Sunday, 25 August 2013

Bonnie and Clyde and a stolen photo

Happy Sunday peeps!

This is a photo Lotta took in Ely, I thought I'd naughtily steal it from her to prove I was actually there myself. She's also written a blogpost about our trip to see Neil Gaiman so do check that out if you're interested and want some slightly more artistic photos of the quirky town.

Today I'm writing character biographies for my play, but I will also visit The King's Head Theatre to see a musical love story about Bonnie and Clyde. I have no idea what to expect but I'm sure it will be something!

Have a great Sunday!

Friday, 23 August 2013

A double take

What? Wait! I'm involved? Why's my name in the ad for Deal - or no deal? Or is there a new show about me? Why are these people staring?!!

Oh right, I forgot. I'm stilled logged in on Channel 4's website and they've gone all high tech in their customer service. Note to self; read the whole sentence before freaking out. *

*The danger of having an uncommon name.


Thursday, 22 August 2013

A. M. Homes - I want to write like you

I mentioned in a previous entry that screenwriter Tony Grisoni visited my play and screenwriting class last year. Another guest whom I found really interesting and inspiring was author A. M. Homes. I love the way she writes, and she did a Q&A for us just hours before she won the prestigious Women's Prize for Fiction 2013.

There are plenty of videos of her talking about writing, but I recently watched these two from 2009 and thought I'd share. Among other things, she talks about differences in writing novels and short stories, and a few elemental things you need to do as a writer. Write, being the most important one.

You can find the second part of the video here.

Have a great evening, Friday coming up!

Wednesday, 21 August 2013

Neil Gaiman and some possible aliens

Yesterday, Lotta and I took the train to Ely, Cambridgeshire, famous for its massive cathedral and one of Oliver Cromwell's homes. Our main mission was to attend a talk with author Neil Gaiman in the cathedral in the evening, but before that, we enjoyed some typical English small town activities. 

Cream tea at the Peacock! (Yes, my blog is full of cream teas. Whenever I travel outside of London, I turn into a thirsty scone craving grandmother.)
 Oooh, scones and finger sandwiches.
 The town was a bit eerie in its own idyllic way. The small buildings, calm atmosphere, and plenty of senior citizens, made us think it could be the location of a wide spread cult, or maybe it had been overtaken by aliens, a bit like in Simon Pegg's latest film The World's End.
 Geese waddled along the canal. It was sweet and a bit scary at the same time. Having grown up in the country side, I know how perilous and annoyed goose can be.
 They suddenly decided this woman and her baby would be a suitable prey ... Or maybe they had bread.  Either way ... (Undercover aliens masked as geese?)
 What made the town even more bizarre was the cathedral with its rather flamboyant architecture. An octagon shaped tower? Yes please! Had we suddenly walked through a crack in time and reality and ended up in Game of Thrones? It even looked like CGI!
 Another bit of the massive cathedral. I've seen plenty of impressive churches in my time, but this one still made me go a bit "wow".
 It's been in Ely for over 1000 years and it still looks fake!

Okay, so the main attraction of the day; Neil Gaiman. About 1000 people had ascended upon Ely and the cathedral to hear him speak about his latest novel The Ocean at the End of the Lane and his Children's book Fortunately, The Milk.
Neil knew how to give a good talk with plenty of amusing anecdotes and wisdoms and read a few extracts from his book. Especially the kids' book had me hooked! (Or maybe it was just the way he read it?) Either way, it was a very entertaining end to the day and well worth the trip.
Aftewards, Lotta and I hurried back to the train to make sure we got to London on time. The full moon didn't make the town seem any less suspicious, at 9 o'clock the streets were already empty and I was certain the town's people had fled indoors to escape the werewolves. Luckily we managed to get away unbitten.
Anywho, Lotta and I had a lovely day in Ely, a whole day without a single computer in sight (!) and no e-mails. The fab thing about London is that you can so easily jump on a train and an hour later be somewhere completely different. Suddenly you're full of energy again.

Have a great day!

