Saturday, February 27, 2010

Crazy Heart


Saw the film Crazy Heart with Jeff Bridges. It wasn't the best, wasn't bad, but didn't have the ending I wanted either. Wah! Oh well. You know how these things go.

And I have to say I liked Jeff Bridges's performance more than I liked Maggie Gyllenhaal's, though I understand she has been nominated for an academy award as well.

But as a rule, I find 57 year-old men sexy, so maybe that's why!

Was it the nachos after the movie, Bridges' performance or the subject matter, or maybe the music that vexed me with a sudden sense of calm? Or was it the run today or the yoga? Can't say for sure. No.

But I felt like writing poetry while standing about at JCPenney's, close to closing time, with my hands in my pockets and not a care in the world.

No sense of unease.
No sense of being incomplete.
Just a calm secure sense of self.

Hmmm.... Now, if I wrote poetry about that, I'd have to ask why. I suppose that tells you more about myself than you probably wanted to know.

Wait for the movie on DVD. That's my recommendation. After you watch it, maybe you'll have that same sense too.

LOL


Bratty

Friday, February 26, 2010

STC beats out District 9


I have to say the Blake Snyder blog has become a favorite of mine though I feel bad that I read it more often these days, now that he's deceased! Still, we are fortunate that great people are carrying on his work.

A recent post, STC! Beats out District 9 is a great take on a film that I didn't like all that much because of the violent aspects, but still appreciated for its glimpse of the dark side of human nature as only sci-fi can deliver!

If you have seen the movie, check out the beat sheet and see if it makes sense. It does to me. And I think they hit the themes as well as the no-way-back turning moments right on the head. Nice!

I remember thinking that the mockumentary at the start was done very well, though it surprised me to see a major motion picture start that way. The Setup that followed really did its job, as did the No Turning Back moment of Wikus getting sprayed by the canister. And hasn't everyone gone to a party and felt just like they were going to be sick? I mean, I could really empathize. The spewing all over the cake was the show stopper!

The point of greatest irony was when the alien Christopher tells Wikus it will take 3 years to fix him, to get him back to human. We see Wikus deflate, all his hopes and dreams crushed. Well, they should be. They must be to drive the point home that he is now one of them, with no easy way out, and as he is now one of them, so are we. We see then just how easily we can become them.




Oh such a lovely way to demonstrate the Buddhist theme that all is impermanent, all is without a self.



Nice!

And I thought Sharlto Copley as Wikus was smokin' hot too. Haven't seen an actor whose screen presence I liked that much since Daniel Auteuil in Girl on a Bridge.



That said, I'm gonna go read some Star Trek. One of these days, I'll post a pic of my wall o' ST books. Sigh.....

Until then, you can find me at the shootin' range, or watching Columbo.

More later,

Bratty


Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Video - Shootin'

Dear Bratty Friends,

You've waited long enough to see this and here it is at last! A video of me shootin'! Yee haw!

Okay pardner. Tell me what you think of this here nonsense. This was me shootin' a Walther P22 semi-automatic, or trying to anyway, on Sunday 2/21 at the Wenatchee gun club. This fellow "Barry" I think it was, wanted to show me how to shoot. Lucky for me! (Can you tell I feel lucky? Hmmmm?)

I made the mistake of showing this to my sister.

If I hear her say, "what what?" again, I'm gonna make her watch a very bad movie! I promise!


video

See how happy I am! Keep in mind I have earplugs in, that's why I'm talking loud. Really!

I would upload another video, but these things take time! Must shower!

So, here's a few pics to hold ya.

Love,

Bratty




Suzanne Vega

One day, not long ago, it was "change your avatar to your celebrity doppelganger" day on the Romance Divas board. I read the announcement, decided I didn't have one, and left.

Then I remembered....Suzanne Vega.

Yes, when I was in my 20's I looked eerily similar to Suzanne Vega. Especially the back of an album cover - was it Luka?? - where she is posing with some blinds or something like that. Yep, almost a dead ringer for me as they say. Here's an example:


When my husband saw it, he thought it really WAS me! I said no honey, I've never produced an album, although I've been told I have the soul of a singer and I've heard rumors circulated in Wenatchee after I left town that indicated I'd joined a band.

