The Old Pirate – Poem

The Old Pirate

Under the old clock towers on a full moon night
and the asphalt and cobblestones are wet with a shine
he clomps and staggers in cracked leather boots.
He once was a pirate by trade
sailing off to adventures a many
looting and pillaging and carousing around
letting the gold slip and tumble through his fingers
as easily as the rum slipped down his throat
so full of life was he, till it came back to bite.
A rabid dog bite of a drunken haze.
He’s a cloak of invisibility of old man now
worn and tired and rather gray
aged and fat and a little more drunk
ancient adventures lost in delusional bursts
brandishing half empty bottles and shouting
the insanity creeping insidiously in
slumped on the cold stone steps.
He’s less than half the man of long ago
when he was a dashing charming sort.
Now all that’s left is this sad old man
sailing off in memories long forgotten
growing colder under the towers of time
till time eventually stops and he’s frozen
no longer anything but a once told tale
when the morning comes and they heave him so
up into a cart and tossed not into the sea
but to earth interned never to sail again.

 

I was feeling uninspired by the prompts I pulled for writing at my writing group this morning. So Sera graciously offered to pull some for me. I should have requested a random pulling instead of specifically looking for ones…. I know what you did, Sera…., but she pulled ‘full moon, clock towers, he was a pirate, grey silk, adventure, cloak of invisibility.’  I added in my one ‘wet asphalt’ and suddenly I was picturing the ‘wish realm’ version of Captain Hook that was featured recently on Once Upon a Time. But then I thought, what would this old pirate look like in the real world and would he drink himself to death….? Apparently he became that way, though there were some that didn’t realize I killed off this pirate. Hopefully it’s clear.  Enjoy this very random piece of poetry, and very open verse as well.

Kate

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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

They Were Reading What?

English: Bronte Sisters statue, Haworth Parson...

English: Bronte Sisters statue, Haworth Parsonage. Taken through the window of the museum shop – sorry about the reflections on the glass! (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

EH Bates, over at Bumbles Books had a great challenge this week. In her post Defined by Books, she brings up the subject of what our characters would read. What book does your hero like? Does your heroine read romance? Can you define a person by the books they read?  For the answer to that question, I say absolutely!

I just read in Lizzy and Jane by Katherine Reay (a review I will be writing tomorrow or Wed.) And in it, the hero is a total Hemingway and Greek Tragedy guy. The reasons why this guy is a Hemingway guy is kind of just because of how ‘cool’ Hemingway was. The heroine is an Austen gal.

Who am I as a reader. Um, yes. But I have personal favorites. However how do my characters stack up.

Mia who owns a bookstore is a classics girl. Fitzgerald’s Gatsby, the Bronte sisters, Austen, Zane Grey and magazines. She likes the weirdly unnoticed books like what would come from Persephone Books. She reads magazines because she doesn’t have a lot of time to read, so magazines are quick.

English: Hemingway posing for a dust jacket ph...

English: Hemingway posing for a dust jacket photo by Lloyd Arnold for the first edition of “For Whom the Bell Tolls”, at the Sun Valley Lodge, Idaho, late 1939. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Rafe, Mia’s hero is a total Hemingway guy along with books from the 1920’s and 30’s. He’s into jazz so the older style is totally him. He likes John Le Carre and the suspense/spy novel. You would see him reading Flemming. He’s classic and old school and totally like Patrick Warburton in the National Car ad. You know, sexy.

 

My character Rena, who’s a lot like me, would read like me: Emilie Loring, Sir Walter Scott, Tennyson, Bronte, historical romances, contemporary romances, Harlequin, non fiction herbal books, cook books, gardening. She refers to her authors by first name. So you have the Emily’s – Emilie Loring, Emily Dickinson, Emily Bronte. Can make for confusing if she asks for a book, but it also signifies that her books and authors are her friends. Books are her friends so she refers to them in the first person. (Silly, I know, but it is a quirk)

And lastly Phaedra. Since she’s a photographer, she reads a lot of books on photography, as well as travel guides and historical information. Things she can use. But she likes cheesy and girly. Fairytales and silly romance. Her favorite guilty pleasure show is Once Upon a Time, so you have to figure silly romancey fairytale.  I also picture fan fiction. She’s a total Captain Swan girl so she reads fan fiction late at night. She won’t tell anyone that, but oh, we know she just eats it up.

 

I had never thought that much about some of what my characters would read. Rena yes, since she is most like me. Mia more so since she owns a bookstore. But Rafe is a new addition to thinking about it.  I have other characters that I could list, but I need to think about them more.

This was a great writing challenge and I think it will help me with my character depth as well.  Check out Bumbles Books. Her posts are great and thought provoking.  And also, think about what your characters read. I’m going to ping John Guillen since I think he might appreciate such a post or for him to think about.

