Tuesday, 24 March 2015

Too Much is Too Much...

Envy is a sentiment I normally can't relate to.
I am ambitious, if I want something I have to work hard to get there, but I don't envy somebody else what he has or what he achieved. Never.

But this one time, I would want something for someone else and not the one who got the chance to do it.

Reading a poem by Poet Laureate, Carol Ann Duffy about King Richard III at his funeral ceremony on Thursday, March 26th.

The next BBC King Richard III may read it and not Richard Armitage.

Perhaps it is fortunate that I won't be able to see the ceremony anyway, because it is not transmitted on TV in Germany. I don't think my none existent TV-set would have been safe. Now I just need to secure my computers ;o)

Saturday, 21 March 2015

The First Time ...

The first time I killed a man ...

No, you need not be worried. I was nowhere near RA and RIII was killed long before I was even born. So all living or dead men are safe from me. Just not so much my fantasy men ;o)

There I am quite blood-thirsty, especially against men. Women in my story have a much safer life. In my first ever novel draft I wrote more than 15 year ago, which I some weeks ago un-dusted and re-opened, a dead man was found on the first page. In Venice of all cities. So quite definitely my all time favourite fantasy story ;o)

I answered a writing prompt by Ella Drayton
and now my little story was featured in her post about her new writing prompt:

Writer In Progress: Writing Prompt Wednesday: Divorce Lawyer: Welcome to the 3rd Writing Prompt Wednesday!! I am so excited that I can feature someone else's story inspired by last week's p...

It was the first time I killed a man - and the surprising thing, I got away with it.
You don't believe me?
Well, it all began last Monday. I went to work as usual. My boss was late for a meeting, as was usual as well. When he called me from his mobile to bring him something for his meeting he had left at the bureau the last Friday (which in truth was something he had not done and I had to miraculously procure out of thin air), the drama began to unfold.
It would finally kill a man, but nobody knows, not even my boss. And as that is how I want it to stay, I just can't reveal, who it was that I killed. It obviously was not my boss, though annoying as he is, he would deserve to be next. I just don't like him as much as my first victim to ... 

Please leave comments at the blog of Ella Drayton. Also writing-prompt contributions are very welcome.
Criticism I would appreciate you better left here on my blog ;o)
Thank you !

Sunday, 18 January 2015

My Tears for Hobbit III

(I do refer to the ending of Hobbit III, so only read if you already know or have seen the film yourself.)

You know, if you follow my blog for a while, that I am not a hardcore Tolkien or Hobbit fan. I have major reservations against both and don't like the factual writing style of both Tolkien and his friend C.S. Lewis.

So my reservations to go into the third part of "The Hobbit" were major. (Especially when I was already well aware of the necessary ending.)

The only reason, why I follow the trilogy and the filming so closely is RA. Otherwise, only the used new filming technology would have been able to draw me to the project.

So, starting with the hard background facts, I now can go on with the bad things first, what I don't like about the third part, to later get to what I really liked and what brought me to tears at the end (sorry, RA, unfortunately not you).

In this earlier post, Thorin & A Lot More (Relevant part starting quite far down in the last two sectors with: The one thing lots of J.R.R. Tolkien or C.S. Lewis (Narnia) interpretations don't mention, ...)
I already wrote how I interpret "The Hobbit" and why I only accept a slim way of interpretation.
I also see that my interpreting of the reasons which lead to the conflict and war, are hard to depict in a film. So it was to be expected that Sir Peter Jackson would have to avoid this rather underhanded reasoning and go for the obvious and depictable reasons.