Not bad, but my bank account is not padded with album sales, I assure you!

Here's another Vega shot:



Those dark bushy eyebrows and big eyes tell me we could have been sistas! But you know what? I've never even owned one of her albums!

Sorry celebrity look-alike. I guess one day we'll meet and we really won't know anything about each other. Sad!

In other news......I've got a mentor! She is Kelly Jamieson and her Web site is located here.

I'm now stalking her..... :P

More later,

Love,

Bratty

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Seeker by Jack McDevitt



I picked up Seeker, by Jack McDevitt because I was looking for a story about a large-scale long range move of humans into the outer depths of space.

That it wasn't. Well, a historical wave of colonization did figure into the story, but we didn't follow the people's travels during that time. Readers instead follow an antiquities dealer - sort of a tomb raider and his assistant - who are seeking the lost colony 9,000 years later.



This story is set in future time where inhabitants make use of future technology on a world similar to, but not quite Earth.

I can't say I wasn't disappointed that the story didn't turn out to be what I was SEEKING but I can't say I didn't like the story. After all, I finished the book!

And it was loads better than the movie I saw this weekend - Valentine's Day - which was the worst piece of trifle one could spend their $7.50 on IMO. (Please note, I didn't say IMHO since my opinion is rarely humble about lousy films!) Yes, that was one to avoid. But you could do worse than the book.

The only good part in the movie was when the kid stood up and described Valentine's Day as the day a bunch of mobsters got blown apart in Chicago, which they did, true story. It was called the Valentine's Day massacre.

Strangely enough, back in 2008, I talked with the daughter of a photographer who'd taken photos of that terrible scene. Small world, eh?

More later,

Bratty

Pics of the day

Here are some shootin' pics, and some Nature Trail pics for your perusal. All from today. Yes indeedy. And I've got some video too but I'm scared how long that would take to load. Probably years!

Lynnette and I at the gun club up No. 2 Canyon Rd.


Under the old RR bridge.



Under the pedestrian bridge at the Nature Trail.

Nearing the nature trail from the main Loop Trail.


Under the pedestrian bridge on the Nature Trail. This bridge connects with Confluence State Park.



My favorite pic of the day. Didn't see the fisherman for the trees! Oops!


Another shot under the old RR bridge. I think this is my 2nd favorite shot of the day.




More later!

Bratty





Friday, February 19, 2010

Solaris by director Andrei Arsenyevich Tarkovsky




If you can stay awake long enough to watch the 1972 film Solaris in its entirety, you must be on bennies.

Seriously.

See, even the actress couldn't stay awake!



This film isn't subtle. No. It's slow. Damn slow. If I'd been on that station with fake ex-boyfriends who wouldn't die, I woulda made a stink, not sat around looking haunted for the entire 2:49 of film time. But oh well. The Russians and the French seemed to have loved it.

Remind me not to move to France until I'm very old, and therefore slowed down enough to mix well with them! Adieu!

Anyhoo, here's some good quotes about dreams from the movie:

"They come at night, but a man needs his nights for sleeping.

That's our problem. Man has lost the gift of sleep.

Senior, I know only one thing. When I sleep, I know no fear, no hope, no work, no blessing.
Blessings on him who invented sleep, that balance and weight that equals the shepherd with the king, and the simple with the wise.

Sound sleep has but one defect - it smacks too much of death."



On Science:

"To science? It's a fraud!

No one will ever resolve this problem, neither genius, nor idiot!

We have no ambition to conquer any cosmos. We just want to extend Earth up to the Cosmos's borders. We don't want any more worlds. Only a mirror to see our own in. We try so hard to make contact, but we're doomed to failure. We look ridiculous pursuing a goal we fear and that we really don't need. Man needs man!

In his march toward the truth, man is condemned to knowledge."





**one problem: in the weightlessness scene, only certain objects float. Why is that? **



And here, perhaps is my favorite line:

"Don't convert the scientific problem to an insignificant love story."

Well, don't tell that to a romance writer!



