Movie time.

Saturday, 28 March 2015 12:01
partlyopenbook: CKR (act)
Let's all go to the lobby and get ourselves a snack!

Just an update on some films I've watched lately. Also, would someone with more ambition and knowhow please start a movie site that's just like Goodreads, but for, you know, films? K, thx.

Starting with last night...

I made it through most of Beauty & the Briefcase before I wanted to skip over parts. Which I did enthusiastically! I skipped over Lane's unimportant dates, even the ones with Seth, played by Matt Dallas. But, urgfffk... not the best movie ever. If it hadn't been for two things, the clothes/costumes and Michael McMillian's performance, I would've turned it off in the first twenty minutes. (Plus, he was born in '78 — and I think that we are a rare breed, indeed.)

So why did I even want to watch this movie? I try to watch different things, titles that aren't the same-old (for me, at least). And I was really into Lizzie McGuire back in the day, and continue to have very little antipathy toward Hilary Duff.

And going on from there...

I finally watched this! All I have to say about it can be summed up in a few sentences, including what I told my friend Dalliann in an email: I liked the twist on True Love ... and what I told my cousin, "It's very pretty." Because it is very pretty, but, for some reason, kind of flat. And this tweet:

It is, however, prodding me to finally start watching Once Upon a Time...

Desert Hearts (1985)
This was a really good production that uses the almost eerie backdrop of Nevada so masterfully and compellingly. The performances are layered, rich and almost indulgent. Much like In & Out, I don't know how this movie got made with big studios behind it, but I'm glad that it was! Desert Hearts was adapted from a novel written by Jane Rule. For me, it was almost as though Margery Sharp and Meredith Tax wrote something brilliant together.

Unrelated... doesn't In & Out have one of the best poster/cover images EVER?

Bedrooms & Hallways
Quirky gay flick from across the Pond, with a panorama of fun characters. You're bound to find someone/something in this to relate to. Loved the supporting performances by Hugo Weaving ("Welcome to Rivendell, Mr. Anderson.") and the always amazing Tom Hollander.

Waiting for Forever
I have a feeling this surrealistic dramedy/romance was originally going to be called "Showing off for Emma" — but that's hardly the kind of title production companies and little Hollywood like. This movie generates a lot of Benny & Joon comparisons, but it's also darker and yet not so dark that it becomes suspenseful. The movie never tried to be more than what it was: a character study of an unusual young man who's been in love with the same woman his whole life, and has devoted so much of his time an energy into loving her from a distance. A mediocre performance from Rachel Bilson ("Heartland") is thankfully glossed over by Tom Sturridge's at-the-edge-of-losing-it acting. He made me think of Will Shakespeare's plea to Gwyneth Paltrow's Romeo in "Shakespeare in Love" — "Don't spend it all at once," he says (or close to it) — and Sturridge does just that — he never overacts — he just exists. For a Brit, Sturridge is very relaxed on screen. His facial expressions generate enough range of thought and feeling that he doesn't need to do much. Blythe Danner is amazing, as always—so brilliant. And will someone please cast in MOAR THENGS PLZ.

It's rare that we can see a child actor grow up and continue to make films... One of the main reasons I watched The Break Up, for instance, was to see Peter Billingsley (of "A Christmas Story" fame). From another holiday film poignant during my childhood, One Magic Christmas, is a child actor who continues to act in the occasional project (the original CSI), the lovely Elisabeth Harnois (six months younger than yours truly, as hard as that is to believe). She was the main reason I watched Keith. Jesse McCartney plays the titular character, and he was surprisingly good. It's a high school drama, nothing fancy, but it's engrossing anyway, chiefly from the way the story is told, the pace of it, and it's almost like watching everyone under a microscope or through a speakeasy—which is the way a film like this should be. The two pieces of trivia from IMDB do make you scratch your head, and are exactly the two things that I was going to mention: 
Elizabeth Harnois was 29 when she played 17 year old Natalie Anderson.
Elisabeth Harnois is eight years older than Jesse McCartney

A small screen budget film made for ABC Family, Princess is worth watching for the intriguing story twists and the ball gowns. For real. I watched it for the clothes.

