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Location: Vero Beach, Florida, United States

My name is Pat and I live in Florida. My skin will never be smooth again and my hair will never see color. I enjoy collecting autographs and playing in Paint Shop Pro.,along with reading and writing. Sometimes, I enjoy myself by doing volunteer "work" helping celebrities at autograph shows. I love animals and at one time I did volunteer work for Tippi Hedren's Shambala Preserve.

Wednesday, February 28, 2007

This 'n' That...

On Monday, on television (on The View) Barbara Walters had Angela Lansbury on. It wasn't long ago that I had written to her and received an autographed photo of her, so I was really happy to see her!

What I was most pleased to hear, beside the fact that she is doing a stage show at the moment, when asked if she would ever do another Murder She Wrote, she said that she told her son (who is a director) to find a good story that they could make a 2 hours special of Murder she Wrote!!

Golly! I think that's a great idea! There are so many writers in blogville here maybe someone should write a good story for Angela Lansbury and send it to her!! (keeping with the old format of the show of course) One person in particular, who I know wants to become a screen writer (yes, you Kiyotoe) might give it a try? If anyone needs more "practice" at something like this, this could be a challenge. And if for any reason it doesn't get sent to her, then post it somewhere that we can all read it!! I wouldn't mind ready a few "new episodes" of Murder She Wrote lol.

I started some packing yesterday for my trip .. lord those 4 books I have to bring are heavy! Each one is thin and not to bad on it's own but put the 4 of them together and it really adds to the weight!

I will only take a carry on.. I like that I know it can't get lost by the airline. But I'll tell you what... lifting that thing over my head into the overhead compartment is horrid, especially with my bad back...and now the 4 books!! I'd put them in what "can fit under the seat" but I have a cloth bag and it's carrying my heavy camera (the one with the 300 zoom lens) and my purse. They make no exception for ladies to carry on a purse! That means if one was to bring a laptop with them, you can't be a female and have a purse too! One overhead item and One under seat item...that's it.

I really need to get a "good" digital camera with a zoom equal to my heavy camera that takes film. I've looked at them on line and they've gotten to the point that I just don't have the brains to learnall the buttons and menu's. With this old SLR Cannon the only setting I have to do is film speed.. then it's point, focus and shoot. Somehow, I don't think I'll ever find a digital like that with a zoom and macro. I keep going on line, looking them up and reading all i can about them in hopes one day something "will click" and I'll understand it all rather then feeling like it's written in Greek...but so far..nadda.

Anyway, I have the "film" camera and the small digital which isn't the greatest but at least I get a lot of use out of it for my journal. (Kitty pics/ plants in spring/ snow in winter etc) Which is still another thing on my "list".. to remember to charge the batteries for the digital on Sunday, the day before I leave... it's always something!

I'm tired before I even get there!.. OH! and it isn't bad enough on this old body to have the time change for a week out there, I just found out that the last Sunday I am there.. we push the clocks forward an hour!! More sleep lost! It could well be a week before my head clears up from all the time changes that I have to go through ! But I promise not to complain about it... to much. heh.

Before I leave this post I just want you to know that it's still Winter here in New Jersey... wanna know how I know this? Because what you see below is still going on! It's called "winter cuddles"...

"Till next time..."

Tuesday, February 27, 2007


In response to a comment made in my blogspot journal by Stewart, where he mentions occurrences in the film industry such as the blacklisting of anyone thought to be a Communist during the McCarthy era...
There once was a man named Edward Dmytryk.. he was a director. I came to know of him because (as you may well suspect) three movies that he made had DeForest Kelley in them. De had told some stories of working with Mr Dmytryk and so he popped into my mind when Stewart commented.
I've only ever met 2 Directors of movies. (I've seen George Lucas, but never spoke with him) One was Nicholas Meyer (I tell my story of Nickie, as I fondly called him around De and the other was Edward Dmytryk.
I met Mr Dmytryk quite by accident. Myself and a then friend of mine happened to go to breakfast one day when I lived in Encino. We decided on the Pancake House. As we were leaving and paying our bill there was an elderly couple in front of us. The man was not much taller then myself with pure white hair. I couldn't help but overhear the man taking their money thank "Mr Dmytryk" for coming by.
I may have never opened my mouth to him but as he turned to leave he looked right at me and smiled a friendly smile.
"Mr Dmytryk? Mr Eddie Dmytryk?" I asked quietly.
"Yes, it is," he responded, "Do I know you?"
"Umm, well no.. but you worked with an actor friend of mine a few times, DeForest Kelley."
He smiled again, "Oh my, yes I have. How is DeForest these days?"
From that we had a small chat and he introduced his wife to me. It was only about two years later that Mr Dmytryk passed away. But I will always be grateful that I had a chance to meet him.
Now back to Stewarts comment.. the reason I am remembering Mr Dmytryk is because he was one of those people that was blacklisted. He wrote a book about it which I read a long time ago. (somehow while moving the book got lost and although I could replace it, just never got around to it.)
The book is called "Odd Man Out". It's very interesting if you want first hand information on what it felt like to go to jail and be blacklisted.

