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Tag Archives: writing

Today’s Quote – What Writing Does


When it’s in a book I don’t think it’ll hurt anymore… exist anymore. One of the things writing does is wipe things out.

Replace them.


Read my Series on Bob Dylan at One Week One Band


Last week I had the very fun opportunity to take on the writing endurance/music obsession challenge known to music nerds all over the world as One Week One Band. It is a comprehensive music encyclopedia, where each week a new writer takes on the task of writing about a musician or band that holds a special place in their heart.

I chose Bob Dylan, which, if you know my dog is named Mr. Bojangles, and that Bob portraits hang on many of my walls, or that I almost named this blog No Direction Home, or that my next tattoo is Dylan lyrics, will be of no surprise to you. His music and words have had a tremendous impact on my life, and will continue to for the rest of my life.

With that in mind, if you want to read my raves about my five favourite Bob Dylan albums, go to this page on One Week One Band and scroll to the bottom to find my first entry, then work your way up and forward through the newer pages. There are many posts, and many songs! Like I said, endurance challenge. It was exhausting and fun, and I highly recommend any writer looking to go deep into their own obsession with an artist to consider taking on the challenge.


Today’s Quote – Perverts


The desire to make a living as a writer is a true perversion in this culture, but I think we need our perverts more than ever… to be a working writer is a political act.


Today’s Quote – Learning To Accept The Compliment

Lena Dunham quote I think one big mistake… Girls are trained to say, 'I wrote this, but it's probably really stupid.' Well, no, you wouldn't write a novel if you thought it was really stupid. Men are much more comfortable going, 'I wrote this book because I have a unique perspective that the world needs to hear.' Girls are taught from the age of seven that if you get a compliment, you don't go, 'Thank you', you go, 'No, you're insane.'

I think one big mistake… Girls are trained to say, ‘I wrote this, but it’s probably really stupid.’ Well, no, you wouldn’t write a novel if you thought it was really stupid. Men are much more comfortable going, ‘I wrote this book because I have a unique perspective that the world needs to hear.’ Girls are taught from the age of seven that if you get a compliment, you don’t go, ‘Thank you’, you go, ‘No, you’re insane.’ 

I had to learn to go, ‘Thank you.’ Because it’s much easier to go, ‘Thank you so much, I’m actually a huge piece of shit who has no worthy things to offer the world, so I appreciate that you said that.’ 


Best of the Oscars 2014

karen o oscars

Really I just wanted to post Karen O’s beautiful performance of the song that should have won the Oscar, Her’s “The Moon Song.” Seeing her onstage at the Oscars was almost as cool as seeing Elliott Smith sing “Miss Misery” at the Oscars way back when.

Pink’s ruby red dress was definitely my favourite dress of the night. It was obviously created as a homage to the ruby slippers in The Wizard of Oz, which her performance was celebrating the 75th anniversary of. It was also nice to see her give a performance that didn’t involve acrobatics, for once!

Another highlight was the brief on screen mention of Sarah Jones – the camera assistant who lost her life on set due to the producers not taking safety precautions - something that happens on film sets far too often – and not telling their crew that they DID NOT have permission to be shooting on that train track – and also not going over an in case of emergency (aka if a TRAIN COMES – as it did – where should everyone run to) routine.

Obviously, film workers everywhere were and are outraged. The fact that crews shoot 14+ hour days and everyone is exhausted is bad enough for their overall health, but something as horrible as this is just unnecessarily stupid. Having a sister that works in film, she experiences these things first hand, and I am always complaining that she shouldn’t agree to sleep on set and work insane hours – it should be illegal. But the fact of the matter is, the industry demands this. The standards are ridiculous. And if you complain, you won’t get hired again  - so no one ever dares to. It has to change. When a 27 year old camera assistant is killed because she was not informed they weren’t even legally allowed to be on the track, that’s a new low for the industry. #slatesforsarah

sarah jones oscars
Speaking of film figures lost this past year, another highlight was Bill Murray’s perfect impromptu shoutout to recently passed, beloved collaborator Harold Ramis as he announced the nominees for Best Cinematography:

Oh, we forgot one, Harold Ramis, for CaddyshackGhostbusters and Groundhog Day.

And my absolute favourite part of the night came from the intro Robert DeNiro read while announcing Best Screenplay, about what it means to be a writer:

The mind of a writer can be a truly terrifying thing. Isolated, neurotic, caffeine addled, crippled by procrastination and consumed by feelings of panic, self loathing and soul crushing inadequacy. And that’s on a good day.

Truth. Heh.

Even better was that the two most deserving screenplays, 12 Years A Slave, and my personal favourite, Her, both won their categories. It was shameful to me that the directing category left out Spike (and Jean-Marc Vallee – truly the best director of the year).

Cate Blanchett also made me cheer out loud when she said this:

To the audiences who went to see it and perhaps those of us in the industry who are foolishly clinging to the idea that female films with women at the centre are niche experiences. Audiences want to see them – and in fact they earn money.

Other quick highlights – Jared Leto’s shoutout to his mom + brother + Ukraine + Venezuela + AIDs victims; Matthew McConaughey’s speech about always envisioning himself in 10 years in order to set goals – reach them – and set new goals; Lupita’s tearful speech; Steve McQueen jumping up and down in pure glee after finishing his speech for Best Picture.

Things I could have done without – Ellen’s lack of any real comedy, instead opting to mingle in the audience the whole time; that awful Bono loves Bono U2 performance; the cringeworthy Bette Midler performance; Pharrell’s hat; the Frozen songwriters giving a truly awkward and annoying rehearsed acceptance speech; Gravity winning almost every category despite having some of the cheesiest lines of all of the films I saw in 2013.

 What did you think about this year’s ceremony? Did the right people win? Tell me below!