Kate

 

Happy Halloween

Shirley Temple from Hell

Shirley Temple from hell, crossed with Zelena the Wicked Witch (a la Once Upon a Time) with a touch of hip Raggedy Ann. Yep, people, I went all out. This is not the normal me, but I couldn’t resist this year.  The skirt is an infinity scarf, while the cape is fabric from the Cote Ivoire back when Mrs Day was there for a year in the 70’s. Wicked pincurled hair, day of the dead face paint… Totally rocking this Halloween.

Signing off

Kate

Word of the Day –Nefarious

So first off, if you didn’t figure it out by the lack of word posts over the weekend, the Word of the Day feature is only a five day thing. I won’t be doing weekends just because WordPress is a quiet place for me on the weekend. So just Monday through Friday. Now onto the word.

Nefarious or not, I of course have to post a picture of 'Captain Hook'

Nefarious or not, I of course have to post a picture of ‘Captain Hook’

Nefarious. I think of that word and one person/character comes to mind.  Captain Hook.  I love nefarious. It’s a blast to say.

ne·far·i·ous     adjective \ni-ˈfer-ē-əs\

: evil or immoral

:  flagrantly wicked or impious :  evil

Ah, such a fun word to use for a villain.  And the only reason I choose Captain Hook is because of Once Upon a Time.  I’m sorry, but Captain Hook is a favorite villain of mine and nothing screams nefarious or dastardly (another fun word to use) like Colin O’donaghue’s Killian Jones/Captain Hook.  Maybe because I love the term ‘flagrantly wicked or impious’. Doesn’t that sound like Captain Hook?

Okay, so people, your challenge today….. Use nefarious, or dastardly, or both! in a story or in your daily vernacular.  I dare you. Come on, have a bit of some villain in you.

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Do You Really Want To Claim That Picture As Your Own?

So, usually I’m not one to get to irritated with people online, but this is not one of those times.

There has been a lot of debate regarding photo rights and what people can use online.  Most bloggers I know of, especially those from Tumblr, use whatever image they want with little regard for sources.  While technically just adding in a source is not the correct way of using images, it’s more proper than just claiming something as your own.

Even I’m guilty of using images that are not my own.  However, I usually try to link to the original site where I found the image, and if there is a credit, I will include it. The only time I do not use certain images is when they are specifically from a photographer with their name on it. Most of the pictures out there I find it hard to know who the original source is, so I can’t label it.

Just this week, I was on Tumblr and I found a really nice background of Colin O’Donoghue and Jennifer Morrison sharing the infamous Captain Swan kiss that has set the fandom all in a marvelous tizzy.  It was posted as the background of the blog  Because You Didn’t See This Coming…

I loved the image, and I am going to include it with this post so you can see. A charming wintery background, and then the couple kissing.  So, I posted it on Tumblr, crediting the site I found it on, though I figured well, the image could have come from anywhere.

CS winter kiss.

The edited version from the original

Not two hours later, I received a message from the blogger asking me to take down ‘her’ image. Well, technically, it is polite to remove an image if it isn’t your own and the ‘owner’ wants it down.  So, I removed the image and apologized profusely for upsetting the person.  The reply I got was this.

“If you want to promo me, you can just explain my blog and link it. But thank you for removing it when I asked. No worries. I’ve dealt with assholes in the past, thus why I got really mad, but it’s fine now!”

Okay, fine. Whatever. I went on my merry way.

Until the next morning.

32cs

The Original Image

See, it’s all fine and good to say you have created an image and it is yours, if it actually is yours.  However, when you take an image from the internet of say, a famous couple kissing, and edit it and add a background, I’m sorry, but that original image is not yours.  Did you ask for permission to use it and edit it?  In this instance, did you contact the ABC network and the producers and photographers of Once Upon A Time and ask them if you could use the image?  If not, then you are breaking all the copyright and image rules out there.

You do not own public images like this unless you are the photographer.  So, I can just take that image, and edit it a bit, and call it my own.  In fact here, let’s just do that.   Oh my, look at that.  It’s not the same, but look at the couple, well they are still what was the original.  I’m going to call this my own.  And I’m sorry, but no one can use it without my permission.

My edited version of the edited version.  (Oh and Merry Christmas CSers and Oncers)

My edited version of the edited version. (Oh and Merry Christmas CSers and Oncers)

I think that sounds right. Don’t you?  See how ridiculous that is?  These images out there are corrupted and edited by thousands of fan girls.  Then they get upset if said image is posted without their consent, but I’m sorry, they do not own the original image and cannot claim it’s theirs.

Now, I’m not one to get on a soap box, but I think there are times when I need to speak up. I give this a warning to people who blog and ‘edit’ pictures.  Unless the image is one you took with your own camera, you cannot claim it is yours just because you edited it a bit.  Editing is easy now. Anyone can do it.  I’ve just proven that. It is impossible to call something yours, if you have no rights to it.