Still another book he wrote was Hollywood's Golden Age. Which is a memoir of Edward Dmytryk's early days in Hollywood.

Some of the more famous movies you may have heard of that he directed are: The Caine Mutiny (1954) Soldier of Fortune (1955) Raintree County (1957) . And the three movies he made with DeForest in them were: Where Love Has Gone (1964) Raintree County (1957) Warlock (1959)

"Till next time...

Monday, February 26, 2007

Can You Hear Me Now?...

On Saturday 3:30 pm.. did you hear me scream? It was loud enough for everyone to hear!

I finished reading Inkspell.........

AAaaarrrggghhhh! I can't believe how it ended! And I have over a year wait (maybe 2) before the third book comes out in English!!! (I know better then to read books that are a series before they are all out... for the life of me I don't know what made me do it!)

Needless to say I really enjoyed the books, even though they were written for young adults. It was a new concept, and I really liked it. Very well written! Excellent story! What more can I say?.. oh.. don't read them or you will be as frustrated as I am having to wait for book 3!!!

I'm really glad I got them in hard back.. they will definitely stay in my collection of books that I know I will re-read at some time or another.

So... now I am but a week away from my trip and I don't want to get into anything too exciting that I don't want to put it down; plus with my cloudy eye I still find the larger print or double spacing in hard backs much easier to read so.. the only hard back I have left in the house at the moment (that I haven't read yet) is a little book written by Sean Astin called "There and Back Again an actors tale."

He's too young for a biography so I guess this is going to be about the making of the movie.

I remember reading a book by Walter Koenig (Chekov in the Original Star Trek) called Chekov's Enterprise in which he talks about the making of the first movie. In that book I found out what a wonderful sense of humor he has for writing. I don't know that Sean Astin's will be funny but I hope it has alot of his feelings he was having while filming Lord of the Rings. I guess I'll find out soon enough.

So between making lists and packing, (and anything else that I do each day) I'll begin this book... I hope it makes me forget that what I really want is to be readingbook 3 of Inkheart!

"Till next time..."

Friday, February 23, 2007

A Brief Intermission...

We interrupt the regularly scheduled programing (the autograph posts) briefly for breaking news!
(but the next installment of autographs will be below this post)
February 22, 2007 has turned out to be a good day after all!
I received the book, The Making of King Kong, in the mail today; in plenty of time to take on my trip with me. (now the book count is 4.. and it's gotten heavier then I had wanted it to be!)
I flipped through the book, hoping against hope, that there would be a good photo of Andy Serkis doing his thing, as King Kong. I came a cross a few smaller photo's, one in which he has all the electronics all over his face to make the facial expressions for Kong, but it was very small. Then I spotted another picture that was maybe 1/2 page in size of him with some prosthetics on for some movement of Kong...
'Till next time....(my precious)

