Blog Archives

>A is for the "A" List

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For the first day of the A to Z Challenge,
I thought I’d start things out 
by posting some of my favorite things 
that begin with the letter “A”.
In no particular order
(and believe me, this is a very short, random list):
About a Boy
I love this movie. It’s sad, funny, tragic, and real.
And you’ll see Hugh Grant in a whole new way.
Highly recommend it.
It’s no secret that I love YA/MG novels.
Artemis Fowl is one of my favorite characters.
I’ve read the whole series so far and I’ve enjoyed watching him mature.
August Rush blew me away.
It’s a fairy tale. Musically.
Freddie Highmore is completely brilliant.
He breaks my heart, in the very best of ways.
Very highly recommended!!!!
This is probably my favorite Audio Adrenaline album.
There’s even a fantastic cover 
of Pete Townshend’s Let My Love Open The Door.
AA has a rock flavor that appeals 
and a message that encourages.
Check them out if you haven’t before!
Funny Face
Breakfast at Tiffany’s
My Fair Lady
War and Peace
Grace. Charm. Beauty. Talent.
That smile…..
Has there ever been anyone like Audrey Hepburn?
Anastasia
I absolutely adore this movie.
Ingrid Bergman is beautiful, fragile…..amazing.
And Yul Brenner just makes me swoon!
A real life fairy tale that almost could have been….
It’s not for nothing that this is a true classic.
all images from google.com
So, what’s on your A List?
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>I’m In Love!!!!!!!!!!!!

>Oh, my friends, this may not matter to you at all and THAT’S OKAY! For real! But if I don’t share this, I’m going to just explode!

I’ve mentioned before about my favorite wip. Not the nano novel (which I do love, btw). There’s just something about Tangi, my favorite MC. She’s haunting and haunted. She’s tragic and epic and I adore her. However, it’s a giant struggle to write her story and do it RIGHT. Therefore, most of it is still in my head. (I can do that. It’s my super hero power-storing whole story elements in my brain-pan.)

I can see the entire thing, but some of the characters need to be more, you know? And the antagonist(s) need fleshing out, as do a few other elements.

Well, I had a major breakthrough yesterday. Still not what this post is about, but it’s important nonetheless. One of the major characters solidified! His whole story just birthed itself, wow! And, his bff….I got the whole relationship, how it’s relevant, and how it affects Tangi in all kinds of ways. In fact, there’s a whole trickle down effect happening!!!! *happy dance*

Now, if I can just figure out the rest of the cast (make them more than 2D) and more specific conflict stuff….

ANYWAY! Recently, I saw Prince of Persia, The Sands of Time. I have to admit, it was way better than I expected. What’s more, I love the soundtrack. I love listening to the music as the credits roll and I’m glad, because I found something amazing.

This is going to be Tangi’s song. It fits her in a very different but profound way…….

The passion with which Alanis Morissette sings….it blows me away. In my head, I can hear Tangi singing this – with anger and sorrow and defiance…..a declaration to all who hunt her.

Sigh….I’m in love with this song!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

>Top Ten Countdown Music Blogfest….A Day Late!

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Alex stopped by yesterday and said I could still post my top ten music list. Ain’t he the sweetest?!!!

The only problem is….I ADORE music. All kinds of it. And what I listen to depends on my mood. Still, I did manage to narrow it down to just ten. It was difficult and I may need therapy, but I did it.

I picked songs that, no matter what, bring a smile to my face. They make me close my eyes and go somewhere else. They do it to me. In no particular order, here they are:

 Rambling Gambling Man – Bob Seger
Because it’s straight up rock-funk. I prefer the original version when he was very young
 In Your Eyes – Peter Gabriel
Because it’s beautiful. I prefer the live version; it showcases various talents. And I never want the song to end.
 Living For The City & Uptight (yeah, I cheated) – Stevie Wonder
Because I grew up with Stevie. These are only two of many I could have picked. Besides, I always cheat on these kinds of things. You would have been disappointed if I hadn’t….
 Do Ya – ELO
Because it has a part in the middle that I just go bonkers for. Since I was a teenager. 
 He Reigns – Newsboys
I love the words and how the music adds such drama. And it’s very upbeat.
 Ray of Light – Madonna
Because when no one is looking, this is a song I can spaz-dance to. And at the end, she sounds like she’s having a fun time.
 Wonderful – Adam Ant
Because he wrote this after coming out about being bi-polar and could see more clearly. It’s about regret. And it’s beautiful. He still struggles….
(When I was a teen and he wore all the costumes and war paint, I was ga-ga over him!)
 She Sells Sanctuary – The Cult
I love the darkness of Cult and this song is, to me, an in your face flip-off. It’s an upbeat sort of song, to be kinda dark. I’ve loved it for years and years.
 In The Mood (For a Melody) – Robert Plant
Because, well, have you ever listened to it?!!!!! If you haven’t, I suggest you youtube it and listen. Eyes closed.  The video doesn’t match the song AT ALL. That voice…..ahhhhhhh……