Later, Kris says, "Suffering makes life seem gray and suspicious." And, "You love that which you can lose."




Snaut later says, when Kris asks him why they are being tortured like this, "We have lost our sense of the Cosmic. Ancient man had no such problem. He'd have never asked why."



He also says, "When man is happy, the meaning of life and other themes of eternity rarely interest him."

Kris replies, "We don't know when our life will end, that's why we're in a hurry. We question life to seek some out meaning. Yet to preserve all the simple human truths we need mysteries. The mystery of happiness, death, love. "


** why the camera zooms in on Kris's ear at this point, I'll never know! **

But of course, I have to say I found the end pretty predictable. Even before the water started to fall.

By that time, my finger was sore from pressing the fast forward button! LOL


Sigh. So, more Columbo on the Netflix list. And I'm about ready to move the Star Blazers up to the first slot. What's a girl to do, huh?

I know.


Go shootin'!

<>

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Yay! I have pimpage!


I have pimpage at last!

My short story, Meat & Greet has been linked on the RomanceDivas.com main page. You can click it there, or here under a previous post and download a 6k free vampire foodie read.

Yes, a vampire foodie read.

And it's a contemporary comedy, LOL.

Why do all my works eventually stray into the comedic arena? I tell ya, I could never be a thriller writer. I'd have the bad guy standing in the middle of the Pike Place Market at the climactic scene right next to a guy yelling, "I want bacon! I want bacon!"

Seriously! I'm demented like that.

Anyway, check it out.

Love,

Bratty

Sunday, February 14, 2010

New writing contest


Accomplice Press, LLC Announces a Writing Contest to Launch Their New Plus-Size Romance Book Line Called Curvalicious. Two Winners Will be Contracted and Published.

Montgomery, AL, February 05, 2010 --(PR.com)-- Accomplice Press, the boutique-style independent publisher, is launching a romance book line called Curvalicious. To kick off this new endeavor the company is hosting a writing competition beginning on Valentine's Day, February 14, 2010 and ending at midnight on May 14, 2010. The company will be accepting submissions in two different categories, one sweet and one spicy. On May 28, 2010 two winning entries will be chosen, announced on Accomplicepress.com, then contracted and published in eBook format by the publisher. The top three submissions of each category will also be included in the first Curvalicious print anthologies.

These literary selections will be short novella length love stories with happy endings featuring beautiful, strong, intelligent plus-size heroines. These anthologies will showcase woman who know who they are and don't feel the need to lose weight or change their bodies to get the man of their dreams. These enticing romances are designed to build self confidence in their readers while entertaining them with intriguing plots and well developed characters. The specific guidelines for sweet and spicy submissions, word count and formatting requirements are all available at accomplicepress.com.

"Society and the media have convinced women that men won't find you attractive if you wear double-digit sizes. This is reinforced by the romance book industry. The leading terms used to describe a heroine are slender, thin, lithe, small, and tiny. Real women read romances, and real women deserve to be able to relate to the heroines. Romance stories are about fantasies, and as a large woman, I personally do not find it satisfying to fantasize about a man touching a body that I can't relate to. I also happen to know that men love women of all sizes. Sexy comes from within. That is why I created Curvalicious."--DJ Alling, CEO, Co-Founder of Accomplice Press and Editor in Chief

"The Curvalicious contest is a way for Accomplice Press to introduce this specialty book line to the readers while giving new authors a chance to be published. We are extremely excited to prove to the world that the main character in a romance novel doesn't need to be a size 8 to be a sexy desirable woman. Our full-figure heroines will get the hot guy without conforming to unattainable stereotypes and she will get the happy ending that she deserves."-- Karen Jones, Promotions Manager for Accomplice Press and what some consider a full-figure woman.

Curvalicious submissions must be sent to curvecontest@accomplicepress.com and must be received no later than midnight May 14, 2010 to be considered for the first print anthology. In conjunction with this writing competition Accomplice Press will be holding a general 'open call' to all authors, with original manuscripts, who use their voice in unique ways that push the boundaries. The company is searching for distinctive stories that need to be told but are often overlooked by literary agents and large warehouse style publishers who only have the bottom line in mind.