Monday, February 19, 2007

A Moment in Wonder-land

I know I talk of books I've read or movies I love a lot... it's part of me, you'd better get use to it if you are a regular at my journal. I do it so that my mind stays off of other things that keep me depressed... it helps.. somewhat.
My last few posts were mostly books and movies and when Astarth mentioned that she forgets things and names much as I do my mind began to wander.. Often at this house we are the same when it comes to names.. be it characters, movies, book titles or real names of actors.
"Oh, did you know that what's his name is in that movie we saw the other day. He was also in.. ummm.. that movie about horses."
That would be a typical sentence used in this house.
My mind wandered on....
I began to wonder what it must feel like for an author to watch his/her book "come to life" as a movie?
Do they get to watch it being made? and mostly.. how do they feel inside when they first see their favorite character standing there before them? What would Tolkien have felt when he first laid eyes on Gandalf, or Frodo? In that first moment seeing them, before they could utter a word of the script. Would it take his breath away? Would he tear up inside? Would he ever again look at the actor portraying his characters in the same way? Could he see them and not think of his beloved characters?
Heart be still.
I found myself sitting, looking out my window with my eyes beginning to tear up.
Abbercorn.. oh what I would give to see him just once. To touch him. To believe such a person could exist, even for just a moment in time.
The name Abbercorn would mean nothing to anyone reading this, because he is a character that was born in my mind...and my heart. But, he would be the one I'd want to meet.
I sat there for some time feeling what I thought It might be like to meet someone who only existed somewhere inside of me.
My mind continued to wander..
Having known DeForest Kelley, and having been on a movie set while he filmed, I had a clear picture in my mind of the what the setting would be like. People buzzing around getting set for the shot, the camera men and lighting people making everything just right.
I remembered when DeForest walked out into the scene that I was watching and the overwhelming feeling inside that I had just met Dr. McCoy! It was a glorious feeling... but McCoy was not of my making, not someone that I had created. But I did feel I had met the Real McCoy, and it did make him VERY REAL for a brief moment. Breathtaking.. simply breathtaking!
My mind seemed to switch gears on me and I began to remember the only time I had met Anne McCaffrey. As she signed a book for me I asked her if one of her characters (Master Harper Robinton) was fashioned after anyone she knew in real life. She responded by telling me, "he's my neighbor in Ireland".
Although her books have not been made into movies, I now wonder if when she sees her neighbor, does she see the character she made from him? Or the neighbor? While speaking with him, does she ever inwardly think, that's exactly what Robinton would say? ! If I ever have the opportunity to meet Anne McCaffrey again, I hope I remember to ask her this exact question.
Strange how a simple comment to my post would set me off in such a way... and that I had to write it down quickly while I was still full of the emotions that filled me so instantly.
I guess it was really a combination of that comment from Astarth and the books I am currently reading, (Inkheart/Inkspell) where someone can read characters out of a book and have them standing there before them. In this case, most (not all) that were read out of a book are not the sort of person you'd relish meeting.. however, meeting one of the good guys or one very special character would be fascinating, to say the least.
One thing is for certain.. that person/ character couldn't disappoint you.. after all it was created from within, given all that you wanted him/her to be.

Friday, February 16, 2007


An update on Cornelia Funk's Inkheart book... I finished it just today. It's fast and easy ready (duh, it's a young persons book). I enjoyed the story very much and yes, I can see this as a movie!

I was disappointed when I read of the character that Andy Serkis will be playing in the movie, he's going to be a villain. I was hoping he could spread his wings a bit more.

Inkheart movie: I was happy to read some of the others that will be in the movie such as Brendan Frasar and Helen Mirren. It sounds as if it will be a decent movie.

Upon reading an article on Inkheart and then opening book 2 Inkspell, it seems that Cornelia Funke wrote the part of "Mo", who is the father that can read characters out of a book, with Brendan Frasar in mind all along.

In the beginning when you open book 2 she writes:

To Brendan Fraser, whose voice is the heart of this book. Thanks for inspiration and enchantment. Mo wouldn't have stepped into my writing room without you, and this story would never have been told.

Having written a story of my own, I know how it feels to hear the voices in your head when you are writing dialogue (you can even see their expressions, because to you they have become nothing less then real)... I find it wonderful that she managed to have him for the part when Inkheart became a real movie.

The other thing worth mentioning with this book is that it's originally written in German and has obviously found it's English voice with Anthea Bell, who wrote the translation.

A book for the young it may be, but I think she has come up with something very original. (Although I haven't read that many young folks books so I could be wrong) I think I see her as one of her own Characters named Elinor.. a book collector and lover of books at heart.

Although there are no great wars between good and evil, it's there all the same in a much tamer way. I really thought the book was very clever and I'm curious to read on and see what she does next... though the wait for the last book is not one I look forward to.

The third book of the trilogy, Inkdawn, will be out this year, however it has to be translated into English sooooo Inkdawn probably will come out around Spring 2008. Sigh.. I hate waiting so long. (very good article if you click that link)

I would recommend this to young readers, even before I begin book 2.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Daily News Report...

February 15, 2007... Orange NJ..
So? What's the big deal? you are asking...
That's not much snow. (nope) This is your winter? (yup)
I know it doesn't look like much, and in the amount of snow it sure isn't. But what you are looking at is more dangerous then if it was snow... it's ice! And it's been so cold here, single digits and below, that even putting salt on it doesn't help... it stays frozen.
On today's news they showed a film clip from a police car that had pulled over to someone stuck on the road...what it showed would have given me a heart attack had I been in that stuck car! A Fed X double trailer truck was coming down the road in the opposite direction... the second trailer began to slide and went right into that car before bouncing back and then swinging back again farther down the road before the driver could get it to a the time it stopped the double trailer truck looked in the shape of a "Z" Thankfully no one was hurt... but it is an example of what happens on the "nothing to speak of looking road" pictured above.
We are getting to 18 degrees today with a -2 degrees wind chill factor.. I don't think it's going to melt the roads yet! This is surely a case of: Less is More.
Did anyone hear about the passengers on a Jet Blue plane that went out to take off in this weather and sat there for 7 hours?!!! For this they got their money back and a "free flight" later to anywhere... well duh... need to give me more then that after sitting there for 7 hours before the flight gets canceled!!!! I might have choked someone by then lol.
'Till next time...