Bad – Live – U2
Because it’s a beautiful song and this live version really showcases Edge’s talent. 
Love that dude. If I had a bucket full of wishes, one would be to play as well as he does…..
HONORABLE MENTIONS:
Goo Goo Dolls – Without You Here
Yes – Lift Me Up and The Calling
Robert Plant – If I Were A Carpenter
Loreena McKennitt – The Mummer’s Dance
The Verve – Bittersweet Symphony
Eddie Money – She Takes My Breath Away
B-Tribe – She Moves Through The Fair

>My Harry Potter Blogfest Entry…..Sort Of…..

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As most everyone knows, Michael over at In Time…..hosted a Harry Potter Blogfest
Congratulations to Brenda Drake and Hart Johnson!
I’m really glad I didn’t have to do the choosing; there were way too many awesome entries!!!
I had toyed with the idea of writing something, but didn’t know if I could think of anything.
Then, I happened upon a video on Roland’s blog….and I began crying.
For some reason, this Christmas is about the dead or absent for me….
….and the video seemed to emphasize and amplify my feelings.
From that, my own HP entry was born.
I couldn’t enter it, though. It’s over 3k words.
And, my first and favorite MC interacts, not me.
Still, I like it. Because of its length, I won’t post it here.
It’s over there….
….but you gotta scroll up just a tiny bit.
See over there where it says Pages? It’s under the one titled Shorts. It’s where I’ll post short stories.
But you won’t have to do that this time. You can just click here.
If you have time and/or the inclination, check it out. Let me know what you think.
And, 
Thanks!

>My Holiday Viewing Favorites

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One of the things I love about the whole Christmas season is the memories of curling up on the couch with popcorn or hot chocolate and watching movies.
Give this a click and listen while you read…it’s magical….
When we were little, Mom would make it a special occasion, an event. She’d splurge and make peanut butter fudge and hot chocolate, the old fashioned way. We’d turn off the lights, leaving the Christmas tree to create its own wondrous atmosphere while we watched Charlie Brown.
This is probably my all time favorite Christmas special to watch. I watched it with my mom, then years later with my brother and my nephew. It’s sweet and funny and I could listen to the theme music all day. 
I fell in love with this one the first time it aired. I love the look of the people and the mice and the songs were fun. It has a sweetness about it and I still record it on DVR when I catch it. 
This was Nephew’s favorite movie when he was young and we’d rent it in the summer time because we both got a kick out of it. I did make sure he understood that Kevin’s behavior and back-talk were disrespectful….
Sometimes, I watch movies according to the season in which I first saw them. I saw Harry Potter years after it originally came out….at Christmas time. I caught the Chamber of Secrets playing on ABC Family and got hooked. I had to go back and watch all of them, in order. Now, I can watch them all year round, but it feels right to watch it at Christmas.
Honey and I went to the movies to see the LOTR movies and they debuted near the Christmas season (I honestly can’t remember exactly when!) and I always feel the urge to see them when it gets really cold outside.

I don’t know if I want to watch this one at Christmas because of all the snow that’s in it or because that’s when I first saw it, but I watch it every year when I’m off for the holiday.

We went to the movies to see this one and of course, I have to see it every year now. I had it on a cd as a radio theater production and Jim Broadbent was in it, too. 
Last year, I was listening to a music station on tv and heard a song that called to me from another room. It was 2002, a group I’d never heard of. The music was like walking into a fairy tale and I fell in love with it. The next day, I went to Barnes & Noble to get a copy, the only place I could find it. I’ve nearly worn it out and it’s not even Christmas music….(but I did hear it at Christmas, so….)
These are a few of my favorite things to watch at this time of year. How about you? Do you have a favorite movie or tv show? Favorite music? Care to share?

