Monday, September 15, 2014

Now Playing: SAMWISE THE BRAVE by Howard Shore

I listen to Film Scores Radio on Pandora while I write. It does a few things for me: for one, whenever it comes on, whether the song is familiar or new, it puts me in the mind of creativity. It's a bit like smelling a scent that takes you back to a time and a place you smelled it before--once the music plays, click! It's writing time.

But also, all these tracks correspond with some story or another. Pirates of the Caribbean. Skyfall. Alice in Wonderland. Inception. They remind me of great stories, and make me want to write some of my own. It's like they're saying, "You could have this if you would just GET TO WORK!"

Getting to work is one of the hardest things to make yourself do as a writer. I have hundreds of notes on my iPhone about future story ideas, and the oldest one is from November 2012. That's a lot of stories I haven't written! Granted, it's easier to jot a note than write a story, but still, as an amateur who wants to be taken seriously and publish short fiction and novels professionally, I have to write a lot. The music helps set the tone.

My personal opinion: Lord of the Rings has some of the best musical numbers in cinematic history. Sure, some tracks of other greats are amazing, like Pirates or Star Wars or Indiana Jones . . . but overall, taking the average, Lord of the Rings is just an amazing film score. Every track . . . so good. Every time a track plays, I give it the thumbs up--writers of science fiction and fantasy can never have enough Lord of the Rings, right?

In other news, I watched Peter Jackson's video blog about the making of the Hobbit--so cool! I would LOVE to be involved with making a movie one day, maybe as a screenwriter, or have a novel made into a movie . . . big dreams here. Anyway, they won't come true unless I GET TO WORK, so gotta run, more to come later.

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Pretty Cool Stuff

Now Playing: SO FAR DOWN by Creed
Just Read: THE MARTIAN by Andy Weir--So good! Funniest book I've read in a long time; I wish I had written it, because it was right up my alley and I loved the main character. Heard it's gonna be a movie!
Reading Now: THE PROMETHEUS DECEPTION by Robert Ludlum

In the past, one of my stories (Good Business, With Guns) was read on a science podcast, directed by a guy named Paul Cole. The podcast is called Beam Me Up, and they read fiction and talk about science and generally have a great time. I'm excited to say that a few weeks ago Paul read another of my stories, Skipping Stones, originally published in Daily Science Fiction.

You can listen to the hour-long broadcast here: My story is the last thing before he signs off.

It's always cool to see another's interpretation of your work. I was talking to a friend about that last night, particularly about writing screenplays and seeing an actor's interpretation. Mostly I think it's a great time, and though I know some people get up in arms when someone takes their piece in an unplanned direction, I think it's kind of fun.

In other news, I've been doing a lot of my own research on cosmic science and particle physics (because you know, I'm a sci-fi nerd and that's what we do). The coolest thing I've taught myself is how fundamentally connected we are to everything around us. How similar the DNA chains of any organism is to any other. How looking at distant galaxies is tantamount to looking back in time. And most heavily of all, how the elements that make up our planet and our bodies were forged long ago, in the distant and massive explosion of a dying star, ejected as dust until it underwent accretion and coalesced to form the unique, loved, amazing person that is you. That's spiritual. You are a spirit living in stardust.

Be mesmerized. Be imaginative. Be thankful.