Give a book a chance

As I was talking to someone about a Star Wars book I had ordered, which, by the way is a ” special” Star Wars book, the momentum of the conversation made me think about the Star Wars: Aftermath books I haven’t finished reading. So, I felt like reading them.

I was inspired, as per usual, but my rationale for wanting to was that I don’t like to waste and I like to finish the job, in this case not a real job, but finish the job metaphorically speaking. I had to finish the book. This despite the book losing its luster for me about a month or so ago. The lesson: when one has hit the wall with a book, give it some time, and then the wall may come crumbling down, somehow.

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Painstakingly effective

This is a movie that flew under the radar. For one thing, it’s very long. The production design is mostly indoors, which may be too wooden for some tastes, and the costumes from the 1800’s, with only the occasional flare for cinematic storytelling. Despite the pitfalls, it’s not gratingly so. Although the dialogue and interactions are more or less so sophisticated and may require one’s full concentration, Little Dorrit (1987) is involving.

It is impressive in terms of the scale of the storytelling despite the setting limitations. In Little Dorrit, famed English actor Alec Guinness plays William Dorrit, the gentlemanly head of a debtor’s prison in Victorian England. He sweeps visitors up in conversation and is the object of adoration of her daughter Amy, otherwise called Little Dorrit. One has a certain amount of sympathy for William Dorrit, as the story sides with him, especially evident in the final scenes which are breathtakingly good and highlight the divide between rich and poor.

It’s all based on Charles Dickens reportedly satirical novel about being rich and poor in Victorian society. Part one—the three hour It’s Nobody’s Fault—is seen through the eyes of Arthur Clennam (Derek Jacobi), who becomes involved with the business of William Dorrit (Alec Guinness). William’s daughter Little Dorrit (Sarah Pickering) is the seamstress of Clennam’s mother to earn a crust. Clennam aims to help them get out of the debtor’s prison with the help of a lawyer.

Part two is much the same storyline as part one, but told through the ‘eyes’ of Little Dorrit (or Amy). Scene after scene is framed to see the second half through the perspective of Little Dorrit. One finds respect for her, her kindness, genuineness, good manners and even temperament standing out, which made quite an impression.

I loved the cast and characters. With a sprawling cast, Little Dorrit is filled with good performances and interesting characters. As Clennam, Derek Jacobi exudes a youthful air. Clennam’s fineness and reserve is the surface but he is secretly in love. Clennam’s also impeccably generous which reveals nobility.

As Cleenam’s mother, Joan Greenwood is frightfully straightforward. Her reading of the Bible is of a punitive passage in the book of the prophets at exactly eight o’clock and no bible context is given. With her bubbly personality and effervescence in a reserved society, Miriam Margolyes as Flora Finching stands out in the sense that she seems out of place, but in a good way.

Roshan Seth’s exuberance is catching, his cockney accent a change of pace from his refinement in Gandhi and a villain’s off-colour charm in Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom.

The actual logistics of undertaking a film told from two character’s perspectives would be painstaking to produce, but effective and very satisfying.


Little Dorrit (1987) ****½ Starring: Derek Jacobi, Sarah Pickering, Alec Guinness, Roshan Seth. Writer/Director: Christine Edzard. Running time: About six hours.

Different versions of a scene can be helpful, but the first may be best

If there are different versions of the same scene, or they are written differently, one can see the differences between the versions and see which is best.

Sometimes, the original scene can be better in comparison to the second or third version.

Sometimes, one gets too involved with the original scene and edits too much.

Comparing a second version of a scene with the first version of the scene may prove the first is better.

“And The”

I am absolutely tired of how many times “And The” appeared in the Harry Potter movie titles. However, it makes sense. Children’s serials may have “And The”. It just connotes a continuing adventure of a character or set of characters in a different adventure than the one before it. There’s been the Hardy Boys series (The Tower Treasure, The House on the Cliff, for example) and those Willard Price series of books like the Amazon Adventure and Tiger Adventure. And of course, the Famous Five. Harry Potter may be the most famous series of adventures that contain magic which has made it controversial.

A calm spirit is better

This week writing has been writing a devotion based on old notes of my bible reading, a humor piece that I completed and submitted, and a significant revise of a poetry.

Patience and time is a key to working on pieces, though one may be tempted to get the work done fast, so one can move on to the next thing. No, don’t do that. A calm spirit is better. Patience and time gets things done better.

A little reading and reflection

What I’m reading. After reading and reflecting on the book of Job I went back to the start of the Bible with Genesis, with the intention of noting facts of the scripture rather than reading primarily for themes. Thematic analysis is what I had been doing, but I wasn’t sure if I was being true to the text by seeing themes that may or may not be there, for what was the purpose of writing devotionals.

I’ve also finished Star Wars, the original novelization of the film. This year it’s been re-published in a trilogy of books. This trilogy is the original Star Wars trilogy, from A New Hope, The Empire Strikes Back, to Return of the Jedi. I was surprised how they condensed two hours that seems longish into a shortish book. I expected longer, but that’s how this film-tie in went.

Never say die

With three publishers wanting to see my work, you’d think I’d be happy about that. Well, I am, but it’s just three isn’t it? It’s casual writing work. Short writing or thereabouts. Like it. Would like more avenues but am grateful for what’s in the writing department.

With avenues for writers scarce in the religious genre, the younger ones are being promoted.  Did a lot back in the day when the publishers were still going. Hope the younger ones do well.

May just find something else as well. So I keep the possibility open. Have two websites I use for information on publishing somewhere else.

With the thought of possibility, one may never let the possibility die. Opportunities may come and go, but possibility can be forever, whatever happens. Because one thinks, what if? Then you keep on going.