warning: Creating default object from empty value in /home/savethee/jocelynrish/modules/taxonomy/taxonomy.pages.inc on line 33.

Tweet Tales Tuesday Week 224

HUSH posterHave y’all seen Hush yet? I’d been hearing good things about it, and then I saw this tweet from Stephen King: “How good is HUSH? Up there with HALLOWEEN and--even more--WAIT UNTIL DARK. White knuckle time. On Netflix.” Whoa! That’s a major endorsement. 
 
Here’s the Netflix description: Deaf since her teens, Maddie Young has chosen a life of isolation in a remote woodland home. But when a masked stranger appears at her window one night, Maddie's peaceful existence turns into a terrifying cat-and-mouse game with a crazed killer.
 
I finally watched it last night. Awesome stuff, man! It’s a home invasion movie, and it gets pretty gruesome, so beware if that kind of stuff freaks you out, but I loved it. It was super tense, and although there was some ‘characters act stupid to move the plot forward’ stuff, it was pretty minimal. The script was tight, the acting was great, and you’ll never be able look at Jim from The Newsroom the same way again. Thanks for the rec, Mr. King!
 
After it was over, I looked Hush up on IMDB and discovered it was written and directed by Mike Flanagan, the same guy who made Oculus, another of my recent favorites. I’m definitely looking forward to watching more of this guy’s work!
 

15 Minute Tweet TalesAnd now it’s time for this week’s 15 Minute Tweet Tales word:

incalescent - growing hotter or more ardent
 
5/10 - As her fingers fly across the keyboard, she becomes more incalescent. She's fallen in love with her protagonist and so will her readers.
 
Play along and write a tweet tale for the above word. If you’re willing to share, post it on twitter with the hashtag #15tt or add it below in the comments because I’d love to read your tales. Any thoughts about this week's tweet tale or #15tt word?
 

Tweet Tales Tuesday Week 173

I had a fun weekend hanging out with my sister. On Saturday we enjoyed Black-Eyed Susans (the official drink of the Preakness), while watching the gorgeous horsies race on TV. I was so nervous something bad would happen with all the rain and slop, but thankfully they all made it safely across the finish line. 
Drinking Black-Eyed Susans
 
Then on Sunday we went to see Pitch Perfect 2. I loved the first one. I loved it so much I wrote two blog posts about writing pitches using quotes from the movie:
 
 
But as much as I loved it, I rolled my eyes when I heard there was going to be a sequel, figuring there was no way lightning would strike twice. But it was actually a lot of fun. It didn't quite have the magic of the first one, but there were plenty of laughs, lots of head-bobbing and toe-tapping, and I grinned like a maniac through the entire final competition. I'm already looking forward to getting the DVD, so I can watch the performances again and again. 
 
Hope y'all had a fun-filled weekend, too! And now here are my 15 Minute Tweet Tales for the week:
 
5/13 - With each bon mot he spouts at the party, his wife rolls her eyes. He'd spent hours researching and revising to appear spontaneously clever.
 
5/14 - They both cry as she pulls the trigger, but with no zombie cure available, a coup de grâce is the only way to save her husband's soul.
 
5/15 - His cries sound painful as they surge de profundis, but Mom's not ordering him pie. Patrons shoot them dirty looks; she gets him a piece.
 
5/16 - "I say this ex animo: you are horrible, and I hope you burn in hell." Sue blinked. She'd only told Ivy she liked her hair better long.
 
15 Minute Tweet Tales5/17 - Mom always nagged him to festina lente. Now he'd gotten three speeding tickets, arrived late anyway, and would have to admit she was right.
 
5/18 - The genius loci of the house caused most owners to move within weeks,but he found it peaceful. He was even smiling when they found his body.
 
5/19 - She prepares a romantic dinner; he shows up with friends. She finds some Cheetos to serve as hors d'oeuvres then dumps him after dessert.
 
What fun things did you get up to this weekend? Play along and write tweet tales for the above words. If you’re willing to share, post them on twitter with the hashtag #15tt or add them below in the comments because I’d love to read them. Any thoughts about this week's tweet tales or #15tt words?

Special Screening

My theme for the Blogging from A to Z Challenge is contronyms. A contronym is a word with two or more opposite meanings, making it its own antonym. Click here to find out more about these quirky words.
 
Chloe with the letter SHere we are at the start of week four and letter S of the A to Z challenge. Not surprisingly, the letter S has a large selection of contronyms to choose from, probably the most so far. So which contronym did I decide to feature? It's a word I use fairly often: screen.
 
Screen - show; project on a screen
 
~ or ~
 
Screen - hide; conceal from view
 
Since I make short films, I often use the word screen in the showing context, as in screening a movie for an audience. Here's a non-fiction example: My short film High Heels & Hoodoo will screen at the Reel Shorts Film Festival in Canada on May 4th. Whoo hoo - we're so excited! Click here for more information.
 
As for the hiding context, here's another non-fiction example: During the Q&A session after a screening of my short film Saying Goodbye, I got emotional talking about my grandmother and used a program to screen my crying face from the audience.
 
