Saturday, 30 January 2010

SpeedPoem: We Are One

Me and a Twitter Friend attempted a speed poem to the the same title - he got round to doing his a lot sooner than I did - but I'm a busy bee. You can check out his version of the poem here

So here is a quick 10 minute stab at poetry:

We Are One

We are. Collectively singular. One and the same.
In the only single category that's part of the game
Aims of understanding
Of knowledge out of grasp
Have us swiping at that nothing that's the same
As our parts.

You and I and
Me and the tree
Are the same. Are one. Framed by being
Seeing only in 2D
Blind to depth, to life, this reality
There's death tied in
Wound in. Breaking everything
That sings to bring
The end

Short Stories

I think I'm going to attempt it. I've never really written a short story before, I mean I have a couple of short stories, but they were poems that were far too long to work as poems so I just adjusted the structure a little.

A friend of mine writes lots of short stories and I think she's pretty amazing. You should go and check out some of her sheer awesomeness here. And I figure, 'heck, if she can do it, why can't I?' Not in a I'm-better-than-her-way, 'cause obviously that isn't true, but in more of a why-can't-I-do-anything kind of way.

I read an article on io9 about how the success as a short story writer is all about being prolific and it gave a bunch of tips on short story writing. So I'm going to give it a try. I'll come up with something and probably post the first draft of it up here for you all to enjoy and/or criticise at will. So stay posted.

Slight side note - do you find that when you learn a new word it is suddenly everywhere and you wonder how you ever missed it? Well this happens to me all the time. I am constantly learning new words that I'd either never come across before or just failed to pick up and as soon as I notice them, they are literally everywhere! They'll be in comments, articles, blog posts and even general everyday conversation. How on Earth did I go through life without knowing such a word if it is so prominent in my existence? A recent example of this is someone using the word 'prolific' in a comment about me and my poetry on YouTube, since then I have seen it crop up everywhere! After it's stint on the io9 article I talk about I felt like this needed a mention!

Friday, 29 January 2010

Scrubs Without Braff

You must have noticed by now I waste a lot of time watching movies and series'… but hey it’s like research or something. I’m examining different kinds of writing… or something… Ok maybe I’m just an insomniac glued to her laptop, whatever.

So I am not a massive Scrubs fan – I mean, I like Scrubs but I’m not an avid watcher. It’s just one of those shows that’s always on tv and of the bunch it’s probably the best during those hours I spend wasting away. It is pretty funny and JD does make me smile, so when I found out the new season wasn’t going to have Zach Braff or many of the other stars I wasn’t too sure about it. The whole show is from JD’s head, how can you take JD away?

But I’ve been sat here watching a few episodes of season 9 and though I’ve not worked out names yet I am quite enjoying it. It actually feels like it’s a different show, it’s not really Scrubs anymore but that isn’t a bad thing. It’s not good, but it’s not bad; it just is.

Part of me feels like this should actually just be a different show, that they are just feeding off the ready made fan base. But I guess if you can do it, why not? I am actually enjoying it though, I like the idea of getting to be inside the heads of the characters. I actually think it’s a technique more things should use, but then I guess it wouldn’t be so special.

What do you think? Any Scrubs fans? Any script writers? Me and my mate are going to attempt writing a horror movie so every time we watch a movie we get to call it research – maybe that’s just an excuse.

Why a horror movie? Well, they are my favourite to watch. And I reckon I understand the rules of writing horror movies the best, because I understand the movies themselves the best. I always watch them. I can almost always work out what is going to happen, because they always follow the same rules. I want to try to break some of those rules, but work out how to make it a good movie at the same time. A lot of the time, movies that don’t follow the rules, fail. I don’t want to fail!