Monday, February 12, 2007

This and That...

My mind is jumbled today.. not really unusal..
Sunday was a RARE day for me. Since David was home to take care of my brother, my neighbor took me out to get some things done that I needed to do before my trip to California.
The words me and out of the house normally are not said in the same sentence, since my brother cannot be left alone. Also the fact that my neighbor works alot and what little time she has off she has 2 kids to care for and to do her own errands.
But this weekend their father had the girls and she was off of work and she told me she would enjoy being out with just another adult. (a miracle to be sure)
First she took me to an ATM so I could get some much needed money for my trip. I have a charge card but things like a Taxi to and from the airport... well... they frown if you don't have cash, heh. They also toss you out and don't take you, heh.
Anyway, after that stop we went to JC Penny's. I knew I could use some clothes since I can't remember the last time I got anything new. (that's not an exaggeration) She took me there because she had gotten some 20% off coupons in the mail, they could be used for sale or non sale items.
I tried on some dungarees (jeans).. I am hard to fit, having big upper legs, and a big butt... but the small of my back remains "small".. therefore if i can get them over my big butt.. they are big in the waist. So naturally, when one sits down the back feels like your butt is exposed! It's not... but closer then I am happy with! So, in turn I have to wear oversized tops and shirts to be sure my butt doesn't hang out... all of this results in someone who could care less about clothes. So, of course I go for comfort.
I am happiest in winter clothes for this same reason.. I live in sweats in the winter.. baggy and no problems with the butt hanging out. But even then I wear oversized sweatshirts as I hate wearing a bra. At my age that's a HUGE no,no! Talk about "hanging out".. well 'nuff said.
Anyway, I found some jeans with stretch in them (anyone past a single digit clothing size looks for "stretch"!) I found some Gloria Vanderbuilt jeans (with stretch) on sale and tried them on... holy b'moley! They fit! (not mentioning the size!) And yes... the back of the waist still stuck out, so I will still need to wear oversized tops of some sort. I was shocked to find something on the first trip into the fitting rooms!
After wearing baggy sweats for months now I was shocked to see I still had legs! Overweight, though they may be, they still shocked me.
The sale price was only 24.99 (normally 39.99) I had figured I could get two jeans when I left home, and figured the 40 dollar each price. I went wild at the sale! Got the jeans in white and black and light blue! THREE PAIR! Then I found a pair of Lee jeans (dark blue) with stretch and tried those... comfy!! Now I was up to 4 pair of jeans! I haven't owned more then 2 pair of jeans at the same time in my whole life!
 (I still can't believe I bought 4 pair of jeans!)
I started looking for tops but was not having the same luck.. I did come across a brown shirt that felt like suede, but wasn't. I read the inside to see if it was washable and it was. It was on a sale rack for 5.99, normally 24.99.. it was X large... i took it!!
When they rang up my stuff and took off the extra 20% I had spent 86 dollars.. Crimey! Four jeans and a top! I had figured on only 2 jeans for that price!! It was more then I should have spent but I figure I am set in jeans for at least another 5 years now! (hoping I don't gain alot of weight that is)
The final place we went was Target where I didn't spend much at all... thank goodness! All I got there was those tiny travel size things like deodorant and shampoo etc.
We went at 10:30 in the morning and got back at nearly 4 o'clock.. my old body and legs are not used to that much time on my feet without a sit down now and then... the evening turned into a mini horror as my calves began getting cramp after cramp! argh! It finally eased off about 10 pm. Talk about paying for a day off.... sheesh.
Today on television all we are hearing is about a storm headed our way "Storm Watch".. of goody, just what i wanted. (not) It figures that we haven't had snow yet this winter and now that it grows close to when I have to get to an airport and fly.. snow is on it's way. All I can do is hope that no matter what weather we get between now and March 5th is that on THAT day the roads are clear and it's not so freezing cold as to freeze the wings of the airplanes! Instead of excited, I'm getting nervous!
I am looking forward to the visit once I get there though! Spending time with some friends I made while I lived there, and then the convention.
I have to tote the books I am having signed with me.... the first book has a number of autographs in it, the guests coming though were not in the first movie, so I will bring all of them "just in case"... I will have Billy Boyd sign other 2 books since I already have his in the first book.. Pippen was in all the movies. The other 2 guests will sign the last two books .. hopefully these books, containing autographs, will be worth something someday.