Accomplice press is Not a self-publishing company. They are a full service publisher dedicated to provisioning readers of all ages and tastes with quality reading material. By striving to only publish works that are perfection, the skilled staff achieves excellence with their unparalleled concentration to the tiny details. At Accomplice Press the rare relationship between reader, author and publisher becomes a true partnership.

For more information about Accomplice Press, the Curvalicious writing contest or the publisher's submission requirements and guidelines please visit www.accomplicepress.com

###

Contact Information
Accomplice Press
Karen Jones
231-924-1548
kjones@accomplicepress.com
accomplicepress.com
Please make first contact via email

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Chinese New Year

2010 is the Year of the Metal Tiger. Yay for Tigers, I guess. For us Snakes? Not so much! Take a look at this:

SNAKE: 38% (2 favorable and 10 unfavorable months)

If you are a typical Snake, you can be quite at home with tending your own wounds and being your own best friend. That ability could be very useful during a year containing ten unfavorable months. Neither the pace nor style of 2010 is likely to be conducive to your peace of mind. Fortunately Snake's natural element, Fire, has the ability to control Metal, this year's ruling element. This should allow you to receive your fair share of that famous Tiger luck. The key is to be very Snake-like. Lay low; wait for opportunites; and strike quickly. Do not measure the year in the number of your successes. Rather, focus on one or two big wins. Pick your battles carefully and exit the scene at the first sign of trouble.

Career

Change can be uncomfortable for the Snake, but if you recognize transformations can ultimately be in your favor, it will be easier to adapt. Tiger's influence is not likely to help things go your way career-wise in the short-term. Fortunately, you probably possess keen analytical ability and an uncanny sense of timing. There may be only a few moments of opportunity, but stay alert and be ready to take full advantage so you can make them count. In the meantime, direct your energies to areas in which you have the most expertise. It is advisable to to expand skill sets you perceive will become more valuable as your work environment evolves, as you can expect it to rapidly. Be diplomatic; you can't afford personal conflict on the job.

Relationships

Personal relationships are now likely to be a greater source of comfort and support for Snakes than in a typical year. You probably tend to be independent and usually trust your own judgment above all. However, giving added weight to the advice and wisdom of others in this Tiger year could prove extremely worthwhile. Relations with family and friends are likely to be smooth and joyful, and 2010 should be filled with many opportunities for happy gatherings of loved ones. If you have been lonely, or seeking a partner, taking the initiative is rewarded. It is a favorable time for you to put yourself into new environments and introduce yourself in new social circles. You should be well-received, but you need to make the first move.

Health

Rapid change and uncertainty can take its toll on Snake's nerves in 2010. It will be important for you to attend carefully to both your physical and mental health. Not only is this essential to your well-being but also for you to function at the level required to meet the Tiger's challenges. You may feel pressure to abandon leisure activities you enjoy to meet many stressful demands, but this would be a mistake. In fact, you should enjoin friends to participate with you in activities that bring you balance, even if you are accustomed to doing them alone. Companionship and camaraderie in your extracurricular pursuits will help you to stick to them and also bring you additional satisfaction.

Wealth

Major expenses could present themselves this year, particularly related to dwellings or vehicles. The Snake is typically cautious and deliberate with finances, so if you stick to this approach, unexpected outflows of cash should not be disastrous. The year of the Tiger is not a good time to engage in any uncertain investment schemes, and you should pay close attention to the details of any financial agreements into which you enter. Be conservative and don't rely on luck or chance where money is concerned. Read the fine print and make sure you understand all the implications of commitments you make to avoid unpleasant surprises.

To see other 2010 Year of the Tiger forecasts, go to http://www.astrology.com/

Hope you fare well!


gong si fa cai

I'm in!

The Romance Divas Mentor program. I've been accepted as an apprentice. Yay! Now I can learn how to kick writerly butt and take names.

On a darker side, the weekend took on a depressing tone earlier. If you saw my tweet, the bodies of the missing 17 year-old girl and the 87 year-old snowmobiler were both found earlier today. Suddenly things don't seem very Valentine-ish.

