I’m A Little Bit Lost and Feeling Contained

Grow_DammitI need to write. I have so much inside of me right now that it’s threatening to explode.  Apropos since one of the prompts I got in my email today was “finding a bigger container,” which included this marvelous picture.

Is my life feeling uprooted? Do I feel like I’m in a container too small?  Maybe.  I spend a weekend feeling out of sorts due to a new infatuation with someone totally inappropriate but those feelings are still there.  I found the answer to a years and years old question of what bird I was hearing at night.  I have written an essay on it, and that needs to be typed up, edited, read by someone other than me, and hopefully it can be used to send off to a magazine.  I’m actually quite proud of the piece, even though it’s only in ‘shambles’ right now.  It’s actually not that bad.  I was relaying the story off to my writing group this last Saturday and one of the ladies told me that maybe I need to ask the question of why has this bird become a part of my life. Why has it just now revealed itself to me?  kind of like a spirit animal or guide.

Now personally I don’t believe in spirit guides and all due to my Christian faith, but at the same time, I did start thinking about it.  While the answer I came to might not be anything other than what I came up with in my own head, at the same time, I felt a bit of comfort in the result.

It has taken me years to discover this bird and it has driven me nuts year in and year out; but I have kept plugging away, trying to figure it out, not giving up hope that someday I might, just might find out what it is. The only thing I can connect it to is waiting for the right man to come along and just keep plugging away and waiting for the right person.  And also keep plugging away at my writing and someday I might be published.  Keep focused, maybe not to the point of insanity, but seriously taking moments to write furiously.  I’m not going to date furiously; I do have my standards…… Though one can sometimes dream.  (I have not been blessed with the cream of the crop around here….as I was talking to one of the ladies at the library in regards to books, I seem to have more crap of the crop around here.)

I am dabbling in poetry, at random points.  I have four poems that have started all on the same subject….. See above in unhealthy desires….. and then again on this and that. I have a post I want to write about letting words flow, but that will be when my brain is more focused.  Even now as I write, I have gotten distracted by election returns, a news story, looking out the window, my dog, my family.  I can’t stay focused.

-Paris-is-always-a-good-idea.--JournalI’m venting here.  I’ll blame Dona on this.  It’s her prompt that has me writing. I’m dreaming of Paris.  I’m dreaming of a man who love’s Paris but is taken….. so I can only indulge myself in anything French… My family indulged me with necklaces of the Eiffel Tower and a pair of earrings and I’m so Frenched/Eiffel Towered out but I love it.  “Paris is always a good idea” says Audrey Hepburn.  It is so true.  Said taken man spoke something in French to me all because he noticed my Eiffel Tower necklace.  It’s. So. Not. Fair.

What is this post but nothing more than frustration creeping out of me.  I need to run (it’s been almost a week since my last run) and I need to escape the ties that bind. Whatever those ties are. I think I need to write more and think less.  Now if only I could turn off my brain and let the free thought explode out.

I should stop.  The chickens are calling.  ‘Wheat, wheat,” they say.  I need to clean the coop and water and feed the feathered creatures.  Side note, wet chickens smell horrible.  I say that because it rained today and I had to scoop up my pal of a rooster, Mr. Blue, and put him away. He was wet.  P-U!

Restless and contained.
Kate

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Emilie Loring’s Novels as a Film Guide

I was sitting there last night watching White Christmas, a film I love and should be a staple at Christmas, and as I watched Betty get all mad at Bob and storm off, I thought, wow, this is really like an Emilie Loring novel.

Now granted, there wasn’t much mystery involved, nor was there  a woman scorned trying to win back someone.  There wasn’t a whole exact specificity that made it like an Emilie Loring, but I still say it was.  The shenanigans and how everything was solved in the end.  Even to the misunderstanding of Betty and her running off to the Carousel Club, and Bob going to see her and trying to fix it.  It really is semi similar.  Maybe that’s why I love the story as I do.