>YouTube – It’s Great For Finding Lost Treasures!

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My Thanksgiving was a little bit different. My husband went to Asheville to see his mom and have lunch. His dad is a sales manager for a large company and had to work, so he wasn’t able to be there.

Neither was I. I have some kind of wicked cough, sinusy/headachy thing and my sister in law on Honey’s side is pregnant. I wouldn’t for anything want her to catch whatever I have.

So, I stayed behind and nursed a headache, coughed, and laughed internally at my raspy, nearly non-existent voice whenever Honey would call to check in on me.

I think, too, that Roo has been online, chatting with the kids in my class. I’m positive she’s taking advantage of my inability to call her down when she’s doing something she’s not supposed to. Kitty Boss is just taking advantage of my being camped out on the daybed today by curling up with me.

Anyway, I took the opportunity to read everyone’s Thanksgiving posts. After that, I thought about working on finishing my nano wip. I wasn’t really in the mood, so thought if I listened to some music I had downloaded for my MC, I could get into the mood. It kinda worked….

I went to Youtube and started looking for some Josh Groban and switched to Sarah Brightman. I found a video I hadn’t seen in years-Sarah and Michael Crawford doing “Music of the Night.” Happy sigh….

On the side, where the suggested videos are, I saw something that literally made me catch my breath. Really? Someone had posted this?!!!!

Way back, more than 10 years, I found this little movie. A treasure. I’ve bought it twice now; once on VHS and then on DVD. It’s called Rigoletto and stars Joseph Paur and  Ivey Lloyd.

Paur has a voice that wraps itself around me and turns me into a gooey puddle of liquid bliss. I found several videos, but I will only post two of them. These have only the words; the ones with scenes from the movie aren’t as pure in sound….

If you’ve eaten too much turkey, potatoes, or pie, sit back, close your eyes, and let his voice soothe and enchant. It’s completely amazing…..

This is called The Curse and it was the first time Paur’s character sang in the movie. It told a little of what had happened to him in his world.

This one is called April Child. Paur’s character has by this time befriended many of the children, including his student’s best friend. Now, I’m not telling you anything about the movie, except it is a  tiny  bit like Beauty and the Beast but with a different message altogether.

I hope that you’ll take a few minutes to listen. Neither are very long at all, and, if you do listen, let me know what you think.

Has anyone else ever seen the movie?

>Reacquainting, Meeting, Explaining And Introducing….

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You know how you have those strange kinds of days? Let me back up….

This has been one heck of a week. Back-to-back days of tornadoes/damaging winds/severe thunderstorms/torrential rains…..and I heard the train. The ‘train’ lasted about five minutes, then just stopped. Thankfully, it never reached the ground…..

In addition to the weather issues, I’ve had a sinus migraine that’s been kicking my butt for nearly a week. It eases off, lingers, then reminds me that it’s still around. Atmospheric pressure plays a part in the whole mess, too. Yippee.

I work in childcare. It’s a standard rule of thumb that whenever there’s a holiday, the kids are going to act up, bicker, be cranky, cry, fight, etc. I can honestly say that, for the most part, they’ve behaved exceptionally well. And today was a blast. We had a parade to show off everyone’s costumes. Then each class took a turn trick-or-treating to all the classrooms and the office.
 After lunch and nap time, we all had our parties. The kids in our class deserve gold stars-they were that great!

I was supposed to go to a ‘meet and greet’ sort of thing at B & N tonight for local nano-ers, but I didn’t make it. Headache, remember?

This evening has been spent trying to catch up on everyone’s blogs and I’m still so far behind. So, fair warning: you may see me, you may not. But I will eventually make it around, even if it’s just one time a week. Just for the month of November. Then it should be business as usual. And I’m  scheduling posts ahead of time, too.                

So anyway. Back to the strange kind of day. Evening, actually. I was visiting a blog and Mummer’s Dance came on. Love that song. Have the CD! Continuing! I looked at the list the blogger had and found some oldie favorites. Then I stumbled upon Send Me On My Way by Rusted Root. I hadn’t heard that song in a long time.

I closed my eyes and listened to it again. I saw my MC from my WIP. Her life is filled with death. Horror. Difficult choices. Sorrow. Pain. And much of it at her hands and her choices. So she writes. And sings. Music is her salvation.