And neither my husband nor I were ravenous for our boeuf bourguignon. The cats really liked it though.

It looked sorta like this:




Add to that, that it was darn hard week at work, and I feel clear evidence that the planet Saturn is making it's way towards me. And it will be kicking MY butt all over the universe if I don't get my head screwed down tight.

Back to the yoga mat for me!




Love,

Bratty

Thursday, February 11, 2010

I meant to write a poem





Dear Bratty Friends,

Last night, before I fell asleep, my muse visited me with a poem. Ah. How nice. But no paper and pen handy!

Sigh...

Then this morning, I still thought it worthy of note, and again composed, but alas, still did not set pen to paper. I fear it may be all but gone now, though the sentiments remain. You see, this isn't a life or death sort of creation, nor need it be a hurried one, but rather more a musing on my everyday continued existence. At the moment, anyway.

Can you tell I've been reading too much Dickens? Finishing Great Expectations at last, though I've heard it called not his best work, and I'd have to agree. But once you've made it through Bleak House, and that sucker is thick, you can make it through just about anything.

Plus, the movie we rented for tonight was awful:


Yick! Watched about 10 minutes too much of that garbage before going back to Pip and Wemmick. And Old Joe. And Biddy and Estella. Sigh. They are preferable to this Foyle fellow any day!

At any rate, here's some of the things my poem was about:





And the rest I can't remember. Perhaps this weekend I'll try again. When my brain is not fatigued from writing non fiction!

More later,

Bratty

Sunday, February 7, 2010

A very old poem


Three things in Paris by moonlight

Lazy winding lady's fingers
from a gentle source
infested with the torrid cries
of neo-deathless shattered dreams
known only to the lover's eye

And she, the water
is my mother, my lover
and soothes my aching eyes
but the harshness escapes this angel's filter
it would be mistaken for lights in the sky
by fools that would sing love songs
while the sun sleeps embedded
between your thighs


Thursday, February 4, 2010

April Morelock


I'm following April Morelock's blog as she does a page a day - 365 of 'em in all - of revisions.

Come see what she's up to at her Blogger page.

It's a curious thing for me to watch, 'cause I'll be right behind her, editing a 60 page novella and rewriting a 30k space opera. Yeah, that's gonna take me a little while. I'm slow....

More later,

Love Bratty


Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Astrology - this transit is kicking everybody's ass


For myself, and those around me, it certainly seems true that Feb. 1 arrived with a roar. Kind of a downer of a roar really. Nobody is really happy.

Astrologically speaking, at least according to Karmictools.com, this is due to the planet Pluto - yeah, the little one far, far away that isn't really even considered a real planet - kicking our ass. As crazy as it sounds, read this and tell me if this isn't your week thus far:

1/31 ~
Saturn (responsibility) ~square~ Pluto (power):
This dynamic duo is going to literally change your life in some fundamental way(s). Saturn rules your 3-D reality, and all that entails. Any contact with Pluto implies a complete make-over, from the ground up.

This is the time to voluntarily assess the primary aspects of your life (self, family, work) ~ your responsibilities and obligations and determine which are truly supporting you and serving your Highest good and which are weighing you down, creating blockages and delays or imposing restriction and limitation.

When Pluto gets involved, it does not bother with what is already crumbling and on the way out of your life, it goes straight for whatever you are clutching, grasping and swearing you’ll never release ~ the “one thing” you cannot live without. Pluto takes THAT, and forces you to realize that whatever that “one thing” is, it is no longer necessary as you have evolved.

This combo will push you to dig deep within your Soul, trust that anything leaving your life is only creating a space for something greater and more suitable to *now*. Saturn likes to build. Pluto likes to destroy but not for the sake of destruction, only to have a clean, clear space upon which to build your dreams, making them a reality.

This energy is challenging and often uncomfortable, but if you work with these energies consciously, you will come through this activation triumphant and stronger than before.


Yeah, I thought so.

Me, personally, I'm reaching for the triumph and stronger than before, but I'm just feeling depressed and lethargic.

Grrrrrr. Damn that planet!

More later,

< Bratty