And recently, watching the film Aloha with Bradley Cooper and Emma Stone, I thought the same thing.  The film has mystery, intrigue, romance, a woman who wants the hero back, a new woman, a new love interest, people wanting to settle down, a villain.  It’s all there. Updated, with some sex, but still, the premise of the film is very Loring-esque.

You have the guy that comes back home, to Hawaii, there’s the girl who’s his guide, and while she likes him, she’s cautious about him, there’s the ex  girlfriend who is kind of interested in the guy, there’s the business man who has sketchy business dealings…. Will the guy end up with the girl? Or go back to his ex? And what about that sketchy businessman? Did I mention that the guy used to be in the military?

I mean, really, could this be any closer to an Emilie Loring book?  I honestly don’t think so.

So now my new mission in life is to watch films with this style of storyline.  Technically, Pride and Prejudice is along these lines.  Okay, it’s a lot like an Emilie Loring.  And maybe that is what makes these such classic stories.  They have a specific theme that pits good against bad, and guy against girl.  And the guy always get the right girl.

A story isn’t any good with out a little intrigue and conflict.  While White Christmas doesn’t have much intrigue, it still has conflict.  And singing….. the singing makes up for the lack of intrigue.

Aloha has plenty of all things.  Romance and intrigue and conflict.

Does anyone else have some good films that have this story line?  Oh, Sabrina with Humphry Bogart and Audrey Hepburn is a lot like this story line as well!

Clearly I have a Loring vibe still.  I think part of that is because I am reading Patti Bender’s blog as she write’s Emilie Loring’s biography.  Could it be any better than that?  I love this. I’m so excited about it.  And she also has read Loring’s books over and over.  So I get to hear about one of my favorite subjects. Emilie Loring novels.  I think I’m in heaven.

Kate

A Modern Day Audrey Hepburn – Day No. 31

I don’t usually dress up for Halloween, though I did last year.  This year I was inspired by Audrey Hepburn, and I had the shoes and a new hair style I’m trying to do it with.  I call this a Modern Day Audrey because who ever saw Audrey in a Batman t-shirt? Sometimes you just have to modernize something. But classic is still classic.

modern audreyI’m finally done with the Write 31 Days, and it feels a little strange to be done. But at the same time, by the 2nd of November, I have another writing challenge for the Month that will keep me going. I am a sucker for punishment… or good writing practices.  So onwards. And have a safe, Happy Halloween. One day I shall do an Emma Swan out to find her Killian Jones….

Just a bit of Once Upon a Time mentions… Cause I’m hooked.

Kate

Another Persona – Day No. 22

Robert B. Parker had made his character, Jesse Stone, a bad boy, but was R. Parker a bad boy himself? Or did he make Jesse the person he wished he could be sometimes?

As women, we are told to be good. Don’t do anything crazy, or out of societies norms. Don’t swear, don’t sleep around, don’t do anything you wouldn’t want your grandma to know about… Don’t put anything on the internet you wouldn’t want your mom to see at your trial. (this works for guys as well.) Be good. As a good girl myself, I sometimes feel the pressure to always be good. It’s exhausting at times.  Sometimes I want to break all the rules. Kiss a stranger I just met….. oh, wait. I did that. Never mind. He was a good kisser……. Moving on.

As writers, we put ourselves into our characters. We make them expressions of ourselves. But we also make them who we want to be. Or in the exact opposite, who and what we deplore in ourselves. Just take one of your faults and magnify it ten fold. You have a pretty rotten person. We take on another persona by writing our characters. Sometimes it’s liberating to be able to be something else within a character.