Signing off
~Kate

A Peek Into Kate’s Obsessions

Currently I’m obsessed with several things, which in turn has taken up my time so that I’m not writing blog posts like I normally would. Granted, I usually only get one a week posted, but I haven’t even done that. I’m so far behind my norm that it’s getting out of control. At this rate, or as it stands, I have to type up at least 5-8 posts and try and schedule them for the month so that I can have a bit more downtime during the holiday season.

But until then, here is a peek into my current obsessions and time consuming pursuits. Usually I have three periods during the year where I’m obsessed with something. Springtime usually means Jane Austen, though it seemed to run more mid summer this year. Spring was Georgia O’Keefe, this time around.

  1. Colin O’Donoghue as Captain ‘Killian Jones’ Hook

    Once Upon a Time
    This season of OUAT has been incredible. The plot is so incredibly ridiculous and fabulous that I don’t even know where to start. The family tree of Henry is on beyond the realm of normal thought. But it is so cool. The story makes you just keep coming back for more. Not counting the character of Captain Hook.  Killian Jones, as his real name happens to be, has got to be one of the sexiest actors on a drama right now. Not only is he incredibly charming, he has this way with words (an Irish accent doesn’t hurt), these devilishly good looks that he gives Emma, and an actually really good heart. I’ve even delved into the fan fiction realm regarding what is known as ‘Captain Swan’. Oh, the fan fiction and Captain Swan speculations out there will keep a girl’s heart fluttering at an alarming rate.  Pardon me while I go hyperventilate into a bag or sob in the closet.  All kidding aside, I’ve gone a bit fan girl on the whole show, and my Tumblr account     shows it with various OUAT fan posts, quotes, videos, and chatter between other diehard OUAT fans.  #LongLiveCaptainSwan

  2. Tyler+Hubbard+CMT+Music+Awards+Wonderwall+ZbMiZAHQCaelFlorida Georgia Line I’m not sure when I decided to actually listen to these guys, but I think it was right after the CMA’s that I actually didn’t watch. I missed them, and I think I was on Tumblr and there were posts about these boys. Well, I decided to listen, finally, to their song “Cruise”.  And that was it. I fell in love with them. Due to the ‘love’ part, I’ve now used Tyler Hubbard as a model for a new novel I’m busily tapping writing away at. It’s been a blast to look them up, see pictures, hear songs, and *gasp* see them play at the AMA’s, which was incredibly cool, despite my father rolling his eyes in disgust. Sorry, I know it isn’t ‘real’ country, but it is fun.
  3. Luke Bryan playing a ‘classic’ bro-country song (That’s My Kind of Night)

    Which brings me to my next obsession. Bro-Country Blame it on FGL, but now I’m slightly overdoing the bro-country music (I’m not even sure I know how to spell that) It’s this new genre of non country that has swept the music charts, just in case you don’t listen to country, like me, or haven’t heard the term. Singers like Luke Bryan, Jake Owen, Chris Young, etc., sings songs that seem to have the themes of girls with no name, painted on jeans, moonlight, a truck, always the weekend, always summer, possibly a rap bridge, and beer.  It’s sad. It’s the farthest thing from country next to Taylor Swift and her pop queeness. But I love it and since I’m writing about a singer who sings bro-country, well, listening to it helps. It isn’t because it’s catchy…. ‘Aw Naw

  4. Fernando Sor

    Fernando Sor
    This is a recent obsession and it hasn’t taken full hold over me. Recently I was invited to see an homage of Fernando Sor at my local theater, which is really quite small.  The homage was done by the talent John Doan. I won’t go into details about him, you can see what he does on his website, here, but it gave me a taste of modern classical guitar. It was stunning and moving and I was left breathless as I heard this most amazing music played. Now, I haven’t had the opportunity to hear a lot of Fernando Sor’s actual compositions, but I’ve started looking and so far, it’s really quite wonderful. Something I plan to use for part of my novel.

So, four obsessions isn’t that bad, but they do take up time. It’s interesting that three of them are music. But as I’ve always been one to love music and have it on all the time, it’s not unusual.

I’m curious, what are any of you obsessed with? Something embarrassing like Once Upon a Time? Or something more innocuous?

Let me know.

Signing off

~Kate

The Zing of Being Twitter Followed by The Enemies

One thing I’ve found in the blogging, Tweeting, Tumblr-ing world is how very unimportant I am.  My thoughst are very small indeed. I am a nobody. I actually don’t mind it much. I know I don’t blog often enough to hold anyone’s attention.  My tweets are limited to blog updates and a very rare comment here or there.  I think I’m on Tumblr more than anything, having found that it can be addicting to stumble upon Tumblr…..