Also, script is so much harder to write than you’d think. I attempted once (way back when I was 15) and it was a pile of **** (I am not sure if I should swear or not in my blog, I swear a lot but I don’t want to offend anyone. Comment on that too and tell me what you think). You need dialogue in a script, I mean come on – no one really wants to watch a silent movie (unless it’s a short film) but at the same time dialogue can destroy a script. I think from what I’ve learnt in reading and research is that less is more.
Try not to give everything away with the dialogue
Say as little as possible – don’t spell things out
Use dialogue to develop the characters – the way they speak, what they speak about, who it is they are

Any thing you want to share with me is always welcome – we’re all here to learn! Well some people are here for entertainment or ‘cause they’re bored, but those people can just help me learn – ‘cause heck, I’m always learning. I’m a student of the world and even when I’m not officially wearing that Student Status badge I’m always going to be a student. We all are. As soon as you stop learning, you may as well be dead.

Sorry, I ended up on a bit of a tangent with this post… 

Wednesday, 27 January 2010

Last Night's SpeechMotion

Last night was this months SpeechMotion - and it was AWESOME. Not from a biased I'm involved kinda way, more like a it was genuinely awesome kinda way. There was a massive crowd, which is always nice. But half of them disappeared after the interval (light weights), which was a shame because they then missed the amazing Tim Wells doing his thing as well as a film by Sascha Zimmermann about a hold up in the middle of nowhere - which was hilarious! Three girls dressed in bunny suits (or something) with guns trying to hold up a petrol station = gold. 

I filmed (well my camera filmed whilst being held by my beautiful assistant) a few performances of the night, which will be put up on YouTube eventually - I'll let you know! There's a couple of poems from me, MC Angel and Tim Wells as well as a comedy sketch from a group called 'Your Mum' which was brilliant. Sorry I didn't film everything but when I got there I realised I didn't have a full battery and I had to make choices. There were some stand up comic in the open mic you would have enjoyed laughing at, but that's just the way the cookie crumbles. Or the dice rolls. Or the porcelain dolls smashes when you drop it's scary face out of a window...

I was sat on the floor during the comedy sketch with my sister's dog (who felt the need to sit on my lap rather than the floor - I guess she didn't want to get her bum dirty or something, the little diva) who freaked out a little bit when the three girls started running on the spot. She tried to charge at them so she could play as well and I had to hug her to keep her back. I imagine an excited puppy jumping on you while you're trying to act wouldn't have be fun (for the girls at least). 

As always Missy was the star of the show getting the most hugs and kisses out of everyone all night. It's not jealousy, don't worry - just thought I'd point out that I never get that sort of love and attention and it's just not fair! *cough* I mean... erm... moving on.

Oh no saying that, a couple people hugged me and it made me feel a little uncomfortable. So if we are meeting for the first time, it is really ok if you don't touch me. I wont be offended. Well, hand shakes are fine. 

The night was a massive success and thank you to everyone who came down to support as well as came to perform. Even though I'm not convinced any of those people read this... but I just want to make all you non-attenders feel guilty! (Ok that last part wasn't true, I'll see all your beautiful faces tomorrow. Kinda)

Monday, 25 January 2010

Hello Budget

Today, I am putting myself on a budget. I've been off a budget since the 13th of December or something and almost feel as though I've bought at least one new item a day since.

Oh Amazon. Oh Ebay.

Considering I am unemployed and need to save £3.5k for my magazine journalism course once I graduate I really need to sort this out. I will be taking a year old first - So I've given myself a £100 a week budget (not inc. my travel which is £118 a month! London is ridiculous). Though it just occured to me I have to pay my phone bill - damn it! So I will need to recalculate that.

Because I did a bit of online shopping today and spend £50 I am only allowed to spend a maximum of £6 a day for the rest of the week - I probably spend more than that on food normally. Though that bloody phone bill is going to mess that up!

I just paid my phone bill - which has gone up thanks to VAT going up - I now have £4 to last until Sunday. I also just bought the Hope For Haiti soundtrack which helped, and yeah I know I'm sat here in the mist of talking about how broke I am and then I go and buy an album, but they need that money more than I do, right?

And before you start saying to yourself 'what the hell, where does all this money come from if she's unemployed??' - I'm a student. Over in England student's get student loans, and if they're parents don't earn much they get some free money too. So that's what I live off, borrowed money.

And with this borrowed money I buy books and dvds, mostly. Sometimes clothes. Sometimes food. No, food all the time - I am a bit of a fatty... I should work on that. I spent £20 on a philosophy book just a few days ago! Books should not cost £20, I'm sorry. To be fair, it is a good book and will probably help me write my essay - which I should be working on rather than this right now...

