They Let Kids Watch This?

 

 

I recently watched the Hunchback of Notre Dame for the first time.  It was a very good story, but honestly my first thought was “They actually let children watch this?” For the people that have seen it, it is very intense and very adult for a children’s movie. The villain, who is a judge, struggles with lust, tries to commit genocide, and almost throws a baby into a well. Not exactly Winnie the Pooh.

My next thought was that there is an entire vein of movies like this. I may not have seen Hunchback of Notre Dame until recently, but I did watch some weird as crap kids movies.  Does anyone remember Chicken Run? I had nightmares for a while.  Thumbelina is very dark even thought it is animated. I was scarred for life by one of the sequels of the Swan Princess.

When we’re little, we don’t know that these are too mature for us.  I mean, every Thanksgiving my cousins and I would watch the animated version of Babes in Toyland.  I realize now that that is a really strange movie. Back then, I didn’t. A little kid watching the Hunchback of Notre Dame probably doesn’t understand what in the world Frollo is singing about, they just know that he is the bad guy. It isn’t until you get older that it all makes sense. Then you wonder, why on earth did my (fill in the blank) let me watch this?

What do y’all think? What movies traumatized you as a child? Why do these movies exist? What were our parents thinking?

About Nontraditional Authoring

I recently had to do a project based on nontraditional authoring. I argued that the maker of a YouTube video is an author and the video a form of authoring. The video I used as my template is listed here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OnOyIdUg4uA&list=FL-616Iw_RaL_QHbUOTsrUQQ&index=5. If you have ever watched NCIS, I recommend that you check it out. It is a tribute to Tony and Ziva‘s relationship over the 8 years that they have known each other. It was a very interesting experience for me to watch and analyze it as if I was analyzing a traditional form of authoring.

Through this process, I got to further explore the idea that my English class has been discussing that says that everyone is an author. As i explored the devices that the author used to make the video, I saw that they were just the visual counterparts of the ones people use to analyze text on a daily basis.  For example, color and lighting set a mood and music steps into a place only words usually stay. I began to wonder, what really separates a novelists from a video maker? They are both trying to tell a story within their medium. They are both laying out a message that they want us to accept. The interesting thing is that it works. We do care and we do accept the story that they present to us as their audiences, as their “readers” if you will.

The only real difference is how they do it. Most people would define them both as artists, one of words and the other of images. I say that they can both share the title of author. This project helped me to see mediums like photography and sculpting and video making in a completely different light. I now see them as storytellers just as traditional authors have always been viewed. What do y’all think. Is everyone an author?

 

Feud: L. Frank Baum and his illustrator, W.W. Denslow.

Random history lesson of the day.

Aldine by Rebecca Romney

One of American literature’s greatest collaborations later descended into an infamous feud. The stage for this literary throwdown? Children’s literature.

 

In 1899 L. Frank Baum, a magazine editor, and W.W. Denslow, a well-known newspaper illustrator, collaborated together on a children’s book called Father Goose. The book turned into the most successful project either had worked on up to that point, selling 75,000 copies within a few months.

 

Riding on this success, Baum and Denslow decided to work together again…despite arguments over how much credit was due to each for the successful collaboration. Their next creation was the American mammoth: The Wonderful Wizard of Oz.

 

As before, author and illustrator shared the cost of the luxurious color plates (illustrations) on each page. As before, author and illustrator fought over who deserved the most credit—and money—for the project.

 

By the time Baum and Denslow came together…

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Writer’s Block

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Writer’s Block. Everyone has it at one time or another. If you have not yet had it, it is coming. As everyone has had it, everyone has a remedy or two. I decided it’s time for me to put my two cents in.

1. Caffeine always helps. Personally, I hate coffee so tea is my drug of choice. Coke (Coca Cola) will do in a pinch as well. Just choose which one works for you and stick with it.

2. Get into character. One time, I was having a hard time writing a scene where my protagonist had to come clean to her love interest about her motives.  I couldn’t get relate to the type of panic she was feeling so I couldn’t move on. A few days later, I put into a situation where I understood that level of panic. I finally knew how she should handle the situation and my writer’s block disappeared.

3. Do something completely different. Sometimes your brain is just exhausted and it needs a break. Take a walk, watch a movie, take a nap. Who knows, maybe that movie will give you exactly the inspiration you needed in the first place. Weirder things have happened.

So what do y’all think? What are your favorite remedies for writer’s block? What did I miss? Comment and let me know!

 

How I opened a wormhole simply by reading

Geeky Book Snob

I can tell you how to use a book to open a wormhole, but I can’t describe what it will be like.  Every experience is unique to the person experiencing it.  In fact, I can’t even promise that you will remember seeing the wormhole open because I sure didn’t.  All I remember is that I had found a shortcut from point A to point B in seconds.

I’ve perfected the art of opening wormholes over the years.  You need to be focused and committed or else it won’t work.  For this particular step-by-step process I will be focusing on books so if you are going to open a wormhole through this method then you need to enjoy reading.  If you don’t like reading you will have to find another way.  Perhaps meditation is the key for you or watching a movie.  Maybe drawing?  Scratching your fingernails on a blackboard to…

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Where do unwanted books go?

Geeky Book Snob

A friend of mine posted on his Facebook page that he wanted to know where he could go to “get rid of unwanted books”.  I found his choice of the word ‘unwanted’ caused me to immediately imagine a pile of sad books who had nowhere to go.  I responded to his post and demanded to know what the books ever did to him to make him no longer want them.   I thought of the book I finished not too long ago that many fellow bloggers suggested to me; The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon and its ‘cemetery of forgotten books’.  I thought they could go there but then realized it wasn’t that these books were forgotten, they were unwanted.  So where do unwanted books go?

He got numerous suggestions from other people – all of them suggesting second-hand stores which were great.  I realized then that second-hand stores were the orphanages of unwanted books and that…

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