The Audrey Swoop

The Audrey Swoop

Recently I have wanted a change. I’ve futzed with new nail polish and styles and new hair styles. Out went the short hair (by short I mean chin length) and now I’m growing it out to see what I can do. Just yesterday I tried a new hairstyle that is so different from what I normally do. I have had bangs all but for a brief time in my early teens. Bangs, and variations of bangs. But I have been inspired by Audrey Hepburn and I’ve wanted to try something different. So, I did. I swooped up the bangs, swirled them around and pulled everything else into place with an up-do.  Just a touch of a cat-eye and whoa. I don’t look like myself . Mrs. B isn’t thrilled, but I love it. I love looking not like myself. There are only so many ways I can live within a character… Why not live a different way myself.

Raggedy Anne From Hell day of the dead....

Raggedy Anne From Hell day of the dead….

This is why I love Halloween. A chance to be something you are not. To take on a different persona.  Last year I went totally out of my element. I ghouled it up and was far from pretty. Scared a few people.  It was fun to be something more than I usually am. Sometimes I would love to do something exotic and gorgeous. Be kind of sexy. I had ideas of trying to do this look that I saw on Dancing With The Stars. It is very cool. But as Halloween falls on a Saturday, and I’m not planning on going out, I’m skipping crazy.  But wouldn’t it be fun to waltz around looking like this?

I feel like if I were to do something like this in my small town I would totally blow people’s minds.  Or if I totally Hollywood styled it up in a sexy dress and did my hair up and not me. Heavy makeup…. Yep, that would be a different persona.  Thank goodness I have my characters to live my life through. That being said, at least I can try my new look sometimes.

So, do you ever want to be something you’re not? Do you write your characters as someone you wish you could be? Tell me.

And don’t forget.  DaySpring.com is celebrating all of the amazing Write 31 Days readers who are supporting nearly 2,000 writers this October! To enter to win a $500 DaySpring shopping spree, just click on this link & follow the giveaway widget instructions. Good luck, and thanks for reading!

Kate

Tiffany & Co. – Day No. 14

Since I was in my early teens, I have flitted between shades of teal through more bluish greens as a favorite color. There was even a brief flirtation with emerald green as it was my birth stone color. Gads, I don’t know what I was thinking there, but emerald green is not my color anymore. Thank goodness. But then a good few years ago I happened upon a Tiffany and Co. ad in a magazine and I knew. I knew right then and there that I had found my color.  Tiffany blue.  This is so my color that everyone who knows me remembers it and finds me things in that shade. The woman who owns the second-hand shop here saves pieces of pottery or other unique things in that shade. Mims and her mother gave me this gorgeous silk scarf with shades of the sea… and Tiffany’s blue within it. I have several things with that color. Still haven’t found a fountain pen ink that is quite right, and waterproof, but when I do, hoo boy, watch out! I’ll be scribbling everything with that ink.  As it is now, the Noodler’s 54th Massachusetts ink I just got is semi close when it’s watered down. Sort of. Still much more dark, but close.

The reason all my blogs and Twitter are covered in that teal blue color is because it’s close to Tiffany blue. I adore this color.  Look up Pinterest and Tiffany themed weddings and an explosion of blue comes out. I love it.

And because of this, I love Tiffany jewelry… Oh the rings and things.  All those gorgeous splashy stones.  I want a piece of Tiffany jewelry. Even if it’s something small. I just would love a necklace or bracelet stamped with their seal of approval.

And I wouldn’t mind a man getting down on one knee with a little blue box…. Ah yes, any girl who knows jewelry knows what comes in a little blue box. Trust me, I see a blue box on Tv or in a film and  I know where it’s coming from.

Breakfast at Tiffany's (film)

Breakfast at Tiffany’s (film) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

And because of all of this, I love Breakfast at Tiffany’s.  The name, the fact that Audrey Hepburn is in it, they go to Tiffany’s…… George Pepard….. Okay, George is just gorgeous, but he doesn’t fit with the whole scheme I’m talking about. Moving on.

I now collect Tiffany ads from magazines to make little origami wishing stars. I’m going to fill a jar one day with Tiffany blue stars and little silver stars and it will be all mind. Mine I say! I would love to have their Blue book, but I have yet to figure out where to get a copy of that. If anyone knows where to research that, let me know.