Unfortunately, he did exactly that, but it is nothing I had not anticipated ahead of time. So during the film I took notice of what I found a too strongly stressed 'dragon sickness', which makes Thorin Oakenshield the obvious war-cause. (Which in the book, he is not.)
The ambivalent reasoning and accumulation of war causes is about the only thing I really like about "The Hobbit" book, by the way. The way the build up for war is written into the reasoning of each side and their traditions and commemorations of their ancestors. There is not the one aggressor, the one reason, the one cause, like in the film. You still can glimpse a bit of the original, but the film focuses too much on the dragon sickness of Thorin, to be to my liking. It makes the reason for war too easy, too obvious, too computer game like, too unquestionable, too un-research-worthy, too common place. That takes away from the one thing of reality Tolkien had built into his story line, and makes it a simple film answer.
I know the way film scripts work, I know the things that can be expressed in dialogue and pictures are limited. Still, I miss the ambivalence concerning this question in the film.


As I had anticipated that anyway, with all the focus on the size changing dragon, which by the way still did not impress me, that aspect did not distract from my enjoyment of the last part of "The Hobbit" trilogy.

And what I now really enjoyed about the third part of "The Hobbit", was the homogenous integration of the 3D effects. They worked perfectly and enhanced the film experience greatly for me.
For the first time, they really felt completely comfortable, not added, but as they should be. So I must admit, though I knew the sad ending, I liked the third part best of all.

I just wonder, what stories the dwarves will tell about Thorin in the future, as none of them, not even Bilbo Baggins, have seen his heroic fight. (Or perhaps will they get a copy of Sir Peter Jackson's film, to tell the true story?) No point of critique, just something I wondered about.
I also wondered about the military strategy of the dwarves and elves. In the way the dwarves used Roman formation, they would have killed the elves together with the other opponents without further distinction. That was a film strategy, I clearly did not understand and am sure would not have worked in a real battle environment. (Also most of the other fighting scenes are far from a real setting, but computer game like, where after killing an opponent, one just takes the strength of the killed opponent and can go on fighting forever.)
So I clearly am not the greatest fan of the mass fighting scenes, though they make the most work producing and I see what great effort was put into them. 

The thing which brought me to tears strangely was a role I so far had not much cared about. The king of the elves, Thranduil. Recognising that time and reason is not everything, but that emotion has its place in the world and the working of things. That was a hard process for him to come to that conclusion and a hard mental fight with his 'loved' son.
This emotionally impressed me so much, that Tauriel and Kili, as well as Thorin and Bilbo were pressed into the background.

Sorry, Thorin. But your death scene was good, but I had expected it. I was disappointed that nobody will be able to tell about your true bravery in your last battle (except the watchers of the film, but not your fellow dwarves or hobbits or elves or ...)
And I must admit, for me Bilbo distracted from the severeness of the scene. I just see him as a constant humorist, so the tragic moment was lost on me.

Fili and Kili were more tragic for me (though I knew they had to die as well), but still, the realising of the death of a life concept by Thranduil still beat everything else for me.

Just thinking about it - what I do miss in the three Hobbit-films: 
  • Where is Thorin's father? 
  • Where is the explanation for how Gandalf got the key from Thorin's father?
  • Where is the explanation for how Thorin's father disappeared and no longer has a right to the throne of the dwarves?
  • Who will be able to document the death of Thorin and sing about it to future dwarf generations, when all were either asleep or far away at the time it happened?
  • Where is Thorin's burial ceremony? (Had thought they possibly could take notes for King Richard III's re-burial in Leicester in March 2015. No, nothing. Bilbo just tries to quietly steal away. How unceremonious for a 'dear friend', as he last had proclaimed.)

I did not read any of the other Hobbit III reviews, so if I repeat things or don't refer to anything, that is because of my total ignorance. (I am living on work cloud XX right now)  ;o)

Wednesday, 14 January 2015

Thank you - Fablaktuko ! - Liebster Award for CDoart

Fabolaktuko, on her blog "White Rose Writings", awarded my little blog here with the "Liebster Award" and I am greatly honoured.
I am very greatful, that my meager writings here got her attention and her wonderful friendship.

Thank you so much, Fabolaktuko !!!

