m not worried about her performance in the lead. I didn’t think the Capitol was described in a way that’s simple to make into something intriguing – it felt very early nineties electro-pop to me – but we’ll see. I’m sure they’ll make something wonderful of all those bright colors and spiky hair. 🙂

The Dash-All Chronicles: Slow but Steady

•January 20, 2012 • Leave a Comment

I stood still on the steps of the church. It was the largest building in town. And the oldest. It was gray and heavy and ominous, somehow. As though it had ears and was constantly listening for that one sound, that one word, that would force it to shake off the ages of dust and transform into some living thing set for destruction.

I had no problems with God, I might add. I hadn’t been raised in a religious family, but I’d had plenty of religious friends and knew all about faith and its dealings. It had never truly appealed to me, it felt as though there were more restraints put on you than freedom was allowed you and in my teens I had been all about freedom. About travel and getting as far away as possible. I hadn’t turned to God, but I had been shackled all the same. To family, to friends, to a job that didn’t pay enough for me to really save anything and definitively not enough to actually leave, make a break for it.

I realized this as I looked up at the structure before me, it’s large, colored window glowing in the sunlight, and suddenly it didn’t look so foreboding.

However, the visor grip of my sister’s hand on my arm brought me back to the fact that this building, as far as I knew, represented death to the undead who bit me and clearly my sister had brought me there to that end.

“Maryann,” I said softly.

She let me go as I followed her in through the heavy wooden doors. It slammed shut behind us, causing a loud echo to vibrate through the church as the doors leading into it were propped open.

The pews stood at a slight angle toward the aisle, the altar at the front had two steps leading up to it and a pristine white linen cloth covering it. Two candles burned and a golden cross has been placed between them on top of the altar. Hand-paintings of Jesus and his apostles covered the walls. It was a beautiful, serene place, empty of worshippers at that time of day.

“Maryann,” I more or less hissed and she stopped, impatient as she turned to me.

“What?”

“Could you let me in on the plan here?” I asked quietly.

“I’m taking you to see Father Ignesius. He’ll let you in on the plan.”

“A priest?”

She merely smiled and continued down the aisle, leading the way into the sacristy. It smelled of aged stone and burned candle wax. Father Ignesius was there. He was younger than I had expected, with a dimpled chin and a wide, white smile. He was actually quite handsome, not older than forty, though I was fairly certain he was closer to thirty-five. He received a kiss on the cheek from my sister, but his eyes stayed in mine and he reached out his hand.

“You must be…”

His smile faded as he suddenly spotted the markings on my neck.

“Bitten,” my sister more or less filled in his sentence.

He nodded slowly.

“So, it’s true,” he murmured. “They’ve come.”

“All of it’s true,” my sisters stated. “Ask her. That’s Sebastian’s handiwork. Or, I guess, toothywork.”

“You saw him?” Father Ignesius snapped and suddenly the calm, priestly exterior gave way for something as focused and determined as my sister. “When? Where did you see him? Did he speak with you? Did he carry something with him?”

“Look, before I tell you anything I just want to say that Seth saved me, okay? There was this guy and he was huge and threatening and he would’ve hurt me, I know it.”

“You know it?” the father inquired. “Or you know it because you were told to know it?”

“What do you mean ‘told’? Seth didn’t say anything about… He didn’t tell me to… Did he? He said there would be bad men coming. That I shouldn’t speak of him to anyone. He tried to make me forget.”

“He told you to forget?” my sister asked, clear surprise in her voice. “And you didn’t?”

She shared a quick glance with the father that made me frown. I didn’t get a chance to ask before the father repeated:

“Did he carry something with him? This is very important information to us. Please.”

I couldn’t see how it could hurt to tell them.

“A sword,” I therefore said.

“My God,” the father mumbled, taking a step back in what I assumed to be shock.

“See,” my sister said quietly. “It’s all true. They have the original sword. Hell is about to freeze over.”

Don’t You Weep

•January 15, 2012 • 2 Comments

I can no longer weep

for my tears have gone to sleep,

and I hear them softly sigh

Don’t you cry, don’t you cry.

I can no longer smile,

it was there, then grew too wide,

and so it had to fade

and to rest it has been laid.

I can no longer feel

for the feeling’s too unreal

and the day I dare to try

I will die, I will die.

I cannot hear my heart –

is it whole or blown apart?

Is it beating in my chest?

Maybe I should let it rest.

I can no longer run,

the shadows closing, there’s no sun.

All around me desert land.

I understand, I understand.

I can no longer breathe.

Something’s crushing from beneath.

Take these words, they’re yours to keep,

and don’t you weep, don’t you weep.