Star Trek: Into Darkness
Quite a decent Hollywood flick, I must say... I'm glad I watched it with the brother, however, as to glean a few things that I wouldn't have known had I watched it on my own, most importantly the little acting bits and cameos. I'll have to think about it more, but it seems as though I liked Into Darkness more than the first one.

That's the movie round-up! 

partlyopenbook: CKR (act)
Having a lot of fun this morning looking up vocabulary, slang and phrases from the 18th and early 19th centuries! 

Probably too much fun, and I should do some actual work. 

 56 Delightful Victorian Phrases

How to Speak 19th Century - Brought to you by a guy who saw George Washington wear a "surtout." And "oakum" isn't something you stick in your pipe and smoke... There are a lot of words on here I already know, because, yup, I like old stuff. 

Manly Slang from the 19th Century - is just a fantastic site! It comes up a lot when I'm doing story research. If you enjoy writing historical stuff, be it novels or fanfics, artofmanliness is a stop you have to make along your research journey. (Unless you know everything already.)

Here are some interesting books... 

The Humors of Falconbridge

A Journey to Ohio in 1810

Journals and Letters of ... a Plantation Tutor of the Old Dominion - the Old Dominion in this case is Virginia. Sorry, Canadians. (I was slightly disappointed, too.) I spent most of the morning reading this, and it's really fascinating. Only if you like old things, though. And if you can stand to read awkward English, with lots of ampersands (&'s!), and Random Capitalization of Letters, including Improper Nouns, and Verbs that do not Open sentences. And I skipped the first two chapters...  
partlyopenbook: Not me. :) (Default)
I don't know about anyone else (no, really, I don't), but I'll be happy to see the last minutes of this year.

Granted, I realize that every moment contains its own RESET button. But 2014 wasn't very good to me, and at times it was hard to remember the RESET button existed.

There were a few good things about 2014. I released three "books" on Smashwords: The Information Man... Zandry of Bonewood... and my newest one, The Hero and the Holly.

I met some interesting people. Of course, now none of that really matters, since I moved back to The North Hole and left those interesting people behind. Which didn't seem to bother those people that much. C'est la vie!

I got a new (used) car. That in itself has been a mixed blessing. I love, love, love driving my car... but I hate that I've had to put $1400 into it since I bought it. In May. I hope it doesn't cost me nearly that much in repairs and maintenance in 2015.

I got away from some very bad people that were in my life. And it hurts to think that they're thinking the same about me....

Despite having only a couple of stories accepted and published by the professional writing world in 2014, I am still writing. During the upcoming year, my focus will stay on what I can accomplish. The last two years, I honed in on challenging myself as a writer. Whereas my inability to have erotica published might have seemed like a failure, to me it isn't quite so. I did write a lot of erotic tales, and I had a very good time doing it, too! That isn't a failure. Am I going to try again to have an erotic tale published? Probably not... I'm not closed-off to the idea altogether. Simply, there are other avenues to explore.

I have a few things that I want to finish up in 2015... like The Pickled Pirate.... and After Dan & Steve Saved the World. After that, my intention is to clean up my novel manuscripts and send them out to publishers using Ye Old Query Letter and Submission process. This upcoming year will be about that, and if I work on anything at all, I mean for it to be this sweeping, gargantuan epic that I've wanted to work on for years... Or (sigh) perhaps a couple of sequels. I have three ideas for sequels to stories I've already finished. At the very least, I could block them out, chapter by chapter, which is handy to have if a publisher is interested in Book The First, so I hear.

Largely, however, I've found that blocking books out doesn't work very well for me... I tend to get a bit tangential when I write. Or another idea hits me that makes the book more exciting for me to write! And that, that I like better than trying to stick to a pattern. Patterns tend to dull the senses after a while. Good some of the time, but not, for goodness sake, all of the time!