Any of you lot know anything about the pre-Socratics? I'm doing a Parmenides essay 'cause I think he's pretty cool. Plus he wrote in verse which I quite enjoy. What is is and what isn't isn't - expand.

Ha! All non philosophers just read that and thought, 'well yeah Pennie, what the fuck?' And to you I bid you to delve into this and spend some of your evenings exploring what it all means and understand how frustrating paradoxes are. But as frustrating as it is when I don't understand, those moments that I feel like I do make it all worth it.

So now that I'm back on a budget let's see what cheap ways around a life in London I can come across. Perhaps if I just drink more coffee I wont be hungry during the day and can just eat when I get home. In first year I just had a hot chocolate for lunch everyday and then made dinner when I got home. I was skinnier back then. I need to make sure to be drinking the 50p coffee from uni instead of spending £3 on it in Starbucks! I actually think this is going to be my plan... I'll start from tomorrow. I will think about leaving my card at home to avoid temptation - can't spend what I don't have... only, what happens if I need money and have none?

Please share any ideas you might have - I know as a 3rd year I should be used to this student living stuff by now but I'm clearly not... But when my lush new winter boots come through the post I'm sure they will have been worth it.

This was a pretty lame entry - Guess I should get back to doing real work!

Movie Review: First Wives Club

Ok, I know is really old and probably not actually worth reviewing, but I love Bette Midler and thought I'd take the opportunity to look at her by watching the movie again. Whilst obviously taking the opportunity to talk about my love for her by reviewing the movie. Maybe I'll do a 'Bette Midler Season' and watch Hocus Pocus tomorrow! Both have Sarah Jessica Parker in too (which I totally only just noticed! How ridiculous is that?).

So let's start by filling you all in on those standard details in case you don't already know.

First Wives Club, 1996
Director: Hugh Wilson
Writers: Olivia Goldsmith (novel) Robert Harling (screenplay)
Staring: Bette Midler, Goldie Hawn, Diane Keaton

Now, you know when you see the names of amazing actors on a film, you're always that little bit more tempted to go see it? Well, it's with good reason. Good actors promise at the very least good acting. And this is something that should never be over looked, I mean come on, you didn't watch 'Jenifer's Body' because Megan Fox can act now did you?

So after the suicide of high school friend, Cynthia Swann Griffin, who is abandoned by her husband, 3 recently divorced old friends come together to teach their exes a lesson and get some revenge. This is a witty comedy about women getting even. It might sound a little anti-men, but it's not, just anti-cheating-user-men.

They formed the First Wives Club and vow to get back at them.

Elise is an actress with a drinking problem and a fear of growing old - enough so to lead to the love of the knife. Brenda is a single mother, raising a jewish son who's father gets engaged to a ditzy young woman (Parker). Annie is afraid of confrontation, whilst raising a lesbian daughter and putting up with her mother.

Elise (Hawn) starts taking back all the possessions she ever gave to her husband who is expecting alimony, including his Lamborghini which they then trick Brenda's (Midler) ex husbands new bit into buying in auction.

They sneak into Brenda's exes new place to look for his books after finding out his business is dodgy. The bit in the window cleaning lift thing was hilarious. They're all trying to be discrete and quiet but they're screaming and freaking out and then they're falling down the side of a building and they're screaming some more. They even pause to look in on a couple in bed!

Song of the movie is You Don't Own Me which the girls sing on a couple of occasions - and I LOVE. It is actually also one of the reasons I watched the movie today! I heard the song (being sung by someone else) in a youtube video and got really excited!

So there are the ups and the downs and the girls get into a fight and smash up Elise's place a bit. Annie (Keaton), the quiet one, screams at the other two before being slapped by Brenda.

I'm not going to carry on, because if you are one of the few people who haven't seen this film in the 14 years it's been around then I don't want to ruin the story for you. There's lots of meddling and plotting and it's high quality comedy; real quality, not the usual comedic crap that floats about the place. I admit I am not usually a big comedy fan, but maybe I need to restate that: I'm not a fan of teen comedies. I'm not a fan of slapstick or cheap shots. But I damn well love this film.