Monday, 19 August 2013

A few wise words from Grisoni

This video, made by BAFTA, has circulated amongst my screenwriter friends for a while now and I thought I'd share it with you guys as well. Tony Grisoni, screenwriter of for example Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, Red Riding and now Southcliffe, visited my MA course a while back and talked to us about writing for film and TV. He shared with us his ups and downs, tips and tricks and managed to be inspirational in a down to earth way. It's not easy, but it can be done. Here he talks a bit more about his writing.

A lot of what he's saying can be applied to any kind of writing and if there's one thing I very much agree with him on (I actually agree with most of it), it's the walking. If you get stuck; WALK!

I hope you've had a good start to the week!


Sunday, 18 August 2013

A stealth mission

Morning peeps!

So I'm still wrapped up in researching sociopaths, trying to understand. But I did manage to do a small excursion on Friday and visit Stonehenge. I had a mission, curtesy of GISHWHES, an international charity scavenger hunt that joins loads and loads of people from around the world for one week. The teams get a long list of more or less crazy tasks and you get points for each task. My task on Friday was to claim one of the seven world wonders by planting the team flag in front of it. Stonehenge has been considered a wonder on several lists (yes there are several lists of seven wonders and therefore there are more than seven) and being the closest person to it, I went.

I couldn't have picked a more grey day to visit a mostly grey monument. Everything was grey. And green. We stood in the middle of a field. With sheep.

The Henge ...
 The flag I so artfully drew, inspired by our team name ... (As you can see, there's a reason why I'm a writer and not an artist.)
Salisbury was a nice old town with plenty of tourists. A lot of German tourists which was fun because I could eavesdrop and practice my German listening comprehension.

I also had a peak at the cathedral which has the fourth highest church spire in the world, and the highest in the UK. It's also the home of one of the four remaining originals of the Magna Carta.

By now, the weather had cleared up a little which meant I was wearing the wrong clothes. I became too hot, and a little bit grumpy, but on a whole it was a nice day out. And; mission accomplished!


Tuesday, 13 August 2013

It could be anyone

This morning I received a book delivery. I'd ordered the books because I'm doing research for a full-length play I'm writing in the up-coming year, and right now I'm trying to learn more about sociopathic and narcissistic behaviour. It's scary and fascinating at the same time. The thought that somebody can't feel guilt, doesn't have a conscience, while I'm constantly second guessing myself worried I might have done something wrong or offended somebody.

I think I'll start with "Confessions of a Sociopath" a biography written by a high-functioning sociopath, and then continue on to the more scientific accounts of what possibly goes on in 1 in 25 people's brains.


Tuesday, 6 August 2013

Three Good Things

Evening peeps!

I thought I'd celebrate the everyday, but sharing three everyday things that made me smile this Tuesday.

Number 1: My tickets to Shakespeare's Globe arrived today, only a day after I purchased them online. I'm seeing Macbeth and A Midsummer Night's Dream in October. The Globe is an outdoor theatre, modeled after what the Shakespearean theatres might have looked like, so I'm planning to dress warm!

Number two: I visited my local bookshop (dangerously just around the corner from my flat) and noticed that they'd dedicated three whole shelves to the Finnish Moomin troll! I was so tempted to buy one of the classic books and a toy, but then became boringly sensible and didn't. It did warm my heart though! A bit of Finland in the heart of London.

Number three: My flatmate made Key Lime Pie! It was his first ever attempt and it tasted great. It was one cling film accident from perfection. (I'm looking forward to finishing the leftovers tomorrow.) Thanks J! 

So, those were a few bits and pieces of my day. A good day all in all. I hope you've enjoyed yours as well. 


Saturday, 3 August 2013

Double the stress ...

I have to admit, I've been struggling with my writing since I came back from the US. I was really in tune with the characters and the world I was creating and then, all this other fun and amazingness happened (yes, I know, it's not a word). To get back into our work, Lotta and I met up for one of our writing dates, a splendid way of mixing business with pleasure. I spent the day writing a biography for one of my main characters in the play.

Lotta! We're supposed to be working!
 That's better.

I hope you're having a great weekend!