Where Will it End?

When I was just a kid, never did I dream I'd be living in the day of computers. That is just a small part of things I never dreamed about...
One other thing that I didn't dream about.. and makes me very angry.. is what is happening with TV.
When I was young all you had to do was to be able to afford to buy a television to be able to watch the (not so many) shows and movies on television. Of course when I think back, there weren't a whole lot of shows, since it was in it's "infancy".. but it did allow you to watch many movies... and all of it was FREE.
You used to look at roofs of houses and see all sorts of antenna's standing majestically to receive the waves that magically put a picture on your screen. And if you couldn't afford those big fancy antennas... there was always the dreaded "rabbit ear" antennas that sat atop your television (sometimes it helped to put tinfoil on them to help clear things up). At times you had a snowy picture, but somehow it didn't matter if it was something you really wanted to see, you wiped your blurry eyes and watched it anyway. And it was FREE.

When cable came along... at an alarming price.. not everyone could afford it, but it didn't matter, because you could still watch television with your antenna. "Cable" gave you more stations and great reception, and movies that you wouldn't normally see on television for years to come, but ... it was still an OPTION, and if you couldn't afford it, you still had TV.
Times change, as we all know. And fewer and fewer OPTIONS are given to us, I believe that's called "free enterprise", ..wait.. then again...maybe it's the Robin Hood Effect in reverse... steal from the poor and give to the rich?! Ah, well.. either way, the poor get screwed again and again.
It isn't bad enough that the poor (I think that's considered earning under 18,000 a year now... or something like that) have to do without many things that others don't have to do without, and it isn't bad enough most suffer with a lot of depression.. then they take away something entertaining, something that might lift spirits, or let a person at least escape, for just a little while, away from the everyday horrors of surviving, but making it cost more then they could possibly afford. Ah well.. who cares?
So along comes Cable to the point that Antennas no longer work.. one cannot try to escape the everyday hardships by concentrating on something other than their miserable "just existing life"...
And now... along comes HD TV... slowly but surely making the TVs that aren't brand new and aren't more expensive creep out of existence...and of course... they will charge more.
Sometimes it's hard for me to remember when Radio and Television were free (for the price of purchasing said television or radio..), ah, yes.. paid radio has also begun.. and before long there will be no more free radio either.
Don't get me wrong.. I like much of the technology that has come along... and yes, I know there's always a price to pay. I guess what I don't understand is why it has to cost so much. Why do the inventors and others of this technology have to become billionaires "overnight"? Shouldn't things be made so that even the lowest paid individual can afford it too?
I can remember learning that most people.. in the darkest of times like during war or in the time of depression.. would try to find a way to go to a movie, to escape for just a while.. to help keep their own sanity. Television became the new "theater" and although many times it's also condemed as not being good for kids to watch so much television, it's also a savior of sorts to many... the forgotten many.. the ones that always get left behind, many.
Sometimes I wonder where it will all end.
..and sometimes I'm glad I won't be around to see it.
...and that's only one of many things I don't understand, and probably never will.

'Till next time....