Saturday, 23 January 2010

Performance Update

I don't know how many of my readers are based in London, but thought I'd give you a heads up just in case! I'm the resident poet at a night called SpeechMotion in OldStreet. I've posted a link to the facebook event for you all go check out. I think you have to click the title...

SpeechMotion 7.30
The Horse and Groom
Curtain Rd
Old Street

There's also some open mic slots going on if any of you lot want to join in! As well as a comedy group and a couple of short films. It's a really good night so if you can, you should come along.

The night is run by msft, which is actually my sisters company. Which you can look into at for news on all the awesomeness!

I plan to take a bit of a hiatus from poetry soon. I have lots of studying to do and memorising, performing and publicising takes up a lot of time I can't really afford at the moment. It's just 5 months or whatever and then I'll be back, but if you haven't seen me live and you would like to and you are close enough to do it you only have a few chances!

Below is a video of me performing live if you want to see what you're letting yourselves in for:

And if you haven't already and you are philosophically inclined read the post below and leave your two cents.

Friday, 22 January 2010

Perceptual Experiences

So today I sat through the exact same Epistemology lecture I sat through last year on Sense Datum Theories. Part of me felt like just leaving when I realised I'd heard it all before, but let's be honest here, doing it again isn't going to hurt. So in accepting being given this second chance to understand I will take to discussing it with you lot. 

Personally I feel like epistemology shouldn't have it's own class but should just be discussed in relation to everything else. But maybe that's just because I am not a fan - 

So I'll give you the two claims we are (apparently) committed to before I discuss. If you are a non philosopher and absolutely horrified by my sharing this with you I do apologise and hope it doesn't lead to you never returning. But at the same time I did warn you all of this probably happening and as I have been sat in the library for a couple of hours and found myself not really doing much of anything I may as well do this. Let's call it Education Through Procrastination. 

In fact, I quite like that. I will be keeping it, somehow. 

1) Typically, the direct objects of perceptual experience are external, mind independent objects
2) Typically, perceptual experiences are relations to their direct objects. 

'Right, so what does that all mean' I hear you ask! Well, I don't hear much other than the clicking and the tapping I'm causing myself nor could I adequately answer such a question (I'm assuming) but by-golly I plan to try (...something). 

Now, according to number 2 those perceptual experiences are relational just like my laptop is sat in front of me is relational. If I were sat somewhere else that whole 'in front of me' placement would not hold. So according to that, a perceptual experience needs to have a relation going on, if there is no one around to relate to then the experience can't be happening. 

Ok, so that makes sense enough. 

'But wait!' I hear you cry. Does it make sense if we think about illusory experiences or hallucinations? 
Well, if you are a Sense-Datum Theorist the answer would be to abandon claim 1 and keep hold of number 2. So there is still the 'relation to the object' thing going on, but it doesn't necessarily have to be some external object. Only thing, if it's not an external object, what the hell is it? If I can see the laptop, doesn't the laptop have to be there? 
Well, the Sense Datum guys would say that those perceptual experiences are mind dependent 'sense-data' that are actually these internal things inside our minds. 

This is the point I start going - wait, what!?

So (from what I've gathered at least,) our perceptual experiences, i.e. things I can see, touch etc. are relations to the 'sense-data'. 
This sounds like they are saying that those perceptual experiences I'm having are all in my head, which I can almost go for... almost. Yeah ok, so I'll agree that what we're perceiving isn't necessarily what's out there. It's not like we could ever know, my experiences are all subjective. So on a low low scale, maybe when I see blue you can see green - that's not to say we're going to sit and argue about the blue object we're both looking it, but rather we see different things that are called the same thing through that relational language stuff. I learn to call this thing I see blue and so do you, even though we don't see the same thing. 
Sure, fine. This is ok. But now we're getting more into the 'what?' 

So how is it that you and I can both see a table if this is all some internal mental sense data relation? There has to be something making me perceive a table, right? 

