Friday, January 25, 2013

Comic Relief: You've Got Mail

I caught a nasty germ. I've been (as my dad used to say) "Sick in bed on two chairs."  

We wanted to watch a movie and I chose You've Got Mail (1998) because I kept thinking about the scene where Kathleen (Meg Ryan) is sick and Joe Fox (Tom Hanks) comes to her apartment. She speaks to him through the intercom and explains that she is sick, and sneezes through the speaker which comes through loud and clear as he stands at the doorstep. 

Then someone unlocks the door and enters the building, so Joe slips inside. In the meantime, Kathleen is still speaking into the intercom but no one is at the door... her voice carries to the empty front stoop, "And I've got a temperature."

That line always cracks me up. Of course she has a temperature. We ALL have a temperature. Even dead people have a temperature.

She means, of course, that she has a fever. I can relate to that. And watching the movie helped take my mind off my own.

It was fun to hear the clever lines again. One scene I had forgotten about was when Kathleen and Frank (Greg Kinnear) are having a tense discussion as they settle into theater seats. A woman shushes them and Frank responds: A HOTDOG is singing. You need quiet while a hotdog is singing?

Here's a clip from the film when Joe Fox, who is the very NY152 they are talking about, leads her along with guessing what the 152 stands for.

The clip leaves out my favorite part though...

Joe: Mr. 152 Felony indictments.
Kathleen: Mr. 152 insights into my soul.
Joe. Oh yea. No competing with that.

Grateful to You've Got Mail for lifting my sickly spirits.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Action!: First draft.

I finished the first draft of a short screenplay.

Way too much drama. There was sobbing, whining, noshing, questioning sanity, and loss of confidence...followed by weeping, wailing, and praying. Then I finally wrote the script.

"The hard part is getting to the top of page one." ~ Tom Stoppard

Ain't it the truth.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Motivation: Say no.

People think focus means saying yes to the thing you've got to focus on. But that's not what it means at all. It means saying no to the hundred other good ideas that there are. You have to pick carefully. I'm actually as proud of the things we haven't done as the things I have done. Innovation is saying no to 1,000 things.  (Steve Jobs, Apple Worldwide Developers' Conference, 1997)

It has taken me awhile, but I'm finally starting to say "no" to some things in order to keep my focus. I turned in my resignation as Treasurer for Utah Women in Film, I turned away an opportunity to work as an extra, and said no to helping on a film project. 

Saying no to those things helped me feel more dedicated to my goals, and also gave me motivation... since I said "no" in order to work on my own projects, then I darn well better work on them, right?

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Reflections: The shots that DIDN'T get away.

I posted about the shots that got away due to not having a camera with me (click here).  Then I decided I should acknowledge a few moments which didn't escape--ones I managed to capture with my cell phone.

The picture below is a "drive-by-shooting."  It took some skill to hold my phone with one hand and drive with the other.  I loved the way the little dog in the shopping cart is looking the same direction, and positioned at nearly the same angle as the woman pushing the cart.

Here's my daughter with two of her children.  Candid photos reveal such personality, don't you think?

Here's what I captured while walking last spring.  I like the curving sidewalk between the straight lines of the fence and road.  The sun peaking through the tree gives a nice touch too.  Aahhh... let me pause here for a moment and stare at the picture.  I miss Spring.

During a much welcomed break on a snowshoeing trek, I admired the colors against the white aspens and snow.

Below was an experiment with the panoramic function of my camera phone.

The following picture was taken through a window on a moving train during a snow storm.  Not the best quality, but it helps me remember why we took Amtrak rather than drive over Donner's Pass (Sierra Nevada Mountains) in December.

Can you see the cars on the snowy bridge?

Monday, January 14, 2013

Motivation: Dare Greatly

"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done better.

The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again,

because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause;

who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly. ..." Theodore Roosevelt

Friday, January 11, 2013

Comic Relief: Steve Martin quotes.

I am a Steve Martin fan. If I used Twitter, I would definitely follow his tweets. I read his book The Ten, Make That Nine, Habits of Very Organized People.  Make That Ten." The Tweets of Steve Martin.    His wittiness cracked me up.