But Tiffany and Co. is my color, and my dream, and, and, and…..

Kate

Style Icon: Audrey Hepburn – Day No. 3

I want to start this post off with sending out my prayers and thoughts to the victims and victim’s families of the Umpqua Community College shooting.  This hits so much closer to home for me as I live not far from the Oregon border, so to me, it is like being right in my back yard so to speak. My condolences go out the all of the families affected by this tragedy. Words cannot express my sadness for these people. I pray that still in the hospital make a full recovery. I pray that Chris Mintz makes a full recovery. His bravery is what we need to see more in this world. Like Alex Skarlatos, he is a hero. And for Alex Skarlatos, that young man has had too many things affect him in such a short time. The fact that he is enrolled at the college, but was on a sabbatical for Dancing with the Stars is just a bit too strange to not mention.

 

English: Studio publicity portrait for film Sa...

English: Studio publicity portrait for film Sabrina with William Holden and Audrey Hepburn. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

For years my go to actress and role model was Marilyn Monroe. Blonde, sexy, and just so me, I loved her. I wanted to see everything she was in and kind of secretly wanted to be her. Sadly, I can only list a couple of her films I actually like. As I grew up and learned more about her life, I lost the fascination of Norma Jean. Her life was far from ideal and it was pitted with scandal.

Then suddenly, and I’m not even sure when it happened, but I had a new role model and glamorous icon. Audrey Hepburn. I think my first introduction to her was her film ‘Sabrina’. To this day, ‘Sabrina’ is still my favorite film of Audrey’s.  Classy, sweet, black and white, and so utterly glamorous I can’t ever get enough of it. (Plus it has Humphrey Bogart.  sigh) However, then came Roman Holiday, Breakfast at Tiffany’s, Charade, My fair Lady, Summer When it Sizzles…..  All wonderfully classic films.  I’d say now, Breakfast at Tiffany’s is becoming a close second favorite of mine.

Her style, her class, and just plain Audrey became my idol.

But it’s not just her look that makes her such a timeless woman. Her work with

UNICEF is well known throughout the world and brought her status up from just actress to someone who cares deeply about other people. She was able to take her fame and use it as a stepping stone to publicity for her charities.  In my opinion, there are very few actors that go to the level Audrey accomplished. The only ones I can think of are Angelina Joli or Gary Sinise.   And as time goes on, I am seeing fewer and fewer actors taking a part in a good cause. This is all off the top of my head as I am not doing a serious research piece here. I always think that if an actor can make a difference in social issues, such as poverty, or humanitarian aid, or in the case of Gary Sinise, the USO, it’s a really good thing. They have the publicity to make a difference, and the money to bring light to those less fortunate.

Audrey Hepburn at Breakfast at Tiffany's. Espa...

Audrey Hepburn at Breakfast at Tiffany’s. Español: Audrey Hepburn en Desayuno con Diamantes. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

She is an icon of style that no one else has ever been able to capture. She is described as ‘elfin’ and ‘gamine’ but her delicate beauty and sweet disposition are so much larger than those words.  I adore Audrey.  She continues to be my style icon, though I cannot carry it off quite the same way. I’m not elfin enough to ever look like her. Plus with the blonde hair and Finnish features… well, let’s just say I’m not, nor ever will be an Audrey lookalike. But she can be someone to admire, for certain.

Not to mention all of her films are wonderful. Speaking of which, I need to sit down and watch Breakfast at Tiffany’s again, since that is the style I’m looking to copy for Halloween. And I have not watched Sabrina in ages.

 

30 Day Plank Challenge: Repeating days 1 and 2 because 20 seconds is more than I can seem to do. So this challenge might take me longer than 30  days…..