She was dancing and singing Send Me On My Way, tears of pain running down her face. She isn’t ashamed of her tears. She’s earned them. For the first time in a while, we were close again. We haven’t figured out one of the critical needs for our story, but the silence caused by the frustration in trying to solve this one thing, is over. Inside of me, she danced again. Her joy, her freedom, her balm is music. It’s where she’s happy. It’s where she heals. As this song played, she shared her joy and released some of her pain. It was real to me once again. 

She doesn’t look like these pictures (all from zedge.net). But they sort of
capture her essence. She isn’t blonde. I think she may have auburn hair. She isn’t beautiful. She’s compelling. She doesn’t do skimpy. She’ll do flirty, though. Really, a warrior would have a difficult time with any kind of combat in some of the outfits, or lack thereof, that I found. And she uses duel swords.

Those she must war against are very capable. Seasoned. And they fear and hate everything she represents. Hopefully, after nano, I’ll have some clarity and we can begin serious work on her story.

In other news, I’ve had fun meeting new people through Theresa’s blog haunting party. If you haven’t already, you should go over and check it out. There are prizes to be won if you share info about the haunt. All you have to do is give a little info about your blog then visit three other blogs from her comment section. Easy!

I would also like to introduce Parker to everyone. He’s finally started a blog! Woohoo! He is my Co-Teacher’s son and he is currently attending a university near me. His intention is to major in history and become a high school teacher. He’s a rabid  an avid Stephen King fan-he’s the one who got me to read IT. He’s also crazy about Harry Potter, as well as the Lost series. 
He is not only a Teaching Fellow, but he’s part of the events staff and just spent a whole week meeting and working with Harry Potter scholars and even got to attend and work a concert. Jealous! 
He’s also doing NaNo with me and could use some support. Like most of us, he works AND goes to school. So take a couple minutes and go over and check him out. You’ll learn a bit about some of the HP experts he met this week. Um, his real name isn’t Parker. It’s William. 

>A Song For DreamSinger. And His Creations…..

>Have you ever looked back to your high school years and thought about how naive and arrogant you were? I have.

When I was a Junior, my English teacher read us an article about whether or not people (readers, editors, etc.) should disregard an author’s intent and apply their own. I passionately argued that the only interpretation, the only conclusion, the only viewpoint that mattered or was right, was the author’s. I felt people did not have the right to see it differently. It was fundamentally wrong to me.

Boy, my inexperienced opinion was only a step or two above wanting to dictate what people should think…about anything! Thankfully, I have moved way beyond such narrow-minded misconceptions and opinions!

We each bring to the table, or pages, our own perceptions, experiences, lenses and moods, coloring our interpretations with shades different from what the author originally used. That’s what makes reading a great book with characters that you grow to love and/or admire, such a personal experience.

It’s much the same with music. I’m not talking about all the different preferences we have. I’m talking about the soundtracks.

I love the soundtrack from The Book of Eli. I also love the one from The Big Chill. If I’ve read a book and feel really close to the characters, invariably, I will hear songs that remind me of them.

Saigon Kick has a song called All I Want. I think it’s perfect for Edward’s feelings for Bella. INXS’ Afterglow is perfect for the end of the first Odd Thomas book. You may have read these books and know these songs and completely disagree.

So, what’s your point, you ask.

It’s this: I have music that I listen to when I think about scenes for my MC and MS. While for my story the music may mean one thing, it could easily mean something different for someone else’s story-have a different tone, invoke different moods or feelings.

Here are two that I hear and see with my MC, but when I hear them, they also make me think of Roland’s characters. I had two others but couldn’t find a video for one of them and the other is pretty long (8 minutes) and I didn’t want to overload you.

This one is for Sam and Roland and the other male characters who’ve struggled through a hard life and seek solace and redemption, even though I think the latter isn’t needed in the way they believe….

And this one is, primarily, for the fallen angel, but also for all the ladies (and their gentlemen) with tortured souls who long so badly for their loves:

Let me know what you think of my picks, I’m curious.

Here are the lyrics to both songs. They are not mine. They belong to Dead Can Dance and I, in no way, intend to use them for any kind of profit in any way whatsoever.