Well I think so. But then you have those idealists that just make my head hurt who I think say no. Now, maybe I'm just misinterpreting the whole thing, but I think the idealists would say that everything I perceive and experience is just some representation or illusion or something and not what's really there. But then you have to wonder what really is there... 

It almost feels like they either don't have an answer or they're just going to make stuff up and hope it flies. 

I'm not really sure about all this idealism - It makes my head hurt. 

But please, enter into discussion (especially any philosophers!) and let's work all this out together! 

Thursday, 21 January 2010

Super Me

Today, I got a new tattoo. It is very exciting and I've wanted it done for a while. It's a stick man with a cape whispering into my ear! Yes, it's SuperPennie!

I started this hours ago and now I should really be saying yesterday in talking about it... But you can just deal with my time issues.

It may seem as though I have just branded myself and I'm not exactly sure what that shows. Perhaps my commitment to the SuperPennie brand, maybe it's more like my attempts to snapshot this part of my being. Maybe it's both.

I like tattoos. It's as if my body is the scrapbook of my life, and of course it is! We have scars to remind us of our scrapes and adventures, we have wrinkles to remind us of our smiles. Why not have drawings to remind us of our loves? People often tell me I'll regret them when I'm older or that I'll never get a job. And to those people, I tell them they just don't see what I see. This isn't my young impressionable self making mistakes or trying to be cool, this is me keeping hold of everything that is.

I started a diary when I was 10 years old and a scrap book around the same time. When I was a teenager my walls were full of memories I held dear (most of which now live in a massive blue pirate box). When I was a fresher my dorm walls did the same thing (until they were retired into a big pink fairy box). I keep hold of everything. I want to remember the good times and the bad times, to remember my opinions and beliefs long after I don't hold them anymore. I want to see how I've changed and understand where I've come from.

And on the job front... well I want to be a superhero.

I'm not convinced my appearance matters at all as a writer. The words that fall out of my fingertips will no doubt come from the same braincells regardless of the ink or dye that seeps within me. And any employer refusing to have me on their team simply based on my appearance does not sound like the sort of employer who deserves me on their side.

Sure, maybe when I'm 60 and have to explain my stickman with a cape to my tea buddies I may seem a little silly, but the stories I tell will be of adventures I had in my youth. Of the times I followed my dreams and took those leaps towards the stars. And anyone who feels the need to judge my happiness is clearly wasting their lives away rather than being happy for themselves. And to you, I am sorry.

Monday, 18 January 2010

Unfinished Poetry

All year I've been trying to write a poem; a specific poem. You know the one.

I have ended up with a series of unfinished poems. Poems I didn't know where to go with, poems where I couldn't find the right words, poems that didn't even piece together.

So this is a shorty to ask the writers out there for advice on the matter. What do you do when you want to write a poem you can't write? When there is something you need to say that wont come out...

I am toying with the idea of just posting up my unfinished pieces, but I'm particular when it comes to my poetry. I want it to be perfect, or at least be good enough to show people - that first draft. So while I debate the matter, I am calling for help. Poets, writers and whoever else might have a plan - how do I finish that unfinished masterpiece?

I figured I'd add a vid I made ages ago after reading 23discordians comment:

Saturday, 16 January 2010

An Emotional Day; A Nostalgic Lifetime.

Yesterday I went to the funeral of one of my friends. We've known each other since we were maybe 5 years old and on the 1st on January she was taken away. A bunch of boy racers thought it a good idea to speed up onto a pavement and take down a group of people. The result? 600 people at a crematorium saying their goodbyes and remembering the times they spent with her.

Her name; Carrie Maclaren.

And it shall not be forgotten. I have never seen so many people turn up to pay tribute before. It was actually quite incredible. There were people from primary school, secondary school and university as well as family and all other places she crossed paths, all there. We filled two chapels and spilled out into the corridors.

I have never cried so much. Photos of Carrie were being projected onto the wall, showing her life. She looked so happy (and very often drunk). After the service we all filled into hall to catch up and reminisce. Hundreds of lanterns were let loose to rise up into the air. You can see the photo to the left. Unfortunately it isn't something you can really photograph all that well, but you get the idea. It was beautiful. It was amazing to see how many people cared about her. How one girl touched so many peoples lives. I was touched by the sight of it all. She was too young to have been taken yet, 20 year olds are not meant to die.

