I wrote a song? Maybe…

Hello My Imaginary Friends,

No, don’t worry, it’s not Guitar Lesson Tuesday, it’s Friday.

In our current work in progress, we needed the villain to get upset and reveal themselves. I decided, foolishly, that the best way to do that was a song of hope. I figured the character would have learned a Cataclysm Day song that would work. Cataclysm Day is the midwinter festival of Everdome, a cross between Yule and Remembrance Day.

So of course, I decided to try writing a song.

I sat down to write it and froze. I did write a bunch of lines, counting the syllables and everything. The whole process gave me flashbacks to trying to write poetry in high school and university. I wrote a sonnet for high school French from the point of view of a stapler that ran out of staples. Yeah, I was always this weird.

Anyway, I got inspiration songs and chose chords and everything, but once I sat down, nothing really worked. I procrastinated, avoided, and stressed. I had hoped the song would be ready when I got to that part of the story. It wasn’t.

Last night, I got to the part in the book that needed the song and said fuck it. I just wrote it out, not caring about syllables, rhythm, or musicality. I just needed words and rhymes.

It turned out pretty good. It’ll need to be checked for line length and put to music, but I think I can handle that. I honestly have no idea what I’m doing, and in the future I think I’ll leave the songwriting to Jen.

Happy Friday.

Stay safe and be kind,

Éric

Semi-Coherent Ramblings

Hello My Imaginary Friends,

Last night, between Pegasus waking up several times (it’s been a while since he’s done that), insomnia, stress dream, and a couple of days of really bad allergies; I didn’t sleep well.

I’m a little grumpy today. Mumble mumble mumble. So I apologize for today’s disjointed post and possible incoherence.

Jen and I’s newest work in progess is going well. I love being able to plan and geek out about stuff with her as we write. Even if it means we don’t get to bed at anything related to a reasonable hour. I’m planning on writing a song for it and I’m terrified I’ll screw it up.

I read up on the plot, deaths, and story of the new Doctor Strange movie and I have to say it sounds pretty tedious. I loved WandaVision and from what I’ve read, it undoes a lot of the character progression of Wanda and falls into the “hysterical woman” trope that Marvel comics love so much. It’s a good thing Marvel releases so many movies because there are more and more of them that I don’t like.

I’m just waiting for a large bag of dirt that comes in on Friday and I’ll be able to plant my garden. Every year I say I won’t garden, and every year I do. I love the idea of growing my own food. Unfortunately, I only have a green thumb with the help of a marker.

Shamelessly cute photo of the kids.

Jen and I are prepping two manuscripts for submission and it’s a little stressful, but fun. Both are related to Assassins! Accidental Matchmakers (Pre-orders now open at your local bookstores for September 15th) and that makes it awkward for our publisher. They have to judge the quality, but also have to decide if it’s financially worth publishing a sequel and story collection without having any sales data. You could make their decision easier by pre-ordering it. 🙂

I’m not good at this whole publicity thing. I need to improve my ability to get people interested about my books. They are awesome, but if you don’t read them, how do you know you want to read them? Jen has all sorts of exciting ideas that are great.

I think I’ve rambled enough for today.

Stay safe and be kind,

Éric

Frozen II – JenEric Movie Review

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Hello Cinephiles,

Today we’re talking about the 2019 movie Frozen II.

*This was my second favourite movie of 2019*

Story

This movie balances multiple story lines, deals with serious subjects, and manages to inject hope and humour.

The script is tight, there isn’t a lost word, scene, or moment. Everything is set up from the beginning without being so obvious as to ruin the reveals.

At it’s base it’s a standard hero’s journey with a JRPG style collecting element. That’s more of the structure, the actual story is about love, change, and how we handle difficult times.

There was just enough complexity to make it re-watchable and simple enough to keep all ages interested. Everything has multiple purposes in the story and it’s beautiful to see.

Score: 1

Characters

There are very few characters for such an epic story. Elsa, Anna, Olaf, and Kristoff/Sven each get a character arc that is both transformative and satisfying.

There’s a bit where Olaf recaps the first movie (As if we haven’t all seen it a million times) and it’s not about Olaf and the recap. It’s a shortcut to introduce us to the newest characters of Mattias and Yelena. It perfectly shows who they are and makes the audience love them, while breaking up the action, recaping, and making us laugh.

Elsa’s continued discovery of who she is flows well from the first movie and has great parallels for those of us who are different from the norm.

Anna’s struggle through trauma and depression not only make a great story they also give children a guide for how to deal with depression and horrible events.

Kristoff deals with his feelings of insecurity. Not about his love or himself, but about how she feels about him.

Olaf deals with growing up and the fear that not knowing brings.

Score: 1

Dialogue

The songs have some extremely powerful lines but the dialogue doesn’t slouch at being insightful and poignant. “I’m sorry Anna. You’re gonna have to do the next part on your own. Ok?” breaks me every time. Same with, “My love isn’t fragile.”

Of late I’ve seriously been feeling Olaf in this movie, especially the line, “We’re calling this ‘controlling what you can when things feel out of control'”.

Score: 1

Visuals and Music

The autumn aesthetic is stunning. The colours are vibrant and the animation is absolutely beautiful. I’m not an animation expert but the details in this were astounding.

Musically it was great. The songs are a staple of our house already. They are beautiful on their own but also move the narrative, foreshadow, and expand the story.

The score on it’s own is epic and is reminiscent of Lord of the Rings or the better superhero scores.

Score: 1

Fun

This was a beautiful movie both visually and as a story. It tries and succeeds to tackle serious subjects while breaking them down for younger audiences.

Most of all it’s hopeful, catchy, and fun.

Score: 1

Overall

If you’d asked me whether I thought a 2 hour movie could handle talking about growing up, depression, colonialism, and self-discovery, while having a positive message about love being a strong and stable element to life; I’d have said… Maybe but better to do it in a book. It’s staggering that they managed to do it in a movie and made it accessible to all ages.

With the use of short forms, animation, and musical elements they managed to do it all.

Final Score: 5*


*A 5 star review doesn’t mean the movie was perfect nor that it is perfect for everyone but it is a movie I believe is as close to perfect as possible.