Kate

 

What’s Coming for October

lady reading silhouetteHello dearies.  It’s the day before October (gasp and horrors) and I’m sitting here panicking as I realize that my plans to write a bunch of posts for my 31 days in October challenge  has just totally not happened. I did my usual procrastinate and said, Oh, I have time, I’ll do it later….. and now, here is later.  Well, oh well. I guess I’ll have to write just like everyone else and just pound out a post a day for the month. Or well, write a couple on one day.

English: Studio publicity portrait for film Sa...

English: Studio publicity portrait for film Sabrina with William Holden and Audrey Hepburn. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Okay, so here is what the schedule is. For the entire month of October I will be posting about ladies, femininity, and things that relate mostly to women.  It’s not going to be super gushy, for those guys out there. I do have some things that are actually interesting in my opinion; Audrey Hepburn, women poets, Steampunk clothing and women in steampunk….. various thoughts.  Things like that. Just the theme is related to women.  I will have a directory of the posts here —–> 31 Days of October – Femininity & Ladies so if you miss a post, you can just check there. I do have some other non related posts I will being doing as I always have my book reviews. I thought I might get them out of the way before the month, but again, procrastination… and I just received one, so you know.

If you are curious about last year’s challenge, you can find it here —-> 31 Days of Fun, Fanciful, & Functional.  Also, check out Write 31 Days.  If you are interested in a monthly challenge, this is a pretty nice one because there is no theme. You create the theme. There are several categories to fit just about everything in. It’s kind of low key, but at the same time, it is a challenge, so basically you monitor yourself and well, challenge yourself. Joining is open until the 5th, I believe when you can link up and have your button on the site. Also check out their Facebook group if you are interested. It is a closed group, but we are all rather friendly there.

30 Day Plank Challenge - 30 Day Fitness ChallengesAnd lastly, because I haven’t been running due to being iron deficient/anemic/out of breath all the time, I am doing a 30 Day Plank Challenge from the makers of 30 Fitness Challenges.  Last year in March I was trying to do the 30 days of squats, crunches, and situps.  It did not go well due to other health reasons. But I hope to be able to do the plank challenge. Check it out. It’s not horrible and we all could use a strong core.

So, there you have it. One month of a frazzled brain and rushing to get posts done, and drinking too much coffee….  it’s going to be exciting, so I hope you join me. I highly recommend reading each post with a very good cup of coffee. Right now I am drinking an Americano I made with the espresso machine. It’s divine.

Happy October everyone!

Kate

Summer Nights And Summer Films

From the front porchI’m sitting out on our front porch, which is almost de rigur  in the country, watching a tree swallows attempt to fit a too large feather into the hole of the birdhouse the swallows claimed months ago.  They should have had a nest built and babies there already.  Now he, or she, is poking its head out after succeeding in shoving the feather into the hole.

The sun is minutes from setting on this hot, June evening.  Clouds of gnats hover and congregate over the tall weeds.  The mountain air smells more like cow manure and a tractor just went down the highway.  Everyday things in the country.  In the field next door is a tractor waiting to cut the long grass tomorrow.

The days have been viciously hot, if you can call the low nineties vicious, but June evenings are magical.  When everything is still vibrant green and lush, not dried from the summer baking.  The air is filled with the golden flashes of flying insects and there is an ever present sound of birds singing. Or fighting, as I just heard that sound.  Crickets abound and mosquitoes are typical.

There is something about this time of year that makes me want to watch certain films that seem to scream summer.  Breakfast At Tiffany’s, Paris When It Sizzles, Sabrina, (yes, those are all Audrey Hepburn films), The Seven Year Itch, and old westerns like Once Upon a Time in the West.  There’s something kind of sexy about all those films.  The Audrey ones are probably my favorite, but I am an Audrey Hepburn fan.  For years I was a Marilyn Monroe fan, but since I only like 3 or 4 of her films, and her life wasn’t as admirable, I’ve changed my likes.  I adore Audrey Hepburn and I’m in a mood for summer films.