The experience showed me how many faces I've lost to the past. How many people I just don't talk to anymore, not for any real reason other than growing up and growing apart. It helped me realise how much time I waste to missed opportunities. From here I'm going to make a difference. To change. I'm going to try to be better because there is no point wasting my life away. There's just no point.

In times like this people turn to religion for answers. For reasons why and for promises of things to come. Religion makes death easier because it lets you believe the person didn't really die. That death is just a step towards something better. But religion also implies that life doesn't even matter as all it is, is the time before you die. The time spent waiting for that promise of something better. I don't believe any of this. I don't think.

But I do believe we're all just energy. I believe that nothing ever ends, just changes. Things move from form to form but never end. Nothing can just disappear, nor can it just appear. So I believe when you die you go back to nature in a way. You are part of the world and will always be part of the world. You may not have the sort of consciousness that comes with being human, but you still are. And this is where I find comfort. In the thought that we are all connected and part of the same whole. The thought that death is just a state, a process of transferal into another form.

What do you think?

Wednesday, 13 January 2010

Insomnia is...

... probably just an excuse.

But heck, let's role with it. I've never had the sort of sleep patterns that really stick to those norms of the everyday human, which really help when you want to function in the world. Sleeping at night and being awake during the day really sets the tone for getting work done, going to work etc etc so you'd think knowing that sort of information I'd make the effort to sort it out... Well Mr Presumptuous that is just plain wrong.

I have a few theories on why this seems to be the way I roll, but who knows the truth? So here are a few possibilities, please chime in with your own ideas on why my sleep patterns aren't much on the pattern side (or you know, why you don't sleep properly either).

1 - This is my subtle attempts to live outside society and rebel against it's structures

2 - I am trying to put tomorrow off so much I don't want to speed its arrival up by going to sleep.

3 - My avid procrastinating has me putting off sleep

4 - My brain is just too active to switch off on command

5 - I'm stressed/worried about the pressures of life and existence. Avoiding sleep means avoiding that quiet thinking time that comes before it

6 - I want to keep going until my body gives up for itself

7 - I enjoy the peace of night time

What do you think? Any suggestions? Both in a 'add to the list' and 'how you get to sleep' kind of way.

It's weird, between the hours of 1am and 7am I swear my brain is at it's most efficient. I can write and read and think and most importantly actually seem to get things done. I just can't understand those early risers, who get up at 6am to commence the day!

So I am sat here waiting for Better Than Chocolate to buffer to watch a movie before attempting to retire for the evening and figured I may as well do something to waste *cough* I mean 'fill' my time. The only place I could find it in good quality is on divx and I am starting to think divx hates me. Divx web player refuses to play on my new macbook for some unbeknown reason no matter what I do, so I'm having to watch it on a different computer. On top of this small (ok bigger than small) annoyance it also takes longer to buffer than anything else seems to! Sure, I could watch it in a lower quality or just watch something else which doesn't need to be streamed but that's not the point.

Do any other macbook owners have divx web player hate or am I just lucky?

Monday, 11 January 2010

Movie Review: It's Complicated

Watching this film made me feel very old, granted I am probably 30 years shy of the movie's target audience but it was still very much worth watching. This film had me fall in love with Meryl Streep just a little bit whilst also having me want to date (or maybe marry) a baker. But mostly this movie made me really hungry. So I suppose I should tell you something about the movie after all that...

Everything I read about this film tells me they're middle aged, but when did 50 become middle aged? Maybe I just have low expectations, but I would have called them old. Anyway, It's Complicated is a rom-com for the older generation. Haha ok, I am focussing on their age way too much - I'm sorry. But it's not everyday I watch a film that fits this slot - most of Hollywood ensures I spend my time staring at sexy 20 somethings. Though apparently director and writer Nancy Meyers pretty much does just this so... I guess I just need to look harder.

The film is set 10 years after Jane (Meryl Streep) and Jake Adler's (Alec Baldwin) divorce, just as Jane is starting to feel normal again. Jake cheated on his wife with a younger woman who he then went on to marry (even though she cheated on him and had a child with someone else - it's all very tangly).