So, in 2015, I intend to finish my outstanding projects... The Pickled Pirate will probably be out sometime in February... depending on the amount of editing the volume requires. The titular tale isn't finished yet. The accompanying four short stories are in splendid shape and form, as far as I can tell, and the editing there will be minor, if it exists at all. But the release date depends on how quickly I can actualize the book itself, seeing as how I plan to release it using a different site. There will be new formatting rules to grasp. Always an adventure!

I plan to read more in 2015 than I did this year. Of course, this year was dangerous with dips into devilry, beleaguered by bandits and beasts of the metaphorical and allegorical sort—and I didn't have much time for reading. Since returning to The North Hole, I've felt relaxed enough to sink into books... now, of course, that all of my books were left behind me. Thank goodness for digital libraries and electronic reading devices (and my brother's personal library)...

In the upcoming days, I intend to start charging the minuscule fee of ¢0.99 for my books, except The Hero and the Holly. This includes all others, though: The Information Man, The Carols of Holly House, and Zandry of Bonewood (which is already listed for a price). I would like to try and make some money (please reread Paragraph 5), and, of course, free samples of those works will be available to read prior to purchasing. A lot of people don't want to pay for art, I know. If you don't want to pay for my books, there are plenty of other good stories that you can find for free, either on Smashwords, Project Gutenberg, Fiction Press, Archive of Our Own, or your local library... But a nice book, for less than a dollar? If I found a book at the thrift store that I really wanted, it would be ninety-nine cents there, too. Comparatively, my books are bargains, even if they're not very long. Please consider buying books for authors you like, whether it's me or Meg Cabot or Chris Colfer!

The upcoming year is far from mapped out. (See my sidebar on blocking books.) There are things I want to do, sure... Mostly, I just want to have a good time, have some fun, earn a bit of money from my stories, from hard work in the less fictionalized world (Real Life), and maintain an interest in my art without falling into crevices of heartache. Basically, I want to stick to my oldest of old new year's resolutions: Be happy, and try not to die.

Happy 2015 to everyone!

partlyopenbook: (stache)
Finally got around to updating and editing the main site. And fixed a typo. Trust me, when you're a writer who prides herself on editing skills, a typo on your web site is embarrassment times twenty... But I can't remember when I last updated, though it was likely this past summer, when R + M = LOVE was released on Hyacinth Noir. I doubt I had my editing and writing cap on very securely through a summer that would've made Carroll's Mad Hatter worry. Considering what's happened the last couple of years, I'm surprised I've managed to accomplish one impossible thing before breakfast! Forget six!

Hyacinth Noir is having a photography contest, called The Samhain Wild Hunt! I can't wait to see the photos sent in! I won't be participating, alas. I may have the opportunity to offer my own Halloween/Samhain gift, however, so be on the lookout!

By the way, stories still FREE.

Which leads me to mention why I decided not to remove Zandry of Bonewood, after all... I moved its Category—again! I think that'll make me feel better, and I think it's less erotic than other erotic tales out there... but it's sexy enough that Adult Content is still required! I remain bewildered as to what makes a novel fall under the category of "erotic". Is it personal opinion? For me, I tend to think of erotic stories as anything that contains more than 50% SSS — Significant Sexual Substance! But I guess the Personal Opinion part is what matters.

I'm planning to release another set of short stories in the upcoming future. It'd like its title to be "The Pickled Head and Other Tales" ... but we'll see. This new compilation might be released somewhere NOT Smashwords, and probably under another name, although I'll talk about it plenty on this site... So, under another name, but still me. If released elsewhere, it'll have to be purchased rather than downloaded for free. I have the cover art planned, just haven't started creating it yet. And I'd like to write a fifth story to add to the four already finished. I wish we had 36-hour days. Who's with me?

If I start feeling a little better today (do I have a sinus infection or what? IDK), perhaps I can sit and write for a few hours! It'd be lovely to get a story written, what would be my first completed anything since early August! Wish me luck! 

partlyopenbook: pinkie pie pony leaps into frame (happy)





Great, now it seems to be working just fine. Who'd've thought? All right, then. That makes me happy!!!


