I was on a business trip/quasi-vacation last week, which explains the lack of posts. Sorry about that. With NaNoWriMo starting Saturday, a couple of things could happen. I’ll either be posting more since blogging is at least a semi-productive form of procrastination. Or I’ll be posting less because I’m shooting for 75,000 words this year and will be bleeding from my fingertips due to my output. Anyway, back to business for now.
This Week’s Top 10
- High School Musical 3 ($42 million)
- Saw V ($30.5 million)
- Max Payne ($7.6 million)
- Beverly Hills Chihuahua ($6.9 million)
- Pride and Glory ($6.3 million)
- The Secret Life of Bees ($5.9 million)
- W. ($5.3 million)
- Eagle Eye ($5.1 million)
- Body of Lies ($4.1 million)
- Quarantine ($2.6 million)
What I Watched
- The Duchess (4 stars): I’d expected this movie to be a bit drab, to be honest, but I was very pleasantly surprised. Period pieces are a guilty pleasure of mine, so I would have enjoyed it anyway, but it moved along quite nicely. Keira Knightley lives up to the hype and gives her best performance to date.
- High School Musical 3 (3½ stars): I dragged my sisters to the midnight showing, which is really rather embarrassing considering I’m 25 and they’re 19 and 17 respectively. Once we survived the hormone-drenched mob getting into the theatre, I had a really fun time. The story’s cheesy and predictable and admittedly a rehash of the same themes from the first two outings, but the music is solid and the choreography is wonderful.
- Sunset Boulevard (4 stars): See full review here.
- Starter for Ten (3 stars): Starring James McAvoy, this is a British romantic comedy/dramedy set in 1985 (and released in 2006). It’s not spectacular, but it has some fun moments. If you’re a fan of the genre or James McAvoy, it’s worth adding to your Netflix queue.
- Lost in Translation (3½ stars): See full review here.
What I Read
I finished Neil Gaiman’s Smoke and Mirrors while at the airport before the first flight of my trip. Luckily, it was good enough that I didn’t mind having to lug an extra book with me through four flights, a trek on foot through Nashville, a one-way Greyhound bus ride (which inspired a bit of short “fiction”), and an odyssey through the monstrosity that is the Gaylord Opryland hotel. It’s the first collection of short stories I remember reading, and it’s a good way to get into the genre for anyone looking to do so.
I also devoured Neil Gaiman’s newest novel, The Graveyard Book. It was tense and delightful and touching, and it made me cry, which is a fairly rare occurrence for a book. I don’t imagine it’ll be too long before someone snatches up the film rights for this one.
I picked up a new book, Eat, Pray, Love, before starting the flights home. I’d been wanting to read this one for a while, and it showed, as I worked through the first 150 pages the first night (which is extremely rare for me). Hoping to finish that before the end of the week.
What I’m Writing
I’m working feverishly to finish MUTE before the end of the week for a couple of reasons. Firstly, there’s a contest I’m planning to enter, and the deadline is in mid-November, but I have to ship a hard copy overseas. Secondly, Saturday is, of course, Nov. 1, which means I’ll be starting my NaNoWriMo novel as soon as the clock strikes midnight.
I’ve been looking forward to starting this novel for what seems like months, which is always a dangerous feeling for NaNo, which has a tendency to produce feelings of despair and self-loathing in even the most steel-hearted writers. Luckily, I’ll have thousands of other WriMos with whom to wallow.
I’ve also been writing a bit of short fiction here and there, most of which I’ve posted on this blog. I spent most of one of the conference days working on a short story that’s a long way from being complete, but I might find a few spare moments to work through it even in the midst of the avalanche of words I’ll be writing in November. The genre kind of fascinates me at the moment, so hopefully I’ll be able to keep churning these little story flashes out on a regular basis.
Sorry for the lengthy post. Guess that’s what happens when I’m away for two weeks.