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Book Meme

The BOOK Meme
Found this one over at Insanity Prevails the other day. I know it's been around for a while and decided to give it a go myself..
Hardback or trade paperback or mass market paperback?
If I can afford it.. Hardback is my first choice, followed by Trade Paperback and Paperback. I have to say all of them because not all books come out in Hardback or Trade Paperback, and I don't want to miss any good books!
Amazon or brick and mortar? (buying on line or in a store?)
Oh my.. that's a tuff one! Both! ..and here's why.. I spend less at Amazon, which is a good thing. I mean, I browse and shop and then delete lol.. so I save money... on the other hand, there are books I probably would have ignored had I not been able to pick it up and read the back cover and the inside flaps of the dustcover. I do tend to spend more then I can afford to once I get inside a bookstore! sigh.
Barnes & Noble or Borders?
Any book store will do, but I have to admit I like Barnes and Noble a lot!! (they also have a really good amount of "sale books"!! That can only help!
Bookmark or dogear?
Gosh, I honestly can't remember the last time I dogeared a page in a book! I know I've done it in the past but it's been many a year (eons) since then. Besides, I like using my Dr McCoy bookmarker! heh
Alphabetize by author or alphabetize by title or random?
I tend to keep my books together by author. But I don't alphabetize the order of the authors.
Keep, throw away, or sell?
I can't say I know anyone that has thrown away books! And it's DEFINATELY not me! It's rare I read a book and not like it. If that does happen I would give it away or sell it at a yard sale. But the books I like... goodness... many of those now have yellow pages and need to be replaced, but I love the original coverart so much that I keep refusing to buy new copies! (I don't know why they insist on changing the cover art on books!! grrrrrrrrrrrrr)
Keep dust jacket or toss it?
Ohhh, I keep the dustjackets!! Cover art tells you so much of what the book is about, and some of those artists are fantastic! I 've even bought books of just their art!
Read with dust jacket or remove it?
I definately remove the dustjacket until I am done reading the book. I hate to take a chance on tearing the cover.
Short story or novel?
Definately novels. I dislike getting into a story and getting to like a character and then having it abruptly end.
Collection (short stories by same author) or anthology (short stories by different authors)?
That would be a Collection I guess. I have favorite authors that I will read some of their short material, even though it frustrates me that its so short.
Harry Potter or Lemony Snicket?
Even though both of these are supposedly for "young adults" I think Lemony Snicket is for "very" young adults. I love the Harry Potter books.. as much as I am looking forward to book 7 that is due out this July, I'm really going to miss the characters.
Stop reading when tired or at chapter breaks?
Pretty much at chapter breaks. I don't like to push myself to read when I am tired because although I am reading it, I'm not always comprehending what I am reading when I get too tired.
"It was a dark and stormy night" or "Once upon a time"?
That's an easy one for me, "Once upon a time"! I don't mind watching a scarey movie but I've never been able to get into reading them.
Buy or Borrow?
I like to buy my books, because I know if I like them I will keep them forever and read them more then once. Rarely I will borrow a book, if I am really unsure of if I will like it or not... if I like it I go back and buy it .
New or used?
New is always the best, but I've purchased used books many times. Most are in really good condition anyway, so why not? Plus if it's at a yard sale or something I may pick up something I normally wouldn't buy at full price and give it a read to see if I like it.
Buying choice: book reviews, recommendation or browse?
I take all of the above into consideration.
Tidy ending or cliffhanger?
Oh boy.. well.. I don't mind a cliffhanger if it's in a series of books, and the next book is available! But.. DO NO LEAVE ME HANGING FOR 2 YEARS WAITING FOR THE NEXT BOOK! I would not be a happy camper!
Morning reading, afternoon reading or nighttime reading?
Any time I get the time... I can't be fussy! I generally get some night reading in and try like heck to get some daytime in too.
Stand alone or series?
Series! Oh yes! If I like the characters I don't ever want them to go away! I hate when a favorite author decides they are tired of what they have been writing and decide to go off into something else entirely.. *groan.
Favorite series?
Oh my.. I have many. The LOTR series, the Pern series, the Belgarath series, Dragonlance series, Thomas Covenant series, Harry Potter... and on and on lol.
Favorite book of which nobody else has heard?
Hmmm, now that's difficult, if a book is published it has to be known by many.. I mentioned a book a few posts down called Company of Heroes which is not a "best seller" that I enjoyed, and maybe an older book I have of Jane Wagner's she wrote for her life-mate, Lily Tomlin, which in turn was a one woman Broadway show, The Search For Signs of Intelligent Life In the Universe.
Favorite books read last year?
I don't know if it's a favorite but I enjoyed recently reading a trilogy by Margaret Weis The Mistress of Dragons.
Favorite books of all time?
Gimme a break! I've mentioned most of them in this Meme!!!
Having finished the book Meme I guess this is where I tell you that I also finished the Angela Lansbury Biography that I was reading. There were a few things about her in the book that I didn't know but nothing earth shattering, and I come away from it still admiring her very much.
And today I begin: Inkheart by Cornelia Funke.
The books, Inkheart and Inkspell, arrived in the mail on Saturday. Two things surprised me about them. The first was the size of the books. They are hard backs and measure 6 1/4 wide by 8 inches tall. Almost a square! Very odd holding the book... add to that it's over 500 pgs so it's thick.

The other thing I noticed, I really liked! I took the dustcover off, as I always do so that I won't tear or bend it, as I am reading, and the same picture is on the hard cover!! I haven't seen something like that i quite a while!!! It seems the publishers save money by only having the name and picture on the dustcover, so this is a small delight!
I know these books are for young adults so I am not expecting alot, but I do hope that they are enjoyable... I'll let you know when I reach the end of the first book.

Friday, February 09, 2007

Weekend Assignment #151

Weekend Assignment #151: from John Scalzi.....Is Valentine's Day a genuinely romantic day? Or just a big commercial money pit into which romantic people fall? Go on, share how you really feel about the day -- whether you enjoy it, or feel like it's forced on you by greeting card companies, or fall somewhere in between those two poles.
Valentine's Day has never been an exceptional holiday for me. But over the eons I have lived, it's obviously a special day to many who choose this day for their Wedding Day! If I had married on that day I'm sure I'd feel differently.
But alas, it has gotten probably more commercial then Christmas! It does give me the feeling of "forced" to get a card and some token of love..and as we all know.. that should not be how one feels, be it one day or for the rest of our lives.
Extra credit: Suggest a nice romantic movie. Sense and Sensibility
For a Romantic movie I am choosing one of my all time favorites, Sense and Sensibility.
It may not be for everyone, since it is a period piece, but each and every time I watch this movie it brings me to the welling of fluid in my eyes.