Since Saying Goodbye also starts with the letter S, I'd like to screen it for you now. It's only sixteen minutes long and has won several awards at film festivals. If you enjoy it, please pass it along to family and friends. We'd be most appreciative - thank you!
 

If a cat predicted your death, how would it change your life?

 
Are you familiar with contronyms? Can you think of examples of other ‘S’ contronyms? How Sleepy is Chloe with her letter S?

Tweet Tales Tuesday Week 47 + A Busy Week

Whew, this week has been crazy! This Boob Tube Junkie was so busy I didn’t watch TV for seven whole days. I know! Surely that means there are now some demons downstairs doing triple axels in sparkly costumes. So what kept me from my beloved boob tube?

For one, my short film Saying Goodbye screened in the Unofficial Google+ Film Festival this past weekend. It’s a very cool way for people to enjoy some of the film festival experience from home and for us to share our film with an international audience. Frustratingly, I had technical difficulties and couldn’t join in on the live Q&A (you should have seen me shrieking at my computer), but luckily my brother was able to represent us. Hopefully we can be part of the lineup next year with High Heels & Hoodoo!
 
The other big event was the Twitter Fiction Festival, and I participated in two different ways. The company Page 27 makes a storytelling game app, and for the festival they invited fifteen writers to participate in a collaborative storytelling event called Once Upon a Line. We’d get a text when it was our turn and have an hour to write the next part in 1-2 tweets. It was an interesting experiment as we tried to find the balance between improvisation and creating a well-plotted story, as well as the balance between a cohesive storytelling style versus each writer showing off their best flowery prose. As a genre reader/writer, the result wasn’t really my kind of story (not enough murder and mayhem!), but it was great fun to play along and see what our collective creative brains produced, plus I met some new talented writers. You can read the whole story here, and if you want to see what my contributions were, you can click the tweets by day tab and look for my smiling face. Huge thanks to Page 27 for asking me to participate!
 
The other way I participated was by animating one of the #15tt tweet tales from each day of the festival (except for one day because of more technical difficulties – I think I need a new computer!). The little movies are silly (especially with the horrible voice “acting”), but I had a TON of fun making them. However, each one took waaaay longer than I was anticipating (hence no TV and really no sleep either), so I was pretty drained by the end. But it was so enjoyable that I plan to keep doing them occasionally, especially if I can spread the time out rather than trying to get it all done in one night.  
 
Here’s the first one – I was very nervous about animating someone else’s story for the first time, but thankfully I got a thumbs up from the author.
 
I think this second one turned out to be my favorite. Growing up with a brother, I have felt like this on more than one occasion.

When I read this one, I got excited since I knew the animation software had Santa and elves. Turns out it only has female elves and only in these skimpy outfits. The feminist side of me was a tad offended, but *shrug* it’s all in good fun.
 
One of the long-time #15tt regulars really wanted one of his tweet tales animated, and since I’d told him the software was very limited as to what I could animate, he craftily wrote this tweet as a sequel (prequel?) to the tweet from the day before to ensure he’d meet all the prop/setting/costume/action limitations of the software.

 
Stay tuned for future #15tt animations, and play along some days – your tweet tale just might be the next to get the animation experience!
 
On top of all that, I had company in town, and there were lots of events happening on the blog. I ended up posting every weekday for the first time since the A to Z challenge. Don’t forget – I’m giving away a signed copy of Kami Kinard’s The Boy Project. It’s super easy to enter in several ways, so get your entry in before 11:59 Wednesday night!!
 
And if you’ve stuck with me through all that, here are my 15 Minute Tweet Tales for the past week:
 
11/28 – Tom beams at his neophyte’s success. She might be small, but her passion gives her strength. He buries the pieces of the missing man.
 
11/29 - Her tempestuous wails send him scurrying. The shoes were too tasty to resist. He peeks at her with extra sad eyes. She sighs, then smiles.
 
11/30 - With one hopeful breath, I send dandelion fluff floating across the sky. My wish? That my womb will soon pullulate like that wildflower.
 
15 Minute Tweet Tales12/1 - A blizzard of words overwhelms her as he tries to convince her tp stay. It just reminds her why she's leaving: he talks too damned much.
 
12/2 – My dog wouldn't acquiesce to my commands, so I took him to the vet. She told me he was a cat. I think I might need glasses.
 
12/3 - "Do you want to go up to the roof to see my dovecote?" I hate birds but say "yes" hoping the city view will inspire our first kiss.
 
12/4 - I know our marriage is over when he starts wearing flamboyant ties to work - a flourish of fun from a man who no longer smiles at me.
 
And now I’m off for some much needed rest that will include catching up on some of my favorite TV shows!
 
Did you participate in the Twitter Fiction Festival in any way? Have you ever done any collaborative storytelling? Should I win an Academy Award for my awesome voiceover work? (I think my Santa was particularly inspired.) Any thoughts about this week's tweet tales or #15tt words?

Engaging Events

Normally I’m pretty much the homebody type, but during the month of November, the Charleston area is hoppin’ with happenings that are forcing me to break my hermit-like habits. Since these events might be of interest to fellow local storytellers (both writers and filmmakers), I wanted to share them here.