The rules of the Liebster Award:

1. Thank the person who nominated you and link their blog into your post.
2. Answer 11 questions which you have been asked by the nominating blogger.
3. Nominate 5 to 11 other bloggers who have fewer than 1.000 followers.
4. Add a new list of 11 questions for the nominated bloggers.
5. Paste these rules into your post.
6. Make sure your nominees know about your post and their nomination.

I sometimes do interviews, but only really very rarely feel myself being interesting enough to be asked questions in an interview myself and for myself.

1. If you could take Richard Armitage on vacation with you anywhere in the world (except ski resorts) where would it be and why?
Venice - I hope Richard Armitage likes museums (perhaps better to say, loves museums in abundance and never ending), because I have never been to Venice, but studied the history and would like to see every possible museum and library and archive there that is available and accessible to the public.
So it would take a while to get me away from there and stop me talking about all the "Kaiserpakta" (emperors' pacts with Venice), the battles, the maritime inventions, the book printing industry and the democratic specialty of La Serenissima. I so far have not found anyone who would endure me for the length of time necessary to appease my Venice enthusiasm and tolerant enough to bear my company on all the tours and discoveries I would like to make there.
My mother once told me, I should take my future husband on a honeymoon trip there. My comment only was: "That would be quite a short marriage then".
Her response to that was, I should have more confidence in men.
I could try if that works with RA ;o)

2. What is your favorite RA interview?
The first interview I saw with RA and the BBC (27.10.2008), [just can't find a working link to the interview right now and the old link where I saw it on YouTube does not work any longer.], which resulted in me becoming an irrevocable fan, because of the polite and still critical way of an upstanding and sensitive actor.

3. If you were producing a movie starring RA what would it be and who would be the director?
For me, of course: King Richard III
Director - I am not good with choosing one. I would leave that choice to Richard Armitage himself.

4. Your favorite RA sweater?
Sky blue, the photo series just makes him look so ethereal. (I am searching for a link to the images, but can't (any longer?) find them on my go-to source RANet.com.)
I must admit, I normally have my problems with v-necked t-shirts or sweaters on men. (Must be a continental thing. On one of my first visits to the U.K. I was asked if I felt it was o.k. for men to wear v-necks. I was astonished about the necessity for such an absurd question, as those styles are a no-go for men here where I live and men think them to be efeminating, except perhaps in combination with a shirt beneath and then they might seem a bit oldfashioned or nerdy.)
But RA certainly makes them work to perfection, so my general style guides don't apply to him. (Though I still hesitate concerning stripes (except fine pinstripes), dots and checks. Ihhh...)

5. What was your favorite movie as a child?
I can't remember having had one. But you could always convince me to watch a film, if there were pirates or ships in the movies or it was something historical.

6. What is your favorite comfort food?
Tomato sauce with Knödel/dumplings of some kind
(For the height of effect of the last two, only my mother's would do. Not even my mere cooking, knowing what I like, would suffice.)

7. Favorite RA hair?  Thorin, Guy (season 1, 2 or 3), Proctor, Lucas North, or John Strandring (pre or post haircut)?
Lucas North mostly had a quite lax haircut, but still, I quite liked him that way. Not overly fussy and no stickler for accuracy, but still sweet and decisively male. Proctor on the other hand represents the stickler for accuracy and the necessity of strict order for me, another very attractive extreme on RA. Though he has a beard here, even the beard is short cropped and under control.
I also like the long and well cared for look of Guy of Gisborne’s hair in few parts of series 3, but that look did not last nice for long. I am surprised about that, because only few men can turn long hair into a sexy work of seduction, but RA obviously can. He should really play a historic role, where long hair is necessary. Would like to see him with a wig once. (So not only a Richard III role, but also another historical role would be on my wish list, if I could have a say in the decision making.)
Do I really have to chose just one haircut? As long as it is RA's hair (or Guy's extensions), long short or ruffled, that mostly is enough for me: I just don't like his hair's look as John Standring.

8. Are you a day person or a night person?
More a night person. I need some time to get my body working and into a creative mood, which normally takes till evening, till my brain is not just coping, but creating.

