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Archive for the ‘INK’ Category

Magic Hour – Big and Small

Crimson and gold clouds stretching to the far horizon… a pink blush of colour tints the buildings left behind… sunset is a vibrant, spectacular time of the day – especially when the weather conditions are just right. No wonder at all why it’s called “magic hour.”

We can’t help but look to the skies for the extravagant light show, can we? Well, know that there are many other – smaller – magics happening at sun rise and set too.

Look down. Look closely.

Find the flowers that close up in the evening and open again at dawn. Everyday. Every single one. It’s a quiet kind of magic, but magical all the same.

flwrwake

Look closely. What small magical events and stories are happening around you?

Cheers and magic to you,
Deb

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pirsailsThink of pirates and your mind will no doubt go back to the Golden Age of pirates. An age so often romanticised in books and movies. Why don’t you first think about Sir Francis Drake? Or other explorers of the Caribbean? If it was government-sanctioned, was it not still piracy?

You gotta love a book that challenges your ideas on a topic… especially when the story is told as a modern day adventure story.

Author William Gilkerson gives us this new persepctive on pirates and on what is good and what is bad from the grizzled old Captain Charles Johnson (who appears to be a sailor out-of-time). Using fiction, the new ideas cannot possibly come across as factual and dry, but instead keep you guessing, teasing you back and forth on both sides of believing them. Through the POV of 12 year old Jim, you are taken on a journey to the thin line of choice to become a pirate yourself or not. And when you’re there, the decision is not as easy as you thought it would be when you were on page 1.

Then again, serious decisions are never as easy as they first seem, are they?

Cheers and good decisions to you,
Deb

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prplwindwCan you picture it? That perfect writing place?

A window overlooking nature (forest or beach), an ergonomically comfortable desk chair, a keyboard at just the right height, reference books and inspiring objects all within arm’s reach, but breathing space on the desk so as not to clutter the mind, and wall space that’s either a white board for you to work out story problems like a fresco painter, or cork board with ample space to tack up movable notes and inspiring pictures… happy sigh. While we’re dreaming, how about a servant to bring you a cuppa tea or coffee when you need it?

Dreams indeed.

Ever seen the haphazardness of Nature? Perfection of writing space is not necessary. Grab a notebook or tablet and go sit in a new place: a living room chair, the back seat of a car, the deck of a sailboat, wherever. Now write. Journal stuff. Anything. Go!

See? It’s possible!

What’s the perfect writing space you have to let go of?

Cheers… with a little INK,
Deb

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“I have made this letter longer, because I have not had the time to make it shorter.”

– Blaise Pascal

How efficiently Pascal describes the usefulness of an editor!

… makes me think about that Budgeting/Writing Pencil again. Happy first day of summer to the winners of the spring contest to win one! Thank you all for participating! I decided to randomly select more than one winner after all (just because!), and will be in touch with you shortly to send you your pencil. It’s interesting to see where people access the blog. The winners are:

winpcl

#1 = Dan (Canada)

#2 = Rona (USA)

#3 = Louise (Canada)

… plus honorable mention goes to Barbara, who so often comments!

Cheers and good editing to you,
Deb

P.S. The actual pencil is NOT the same size as in the picture. 🙂

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Excuses, excuses, excuses… We tell them to ourselves. We give them to others. What’s stopping you from writing?

How about that voice in your head that doubts your use of vocabulary (“should I write in US English, UK English or Canadian English?”), or doubts your consistency of style (“you don’t really know how that character speaks yet”)… it’s the voice of:

mageyethe Nit-Picker Copyeditor

A valuable voice later in the writing process for identifying and polishing the details of consistency and flow in your writing, but letting this voice into your head too soon and you can be stopped before even before you start.
A solution?

Make a writing schedule for yourself. Yup. I said that. Real dates on a calendar (or on a clock if the work is short enough). Give enough time for your Wild Creative Brain to work with free reign on the first draft. Then have a specific date (or time) for Nit-Picker Copyeditor to come back in and work with the whole drafted work instead of the words in progress. I bet you’ll find Nit-Picker Copyeditor back pedals on criticism when the whole work is available… it’s not as bad as Nit-Picker Copyeditor thought it would be. Besides that, Nit-picker Copyeditor loves details so much, the specific date/time will be acceptable to leave you alone so you can truly get on with your writing.

How else do you deal with Nit-Picker Copyeditor?

Cheers and happy drafting to you,
Deb

P.S. Since copyediting makes me think of revisions, have you seen and liked or commented on my posting to win a Writing / Budgeting pencil? Here ’tis is you missed it: https://debpatz.wordpress.com/2015/05/14/how-writing-a-budget-is-like-writing-a-script-revisions-and-a-wee-spring-contest/

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You may have seen my PM101 budgeting pencil:
wrt-pmpncl
… or you may even have one (and laugh each time the eraser wiggles while you write). It tangibly demonstrates the proportion of time you spend writing a budget vs the time you spend revising it. Recently, it got me to thinking about script or story writing too.

Revisions, Revisions, Revisions
Both budgets and stories are sooo not done after the first draft! Actually, the “draft” you are ready to show publicly as the “first draft” is sooo not the first pass you penned – you’ve already revised it privately however many times you’ve needed to for you.

Then after the first draft, your creative team contributes, pointing out strengths and weaknesses. You evaluate feedback. You restructure. You revise. You tweak.
Limits and prerequisites are imposed as the revision process continues. How you thought you could shoot the movie cannot be done that way. Script is revised, the budget undergoes re-allocations.

One thing is for sure… both writer and PM spend a lot of time reviewing, evaluating, revising, and tweaking to make the script/story or budget the best it can be.

Wee Spring Contest: Win a PM101 Budgeting Pencil
dp-pnclHow about owning your own PM101 budgeting pencil? Whimsically remind yourself with each wiggle of the eraser as you write that you don’t have to write the “perfect” first pass or “perfect” first draft. It’s ok (and expected) to revise, revise, revise.

To celebrate this parallel of art and business through revisions, let’s have a wee Spring contest. Like and/or write a comment on this post (on WordPress, Facebook or LinkedIn) and I’ll draw a random winner at the end of Spring (June 21). 1 entry for a like, 2 for a comment, 3 for a more thoughtful comment.

Cheers, good luck, and good revisions to you,
Deb

P.S. “PM101” is short for my book’s title “Film Production Management 101” and though there’s a lot inside about the business side of the industry, I’ll bet you know now that because of parallels like this one on revisions, you’ll learn about the art side of the industry too in its pages, too.

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iceAt Digital Days 2015 this past weekend (an event hosted by DGC and IATSE for the BC film community), I was heartened by talk of story.

At an event focused on discovering and experimenting with cool, new tech, the wow-factor can easily become the centre of attention, yet while we were experiencing the Polar Sea in immersive-put-me-in-the-movie 3D virtual reality, the speaker (Thomas Wallner of DEEP Inc.) stressed to us how the cool new tech is – and should be – just another way to experience story. Story is the reason we watch movies.

So very true!

Tech may let us experience story in a new way, but tech – and nifty new ways to shoot a scene – should never overshadow story. The wow-factor quickly fades, but it is with story that people connect in an enduring manner.

So next time you’re amazed by new technology, ask yourself: how can it help me tell story? Because… story rules!

Cheers and a good story to you,
Deb

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