Like films, my music tastes change come summer.  I love pulling out Carole King’s Tapestry album because it should only be played in the hot summer months. Or America, Loggins and Messina, Seals and Crofts, and various other bands from the seventies.

And now the sun sets and the air is scented by the hot, spicy scent of pine resins that float down the mountains.  I’d love to stay on the porch reading and enjoying my cup of coffee, but I’m sure to be slapping mosquitoes soon, and I can’t bear that.  Besides, I spent this time writing out this post in my journal and I’ll need to type it up and post it with the picture I took of a view from the porch.  Also, after a day of watering and burning out in the sun, a shower is definitely in order.  too bad we don’t have an outdoor shower or a cattle trough bathtub.  I would love something like that.

So here’s to summer, sun, and sexy heatwave movies.  What are some of your summer must watch films?

Signing off

~Kate

Nine – A Review

Nine.  I’ve spent the past few days trying to come up with how to review the film Nine.  And really, this isn’t so much a review as more of a gush.  So be forewarned. I will be gushing.

Nine is the story of Guido Contini, an Italian writer/director who has his next film, Italia, ready to start production. Except for the minor detail of no script. Who needs a script? You have magnificent costumes designed by the charming Lilli, the ever amazing Judi Dench.

Guido, played by Daniel Day-Lewis, is a charming self absorbed man, with just a few too many woman on his arm. His mistress, Carla (Penelope Cruz), wife, Luisa (Marion Cotillard), muse, Claudia (Nicole Kidman), ghost of a mother, Sophia Loren, and a new flirtation, a Vogue fashion journalist (Kate Hudson)

Mistress or wife? Who will win?

Set in Italy in the 1960’s, the bulk of the film takes place over just a couple days, with flashbacks from Guido’s childhood mixed in, then a jump of a couple years towards the end of the film.  It is a stunning mix of scenery, sets, and musical numbers that leave you breathless.

The overall story is sad, with Guido not caring with true depth for any one woman, yet all are in love with him.  A wife who thought every special moment they shared was there’s, only to find out, some of those special moments have happened with other women.  A mistress who wants to be with her lover, only he keeps her hidden.  An actress who has been in several of his films, and has loved him from afar. And while I think Guido and selfish man, I can totally understand this amazing fascination with him. (Daniel Day-Lewis is not an actor I like, but oh my gosh, I fell in love with him as Guido.)  I can completely understand why all these women flock around him. He’s charming and sweet and artistic….. when he wants to be.

The women in Guido Contini’s life.

It’s a character film. You get lost in the intricacies of the characters, and the songs, sung by the actors themselves, bring the problems home.  While  I can’t say as you are truly happy by the end of the film, you can’t help but love it. Or at least, that is the way I feel about it. I can’t see any guy really appreciating it, my father being one of those.

The music itself is something that needs another whole post unto itself. Lyrical, stunning, Rogers and Hammerstein-esque, I have the music stuck in my head. I loved it so much I got the album and have listened to it twice today. With lines like “Long ago, twenty years ago,once the names were Guido Contini, Luisa his lover, actress with dreams and a life of her own…” from “My Husband Makes Movies”, you really start to feel for the wife, Luisa.  I can totally relate to that feeling of losing yourself in a relationship.

There are many aspects that a woman can relate to in this film.  And I can see why it was such a smash hit on Broadway. In film, it flopped, though I don’t think it should have.  I highly recommend this movie if you enjoy musicals and in-depth stories.

I’d gush more, but I fear I can’t really describe everything that hits me about this film.  Just watch it and see for yourself.  Me?  Well, I plan to get the film to watch again and again, one of these days.  I’ll add it to my section of films that my family doesn’t get why I like.  The Pride and Prejudice, Audrey Hepburn collection, anything British BBC-ish…. films.  Maybe being a writer makes me like quirky films.

Signing off

~Kate