Tag Archives: arts

Mrs Palfrey at the Claremont

Writers love to read; I think there’s also a bit of a movie buff in each one of us!  I like to watch films for the entertainment, but also for the analytical aspects; to see how the plot is built, how characters are developed, how scenes unfold, and which camera angles work best in a particular moment (that translates in writing to the point of view in a given context).

Mrs Palfrey at the Claremont“Mrs Palfrey at the Claremont” (2005) is a beautiful piece of cinematic craft in which characters are explored with a great deal of tenderness, wit and insight.  The film is based on the eponymous book by the English writer Elizabeth Taylor (1912-1975), considered one of the greatest British authors of the twentieth century.  There are a wide range of characters, from the calm and insightful Mrs Palfrey or the spontaneous and warm-hearted honorary grandson, to a collection of oddball characters all staying together in the same London hotel for better or worse, and the great minor characters such as the “bellboy”, the waitress, the ex-girlfriend or the real grandson.

It’s a gem of a film; if you haven’t seen it, consider getting your hands on it to watch!  It’s one to enjoy, and then re-watch and take notes on how it unfolds.  Be inspired, and keep writing!


Filed under Articles, Plot Thots & Profiles

What a Pink Tutu Can Do

What on the surface just looks like a man going through mid-life crisis in a pink tutu turns out to be a heart-warming and inspirational story that will make you smile every time you see a pink tutu from now on.  Just click on the photo below to hear the story of a man’s love for his wife and the lengths he’s gone to, to bring a smile to her face in the midst of the trials of cancer, and where it’s gone from that simple desire.



Filed under Articles

What We Eat

Photographer Peter Menzel has gathered an amazing visual documentation on eating habits around the world; each photo represents the food eaten in a week by the people in the photo (which implies that it is the number of people who live in the same household, even it that “house” is a cardboard box or a tin shack…).  It’s eye-opening in many ways:  The amount of junk food in any one of the American households outweighs nearly the entire weekly diet of a family in Chad; some cultures are starch-oriented (pastas, breads, potatoes), and others are meat-oriented.  Click on the photo below to see a video compilation, with the countries labeled, of who eats what.

What do you eat in a week?  How much is natural, how much is man-made?  How much water and natural drinks (teas, fruit juices) vs. artificial drinks (sodas, syrups) do you drink in a week?  Just curious…!

A Week of Food - Ecuador


Filed under Articles, History

Families of Complete Strangers

Photographer Richard Renaldi has a unique way of posing humanity, and something unique happens along the way:  Complete strangers discover that feeling of family, even if only for a moment.  They’ll never look at strangers the same way again.  Click on the image below to see for yourself.

Complete Strangers - Richard Renaldi


Filed under Articles, History

Changing the world into words

World into Words


June 13, 2013 · 4:47 PM

Cover Art, Cover Art, Where Art Thou

For those of us who are writers, you know what I mean when I say that we’d MUCH rather spend our time writing, creating, moulding, researching characters and plots, and basically ANYTHING else than the dusty technical nuts & bolts of publication.  With the hurdles one has to leap in the publishing world, it’s no wonder that e-books are becoming THE path of choice.  I spent those required months writing cover letters, creating packages to agents, etc. only to get those letters back that said, “Great ideas!  We loved it!  But…” when they already have clients in that genre, they’re not about to take on competition for them…  So like many others, I’ve chosen the route of Kindle.  I’ve got one book ready to go, and another first draft just completed, as well as no less than 5 other projects at various stages of completion.  A meeting with an artist proved fruitless to my purpose; he knows art, but not all the aspects of doing cover art.  I’ve worked with graphic artists for album covers and artwork, but I’m not prepared to invest several thousand at a time when I’ve got dozens in my future… so…

That’s where www.Fiverr.com comes in!  For a fiver, you can find just about any service you can think of, from fake testimonials, to placebo-effect health talks, to business advertising on the back of a Harley, to language lessons over Skype,  to cover art for e-books.  If you find yourself swimming in the Maelstrom of publishing, check it out.

But a word to the wise:  You get what you pay for.  Take it as a springboard, an idea; but take it and own it yourself.  Take the time to invest your energy in learning all you can about each step of the publishing, editing, and artistic processes.  Also, such offers only cover e-book cover art; they are lower in pixel than will be required for a paperback cover, so it’s worth looking into a solution that covers both formats.

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Filed under Nuts & Bolts, Research