Rakim
Favored son
Turn in the garden
Shades of one
Sins forgotten
Favored signs to find hope
In the rounds of life
Favored rhymes to find hope
In the sands of life
Favored son
Fence in your heart
Saviored son
Sins forgotten


Enigma of the Absolute
Saloman hung down her head
Laid bare her heart
for the world to see
She craved for intimacy
Through the darkened doors
Her aspect veiled with indecision
Gazed out to sea
She craved lucidity
Cast adrift
from past relationships 
in her life
Hoisted up the ideal
This was her saving grace
Sea's of rage
That once assailed
her concern for the truth
Had past her by
And left her high and dry
In her saviors arms
In her saviors arms
In her saviors arms
Across the sea
lies the fountain of renewal
Where you will see
The whole cause of your loneliness
Can be measured in dreams
That transcend all these lies
and I wish and I pray
That there may come a day
for a saviors arms
for a saviors arms
for a saviors arms
for a saviors arms

Tomorrow, I will post what I see when I hear the music....

(on my preview, the words to the enigma of the absolute are not together...but they are on the compose screen...?)

>Happy Hump Day Music

>A quick update: we didn’t go buy a new computer. Honey went shopping and discovered he’d left all his cards (credit and debit-we were going to do half and half) at home, so he said he’d bring his computer home from the office. Of course, he’ll have to show me how to use it because it has Vista on it….

He’s tinkered with this one, but I’m still backing up all my very important files to transfer to his ‘puter. (His orders! He knows how much stuff I have on here. Honey rarely puts his foot down, but when he does, everybody listens….) Then, I got to get all my other stuff, too. Probably about a terabyte…just kidding!

Anyway, the big news is that AUTUMN IS NEARLY HERE!!!!! WOOHOO!!!! And this puts me in a very happy mood. I’m much better in cooler weather. So, in honor of Hump Day and the pending season change, here’s some happy music.

These are a couple songs I fell in love with when they came out. (I can go way back with music-I had 45’s of Hanky Panky and Tom Dooley! Course, I was too young to buy them…they belonged to my mom. My first record was…I’ll just post it at the bottom.) The cool thing is that YouTube has videos from all sorts of genres and eras. Hope you enjoy and happy hump day!!!!

>Updates and Flavors Of The Week

>Well, as you can see, my ‘puter is connecting to the internet. We’ll see how long that lasts. I wonder if it has something to do with the updates that it just downloaded earlier in the week…who knows?

Anyway, the Open House was pretty successful. It’s funny to see trends continue. Last year, the Older Two’s class (the children we are getting) only had one or two families show up. This time, four came to see us. Last year, in our class, all the parents came and they showed up again in their new Four’s Class. Interesting…

Finally finished IT. I really loved it, too. I’ve had the best time getting to know Parker and being able to talk about writing, history, authors and books this summer. Friday was his last day working in Summer Camp-he goes back to college on Monday.

Everyone one, myself included, is exhausted and feeling decidedly under the weather. I’ve tried to get as much done as possible, but I’ve had company two nights this week, so I am as behind as ever…..but it was Nephew, so it was fun company. And he doesn’t mind if the dishes aren’t washed.

The kitties are great friends, as of about Wednesday, wow! Kitty Boss only spent a few hours sulking before coming out to see this little whirlwind running around the house. By the end of the first day, they were both tentatively playing peek a boo. By Wednesday, I was worried the house wouldn’t be standing when I got home from work. They have a blast with each other. Yep, Roo (thanks Laughingwolf) is pretty darn good for Kitty Boss.

It’s been a long, hot, stressful summer. (Okay, now I’m in the mood to see Jason Robards, Judith Ivey, Don Johnson, and Cybil Shepherd-I’ve never seen the original one.) It’s taken a toll, too. Even though it means back to school for me, I’m looking forward to fall. Big time.

I have tons to catch up on and to prepare for next week….but I’m going to catch up on all your blogs this weekend (being without internet SUCKS!). Director wants to read a book together-I think she saw how much fun Parker and I had, and we’ve picked The Stand. Looking forward to that….

Do you ever feel like you’re looking through a mood darkly? Yeah, I know, I sort of stole that and tweaked it a little. I love tweaking. I’ve been in a place lately and it’s reflected in the music I’m listening to-over and over. So, since I’m going to have to start scheduling some posts ahead of time, I decided that maybe on Saturdays I’d do a playlist (very very brief playlist) of what I’ve been listening to during the week. This music is also reflective of my MC……

This week has been all about Dead Can Dance and Lisa Gerrard. Lisa is the amazing voice you hear at the end of Gladiator, by the way. I like all sorts of music, sometimes because of a voice, sometimes because of a particular piece in the song, and sometimes because it just speaks to me….