Sylvia Plath. 1932-1963
“I can never read all the books I want; I can never be all the people I want and live all the lives I want. I can never train myself in all the skills I want. And why do I want? I want to live and feel all the shades, tones and variations of mental and physical experience possible in life. And I am horribly limited.”
“Here we are, back in our old situation: surprise or suspense. And we come to our old analogy of the bomb: you and I sit talking and there’s a bomb in the room. We’re having a very innocuous conversation about nothing. Boring. Doesn’t mean a thing. Suddenly, boom! the bomb goes off and they’re shocked—for 15 seconds. Now you change it. Play the same scene, insert the bomb, show that the bomb is placed there, establish that it’s going to go off at one o’clock—it’s now a quarter of one, ten of one—show a clock on the wall, back to the same scene. Now our conversation becomes very vital, by its sheer nonsense. “Look under the table! You fool!” Now they’re working for ten minutes, instead of being surprised for fifteen seconds.”
This gets at something I find challenging in writing a novel: when to reveal and how much to reveal. I’ve heard some advise that the author should never hold information back from the reader, more like Hitchcock is advising here. But then at the other end of the spetrum you have writers like J.J. Abrams who specialize in using a lack of info to get the audience to ask “What’s in the box?”.
By Despina Kakoudaki
Happy Birthday Peter Lorre [László Löwenstein]: 26th June 1904 - 23rd March 1964
Lorre - perhaps it is a misfortune - can do almost anything. He is a genius who sometimes gets the finest effects independently of his director, but he is also a throroughly reliable repertory actor…I have a horrible fear that film directors will find it easier to follow in Hitchcock’s footsteps and provide Lorre with humorous character parts than discover stories to suit his powerful genius, his overpowering sense of spiritual corruption. He is an actor of great profundity in a superficial art. - Graham Greene writing in 1936
He was a delight to work with and a joy to have as a friend, as he possessed a rare talent for gaiety. There was not a pompous or even solemn bone in his body. - John Huston
Peter was a very cultured man, a very sensitive person, a very loveable man, and with a great sense of humour. - Robert Mamoulian.
He was a remarkable innovator…a man who built his part with little tricks that were almost indiscernible, with his eyes, his face, with his body, and with a little look at the right time, a little shrug of the shoulder. Each of these built a character and built up a love in the director for that person who’s thinking of things that he should be thinking of. - Frank Capra
I am less complicated than anyone I know. My interest and instincts, I am afraid, are strictly normal, but I have always had, even as a child, a fantastical absorption into getting into people’s character - in trying to unmask them and their motives. This, I suppose is what has interested me so much in playing pathological roles, but has not, I want to say emphatically, circumscribed my ambitions, for I want to play all kinds of parts. I don’t care whether it is tragedy or comedy if it is authentic portrayal of life. - Peter Lorre
Oh I love Peter Lorre.
Does anyone in Hollywood go by their real name?
Another sneak peek at the book I am working on for Neil Gaiman, to be published by Dark Horse. Pencil.
Protagonists: worth telling stories about.
The Hare got a high-powered job in the tech industry straight out of college, while the Tortoise traveled the country by train just writing in his journal and thinking. Finally the Tortoise got a big book deal for a memoir he wrote, and when he posted about it on Facebook he thought, I knew I’d outshine that fucker in the end.
The Tortoise and the Hare Facebook-stalked each other. He might have a lot of money but I bet he doesn’t feel alive when he goes to work, thought the Tortoise. The Hare looked through the Tortoise’s photos and thought, Being a writer in Brooklyn is so pretentious. The truth was that a part of each of them longed for the other’s life. How are you supposed to know you’ve chosen the right path?
The Tortoise and the Hare met for coffee. They each casually mentioned their recent successes to the other one, secretly hoping to appear better than the other. As they walked their separate ways home it hit them at the same time: There never was a race. There is no destination. There is no winner.
(unpublished illustrations from Alice in Tumblr-land)
Closer look at Russian Juju from my solo show #theAdventuresOfRaspberryFinn Was inspired by traditional #matryoshka art and folk painting as well with a nouveau Russian couture sunglasses by the majestic #ulyanasergeenko 🎀
Louis Rosenberg’s post-apocalytic trade paperback Eons is now at Comixology for just under four bucks.
Here’s the story: Selected for their extreme physical and mental prowess, eight volunteers embark on a 60 day test of PROJECT EONS, a secret military program designed to preserve a seed population of perfect human specimens in the event of a global catastrophe. But something goes terribly wrong, hurling them into a life and death struggle against the elements, each other, and a mysterious presence, until soon… they’re vying to survive as the last remaining humans on planet earth. Let the end begin!
"There is no condition of stasis in nautre. Every living thing is either moving toward growth, change, and development of it has begun to decay and die."
I found this quote inspirational. It made me want to get off my tush and do something. Unfortunately I was at a conference, so it would have been awkward to jump up in the middle of the keynote speech.
If this is a little crooked, it’s because it’s a photo of a slide presentation at the California Writers Club Leadership Conference. I spiffied it up with filters on my tablet to give the plain text a decayed look, but didn’t quite get the tilt right.