9. Vanilla or Chocolate Ice Cream?
Straciatella, if I could choose. I like both, vanilla and chocolate, so a combination of the two normally would be my choice and straciatella does that quite fine ;o)

10. Favorite RA premiere look?
Phiuhhh, that is hard. I neither like stripes nor checks nor spots (as mentioned previously), so definitely all those things are quite out of the question for me. Though lately one checkered look was not all too bad on RA.
But I must admit, I am rather an admirer of formal wear and RA just looks so wonderful in it. And aubergine/dark, deep violet/lila is my favourite colour, so the first Wellington premiere with the dark cravat is my absolute none plus ultra.

11. Favorite TV Series?
Spooks (though series 9 still rises some issues with me and I still feel it is a bit of a let down on the possibilities it previously had.)
Le Floch (with Jérôme Robart) - even a few ships ;o)
Hornblower (with Ioan Gruffudd) - full of ships. Though some sink, I am still in heaven here with the wonderful film music I just can't get enough of.
Smuggler (with Oliver Tobias) - Ships again ;o)
Though I am sure on board of a ship myself, I would follow Mr. Hornblower's example and would be 'seasick in Spithead'. You will know what that means, when you have watch part 1 of the series ;o)

As I am not up to date with blog reading and discovering new blogs, I must admit, that I did not come up with a new list of blogs to recommend. I follow a few blogs and some of them for a long while, but quite a few of them became famous by now and do not fit the 1.000 followers recommendation any longer. So for now, I have to pass and postpone the naming of new "Liebster Award" nominees for a later time.

Thank you for reading and following and a big thank you to you, Fabolaktuko, for selecting me as one of your "Liebster Award" blogs !!!

Thursday, 25 December 2014

Merry Christmas !

How better to wish you a merry Christmas and a happy new year 2015
than with the words of Mr. Armitage himself?

A well balanced and charitable message this year - and via the new medium Twitter, that for the first time allows me to embed the message here ( so of course I can't resist):

The direct link to Mr. Armitage's recommended charities on Just Giving.

I hope you will have joyful Christmas days and wish you all the best for the holidays and the new year 2015 !

(Yes, the image has a relationship to RA and fandom and fans and ... - Of fans and of mice having fun besides the desirable red ...)

Sunday, 21 December 2014

Should keep my mouth closed ...

Uttering some intent just does not work out for me!
 See what happened after my last post.
I merely utter my plans to continue with "Intrigue" and total chaos comes out of it.

When I finally had managed to get up ahead of work and keep up with the day to day business, I thought I could sit down, relax a bit and get back to my story "Intrigue".
The next thing that happens is, my telephone (business phone line) and internet stop working, not entirely, but break off every few minutes and need some more minutes to come back and work for a few minutes, before the whole thing starts all over again.

So, what do I do, of course - my daily business anyway, call the hotline. [Can I suggest 'hotline' for the "Unwort des Jahres"? It certainly is mine!]

The first hotline lady, I soon bring to the end of her wisdome with my case, so I am transferred to a technical guy, who makes me restart, reset, test and re-do everything imaginable, till he is at the end of his wisdom as well. So we settle for a replacement of the router, to at least try to solve the strange problem. (Did I ever say I had 'normal' hotline problems? - Well, never the easy stuff for me.)
So, I wait patiently for the replacement router, go to my parents and their internet connection ín the meanwhile to work from there, but for reasons unknown, the connection there is almost as bumpy as my own. Then the replacement arrives and, at first, does not work either - though not in the same way, but completely not. After days of trying to get it to work and then in my desperation completely ignoring the given setup instructions, I can finally bring the thing to work ;o)

Long storry short, my nerves are nonexistent now, as the breakdown quite naturally happened, when I had a list of online contractual work to complete.
I am still behind with that and it is not likely I will catch up any time soon.