Watched This Month: TV-series

•January 14, 2012 • 2 Comments

Smallville S9 & S10: I loved what they did with the Lois and Clark relationship in this show. I think they brought the series together in an excellent way. Yes, sometimes it’s a bit much and the story lines aren’t always consistent and neither are the characters, but I still love Tom Welling as Clark and Erica Durance as Lois. And those final two hours are… well, there are no words.

Jekyll: Only got to see the very first episode of this BBC show, but I am going to order it asap because it was freakishly good.

Sons of Anarchy S1 & S2: Have just begun the second season. Season One was awesomeness in a violent package. I find organized crime a little scary, I have to admit, and this show is very, very realistic and it’s a bit freaky, but the characters are well-drawn and they pull you into their world without pause. I’m loving it.

Grey’s Anatomy: Actually, I’m watching the reruns on TV and am unsure which season I’m at. It’s the one after a certain someone gets shot. I’ve gotten hooked on this show again after watching S3 and rooting for Izzie and George and them (read: the Writers) completely fucking that up for me and all the soapy drama with everyone being with everyone and I just got so sick of it. Anyway, really loving it now. The writing has always been stellar.

Once Upon a Time: Finally! Finally this show is starting over here and I can’t wait. Yeah, this is a premature post because I’m watching the first episode tomorrow. Color me excited!

Update: I enjoyed the first episode, though I felt there was too much exposition that was really just thrown in your face. I understand exposition is necessary, but there’s a good way and a tasteless way to do it and the writers went with watered out broth. The second episode left me actually wondering why I should care about these characters. I don’t see a strong arc building and I’m actually less intrigued than I was by the first episode. As I have friends telling me it will be amazing, I’m going to give it a few more episodes.

Six Feet Under S1: I am completely enamored with this show. Alan Ball is the shit. And yes, I can’t believe I haven’t seen it yet, either. As I’m only on the last few episodes of season one – no spoilers, please! 🙂

Bones S7 Episode One: It’s started. Why have they changed the format? I’m sorry, writers, I’m sorry actors of other characters than Booth and Brennan (you’re also fantastic, but) – I don’t CARE about you. I don’t care about the cases. This show started out as a romcom with crime as a backdrop. Even if they’ve eliminated the UST, I still love Booth and Brennan interacting and I want to watch them be tentative about where they stand and I want their banter back. I want them deepening as characters. They’re never together anymore, apart from the oh-so-predictable opening scene-scene in the middle-end scene set-up that is just frustrating. I’ll give it a few more episodes this season, but if this is the format they’ve chosen (focus away from B/B and more on the boring crime stories, which really are a dime a dozen, no matter if they’re well-written or not) then I’m buying the season on DVD so I can fast forward through all that mumbo jumbo and get to the heart of the matter.

Äkta Människor (Real People) Part 1 & 2: Swedish futuristic mini-series that explore our society with robots that look exactly like humans in it and what the repercussions might be. It started off fairly well, though the second episode didn’t really do anything to actually move the plot forward. Still, I’m intrigued. This is a very un-Swedish show and I’m glad that our TV execs want to take a gamble on the topic. Update: The following episodes have been disappointing, unfortunately. I don’t know why we can’t be more American when it comes to telling stories and get a breathtaking amount of interesting information in within the first fifteen minutes without idle exposition, and then keep that interesting NEW information giving up for the rest of the season.

Legend of the Seeker S1: I loved this first season. It has it’s bumps and bruises, but I forgive them all. It’s a wonderful world and I’m enamored with Kahlan and Richard. Kahlan must be one of the coolest female characters ever.

(The Other) New Year Resolutions

•January 6, 2012 • 1 Comment

As I mentioned in my previous post, I spent the New Years in Finland’s capital Helsinki. I stayed with one of my bestest friends and we had, as always, a truly good time, eating too much junk, drinking just a glass (or two) too much of wine and watching an endless stream of television shows that we’ve been dying to run a narrative on together. Smallville season 9 and 10 being the main event – Lois and Clark forevah – though we also watched some Nikita (the original TV-series) and Jekyll and, as she also had to work, I watched the gloriously well-written and acted The Pillars of the Earth.

While there I brought my journal (it sounds more grown up than diary, why is that?) and I caught up on all the events of the fall as I hadn’t taken the time (it’s a disease with me) to write any entries since October. And it was in this journal that I listed the six main points of my New Year Resolutions (Re: Life).