The movie is from a novel written by Jean Austin, and the screenplay by Emma Thompson herself.
It's filled with really good actors .. doing really good acting!
Emma as Elinor Dashwood
Kate Winslet as Marianne Dashwood
Hugh Grant as Edwrd
Alan Rickman as Colonel Brandon
and Greg Wise as Wiloghby
There's even a smaller part played by Hugh Laurie! What's not to like?.. nothing! It's a great and enjoyable movie. I strongly suggest you watch this movie and dare you to tell me it isn't romantic!

Thursday, February 08, 2007


Wednesday was a quiet day around the house, so I was able to finish the book Eldest.
I have to say that I think Paolini's writing improved somewhat in the second book. Although it may not be a great epic, I can say that I am looking forward to the third book to see how things come together and end.
I ordered two books from Another young adults yarn... Inkheart, and the second book Inkspell.

I became curious about them in searches I did on Amazon, and then when I found out that they were making a movie of Inkheart, I decided I would go ahead and read them.
Since I have to wait a week or so for them to arrive I grabbed a book I had, that had been set aside (not read even page one of it), Balancing Act by Martin Gottfried,and decided I would read it while waiting for the new books to arrive.
This is an authorized biography of Angela Lansbury, an actress I've enjoyed for many years.

Most all of the time when I read, it's Fantasy books, but tossed in here and there I read an occasional Biography. I've read a few about the "original astronauts", and I remember reading An Open Book (John Huston's Biography) and a really enjoyable (small) book called Company of Heroes by Harry Carey Jr. ( At one time I loaned the Company of Heroes to DeForest to read...who, when he returned my book, left a note inside of it saying that he remembered everything Harry Carey described about making westerns back when San Fernando Valley, was still really a Valley!) I read that back in 1994.

You are probably thinking.. wow how can she remember what year she read that book?? I cheated. heh.. it's a signed copy of the book and Harry Carey wrote the year he signed it lol... shhhhhhhhh, don't tell anyone!
I guess you can tell that other then the astronauts the books all tend to be of people in show business. By now I'm sure you've figured out my interests in the original astronauts, movies and books.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Quiz and Rant

There are just some quizzes worth taking, ya know?

Which Fantasy/SciFi Character Are You?
Leonard "Bones" McCoy

An intent healer with a strong temper, you are often the voice of compassion when it comes to the concerns of others.
I'm a doctor, not a bricklayer!
Bones is a character in the Star Trek universe. His crew biography can be read at STARTREK.COM.

... The funny thing is: I couldn't have rigged this even if I had tried! It doesn't really describe me... but it did make me smile!
With that out of the way... I want to know how to go through a winter WITHOUT static electricity!
Living with my brothers 9 cats a day cannot go by that one of them rubs up against me or jumps up to be pet and WHAMMO I get shocked! Grrrrrrrrrr, I can't begin to express how much I hate static electricity!
This year New Jersey is going through the strangest winter I can remember ..and I'm plenty old enough to remember a LOT of winters! Here we are in February and we've had nothing but "dustings of snow". Now that's incredible! (I woke to yet another "dusting" this morning)
'Though we are going through a really cold time (wind chills have been below zero) the humidity levels are also low. ZAP! (dang cat!)
Hmmm, I just remembered something... when i lived in California .. one winter I walked across my carpeted living area to my computer, put my hand on the mouse and Zzzzit, a spark flew! Static electricity blew out my mouse!!!
Am I the only one that static electricity seems to bother??? *sigh*

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Smeagol and Andy Serkis

I realize, that as of late, I seem to be either talking about books and movies or telling DeForest Kelley stories. Well... what can I say? There's not much else in my life besides that and/ or pity parties ... so I shoot for things I'm interested in or things that make me happy for my posts. Today, it will be books and movies.
As you may know I am going to a LOTR convention in Burbank CA in March.
One of the guests at the show is Andy Serkis.. he played Gollum in LOTR, both in voice and "actions".