The end result of it all is:
  • Now I am back in my normal chaos. All effort to the contrary was in vain.
  • The continuation of "Intrigue" is uncertain again and delayed indefinitely. Sorry !!!
  • I even did not manage my annual CD-celebration post, which I normally do, even when writing only rarely.
  • RA was not available in time to compensate the pressure during this chaos, because the internet connection was too twitchy and The Hobbit not yet out. (By now, I have seen the third part and more about that at a later time.)
  • And to hit it all off, I am searching for the source of one certain RA picture for a friend and now can't find it anywhere. If I would not have it in one of the banners and so must have the documented source files somewhere, I would think I dreamed the lovely picture. (But my twitchy file visibility is an entire mystery on itself. Or do you have file folders, which only do show up, when they like and never when you search for them? When you don't search for them, the files suddenly appear exactly where they should have been the whole time. It gets me crazy and I have no clue what causes this problem, when all the settings are to show all available files and I am the administrator with all visibility rights.)

Wednesday, 29 October 2014

(Re-)Turning to Al Delarmy

On request by a dear RA fan and friend
and because of an infection securing my inactivity in bed and a sleepless night with headache, I found my way back to the one remedy, which like no other can turn my head and get my gray cells into a muddle and into motion at 3 a.m. at night.

Intrigue - Al Delarmy

I am no longer able to write the story the way I most likely would have done two - oh my, it is already over three (!) - years ago.
The story went along with me for three years.
My world pessimism did not lessen one bit in the meantime, but if any, did increase, which unfortunately will also influence my already world weary hero Al Delarmy.
And I left Al Delarmy alone for over three years by now, and an intelligent spy left alone for so long has time to find his own scrapes and pitfalls (so I don't need to invent some for him ;o)

Let's find out, where we find him after so long, if he found a new or the one singular love interest of his life. (I would wish it for him and had written in one character for him before the pause and now need to find out if Al likes her the way I had intended. - But, what a disappointment ! Al the romancer did put the lovely girl on hold and made it a long distance relationship! Argh !!! What more can I do as his author? Should I push him or ... ?
It is good that I, his author, now come back and take a leading hand in his fate again. He so urgently needs me to get him out of the muddle his life is and get him a happy ending.
Or, will he even get one? Or am I just mean and will put him into another 'John Bateman Nothing'? Or let him redeemingly die, sacrifice himself for the greater good?
Who knows?
Some of my acquaintances certainly are convinced that I can be mean ;o)
And with the world as it is, who knows where we will end ...

I am sorry for my very summarising writing style in this story.
I refer to the series' happenings and so need to get a lot of action into the background without overtaking my main line of the story, as I don't want to cut him entirely loose from the rest of the story, but embed him into his own story which is the one solution "S." was not able to reveal to us (because Al's story had not concluded and fully happened back then ;o)
To make my story work, I also need to re-arrange a lot of persons in a swift way.
As I am also personally not comfortable in the gambling halls and the underworld where I send Al into, I might gloss over some of the scenes you would most likely want to hear more in detail reports about.
To get to the main draw and angle points of the story and not to draw it out any longer than necessary - as my figure constellation is complicated enough - I hurriedly gloss over the glamorous social encounters and partying of Al Delarmy and focus on the main persons furthering the development of the secret plot of the story line.
Please feel free to enrich the social encounters of Al Delarmy in a way your fantasy likes best.
Al is much more comfortable in those environments than I am and can play the protagonists much better than I ever could. (I am always surprised by his reports about his encounters.)
I try to tell you the mere details of how Al tries to get his revenge and as Al is not a simple, one-layered character, his plans can get quite complicated, especially as he tries to get his revenge against an enemy the MI5 does not even recognize as a possible threat and Germany with open arms harbours and works with and supports as an economical saviour.

So with the following motto the story can go on:
The bad guys you can calculate with. The 'good guys' are those you need to keep an eye on.

But maybe, Al's schemes already start to work in the background and the masks begin to slide and truths start to be revealed?
Who knows ... ?

Slowly, the story will go on !
Long live Al Delarmy and that lots of his Intrigues work out the way he intends!