  1. Reach my goal weight and actually stay there. I’ve posted before about my Diet and how well that went, and it did. But I have not been in the mindset over the summer and this fall to actually make a commitment to eating healthy and exercising. I’ve had every intention, but I haven’t quite managed it. So – until April – I am on a calorie diet (which means I can eat anything I want, but within reason) and I am eliminating sugar all together. I’m even cutting back on fruit. It may sound extreme, but I know it works – I did this for about three weeks in November and I lost two inches off my hips (mostly water weight, but still, if I’d kept it up…) Then came December and the making of Christmas candy and the baking of Christmas goodies and I decided that January was the time to actually begin a diet of no sugar. As, I believe, about three billion other people do every single year.
  2. Establish my career as a screenwriter. By this I’m not saying I’m going to be Aaron Sorkin this year, do or die – I simply mean that I want to finish stuff off and send it out and hopefully get a positive response. Scary as hell, but it’s time. I finish school in June and I’m so ready to start my life. I could even add a /writer to the heading of this Resolution because I would love to pitch a few ideas I have for novels and children’s books as well. We’ll just have to see what happens, I guess. What I think this Resolution is mostly about is for me to finish my projects and actually start showing them to people!
  3. Direct. I have money do shoot a short film and I will do it before this spring is out, that’s a given. I just don’t know if I might need to go look for more money somewhere… I would love to – if I find that directing agrees with me – also aim to shoot a longer short film of about 30 minutes before the year is out.
  4. Regular CSiS posting. Yes, CSiS is this blog.
  5. Örebro Filmclub and its growth and evolution. I’m hoping to make this club into something special. A bit more special than it is now, anyway. I want to engage our members in the art of film and I want it to be a place where film lovers know they can meet others who share their passion. I want to put together trips that are inspired by film in any way and I want the club to grow. That’s all. I’m taking over as president come the end of January and I’m not worried, only excited!
  6. Travel. This may seem like a strange thing to put on there, but I love to travel and last year I barely had any money to do anything, so I’m hoping this year will be the year when I get to go to England to visit a bunch of friends I have there, Barcelona in the summer with two of my bestest friends (one of them being my New Years pal, yes) and Vancouver/New York/Boston in the fall because I have a friend in Vancouver who’s been to see me twice and I have the families I’ve worked for outside New York and Boston and I haven’t seen them for over five years. Also, my legs get itchy when I stay home for too long. I want out – I want to explore – I need to be inspired!
  7. Become more Time Efficient. I know this was on the other list, but this is what I need to do to keep the stress out of my life: I will get up at a reasonable hour (which is around 8.30-9 am for me) and then I will concentrate on answering emails, planning for the film club events, blog, look over writing projects that are due and, most importantly, do all the work I need to have done for school – until it gets to be 5pm. At five I will leave the computer alone – ALONE I tell you – and I will have downtime to work on my own writing projects, read, watch telly, watch movies, whatever. I Need A Schedule. And I believe this will work well for me. I hope it will. It will. I think it will. It’s GONNA!

There, these are my Resolutions. I’m looking forward to keeping you (and myself) updated on my progress. Writing stuff down always helps and working on this blog will remind me of my Resolutions every day. Thanks for that!

Do you have any Resolutions this year? Hmmh?

New Year Resolutions

•January 5, 2012 • 3 Comments

There comes a time in every bloggers life when they have to take a good, hard look at their Posting Track Record and either beam with pride or hide their face in shame. I had to do the latter before New Years as I once again had a month of barely any posts (even though, as every blogger probably has, I had every intention to be consistent and frequent).

I have been leaving this blog to its own devices – which, lets face it, are none if I’m not here to device them – for far too long now and I am ashamed before the six of you who actually subscribe to this blog (yeah, I got your number down) and also I am disappointed in my blogging self because the truth is I love to write, its my favorite thing in the world, so this blogging thing should be easy-peasy. And it is. It’s setting aside the time for it that has had me coming up lacking. Yes, I’m one of those incredibly busy people, believe it or not. Believe it!

Seriously, though – I have had one hell of a busy fall, but that’s no excuse. So, here are my New Years Resolutions (re:blog):

  1. No more excuses.
  2. Time-efficiency. Never leave for tomorrow what you can do today.
  3. Three posts a week, no exception. Yes, I am aiming to become a hell of a lot more consistent, like my friend Thoughts, who posts practically (if not always) every day or Whoopie, who posts at least once a week.
  4. Be a better reader. Try to catch up on what you miss in your fellow bloggers life when you’re not online!
  5. Find a cure for cancer.
  6. Disregard that 5th resolution – that one was stolen by my Dark Side from Madame Curies list. Don’t ask me why my Dark Side would want to save humanity from a crippling disease. My Dark Side also has a Light Side. It makes it more complex. Just go with it.

So, I aim to be a better blogger not only for you Wonderful Six, but for my own sake. I started this blog with the intention of actually building something that has to do with me as a person, but most importantly (because personality takes a back-seat to this) as a writer. Something that would reflect the way I think through the way I write might be a better way of putting it.

You can do anything if you put your mind to it. This will be my foremost mantra this year.

Also: It’s not what you can’t do, but what you try to do.

I hope your New Years was amazing – mine was spent in Helsinki and it was amazingly nice. Looking forward to sharing 2012 with you!