Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Ahem (An apology)

Ahem. The Lady would like to cordially apologize for a grievous error and mistake. Her third post, titled 'Movie Review: The Secret of Moonacre' is separated into several sections, such as "Positive Elements' and 'Conclusion.' There was one section, titled 'Violence.' The Lady wrote all the sections, then went back and filled them in. She regrets to inform her readers, some of which may have been astute enough to notice this terrible oversight, that she left the section titled 'Violence' unwritten. It was an unknowing mistake and the Lady would like to request that her understanding and merciful readers would forgive her this egregious blunder. She thanks you.
And yes, the Lady likes to write in third person.

Monday, May 28, 2012

Character Letter

 My friend, The Mad Elvish Poet, writes character letters for various characters in her stories.  The following questions are taken from her blog.
I am writing a Greek Tragedy about the mysterious disappearance of the Minoan civilization. I have read several books on the subject. Some authors pretend to know all about what happened and others are frank, but, the truth is, they don't really know much about the Minoans. Which is perfect! Plenty of room for me to fill in the gaps and invent crazy ideas about their disappearance. They probably found a door to Narnia.
Anyway, I am filling out some questions about my heroine, Aethra. If you know the story of the minotaur (if you don't know it, get some books from your library on the subject), know this: Two years ago, her brother was eaten by the minotaur. This year, she has been called to be one of the fourteen tributary victims. I will probably post a scene or two later.
Here are her questions.

 Name: Aethra (ay-EE-thruh [I think])
Age: 14 through most of the book
Hair Color: Dark (I'm really not so sure about this. I thought Greeks had fair hair, but after watching My Big Fat Greek Wedding last night, I'm guessing Greeks are dark haired)
Eye Color: Dark (see above)
Build: Petite; very short and skinny
Lives In: In Carolos, Mycenae. I named it Carolos because I find it ironic that Carolos is a variation of Carl, which means "free man." At this point in their... well, I can't say "history" because I wrote it... At this point in their rewritten history, they are anything but free since they have to send tribute to the Minoans.
Race: Mycenaean, Human
Favorite Color: White or light blue.
Favorite Things To Do: In Athens (and Carolos is like Athens in this respect), women basically sit in their rooms and weave all day, gossiping with friends who come to visit them. So, Aethra hasn't had much exposure to hobbies. She liked talking to her brother, she likes weaving, and she likes to paint (her brother used to sneak paints and brushes to her).

Q/A
Does he/she have a best friend?
 Her brother, before he died. After that she would say Natasa, her sister in law. When she is in the cell at Knossos, her best friend is Ilysiad (ih-LEE-see-add).
Can he/she cook?
OF COURSE.

What is his/her general reaction to crisis?
Wait until someone else addresses the situation. Usually, there is someone who can address it. If not, she raises her chin, steps boldly forward, and does whatever needs to be done.

Does he/she have stage fright?
As every respectable person knows, only men act. Women aren't supposed to do things like that.

How would you describe his/her disposition?
She is easily influenced by someone she trusts; she is quick to make friends, to apologize, and to trust someone. She can be bold and quite brave when needs to be, often wiser than her years; she remains strong when others flee, fail, or quake in fear, but when she is betrayed she falls to pieces. This is her biggest weakness.

What is his/her favorite thing to say?
She often uses a phrase that her brother, Ikylthros, used to say. In place of saying "darn" or "sheesh," or some other modern phrase, she says "cat tails." As in the tails of cats, not as in the plant.

Does he/she enjoy reading?
She can't.

What type of clothes does he/she like to wear?
She doesn't really have a favorite outfit because she hasn't had much experience with different types of clothes. Her typical outfit is a white chiton, perhaps with a pale blue shawl or cape.

Does he/she ever do self-reflective things, like journaling or praying?
Well, she can't write so she doesn't journal. She does pray to the gods, but her praying isn't pouring out her heart to Athene or whoever, it's more of reciting a poem because it's tradition.

Does he/she know God?
Not at the beginning of the story, but she is very doubtful about "the gods" because her father is an idol maker. I hope (but, as any writer knows, characters can be quite stubborn) that by the end she will be a believer. Jesus hadn't been on Earth in her time yet, but she can still be a Jewess if not a Christian.

What chores does he/she do?
Cooking, washing clothes/dishes, and cleaning house, but mostly weaving.
What's their favorite animal?
NOT a bull...

What does their average day look like?
Before Ikylthros went, she would spend the day in the women's quarters, weaving and listening to the older women gossip. A few times a week, Ikylthros would sneak some paint in. But she hasn't painted for two years. Before she was taken away, her day would be pretty much the same. Now, her average day has been sitting in a cell, eating once in the middle of the day and having depressing conversations in between. Every other day a girl is dragged away.

Night owl, or morning person? (Optional: What time do they normally wake up, and go to bed?)
Morning person, though this is more of a habit than a disposition.

Do they have a sweet tooth?
She likes grapes and figs a lot, but I wouldn't exactly call this a sweet tooth because fruit was one of the main components of the Greek diet, whether she likes it or not.

