Sentential Links


:: The morning after the Poseidon disaster, the broke captain (Caine) of a cargo tug discovers the wreckage and takes his crew (Field and Karl Malden) aboard to look for salvage. At exactly the same time, a wealthy doctor (Savalas) also goes aboard, claiming he wants to assist survivors. But is that really his goal or does he have something more sinister in mind? (Wow…never thought I’d find someone who speaks positively of Beyond the Poseidon Adventure!)

:: Just think of the people your stories are helping.

Trust me–they’re out there.

:: Like two films in one — the first one on land when the inhabitants of Amity Island are forced to deal with a predator that’s slowly devouring its citizens one by one, to the three men (Chief Brody, Matt Hooper, and salty sea veteran Quint) going out to sea to try and catch the shark singlehandedly — Jaws is an absolute memorable classic of the history of the cinema. (The 50 Greatest Jaws quotes — and they purposely omit the one that everybody remembers! What a great movie. I need to watch it again. By the way, my favorite quote in the movie is the exchange between Brody and his wife, just before he sets out with Quint and Hooper: “What do I tell the kids?” “Tell them I’m going fishing.”)

:: Whatever their approach, for these gardeners, creating a garden is a process. It is not a remodel that will beautify the neighborhood while the gardener kicks back and enjoys having finished. It may very well beautify the neighborhood, but it will never be finished — which is really the point.

:: Elvis had been performing “Hound Dog” live for months and it was always a hit with audiences, especially the slowed-down coda, where Elvis went wild, one of his signatures. (Elvis always thought the song was silly, and he originally performed it as a joke, and its success surprised him as much as anyone.) So Elvis and team finally decided it was time to get the thing down on tape, audience demand was enormous. Photographer Alfred Wertheimer was there, and captured Elvis through the whole process.

:: Publishing is a business. As a writer, you are enaging in business with others, sometimes including large corporations. It’s not a team sport. It’s not an arena where there are “sides.” There’s no “either/or” choice one has to make, either with the businesses one works with or how one publishes one’s work. Anyone who simplifies it down to that sort of construct either doesn’t understand the business or is actively disingenuous, and isn’t doing you any favors regardless. The “side” you should be on is your own (and, if you choose, that of other authors). (Sage advice and well-worth remembering. And even though it’s only tangential to John Scalzi’s main point here, it’s along these lines that I always end up thinking that we should be really careful about the way we’re constantly pushed to “privatize” things. Introducing the profit motive is not always the best way to go about achieving certain goals.)

:: Oh, man, check out how terrified Les looks by the idea that even in the fictional world being weaved by Cable Movie Entertainment, Lisa might live! It’s almost as if her death was the foundation on which he built his entire artistic career and sense of self. It’s almost as if he has to kill her again every day in his mind in order to stay Les. It’s almost as if the thought of Lisa alive, standing before him, and seeing what he’s done with his life for the past decade fills him with a the darkest sort of dread. (Oh man, this particular storyline in Funky Winkerbean is beyond the levels of awfulness usually plumbed by this strip. Just the notion that a film company is going to fly the original writer out to the set after the script has been heavily revised, and after a crew has been hired and the film cast, is nonsensical on its face. The bigger problem with the whole storyline is laid out here, but Les’s reaction to Lisa surviving her death-porn movie is just too hilarious to let pass.)

:: For those who missed it (most of the world, as it has to be!) it was announced from the office of the Governor General of Canada yesterday afternoon that I have been named to the Order of Canada. (Huzzah! And let me say this, folks: If you love fantasy but you haven’t read GGK, you are failing at life.)

More next week!

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