The following quotes are attributed to Steve Martin, although I think some of them are lines from his films. Nevertheless, I think they're funny.
  • By the way, the proceeds from tonight's telecast - and I think this is so great - will be divvied up between huge corporations.
  • A day without sunshine is like, you know, night.
  • All I've ever wanted was an honest week's pay for an honest day's work.
  • It's not the size of the nose that matters, it's what's inside that counts.
  • The only thing that bothers me is if I'm in a restaurant and I'm eating and someone says, "Hey, mind if I smoke?" I always say, "No.  Mind if I fart?"
  • There's a point when you're famous and it's unbearable to go out because you're too famous. And there's a moment when you're famous just right.
  • And now, I'm pleased to introduce the star of the film Gladiator, and a man I like to call a close, personal friend, but he told me not to...
  • I wrote a novel this year called "Shop Girl", and several producers came to me and wanted to turn it into a movie. And I said, "If you think you're going to take this book and change it around, and Hollywoodize it and change the ending... that's going to cost you." 
  • I gave my cat a bath the other day, they love it. He sat there, he enjoyed it, it was fun for me. The fur would stick to my tongue, but other than that.
  • I like a woman with a head on her shoulders. I hate necks.
  • Comedy is the art of making people laugh without making them puke.
  • I handed in a script last year and the studio didn't change one word.  The word they didn't change was on page 87.

Monday, January 7, 2013

"Block" Buster: Involve other imaginations.

"I always believe it's better to have 30 imaginations working on a project, rather than one imagination telling the other 29 what to do." ~Trevor Nunn

This particular quote refers to people working together on a project, but it made me think: When we feel a block in creativity, asking others for input can unleash a flow of ideas. We might not want to involve 29 other people, but even asking one person gives more ideas than what we can think of on our own. It's the two heads are better than one concept.

Remember when I posted about allowing ourselves an abundance of ideas before tossing any out?  (see: "Block" Buster: Allow abundance.)  I challenged myself to come up with 50 script choices for a screenwriting contest, and at the time I posted that, I thought I was nuts.

I was amazed when I actually achieved that goal.  And in reality, I surpassed it. How? Not only did I come up with the five ideas for each of the ten storyline suggestions, but I asked my husband for suggestions and he helped me think of things beyond what I'd already written down.

I selected one of my ideas for the storyline of my short script, and I plan to involve other imaginations too.

Want to share your ideas with me? Tell me what kinds of things/events/situations an angel might become addicted to (fun or serious).

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Reflections: The Shots That Got Away

Sometimes when I see a beautiful image that would make a great video shot, I wish I could just push a button on the side of my head and record it to transfer later to a digital file to share.  I guess a pocket camera capable of quality video would be the next best thing...if I had one.

Here are some shots that got away:

  • While traveling on a ferry from Whidbey Island to Port Townsend, WA, a rainbow touched the water of the Puget Sound. As if seeing the end of a rainbow was not enough, a sailboat glided through it. Magnificent image. Once in a lifetime shot. Even though we were mere minutes from docking, people hopped out of their vehicles to snap pictures, while I sat in my pickup bemoaning that I didn't have my camera.
  • Driving on a two lane highway between Shoshone and Twin Falls, Idaho, my niece and I spotted a coyote standing on the crest of a sagebrush covered hill, a purple and pink sunset casting the lone creature in silhoutte.  It looked like a photograph.  Perfect.  But pulling over to the side of the road spooked the coyote.  Drats!
  • I recently missed two great shots within a matter of minutes. My husband tossed some bread over our condo stairwell to feed the birds.  Interesting image as the bread sailed through the air and his car keys plummeted to the ground, slicing through the thick blanket of pristine snow three stories below. I stood on the landing, laughing while he descended the stairs, went through the parking garage, and around the building to tromp through the snow in his good shoes.  As I watched from above, my laughter stopped as I saw a second fantastic shot... from my birds-eye view, I watched my husband dressed in a black suit, black ascot hat, and long black wool coat blowing behind him as he walked across the fresh white snow. I cannot adequately describe the image, and certainly wish I could show it to you...but camera with me.