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Showing posts from February, 2012

Children's Stories

Each generation probably thinks their television, music and movies were the best but they would all be wrong. Clearly my generation had the best of everything.

However, it doesn't surprise me that fairytales and children's stories seem to cross generations. Parents read their kids stories that had a powerful inpact on them and then they discover new stories together which will then be shared with the next generation.

Not only are these stories multi-generational but they're multi-cultural, tweaked to better fit within the framework of a particular group of people but the morality or the lack thereof remains unaltered. Walt Disney is the most famous exponent of packaging fairytales for the masses and to this day, kids drag their parents around the World and Land created by the famous animator.

Dozens of animated movies have been made featuring characters like Snow White, Cinderella, the Frog Prince, The Little Mermaid, Pinocchio and Rapunzel which are based on stories writ…

Movies of 2012 (part 4)

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So, I've watched a pile of movies lately, mostly while I've been avoiding my current writing project. I've not been overly enthused by any of the newer movies and so far, this year, the best movies I've seen are all older movies. Here are another 3 reviews for the pile...






My Cousin Vinny (1992)

Goofy comedy that won Marisa Tomei a Best Supporting Actress Oscar that about knocked the critics off their high chairs. This is one of those movies I always find while browsing through the channels and always end up watching. It's very silly but Joe Pesci is likable as Vinny, the loud-mouth New York lawyer out of his depth in the South.(As usual Pesci's wig seems to have a mind of its own!)  Tomei also shines as his patient  yet hot-blooded girlfriend. And for those with long memories, check out Herman Munster (Fred Gwynne) as the judge! 3 bad wigs out of 5




Attack the Block (2011)

British sci-fi, horror, comedy which got a lot of rave reviews. I wanted to enjoy this movie…

eBooks and FreeBooks

After I finished writing "Monsters" the thing I most wanted to do was make it into an actual physical book. I'd never finished a novel-length story before and this would be the icing on that particular cake. My friend Andrew already had some experience working through the Createspace site (owned by Amazon) and suggested I go that route.

Createspace will print your book on demand and sell it through their own website and then it will be picked up by Amazon. Paying a few more dollars will give you access to the "advanced distrubution network" which promises you the biggest possible audience.

I wanted a couple of copies of my book and I knew friends and family wanted copies but would anyone else? I didn't know, but I figured it would do no harm to pay for the full distrubution and whatever happened would just be a bonus. My book went "live" and over the next few months I sold 14 copies. I could tell you the name of every one of the 14 buyers too. I k…

Books that made me want to write (Part Two)

Here we go with the second installment and this time a writer I'm pretty sure you've heard of:

The Martian Chronicles by Ray Bradbury

My parents had a piece of furniture in the house that worked as a display case, had drawers for music tapes, a drinks cabinet and a cupboard for storing bits and pieces. Most importantly though, there was a horizontal section along the middle which could be used as a small library shelf. This shelf was filled with paperbacks that my parents had picked up over the years and it included a large amount of science fiction stories and short story collections.

My eye was drawn to them because of the vivid covers: colorful and psychedelic images of spacemen and aliens; of alluring alien females and deadly spaceships, the covers were always rich and interesting and made you want to find out what was inside. I learned the names of a few of the giants: Asimov, Clarke and Heinlein.

Clarke was most well known to me at the time. Arthur C. Clarke's Mysteri…

Books that made me want to write (Part One)

If you will indulge me, I'd like to start a semi-regular piece on books that rocked my universe so hard they still influence me with my writing. They won't all be classics, by my or anyone else's standards, but they have all affected me positively as a writer. Here's the first one:

Dr. Who and the Robots of Death by Terrance Dicks

Much like everyone has their favorite James Bond; everyone has a favorite Dr Who (In the UK at least). The show has been around since the 60's, on and off, and had 11 different actors playing the lead character: The Doctor. My favorite was the enigmatic 4th Doctor: Tom Baker, with his floppy hat and mile long scarf, easily the most fun portrayal of the character.

It was a scary show for a young kid at the time, but that was a huge part of its appeal. The BBC and Target books were well aware of that fact and commissioned a whole line of novelizations of the show. If you saw it on TV, you would eventually be able to find the book version in…