I’m on Holiday….sort of.

beachHello, my friends!

I am currently enjoying the freedom I have attained by quitting my suck-y (on so many levels) job.  I’ve been “spring cleaning” the house, reorganizing every facet of my life – from my cabinets to my computer and everything in between – rewatching Game of Thrones (like I need the pain), and getting caught up on so many things that I may be a little absent over the next week or so.

Hopefully, when I return, I’ll have lots to share as I look through the files I’ve kept in regards to writing notes, tips, etc.

I hope you are continuing to work towards you goals!  I wish you all the best!

*I really wish I was sitting on that beach right now, instead of the 110+ degree heat of the Vegas desert…ugh.  I did not miss this.

Discrepant Writer Reviews – Into the Woods

ITWposter*Some spoilers – will try to keep to a minimum ;)

Sigh…oh, Into the Woods, I had high hopes for you.

First off, I had no idea this was based on a play from the 80s, I just knew it was a musical fairytale, and I was in, but after the first scene, I quickly realized this was not going to be what I was hoping it would be.

Quick synopsis –

James Corden and Emily Blunt, both of whom I adore, are a childless couple living in a small village as the local baker and his wife.  They have no names, unless Mr. “Baker” counts?  A musical opening number offers us the information that they would like a child, but have yet to be successful in conceiving.

In flies the witch – the always fantastic Meryl Streep, who is the witch from the original story of Rapunzel, in which she offers a trade to the man stealing from her garden – specific greens for his pregnant wife – the veggies for the baby.*  Fair deal.  The witch gives over a whole lot of information to this childless couple about how their house is cursed and if they complete a ritual in a given time, she will lift it.

For writers, this scene will drive you crazy.  It offers all the information about the movie in one scene and without any real provocation.  It’s not as if the couple sought out her help or advice.  She just comes in one day and says, “Let me help you.  Here’s everything you need to do, no strings attached.”  Really?!

*The baker’s father was the thief, and hence Rapunzel is the baker’s sister, whom he doesn’t give a fig about finding, just FYI.

So off the couple go in search of four items that when combined by the witch will lift the curse and give them the family they desire.  They need a cow the color of milk, a cloak the color of blood, hair the color of corn, and a slipper made of gold.  Enter Jack of Jack and the Beanstalk with his white cow, Little Red Riding Hood (who The Sis groaned each time she opened her mouth – she was annoying), Rapunzel, and Cinderella.

As the title suggests, nearly the entire story takes place “in the woods” and they sing about it, often.  Sadly, none of the songs are catchy or even memorable except for one, which I will mention shortly.  The story does stay more true to the original tales in which the darker side of the storytelling is preserved, like killing the wolf to free Red and her grandmother who have been eaten whole, Rapunzel’s prince being blinded by thorns grown by the witch after being caught leaving the tower, and even Cinderella’s stepsisters cutting off parts of their feet to fit the slipper.  Yep and eww.

But the overall story is weak and drags, and this is coming from Disney…Disney! Who is the reason I have a princess complex!  And Rob Marshall, who directed Memoirs of a Geisha and Chicago.  Chicago is great and so catchy!

Maybe because they were trying to stay true to the original, they didn’t realize that it didn’t translate.  A play is limited in its location changes, hence all the woodsiness (I like that word and I’m keeping it) while the action seemed stifled and the dialogue was often too on the nose. Ugh.

The two saving graces of this film – when the witch is transformed and looks like this:

ITWwitchAfter

Love it!

And when the two princes, one of whom is Chris Pine in a hilarious role as Cinderella’s prince, sing this song:

That’s it.

The story takes a weird turn about three-quarters of the way through, when the happily ever after seems too soon, but what follows is completely out of left field.  There is a moment of weakness that results in a really bad consequence and the remainder of the story threw me for an unexpected, and what felt like a forced, loop.

Given the cast, the people behind it, and the basis for the story, Into the Woods was not the fairytale I was hoping for.

2stars

What are your thoughts on Into the Woods?

*Video courtesy of Youtuber John Oncer.

Writing Prompt #51

Good afternoon, my fellow creatives!

As we have reached the halfway point in our week, I have decided to take advantage of the new found freedom that awaits me come Friday by outlining a few fan fiction pieces (while at work because why not?!) that have been stirring for some time, in addition to the sci-fi/space odyssey pilot I have bouncing around as well.  In that vein, I offer you the following Writing Prompt as inspiration…I suppose, a little for myself. ;)OriginHappy Writing!  And don’t forget to share your creations for the weekly Writing Prompt Challenge!

*Image by sinakasra

Quote Monday

BraveEnoughI once jumped without a parachute, figuratively not literally. When The Sis and I moved to Los Angeles, I worked for a restaurant chain that allowed me to have a job upon arrival and to change locations with each subsequent move around the city. Unfortunately, with each move, the money worsened until at a total loss, I up and quit, feeling there had to be something better on the horizon.  It was LA after all.

Nearly 2 1/2 years later, I could not find a job to save my life. I sent out nearly 250 resumes in the first year and only ever received 2 responses. Those are some pretty bad odds, especially for a girl from Vegas.  I was lucky in that I had the support of The Sis who eventually told me to stop worrying about finding a job and to do what we had moved there to do in the first place – for me to become a working screenwriter.

Easier said than done.

The only problem with that was that the guilt of not working nearly ate me alive.  At my age, having my baby sister take care of me was a big pill to swallow, and the screenwriting career took a hit.  How does a fairytale writer write happily ever afters when they are wallowing in self pity and depression?