What colors are their bedroom?
White washed walls.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

A few of my favorite smoothies

I love smoothies! Who doesn't? Here are two of my favorite recipes which I have come up with:
           Note: All measurements are approximate and can be adjusted to taste. All ingredients can be substituted or subtracted, though the results will be slightly different.

Smoothie #1:
Ingredients:
1/4 c yogurt
1/4 c frozen blueberries, cooked according to directions on the package
1/2 frozen banana
1 T vanilla
2 cans (6 oz [?]) of pineapple juice
4 ice cubes
Frozen (not cooked) mixed berries to taste

Directions:
Blend until well combined and smooth.

Smoothie #2:
Ingredients:
Pear juice
Pomegranate juice
Frozen peaches
Frozen strawberries
frozen blueberries
Yogurt
Mixed frozen berries, cooked according to directions on the package
Pumpkin pie spice

Directions:
Add ingredients to taste. Blend until well combined and smooth.

Enjoy!

Movie Review: The Secret of Moonacre

Let it be known: I watched the The Secret of Moonacre. This is the movie of The Little White Horse. When I saw this movie, I was very excited. While reading the book, I commented several times to one of my sisters and my mother, "This would make a good movie."
Was I disappointed? Well, yes and no.
Yes: To watch this movie and enjoy it, everyone who is a fan of the book (all two of you) must NOT watch it thinking, "I am watching the movie of The Little White Horse." You must watch it thinking, "I am watching The Secret of Moonacre." If you do this, you will enjoy it.
I started watching the movie with Mindset #1. I was thinking how different and weird it was. About 5-10 minutes into the movie, I switched to Mindset #2. I enjoyed it.
No: As for its quality as a movie, it was fairly good. It came out in 2008, but must have been a small production because I was unable to find a review for it on my favorite movie review site, pluggedin.com, or hollywoodjesus.com. So, I, myself, shall write a review.

MOVIE REVIEW: THE SECRET OF MOONACRE 

NOTE: The following review may contain spoilers. If a major spoiler is given, this symbol shall be put at the beginning of the section: *S*
NOTE #2: This is the first review I've ever written, so forgive me for any oversights.

When 13 year old Maria Merryweather's father dies, leaving her orphaned and homeless, she is forced to leave her luxurious London life to go and live with Sir Benjamin, an eccentric uncle she didn't know she had, at the mysterious Moonacre Manor. Soon Maria finds herself in a crumbling moonlit world torn apart by the hatred of an ancient feud with the dark and sinister De Noir family. Maria discovers that she is the last Moon Princess and, guided by an unlikely mix of allies, she must overcome her family's pride in order to unearth the secrets of the past before the 5000th moon rises and Moonacre disappears into the sea forever.





Positive Elements: They really emphasize how destructive pride is. Pride has torn apart the whole area of Moonacre, separating families that were once close as peas in a pod. Maria, by contrast to the others, tries to be humble and tries to get the families to reconcile. At first, she just wants to run away from the weird, magical, strange world of Moonacre. But after talking to Loveday, she steps up to plate and does her part in healing the broken ties of the Merryweathers and the De Noirs.

Spiritual Content: God is mentioned and prayed to in the book. In the movie (naturally), He is not referred to once. They DO mention "giving the pearls back to nature" and how "nature gave the first Moon Princess the pearls". A little weird, don't you think?

Sexual Content:
*S*
  Some of the ladies' costumes are a bit low cut. (SPOILER HERE) Once, when escaping from the castle of the De Noirs', Maria takes off her dress. Because this is in 1842, she has 300 layers of undergarments, so the clothes she is left wearing are not any less modest than the clothes I wear on a regular basis. Her governess is, of course, horrified.

Violent Content:

Crude or Profane Language: D--n is said twice. D--ned is said once, too, though this time it is in context and is not used as a swear word.

Drug and Alcohol Content: We see Sir Benjamin, the De Noirs, and Miss Heliotrope drinking a reddish liquid which might be wine, but that's the only thing that even touches the borderline.

Other Negative Elelments: Miss Heliotrope has indigestion, and burps several times (loudly). I think this was unnecessary.

Book likeness:
               Costumes: The costumes were not what I pictured from the description in the book; however, they were probably more true to the period and they fit the movie well.

               Set: Perfect. Perfect for both movie and book.

               Actors: They portrayed the characters that were written for them well, though some did not portray the book-version well. For example: Robin did a good job at his part in the movie, but he would not have done a good job if the movie Robin had been like the book Robin.

               Script: Here is where they messed up. It was a good script. It was interesting. The set, costumes, and actors were all splendid. But the script was not a whit like the book.

Conclusion:
I think this movie is worth seeing for about 10 and up. If you were expecting a copy of the book, you'll have to make you own. But standing on its own two feet and not leaning on the book, the movie is surprisingly sturdy.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Test

Hello!  This is my first blog post; a test to see how it works. Please excuse me if things don't work the way they're supposed to- I'm still figuring all this out!