Skipping to the part where it starts getting juicy, they both find themselves staying in the same hotel in New York for their sons graduation. Their three kids are off doing their own thing, having a party or whatever and Jakes wife couldn't make it leaving the two of them alone. They get drunk and dance and reminisce and before long they are panting and laughing semi naked in bed together. And so it begins. There is a bit of crotch fondling going on as Jake says "Home sweet home" in a slightly cringey but mostly funny scene. Jake seems very proud of himself, while Jane is busy throwing up and feeling guilty.

The film pretty much continues with Jane being the other woman but then we get Steve Martin thrown in, playing her architect as another love interest. It's all pretty rom com predictable to be honest and was probably mostly funny 'cause it was cringey in an old people having sex kind of way but the acting was spot on (as you can imagine, look at those names!) but even so I was in hysterics the whole way through and will no doubt be watching it again. And again.

I think the highlight had to be Streep and Martin sparking up a joint. Yes - old people stoned! Classic.

I don't want to give too much away so I'm not going to comment on the ending in the hopes you go and watch it. Meryl Streep is fantastic and Baldwin does what he does best. I think this is my favourite Martin film - but to be honest, what I've seen of his is a bit too slapstick for me.

In fact, I now kinda want to review the Lizzie Mcguire Movie just so I can talk about how much I hate slapstick, but part of me is already a little embarrassed that you know I watched it. He's not in the Lizzie Mcguire movie so that probably seems like a strange leap I just made there.... he's in Cheeper By The Dozen (which is worse) and both have Hilary Duff in... in case you wanted to know why I'm talking about this...

Saturday, 9 January 2010

The Power Of The Subconscious

On Thursday I was performing my poetry as part of Pandoras Box, a cabaret night in Islington. I chose three poems I'm most comfortable with as I wasn't in the mood to learn anything new. Since the 1st I've been finding it that much harder to concentrate on anything. I thought it would be fine and didn't really give much thought to the poems I was doing. I perform them all the time, I know them. Only turns out my insides did not want me standing in front of people performing Eye For Eye. For those who don't know I'll embed the video below:

See, a friend of mine died on the first and even though I thought I'd be fine, I guess not. I'm trying my hardest to not think about it, 'cause I don't know how to deal with it, but my body is not ready to just up and move on.

I couldn't perform the poem.

I got about 6 or 7 lines in and completely blanked. It was a little bit embarrassing and at the time I couldn't understand why I blanked, but it occurred to me later that night, talking to my sister. I can't stand there and talk about death like that, when it's such a sore subject for me. I thought I had tougher skin, but I'm just an emotional wreck.

I'm not going to sit here and talk about it with you, 'cause it's weird and a little too personal for me to share too many details. But I just wanted to comment on the power our brains have. Mine went against what I tried to make it agree to because I'm not ready.

Look at me, I'm talking about it as if me and my brain are different things. I'm not a dualist. Just going to throw that out there. I just think there is more going on in my brain than I have control over. And of course there is, I have no control over most mental activities taking place in there.

Friday, 8 January 2010


Below is an open call for writers I've been asked to share with you. If I have any playwrights amongst my readers this may be of interest to them =] 

Open Call for submissions: DYS-PLA

msft are looking for 60 min plays by dyslexic theatre writers to produce as part of the DYS-PLA festival taking place in November 2010 at the THEATRO TECHNIS Theatre. We are able to offer between 2-4 night run and will provide actors, directors, rehearsal space (limited), and full publicity. The plays can be on any subject the writer wishes to dramatise, and we welcome scripts about learning differences, hidden differences and other neo-diversity topics. The deadline for first draft submissions is the 1 May 2010. All scripts will be chosen by 1 August 2010. Please email submissions to

Sunday Surgery – script development and staged performances
Every last Sunday of the month from February 28th 2010, at The Edinburgh Cellars, 125 Newington Green Road, London

Sunday Surgery is intended as a creative think tank where writers of all mediums may experiment and develop their new writing and gain constructive feedback from a supportive audience.

msft offers a Sunday Service for experienced as well as novice writers, where you can develop creative ideas, build characters and push your plot to its dramatic limits. We are not here to ‘teach’ you how to write, we are here to make what you write come to life. Once you have created a story, msft will provide space to put it on its feet, a professional director and trained actors to bring it to life in front of an audience. Successful Sunday Surgery work will then be developed further and considered for selection for msft’s festivals of new work, Write Side of the Brain and the DYS-PLA festival, to take place at a top London Venue in November 2010.

