Friday, July 27, 2007

Prospects, places to go and limbo...

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That's right...look at the date on this. I guess I meant to add something and never got around to it. Well. Let me upload some pics here in a few, and I'm updating this baby!! (Actual date of post: November 19, 2007).





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Attended "The Flash" reading, KGB Bar. Met Nathan Tyree, Andrew Lewis Conn and Paul. Got the chance to ask Conn his thoughts on a program I've been considering (that he was in) - screenwriting - uh, huh, you heard me - and he said it was definitely worth it, EVEN if you're not making a career of screenwriting (or don't know which writing best suits you!). I've also been looking at another, IRL, workshop. Anybody have good info on Sackett Street in Brooklyn? Some good faculty (names I've recognized from reading journals I enjoy, so that might be a good sign!!) Please do let me know, whether here or by email, if you have any scoop!!

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I hope Tuesday is pretty. It's my only day off, and I want something dreadful to go to Coney Island. For some reason, I'm hearing the Cyclone screaming my name. Then I want to turn around and go on Friday night, because they have Fireworks every Friday this summer. And I like fireworks.

And what could follow-up a Nathan's hot dog better than a belly dancing class. Several girls at work have already begun, and I'm next!!


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Fenway Park Reading slated for tomorrow night at the Hairy Monk Pub. Tim Gager is reading, and I Sue Miller slated to visit for the evening, because....

Animationblock
party is all this weekend and I want to see the selections that are being shown on Saturday night. Almost wish I'd gone on the Rooftop Films presentations tonight for the experience, but hey, they have these "underground outside" shorts and feature-length films all the time.



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I am in some sort of revision limbo. I've been devoting (more like obsessing over) most of my writing time to tearing apart a year and a half old story. I love it and I want it to sparkle, I say. I've taken it down now to a sentence by sentence examination, then turn around and do it again. Round three is now in progress. Hopefully just a couple of more passes. It seriously feels closer anyway!


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I have new work coming out in elimae next month, too!


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BE SURE to at least check out Tuesday Shorts, and by all means, submit! Open to subs on Sat-Sun, noon to noon :)


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Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Settling in ... comings and goings.

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My big present to myself this month is a SONY portable reader!! I'm so excited. I will also get $149 in free books from ebooks.com (that's through month's end, if anyone is interested), and it will be so much easier to tote my bookshelf around with me!!


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So, Monday I went to a reading at Mo Pitkins, featuring Rebecca Curtis. She read a portion of her collection's title story, TWENTY GRAND, published last year in The New Yorker (story link). Oddly enough, as soon as she started, I recognized the story (hard to forget the Armenian coin). I just hadn't remembered the title. I'm planning on getting the collection as an ebook once my reader comes in. Also met writer Alethea Black; looking forward to reading her work (Inkwell and Antioch Review).


On Tuesday, I attended [read: was late for] a reading at B&N, by Ronald Currie Jr. Met a whole lot of writers from the online workshop Zoetrope, and briefly chatted with them and with Ron. The premise of GOD IS DEAD is fascinating and the part he read - well, wow. Can't wait to get this one as well.

Then, I tried to make it to a first meeting group of NYC writers. Sadly, only 7 showed up, and I got there when they were disbanding. But I got to chat with one of the attendees for a bit, as I ate a fabulous prawn taco. If you're ever in West Village, go to to Miracle Bar on Bleeker St. and try it!


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Also announcing an upcoming interview with Steven Curtis, author of THE SPECIES CROWN, a novella and short story collection published by press 53. Stay tuned for that! I'm enjoying the collection so far (and I'll be able to download it onto my reader too :)

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Finally, I think I've found an active established writer's group: the Meetup New York City Writers Circle who meet monthly, it seems generally at KGB. I'm excited to get involved in a "real life" group. Each event will have a speaker(s), readings, a social time and what I'd call "focus groups" during each session. I'll just love meeting with folks of like mind, in person!!


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Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Real life research (or My Internalization)

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Whew! It's been a busy month. I worked two jobs for a month, 60+ hours a week (on my feet - both restaurant capacities) and was exhausted. I've whittled down to one and now I'm getting to enjoy the city more.

THIS is my view on workdays -


I usually work the morning shift, have a few minutes to sit in Columbus Circle and read before I start. Very nice!!








Here are two neat sites I found recently.