When I checked on him in I found something interesting. He's filming a new movie called Inkheart. Some of you who read fantasy might recognize the name of a book by Cornelia Funke.
It just made me realize (again) how everyone jumps on the bandwagon of someone else's success. In this case a combination of Lord of the Rings and Harry Potter. Though a bit more Harry Potter since that is a "young adult" book. All are Fantasy and all are more then one book in length.
The first indication was how quickly they made the movie Eragon. That book didn't even come close to the popularity of Harry Potter before they sprang on it and made it into a movie.
And now another book (Inkheart) that's about to wind up a trilogy, and before they are all out... it will be another movie. I'm glad for Andy, but wonder about the choices make by the studios. I am assuming they choose first by popularity and then the story itself.
In this case, though I haven't read the book, what I have read on it makes it sound a bit like Neverending Story. Where a child is pulled into a story book, though not in the same way as Neverending Story. I just know with each and every write up I have found on the book, that is what pops first into my mind.
I do hope for Andy's sake that it turns out well.
(did anyone see him in Peter Jackson's King Kong?.. heh.. poor guy .. he got ate by a giant leech. *at least I think that's what it was!)
I'm still torn, not knowing if I should get Inkheart and it's following book or not. The write ups tend to sound like it's for YOUNG readers, even younger then "young adults" and after my rounds here with Eragon and now Eldest, I don't know if I want to jump right into another young persons book or not.
I have to put Paolini's books somewhere mid-stream. I am enjoying them to a degree. I haven't set it down and said "forget this!" but, neither am I constantly anxious to read the next chapter, which is how I judge a really good read. (when I don't want to put it down... or can't wait to get back to it)
So... I ask if anyone has read Inkheart and Inkspell by C.Funke? If so, would you recommend it??
And... do you think the making of such Fantasy movies is just because they finally have the technology for them? Or do you think they are finally realizing that Fantasy is as much wanted as Sci Fi??
One thing I hope they realize... that they need someone like Peter Jackson and his love of the story to make a movie something really special.
'till next time...
p.s. Thinking on my last comment: for his first ever fantasy, I think that Ron Howard did quite well with the movie Willow.

Saturday, February 03, 2007

Books and Characters..

I am about 1/3 of the way through the book I am reading of Eldest. The second book of a trilogy that began with Eragon.

I've been trying to find the words about the writing of this book, and find I have a really hard time explaining it. It is very precise. It is written so that young people would have no trouble reading it... but.. every so often a word will appear that breaks the flow of the reading. The word is a correct word but is one that you don't expect from a 15/16 home schooled kid to be using.

It's not that I don't think he knows the word he used.. but because he uses them so infrequently, it disrupts the reading. You find yourself wondering how or why he used the word.

There are writers that I do not read because they use so many of these types of words (beyond my knowledge) that I can't understand half of what they are writing. Those authors seem more interested in showing of their vast knowledge of the English language then they are about telling a story.

In the case of Eragon and Eldest, I find myself wondering why he would toss in these occasional words that will make a young person stop and figure out what it means before they can continue.

Beyond this, I find the story he is telling is not bad at all. And I am not surprised it has become popular among the young adults reading them.

I don't know which way he will go as he grows with his writing. Will he keep his stories simple or will his writing change so much that the young adults will have a hard time reading his future material? I guess the time will come when we find out.

I am reading these books because I really couldn't find something else that interested me, and none of my favorite authors has come out with anything new. But I am looking forward to this coming year when, as we know, the new Harry Potter book will be release in July. Also the second installment to a trilogy by Margaret Weis will be released the same month, Dragons of the Highlord Skies. Then in October of this year the second installment of Stephen Donaldson's trilogy will show up in bookstores, Fatal Revenant.

So, at least I can look forward to those!

I don't mind reading books for young adults as long as it's not "all" kids in the books. Harry Potter is a good example, having other characters that I really like, as Rubeus Hagrid, Albus Dumbledore, Professor Severus Snape, and Professor Minerva McGonagall.

Aren't they great names?!!! And all of them easily pronounced! I have to admit, there have been many books that I wind up using phonetics to try to pronounce some of the names... but, truthfully, that doesn't really matter. Eventually you come upon a pronunciation the lets your read without pausing to pronounce it.

I think that part of what makes me like a character might start with their name. Take the Lord of the Rings.. Bilbo Baggins, Frodo Baggins, Sam Gamgee....and Gandalf they Grey. What better name for an elf then Legolas Greenleaf?

So many names that I can never forget!! And the ones I continue to remember?... are the ones I can pronounce!

Saltheart Foamfollower... how's that for a name?!! He's a giant that lives by the sea in the Thomas Covenant books. I couldn't shake that name from my head if i tried!

I once wrote two posts, some time ago, about character names and how I came up with ones I used here and here. So now I'm wondering, if you write at all, how do you come up with the names that you use???

'Till next time...