Archive for March, 2013
I’ve mentioned before that I have a couple of Cake songs that always tend to find their way onto a driving playlist rotation (if I’m just doing random tracks). Last time, it was “The Distance.” This time, “I Will Survive.”
One of the things I appreciate in my music is wordplay. If that wordplay has signs of intelligence behind it, even better. Which is a true story about this week’s selection from The Police. The song itself is all sorts of great listening but there’s one line in there that, with a little bit of outside knowledge, makes the song that much more intelectually punchy. The line references “… that book by Nabakov,” and “that book” is Lolita (later filmed by one Stanley Kubrick).
I was in a film class when I started taking classes for my MA – controversial books/movies – and Lolita was one of the movies that we watched for the class. Knowing the story arc from that context alone gives the song that much more of a creepy element (much like one of their other chart topping singles, which may be featured in a later installment).
And, if you don’t get it, have a slice of one anyway.
There was a discussion some months back – as Skyfall was coming out – about ranking the sustainability of the various James Bond movies and their theme songs. Personally, I’m a Bond… enthusiast. While I’m not devout enough to enter any arguments over merits of one movie/performance over another, I’m not above leaving any of them playing should I come across one while flipping channels.
My personal preferences, though, tend towards some of the newer, more rock-and-roll flavored songs. Even poppier songs, like this contribution to the canon from Duran Duran. As hokey as elements of the video are (and were in it’s day – the flying video camera? Really? WTF is up with that?), the song itself still holds up fairly well.
One year ago, this morning, several weeks ahead of schedule, we went from a couple to a family, when our son was born. It’s been a wild and crazy year, from awkward nights and sporadic sleeping schedules to seeing him grow, get teeth, develop mobility, and just seeing some of his personality starting to emerge.
We still catch ourselves watching him and thinking, “Wow… we made that.” And that thought brings a smile to our faces. Just like he does.
Much of my early musical exposure – outside of long trips to visit the grandparents – came from my sister [older by 7 years]. As such, a lot of those influences were as eclectic as the variety of one-hit-wonders that were released in the 80’s.
One of the bands that she had in rotation was Glass Tiger – mostly their Thin Red Line album which featured two singles that got a lot of airplay (here in the states, anyway, if I am remembering right), and at least a couple more that could have gotten airplay (and may have, in their native Canada).
Anyway, my sister’s musical tastes influenced (scarred?) me enough that years later I tried finding said album, and had to settle for just a Greatest Hits collection. This weeks selection is one of those tracks that did well in the US.
I’m sharing this, as much for myself to come back to later, as for any of my SHU or VP followers (among other writerly-bent readers) that may not regularly visit Mary’s blog. (She’s awesome, you should, just saying.)
Most of my class at SHU are drawing close to or passing the half-way point of our thesis novels. Several of the VP 16 contingient, likewise, (I feel confident enough to say) are in various stages of seeking publication. Many of us, to some extent, see ourselves as writers, as professionals, with plans to continue to tell (and sell) stories.
With that in mind, her post yesterday was another timely reminder that coincides with many of my other thoughts on writing lately.
She offers some coping strategies that are worth looking at (especially for anyone in any form of serious committed relationship), but the core of the message is this:
You are writers. If you want a career in this, then all of the advice in the world can boil down to “don’t treat writing like a hobby.”
If you have a full time job, in addition to being a writer, then you have to deal with balancing things in the same way that anyone else who works two jobs does. If you feel like you are still in the learning phase of your career, then it’s no different from someone who is going to school part time and working a full-time job. Either way, writing is not a hobby.
The path you will follow will vary based on the pieces of your life, but the place you should start from is that writing is your job.