As some of you may know, I'm a former chemist/oceanographer and well, this one lets me ponder another of my loves some. I particularly enjoy news regarding the encouragement of young girls to pursue careers in science~


Goodreads is a great site for weeding out the multitudes of books and discovering what to put on the top of your must-read lists! Be my friend (if you're not already!)

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Although I haven't gotten a lot of new work done lately, I've been able to get a lot of subs out, and am starting some revisions today. I feel like I'm in an "Internalization Period." My whole life is a big experience right now, and I'm trying to enjoy it all, take notes and incorporate into my novels/stories one day. I'm also reading a whole lot - think I'll get a Sony Reader so it won't be as bulky/cumbersome on the subway.

Saw fireworks at the South Street Seaport. Awesome display. Coordinated music was piping too, and of course they finished the night with old Blue Eyes belting out New York. It felt almost Disney-like.

I got to the Transit Museum's exhibit at the Grand Central Station Annex. History of the beginnings of the subway design and architecture. Trains, and particularly the subways, fascinate me. And thinking how much thought and art they put into the system (not to mention the foresight of planning by the city) simply astounds me.

Here are the nuts and bolts...
ARCHITECTS OF THE NEW YORK CITY SUBWAY
PART I: HEINS & LAFARGE AND THE TRADITION OF GREAT PUBLIC WORKS
New York Transit Museum Gallery Annex and Store at Grand Central Terminal

Beginning in 1901, consulting architects Heins & LaFarge designed the subway’s earliest stations and buildings in the popular Beaux-Arts style, according to the vision of the system’s chief engineer, William Barclay Parsons. Incorporating design elements from other prominent New York City commissions, Heins & LaFarge achieved the mandate to bring beauty to New York’s first subway. Using original architectural drawings, objects from stations, and archival images, this exhibit explores the work of architects and engineers who designed the subway we travel through today.


Part II (PART II: SQUIRE VICKERS AND THE SUBWAY'S MODERN AGE) begins July 30.


Information on the New York Transit Museum is here.

I want to see more, so my next visits will be to St. John the Divine Cathedral and the Bronx Zoo, both projects of Heins and LaFarge.


I also HAVE to get to Coney Island. It won't be anymore next year! (Besides, I need some sun).




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Got some cheap tickets to OLD ACQUAINTANCE, and was so glad I did. The reviews weren't astounding, but it was very entertaining, the sets were fabulous, and I "learned" a lot. I really want to try my hand at playwriting now - but about the show....

It is the story of two WRITER friends - one quite prolific and successful (Mildred, played by Harriet Harris), the other more acclaimed (Kit, played by Margaret Colin). They are in alternate stages of love (new-found and lost). Mildred's daughter Deirdre (Diane Davis, who by the way, reminds me of Judy Garland) is sowing her oats, defying her mother, and searching for love in all the wrong places.

Here are my immediate impressions (which I jotted down right afterwards).

I like that they are not sprites - middle-age seems to be gaining popularity as baby boomers get older. The new 30's I think. Because they are writers, I liked the conflict of prolific and so-so writing vs. quality and sporadic output. Critical acclaim vs. popular appeal. There's a May-December relationship going on (you go girl!), and a very familial friendship (in other words, the women love and fight in ways similar to sisters). As well, Deirdre is more partial to Kit's company than her mother's.

I thought Harris (you may know her as Bebe from "Frasier") was phenomenally funny. I thought Colin was good too, but I think hindered in part by the script. Her character, Kit, seemed almost too good, too unselfish. Mildred, on the other hand, was a full-blown mess. So, I wasn't crazy about some of the characterization, perhaps a tad shallow (and then, a too-convenient turn and love scene, which I saw coming in Act I). I could say that was good foreshadowing, but would have liked a unique twist. Aw well.

[UPDATE to say, I read the Playbill [more] just now. OLD ACQUAINTANCE was actually written in 1940 by John van Druten, so it does explain some of the archaic-seeming storyline. However, at the time, I would imagine it would have been considered a progressive story - funny how things like time/setting can interweave throughout eras. Divorce, independent women, etc. Now I'll have to do further digging!]

[UPDATE II: Found the wikipedia info on OLD ACQUAINTANCE; the movie starred none other than Bette Davis! Obviously, one I missed.]

It was a thoroughly enjoyable evening. Playing at the Roundabout Theatre (which is gorgeous by the way).

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All for now!


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