We welcome 10-60 page submissions from writers all year round – please note that submissions received by the 1st of each month will be considered for that month’s Sunday Surgery. We accept anything from first drafts up to completed scripts. msft also encourages submissions from writers with a learning difference such as dyslexia .

Please send all submissions to

If you have any questions or would like to find out more about msft or our other events, please email: Lennie[AT]makingtheatrework[DOT]com

Tuesday, 5 January 2010

The Problem With Blogging

Once I start writing, I usually stay in that mode for a while. I realise this doesn’t sound like a problem, not on first glance anyway, but blog’s are short bursts of thought from me to you; they end quickly. But I can’t be sat here writing post after post, filling up the reader feeds of my followers to a point where they don’t do the reading part of that relationship. It’s all got to be in moderation. I know, of all the blogs/sites I follow, I get fed up with the ones that are posting hundreds a day. In fact there is only one of the bunch that posts shed loads, that keeps me happy as Larry – and that’s mostly ‘cause I’m a big geek and it tells me about all the geeky things I wouldn’t have thought to look up for myself. Like the fact that there exists this giantess fetish in the world (mostly Japan – they hold the title for most fetishes apparently), which would be something to do with giant women (or tiny men) and sex.

Reading that back I can see what that sounds like so I’m going to point you towards io9 for yourselves as there are way more awesome things that that kinda porny example…

More on this same problem with blogging, is that the style I’m writing in here is pretty specific. It’s not the same tone as my poetry or my (attempt at a) novel. It’s also miles away from any sort of philosophy essay, though slightly closer to music reviews I guess. This means my need to keep writing passed that initial blog is unhelpful in getting writing done as I can’t jump through styles all that easily. My brain needs to be utilising some different region, switching on lights in a corner to the left (or something) and I’m just not much of a jumper. Never have been… I remember days of being forced into things like athletics in P.E and not wanting to even try the high jump...

So I either have to write another blog or not write at all – but who knows when the next time I’m going to feel the urge to get all bloggy again? So here is my solution: to just stock up. I’m writing in word and if I haven’t blogged for a few days, I’ll pull this baby out of storage for a quick once over, then BAM!

I have come to really enjoy blogging over these past couple of months. I get to write pretty much how I speak – which probably annoys those Grammar Nazis and what not, but I spend all my time writing philosophy essays and having to be all proper and academic that I appreciate the release. Considering I started the blog because I was told as a journalists/columnists I need to have one if I ever want to be paid for my words, I’m probably shooting myself in the foot a little bit here. Which is a shame. You see, my feet and I have been together for a while now and losing one like that just isn’t going to work for me. But this was all a bit of a side note -

It means you get to really feel like I’m talking to you, instead of you just reading some words some lady over in the UK wrote one day in the past. Pretend this is for you; these are your words. ‘Cause you and me, we’re going to be tight =]

Monday, 4 January 2010

Saturday, 2 January 2010

What A Welcome

Welcome to 2010 ladies and gents. I hope yours is off to a better start than my own, which began with a loud reminder of our mortality. I don't like death when it affects me, strangely enough. But if I'm not involved I can comment on the phenomena of grief and whatever else. As it stands I will be moving the topic on...

I will be returning to uni in just over a week for the last stretch of my university life. How scary is that? Ten more weeks of lectures then it's study leave, then exams. 100% of my degree rests on those exams, so I'm stressing out. If I start lagging in the blog department try not to hold it against me, at least until June. And if I start getting philosophical on you then count yourselves lucky =p
Maybe you can help me solve some of the mysteries of the world. Who knows.

This was just another shorty to keep you posted and to give me something to do with myself other that study... typical?