Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Writer - Stars in Movie

I watched Young Adult, this past weekend, starring Charlize Theron for one reason, because the main character is a writer.

In case you haven’t seen it, Young Adult is a black comedy with Charlize Theron staring as a YA author (actually she is slightly more than a ghost writer for a popular YA series that is about to end).  Unable to come up with the last book in the series, she returns to her hometown to try and win back her high school boyfriend. Problem is, he's married, has a kid and is quite content with his life. As she throws back whiskey and flails at love, she becomes closer with a former high school geek played by Patton Oswalt. 
The movie was entertaining, with an offbeat ending, but it got me thinking about how many of my favorite films have writers as a main character - a lot.
Here are a few of my favorites.
*Midnight in Paris, starring Owen Wilson as screen writer, turned novelist (I absolutely love his line about the negative ions in the shower fueling his creativity.

*Alex and Emma, starring Owen’s brother Luke as the writer (movie loosely based on the true love story of Fyodor Dostoevsky writing his novel The Gambler.)
*Stranger Than Fiction, starring Will Ferrel as the character in Emma Thompson’s book she’s writing

*The Muse, starring Albert Brooks searching for inspiration
*The Hours, starring Nicole Kidman as Virginia Woolf

*Hannah and her Sisters, starring Dianne Wiest as failed-actress-turned-writer
*Adaptation, starring Nicolas Cage, as twin brother writers
*Leaving Las Vegas, Nicholas Cage again as a tormented writer
*Wonder Boys, starring Michael Douglas as a writer struggling with epic writer’s block
*The Player, starring Tim Robbins playing a screen writer in Hollywood

Feel free to comment on any of these, and/or add some of your own favorite writer/movies to the list.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Collecting Words

I love words.  And as Steve Jobs so eloquently put it...

“the only way to do great work is to love what you do.  If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking.  Don’t settle.  As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it.”  (Steve Jobs)

No surprise that I am working my journey as a writer. 
But regardless, I have begun collecting words. 

“What do you read, my lord?” 
“Words, words, words.” (Hamlet, Act II, ii) 

In my reading, or researching, or cyber-stalking, networking, I, all too often, happen upon those perfect words, all strung together like an exquisite pearl necklace.  And a small bell rings in my soul.  

So, I have started to save words.  You know, those quotable quotes that pop up on Facebook, Pinterest, blogs, fortune cookies, and even in email signature.  Like...
Be the change you want to see in the world”  (Ghandi)
So in addition to my First Line collection, I have begun another collection -- of words.  Some can be found on my Pinterest board. On my website, and on my computer desktop.  All of them add a little inspiration, community and philosophy to my day. Like...
“...What disturbed him was the discovery that in sensibly ordering his affairs he had got out of step, and not into step, with Life.”  
(Dashiell Hammett)
And in my quest toward minimalism, okay to be honest, I am nowhere close to minimalism, but I am working on reducing my stuff, yet I can still satisfy my collection gene.  The saving of written quotes does not add to more stuff.  And to quote one of our own...
“it will all work out.”  (President Gordon B. Hinckley)
So here are a few more of my favorite quotes. 
“The woman who follows the crowd will usually go no further than the crowd.  The woman who walks alone is likely to find herself in places no one has ever been before.”  (Albert Einstein)
If the track is tough and the hill is rough, THINKING you can just ain’t enough! 
(from The Little Blue Engine by Shel Silverstein)
“Stuart rose from the ditch, climbed into his car, and started up the road that led toward the north…. As he peeked ahead into the great land that stretched before him, the way seemed long. But the sky was bright, and he somehow felt he was headed in  
the right direction.”(from Stuart Little by E.B. White)
"Now I say that with cruelty and oppression it is everybody’s business to interfere when they see it." 
(from Black Beauty  by Anna Sewell)
"Start where you are.  Use what you have. Do what you can." (Arthur Ashe)

“Housekeeping ain’t no joke.” (Little Women by Louissa May Alcott)
So be sure when you step.  Step with care and great tact and remember that LIfe's a Great Balancing Act. 
(Oh the Places You'll Go by Dr. Seuss)
Uncle Edisto always said, “It takes courage to look life in the eye and say yes to…the messy glory.” (from Each Little Bird That Sings by Deborah Wiles)
“Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.”  (Matthew 7:7)
So I pulled on my chain mail.  
“I thought that was for slaying dragons, not for talking to girls,” said Anibelly, who had appeared behind me.    
“It’s the same thing,” I said. 
(from Alvin-Ho: Allergic To Birthday Parties, Science Projects, and Other Man-Made Casastrophes by Lenore Look)

Calories (noun):  tiny creatures that live in your closet and sew your clothes a little bit tighter every night.  (Anonymous)
Do you have a favorite quote?  Please share.  
Or is there something you collect that doesn’t take up space?  Feel free to tell about it.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Tempting Tasty Tuesday - Etoufee

It was hard to top my last blog entry, the interview with multi-published author Jillian Chantal and my bloggy-muse completely shut down.  So in order to get past this speed bump, (ah this might be another blog spot - speed bumps - coming out of nowhere.)

I got the inspiration from another blogger to post Tempting Tasty Tuesday Recipes.
Now I am not much of a cook.  In fact, my husband has always done most of the cooking in our 26 year marriage.  
Yes, I know I am lucky, but I did pick him, only one of the many reason, so I give myself some credit.  
And I do come from a family where now, my dad in his semi-retirement does all the cooking.  But I am double-blessed because my son takes after his dad and Grandad.  So even though my husband travels more now and is actually away this week, my teenage son cooks!  

All I have to do is provide the grocery essentials.  Which believe me, I do not mind.  I will even clean up the mess, instead of having to worry about putting a meal on the table.
Still I do have to dabble in the kitchen sometimes and if I do, I love the crock pot, or slow cooker.  I put everything in, during my more ambitious hours, the morning, and viola` by dinnertime a meal. 
I have even impressed friends with my can opening abilities and culinary creativity.  Soups are my speciality.  So here is my favorite Southern, not too far from me, New Orleans specialty, easy, tempting-tasty Etoufee.

Using Your Slow Cooker, preferably before noon.
Sautee in olive oil chopped onion, bell pepper, garlic and parsley (dried or fresh, either is okay with me).  Once this smells wonderful and looks cooked enough.  Put in that wonderful invention the crock pot. (almost impossible to burn anything)
Open 2 cans Campbell’s Golden Mushroom Soup and add to Crock Pot.
Open 1 can Rotel diced tomatoes, not drained, you get to pick the “hotness”  I use “mild”
Open 1 can tomato sauce, small can
Then for the meat:  
cut up some polish kielbasa, sometimes I use turkey sausage
1 can or frozen shrimp
1 can of nice white chicken meat, drained
1 can of crabmeat, drained or Walmart’s frozen crawfish for more authenticity
I have been known to add a can of corn, or even creamed corn just because I like corn.
Cook on low heat most of the day.  Serve over rice.
If you have any fast, tempting tasty recipes feel free to share or comment on cooking.