Computer… Computer? > !!! Hello! Look at me, I can type well on my old keyboard! Wee! That makes me happy!




Netsavvy Roundup #2


Things on the Interwebs that have lately intrigued me, made me happy or simply caught my interest.


Let's just get the music out of the way…


Around, by Sixpence None the Richer


Shatter Me, by Lindsey Stirling

Shatter Me Featuring Lzzy Hale - Lindsey Stirling


Fade from View, by Sponge

Fade From View

I've been a fan of Sponge since Ye Olden Days. I'm glad they've (er, recently?) put out a new album.


… About as long as the film The Crow has been around. "Burn," by The Cure, is a song I completely forgot existed until this morning.


… Much like the "Plump DJs Remix" of BT's "Smartbomb."




While bored, I found that has old episodes of the UK version of Whose Line is it Anyway?

Ah, good times… 




This is really it for the Netsavvy Roundup. Since I've been occupied in other areas of life, those that take me away from the computer, I haven't had a chance to wander the net much lately. 


I'm pleased that the scratch on my computer, mentioned in the previous entry, turned out to be some goopy stuff that I was able to wipe off. Still, mysterious goopy substance… ew. 


My keyboard, a Logitech k740, which I thought was broken after an unfortunate run-in with the cat and a cup of coffee, has miraculously healed! My ">" button works again! Maybe it just needed a good rest in the dark closet. I have no words for how grateful I am that it works again! They're not cheap keyboards, and this is my second replacement in nine months. If you type a lot, I recommend the k740 or the k800. Nope, they don't pay me. But wouldn't it be funny if writers could get sponsored by keyboard and computer companies? Reminds me of the classic film noir "Laura." In it, Laura tries to get Mr. Lydecker to endorse a pen, which is how the two of them meet…. Well, I endorse Logitech's keyboards. Anything that can be poured on by coffee and still work is all right with me—with the bonus of keeping my fingers happy if I type 10,000 words a day. 


Now I wish I could watch Laura. Have things to do, though. Such as being glad it's not snowing right this minute…

partlyopenbook: Not me. :) (Default)
Favorite things lately found on the internet…

Don't let the world define you. In the world of acting, and I think in any profession really, people are really eager to put you in a box and categorize you as one particular thing. Make sure that you always follow your heart and your gut, and let yourself be who you want to be, and who you know you are. And don't let anyone steal your joy. - Jonathan Groff

Amon's Fire Sale Audition - will make no sense to you unless you've watched some Legend of Korra and Arrested Development. I still think it says something about me that I found this so funny… 

The Actor's Guide to Greed - I finished reading this, the last Jarrod Jarvis mystery by Rick Copp. It was good, and I read it all in one day, but it's sad knowing there isn't another one! Rick Copp has been writing a cozy mystery series with his sister, under the name Lee Hollis, published by Kensington. 

45 Hottest Guys of 2009 - Found this while doing editing research for a book of mine that takes place in (you guessed it) 2009. How do your picks for hottest guys add up five years later? 

Firefox CEO's Antigay Donation Leads to Boycott - The most interesting part about this is the first paragraph. It's hard to believe it's been six years since Prop 8 passed. While I've started using Safari more often, that really has nothing to do with this. But it does explain why I'm so frustrated writing this update - trying to get used to a different browser can be really gurrafying! I've had to restart this entry twice… 

And on that note, the best for last….!

100 Layer Cake 1920's themed Wedding, Dixie + Shawna - found this while trying to get ideas for The Information Man cover. I hope they don't mind that I fell in love with their wedding. The setting, the clothes, THEIR SHOES (their epic, epic shoes!), the food, and the splendid photography that made it look like something from a glamour magazine! I hope they're still together and happy! (Although this was only a year ago, so yeah, I definitely hope they're still together.) And now read item number one again… 

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