Friday, February 14, 2014

Funny Friday Photos and More Writing/Acting Connections

That's right! It's the weekend (extra-long for some of us) and we're smiling!

If you're here solely for Funny Friday Photos, feel free to scroll on down. Otherwise, I'm going to talk a little about an interesting interview with Ralph Fiennes I read this week at, and was again surprised by the similarities between writing and acting.

As I've mentioned before, I've been struggling with my first draft, finding myself plagued with all kinds of doubts about not just my abilities as a writer, but also about where to take the story. Here's a quote from the article, that seemed to speak almost directly to me.

"You’ve done the homework, you’ve learned the lines, at that point you just sort of let it out.  No amount of preparation, research, no amount of that—and even Stanislavski talked about it, he said, 'At the moment of inspiration you have to do all the work but then there’s a point where you just have to be ready and be open.'  You can make that happen but it’s sort of to do with letting the anxiety of an actor which is, “Will I get it right?  Will it be good?”  Letting that go of it and just being very present."

I've plotted, I've researched, I've done character studies. I'm to the point to where I need to just "be ready and be open." And it's SCARY!! I am definitely thinking "Will I get it right? Will it be good?" And the advice? Let all of that go and be present to inspiration. Let the muse take you. Darn it! Lose a little control! Something I struggle with in general - so no wonder it's hard for me to let go while writing.

And then there is this quote (which actually comes before the one above.)

"You do, to a large extent, construct performance. It’s a cliche, performance is made in the editing room, and I’ve come to see the truth in that—the idea that they say performances are usually made in the editing room because what you film is the raw material. I think just going through the process of saying, “Which take do we use? Why is that the take we want? I want that take can you edit again, I’m not sure that’s the one, I think it’s this one.” And just because you go through that process, I think somehow it’s made me, and I can’t really articulate it very well but, I think it’s made me sort of more open about the possibilities." 

Editing, editing, editing. If the first take (draft) isn't quite right, you do another take (draft.) Nothing is set in stone and through editing we can construct books like actors construct performances. And because writing is a process, not an event, we can all be more open about the possibilities, too. That actually is comforting to me. While I've heard writers say similar things about editing, for some reason the way Mr. Fiennes said it really resonated.

The entire article was interesting and if you want, you can read more here.

So, I'm done! Here's last week's funniest photo:

And now for this week's photos!

I'm on a Finding Nemo roll. Last week it was the shark - this week it's Squirt and Crush.

I really hope they threw it back. The picture evidence of why I don't fish.

Why does that spider have wings? Nightmares will now occur.

Anyone else remember those commercials in the 80's?

These next two are the most adorable pictures I've seen in a while.

Look at that little face! How can you not smile?!

Our pun of the week:

It's a Seuss Knife!

And then, I didn't forget what today was. I made a Valentine for you!

The carrots in the picture came from my garden this summer. I think of them as the "love carrots." Yes, I am that much of a goofball.

And you can see why I hired a cover designer for Finding Meara. My intentions were honorable, though. Can I invoke the whole "it's the thought that counts" bit?

My favorite photo this week is either of the two beaver pictures. Their respective little faces just make me smile.

Which is your favorite photo?
If you're a writer (or an actor, I suppose) what do you think of the Ralph Fiennes interview?

All photos are from or my own.


  1. Is it bad the kitty and the catnip one made me laugh? Spider one too. But those beavers were too.

    We also have a long weekend. And tonight will be spent at our son's hockey game and maybe pizza out w/the team. Very romantic!

    Happy Eat-too-much Candy Day. :)

    1. I hope your son won his game! Valentines was not terribly romantic in our corner of the world, either. Ah well. :)

  2. I like the turtle slide. :)

    The interview is really interesting and the parallels with the acting and writing process are surprisingly similar, at least as described here. I definitely run into the doubts, fortunately (maybe) my questions usually come once the story is done. When I think of one of my stories on a shelf with some of my favorite books it's exciting, and also terrifying. How could something that I write ever measure up to my favorite novels? I keep trying to remind myself that they don't have to, they're my stories and some people will love them and some people with hate them no matter how popular, or not, they are. Best of luck with writing and I hope you had a lovely Valentine's Day!

    1. I'm glad you enjoyed the interview. I'm finding parallels with creativity type pursuits kind of inspiring. I hate the doubts, but it does seem that (like David says below) we have to learn that it's just part of the process, too. Hmm, just thinking about it as I write this comment, I believe mindfulness has a place for dealing with the doubts. We recognize and name it ("That is a doubt.") and then take a deep breath and get back to writing, letting it pass through our minds without holding onto it. I'll have to give that a try. I hope you had a nice Valentine's too!

  3. A month ago, I was in the same spot, Lara. After months of figuring out my new WIP in my head, I wanted to start writing, but I felt the urge to "be smart" and "write efficiently" -- meaning to avoid every technical pitfall, every possible POV or pacing error and prose mistakes while presenting perfect, deep, fully-formed characters, etc. Needless to say no writing was getting done. Then I finally said the heck with it. I'll just get the plot and the action down, and everything else will have to come in successive revisions. I didn't even let myself look at the thesaurus. Now I'm about 20k in. OK, it's hardly a gem. Moe like a rock. A dirty, lopsided rock. But all the polishing will come later. You can do it too. Just get it down in stages. Good luck!!

    I love the pics this week! I love your carrots and the kitties, and that spider is FREAKY!!! The army knife confused me until I got to the caption. BRILLIANT! I'm voting for the baby turtle though. He's just too cute not to vote for. <3

    1. Thanks, Lexa! Want to be first draft buddies? I'll be trying to shovel sand as fast as I can so I can get to the sand castle part. :D It's nice to hear I have company. :) What you said about writing efficiently really resonated. When I wrote Finding Meara I really spent a lot of time on it, and would revise as I go, had a really good outline, etc... This time around I'm not as structured and so I always feel like I'm not writing efficiently. It's a new type of process, but I really want to have some faith in myself and my muse and just give it a try, not worrying about being smart or avoiding technical pitfalls, but being more spontaneous. It's nice to have you around to let me know that I'm not the only one who will be making a lumpy rock of a first draft. :)

  4. Sorry about the animal pics, but it was the Seuss knife that cracked me up.

    As for the writing, we all have doubts and will never get to the point where we don't. I've done a lot of singing and public speaking, and I never approach a microphone without at least a little flutter in my stomach. I understand the best professional golfers in the world are nervous when they stand over an important putt. Recognize your doubts as a normal part of the process and just go on. I'd never have read Finding Meara if you hadn't gone ahead and published it.

    1. I'm glad you're around to give me pep-talks! You're right - doubts are always present. We just have to move through them and finish. I'll get there (to the end, I mean.) I'm just going a little slowly...

  5. Lara, I just nominated you for the Shauny Award for Blogging Excellence. Go to Friday or later to see what it's about.


I'd love to hear your thoughts! Please leave your comments below.


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