Cut to living in Las Vegas, again, and working for a company that is legitimately shady. Nearly 7 months of trying to find another job have failed to produce any results…again, seriously?! But this time, I’m taking the moral high ground. I will not continue to work for people that A) do not respect their employees B) operate under suspicious terms and C) do things that are, in fact, illegal.

ToMoveForwardBesides the mind numbing effect of the work, I don’t make enough money to support The Sis which is why we decided to move back to Vegas in the first place, so that she could go back to school.  I don’t write my own things when I get home because I’ve stared at a computer for 8 hours writing nonsense.  Sorry blog.  I’m usually brain dead, and to top it all off, I think I’ve gained weight because I sit around all day. Sheesh.

So here I am, ready to jump without a parachute, again.  I’m choosing to be brave and to expect good things.  ((crossing my fingers))  I hope this will lead me to bigger and better…please let it get better!

The life of a creative is a difficult one, always trying to balance work with what we really want to do.  Maybe when I’ve found some measure of success (of what I consider for myself), I’ll look back on these days with no regrets.  As of right now, it’s tough to endure.  Am I making the right decision?  I have lifelines here, but I feel making this decision on the grounds of self respect is, well, a bit haughty.

I’ll let you know how I feel about it next week when I find freedom…in the mean time wish me luck!

How about you?  Have you ever made a leap of faith?  What was the outcome?

Writing Prompt #50

It’s Wednesday and today we have reached Writing Prompt #50!  I hope you’ve enjoyed all the images and will continue to share your work when you’re inspired.

This image is rather fitting considering I chose it two days ago, and yesterday I decided to quit my unethical job (we’ll save this story for another day).  This image makes me think about all the possibilities that now lie before me.

TheLIbrary

I look forward to seeing your creations!  Happy Writing!  And here’s to 50 more! :)

Hey, Screenwriters! There’s Another Call for Entries!

MegaphoneAs most screenwriting contests are drawing to a close, BlueCat is picking up again with a call for entries for 2016.

Exciting news for those who may have missed the earlier deadlines!

BlueCat Screenplay Competition is open until November 15th with the early deadline starting June 15.  Here’s the link for all the information.

Wishing you the best of luck!

Quote Monday

I would like to thank those who took the time to share my post regarding my furkids’ recent behavioral changes.  It truly means a great deal!  Although we’re still waiting to hear back from a behaviorist, things are slightly better.

It’s hard not to get bogged down in all that life has to throw at you sometimes, but it’s important to still do things for ourselves.  It’s not selfish, it’s self-preservation…or so I’ve heard. ;)

This is one of my favorite quotes, and I think I’ve shared it before, and today it definitely felt apropos.

DoSomethingTodayHere’s to the start of a great week! ((crossing fingers))

 

I Need Your Help!

P&LOn May 1st, The Sis and I celebrated the third anniversary of bringing home our furkids.

Without a doubt, they are two of the biggest sources of joy for both of us, and have come to mean the world to us.  They are so sweet, so funny, so spunky, and so loving.

This has not changed, except in how they started treating one another.

Last week, Loki was a little under the weather. That suddenly turned into aggressive behavior towards his sister, Phoebe.

They still play with one another, snuggle up next to one another while they sleep, and still exhibit happiness when they see each other, even if only separated for a few minutes, but then out of nowhere…Loki’s ears go back, there’s a low grumble, and then – attack!

It’s like Wild Kingdom, which I have often joked about when they rough house because they stand on their hind legs and paw at the other with their front legs while they motion at the other with their mouths open.  There’s never any biting, and that is still the case, except now they sound vicious.

Phoebe’s confused at why he’s suddenly an ass and tries to check on him, but he’s not having it.  They can go hours without incident, and then it’s like a switch has been flicked.

And there’s no indication of what has brought on this sudden change.  At first we thought it was the illness. Now that they’re three and seemingly going through puberty (Loki finally got hair on his chest), although they have been fixed, maybe it’s hormones?

A trip to the vet offered no insight, and now we’re reaching out to a behaviorist.

Have any of you had to deal with such a random change in your dog’s behavior?  What steps did you take?

The stress on us (and them) is difficult, and any help would be greatly appreciated!  If you know anyone, please share this with them or them with me!

Thank you, my friends!

Writing Prompt #49

Happy Wednesday, everyone!  It’s Writing Prompt Day!

I was searching periodically through the day for something unique, but nothing really struck me until I saw this.

Photographer: Derry Moore (please credit) Public Relations & Marketing, the Royal Collection: 020-7839 1377

Photographer: Derry Moore 

As you all know by now, I have a love of all things English, so not hard to understand why I would like to find myself walking these halls (in an amazing gown).  :)  Maybe that’s my story for this week…?

Does it inspire you?  Don’t forget to share for this week’s Writing Prompt Challenge and I’ll be sure to highlight you and your fantastic work!

Happy Writing!

Quote Monday

CS-Lewis_you-are-never-too-oldNow that I’ve accomplished (some of) the goals I set for myself, I’m ready to make some new ones.  It’s the middle of May and we’re rounding that mid-year point, where I feel it’s time to do some reevaluation.  How about you?

What are your plans for the remainder of the year?

Write them all down.  Tack them up so you can see them everyday.  Large or small, each step moves you toward that bigger goal.  Keep moving forward!DreamsWrittenDownAreGoals