So, I found it quite surprising and exciting to find out one day that my Twitter weas being followed by Cluadia Cowan from FOX News.  I’ve known about her from California news ( I am a native) since I was younger, and I’ve watched her slowly work her way up in the reporting world.  To be followed by someone I deem important is a very cool thing for me.

But by far, the most exciting has been the recent follow on Twitter of the band The Enemies.  The Enemies is an up and coming Irish band.  Now, I don’t know much about them, but the reason for this said follow, I assume, is due to some random gushing remarks I made to the band about following them due to liking one of their band members.  The member of the band is the very handsome and devilish Colin O’Donoghue who is probably best known as Killian Jones a.k.a. Captain Hook on ABC’s Once Upon A Time.  And Boom!  There was the band following me.  A couple days later, the Guitarist/Saxophonist and Song writer, Johnny Crean was following me as well.  An actual member of the band.  Following me!

The Enemies. (psst. Johnny Crean is on the far left)

Little ole me.  Me who has a whopping 85 followers on Kate’s Bookshelf (twitter has around 600 or so, but most are not worth being followed by.  Don’t get me wrong, I love all you guys. I love that I have had some great conversations with you fellow bloggers. I love discussing writing, so getting to know some of  you has been great.  But nothing is quite like the Zing! of having someone ‘famous’ follow you.  Bands usually don’t follow us normal people.  News people don’t have time to follow us normal people.

So I feel very special indeed.  I may not be anyone important, but I have a band following me.  I have a band member following me.  Can you tell that the news reporter wasn’t thrilling me quite as much?  Ha ha.  Well, I urge you all to check out The Enemies.  I haven’t had a chance to listen to all their music, but from what I’ve heard, they sound great.  And also, tune into Once Upon A Time, Sunday nights on ABC. If just for the fun of seeing a very gorgeous Captain Hook.

You can also follow me on Twitter.

Katie Lyn BransonKatie Lyn Branson @KatieLynBranson

Or Tumblr at Daydream Writer

The Many Versions of Captain Hook

It seems to me that I have seen a fair amount of Peter Pan and Captain Hook inspired stories. For me, the classic Hook is the Disney version. Silly, ridiculous and a total nut, he isn’t super scary and is my most favorite Disney villain. I adore Captain Hook.

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Dustin Hoffman‘s portrayal was next as far as hilarious. You can’t really view him as a horrible villain especially when he loses his hat and wig and you realize he’s bald.   He’s so insanely afraid of clocks, he goes completely mad in his clock museum.  Yes, he’s far from scary.

Then we come to Jason Isaac’s portrayal. He was ruthless and kind of scary.  Taking the role of Mr. Darling, then as Hook, he captures some of the fear we feel towards our father’s at points.  Fear and respect, but I found him to be deadly.  And very villan-ish.

More recently there was was Rhys Ifans‘ playing the dreaded Captain, but in a new way. The Neverland mini series gave a slightly sexier side to the Captain, who first starts out as a fencing teacher, and a bit of a gentleman thief on the streets of London.  This has actually been one of my more favorite versions, partly because he was kind of so good looking.

Finally I saved the best for last.  Like I’ve said, I’ve seen a fair amount of Captain Hook portrayals, but none are quite so sexy, quite so deliciously evil (with a good side), quite so wow factor than the marvelous, gorgeous, sexy and all around perfect Captain Hook as Colin O’Donoghue‘s Killian Jones. ABC’s Once Upon A Time has taken and flipped every fairytale we know, but none quite so good as this version of Captain Hook.  He’s sexy, (did I mention that?) he’s charming like you wouldn’t believe, and he’s really not quite as bad as he could be.  Sure he tried to take a heart or two. Sure he’s working with the evil Cora. And sure, you can’t really quite trust him, but, he did tell Emma he wouldn’t have left her on the beanstalk.  That speaks for something doesn’t it?  And he didn’t kill her when he had the opportunity to when they were all trying to go through the portal.  Come on, if he likes Emma, he can’t be all bad.  Besides, he’s so gorgeous, you can’t make him truly evil.  Gorgeous people are not evil.

I could post pictures, and videos, and love sonnets to the new Captain Hook, but then I might look a bit like a stalker.  And pardon the raving.  Colin O’Donoghue and his Killian Jones character, are now the model for one of my hero’s that I’ve been writing about for 7 years.  I’ve never found anyone that fit the bill for my character of Rafe Simon, which after some retrospect I feel is not a worthy enough name for someone as gorgeous as Colin O’Donoghue, and now I have.  I will be posting soon on Escaping the Inkwell, about my characters, so more lovely pictures to drool over will be included.

Now, I’m curious, what other versions of Captain Hook do you enjoy?  Would you believe I have never read the original Peter Pan, so I don’t even really know what Captain Hook is like, except for what I’ve seen.  I’m horribly biased I think.

Well, I’d love to know anyone else’s thoughts on this villain, and Killian Jones…..

Signing off

Kate