YALLFest
The one I’m most excited about is the second annual YALLFest. Last year was a fantastic event, so I can’t wait to see what they have in store for us this year. It will be Saturday, November 10th from 10am to 6pm in venues around King Street, and the lineup of YA authors is enough to make my head explode with excitement. I can’t believe I’ll be able to see writers like Kathy Reichs, Holly Black, Carrie Ryan, and so many others with just a short thirty-minute trip to downtown Charleston.  
YALLFest
 
But the absolutely coolest thing about the event is that Kami Kinard will be one of the presenting authors. I met Kami at a conference a few years ago, and we've stayed friends. We actually sat together at YALLFest last year, and now this year she will be on stage with all the other YA authors!! She’s such an inspiration, and I’m so thrilled for her! 
 
If you like writing and/or reading YA novels, make sure to come out and see some of your favorite authors in action. Most of the events are FREE and you can find the schedule here.
 
Charleston Jewish Book Fest
Charleston Jewish Book FestThroughout the month of November, the Charleston Jewish Community Center is hosting a number of authors, and you can find the schedule and ticket information here. I was especially looking forward to Delia Ephron (who worked with her sister Nora to create charming romantic comedies like You’ve Got Mail) and Stephen Tobolowsky. Although Stephen is also a writer, he’s probably best known for playing a number of memorable characters, including Sandy Ryerson on Glee. I also had the chance to see a hilarious short film he was in called Say It Ain’t Solo when I was at the DC Shorts Film Fest last month. Unfortunately, with so many exciting things happening in November, some of them were bound to overlap, and I won’t be able to see either Delia or Stephen. But hopefully you’ll be able to make it to one of the many events.
 
Literary Dogs
Hub City Press is a non-profit independent press in Spartanburg, SC, and they are publishing a book called Literary Dogs & Their South Carolina Writers (edited by John Lane and Betsy Wakefield Teter) in which 25 Palmetto State writers talk about their dogs. As someone who is absolutely ga-ga about her canine cuties, this sounds fan-freakin’-tastic to me. There are events happening all over SC to promote the book, but the one I’ll definitely be at is on Tuesday, November 27th from 5pm to 7pm at the Charleston Library Society (164 King Street).
Literary Dogs

 

Lowcountry authors like Mary Alice Monroe, Josephine Humphreys, Dorothea Benton Frank, Marjory Wentworth, Nicole Seitz, and Beth Webb Hart will be there with their dogs. I can only imagine how chaotic that is likely to be, but so much fun at the same time. Ticket information can be found here.
 
Carolina Film Alliance
Charleston Film AllianceThe Carolina Film Alliance (CFA) is an advocacy voice for film and television in SC, which has worked toward job creation for state residents and economic development though SC film rebates. If you are involved with filmmaking in SC or have a business that would benefit from potential revenue brought to our state via filmmaking, then you should attend the statewide rally on Sunday, November 4th from 3pm to 5:30pm at Pure Theatre (477 King Street).
 
Richard Futch is the CFA President, and he was also the amazing casting director for both of my films, so I’ve seen firsthand the passion he has for filmmaking. This will be a great chance to hear more about how we can help lure Hollywood dollars to SC to bolster our economy.
 
 
As you can see, the month of November has a lot of exciting things happening around the Lowcountry – I hope to see you at some of the events!
 
Are you planning to attend any of these?  Do you know of any other storytelling-related happenings in November that I missed?   

Monday Movie Madness and #writemotivation

Since the months continue to whip by at a most alarming rate, it means it’s already time for another #writemotivation goal check month. I’m starting to feel a little bit like this:

… except it's more like: Gee, Jocelyn, what are your goals for this goal check month? The same thing I do every month, Muse, try to finish rewriting my WIP! At this point I’m starting to fear I’m much closer to Pinkie’s insanity that Brain’s genius, but like Brain, I won’t let that stop me from trying again and again and again.
 
This time I’ve added a few other goals to the list, so I’ll have the satisfaction of crossing something off the to-do list:
1. Revise at least three pages a day in my WIP.
2. Post two blog posts a week.
3. Spruce up at least one of my short stories and submit it for publication.
4. Finish reviewing critique partner’s novel.
 
I already know I’m going to fall way behind this week revising three pages a day because I’m leaving on Wednesday to go to Washington, D.C. And why am I taking this trip to the nation’s capitol? Because my second short film High Heels & Hoodoo is having its World Premiere this weekend at the DC Shorts Film Festival – whoo hoo! It’s a really great fest, and my brother and I are super excited to be part of it. My sister is even joining us to make it sibling road trip. Parties and workshops and movies, oh my! If any of you live in the DC area, come out and see the film – I’d love to meet you in person! Click here for details about the screening.
 
In other movie news, it’s now been two weeks since we made our first short film Saying Goodbye available for public viewing. The response has been so amazing! We’ve received emails from people, many of them strangers, sharing stories about how the film reminded them of their last moments with loved ones – I even had to break out the Kleenex while reading some of them. Here is a sample of some of the kind words:
 
“A story simply and beautifully told about a subject that's hard to face, but is so important to face.”
 
“I watched as the tears ran down my cheek in memory of those I have loved and who have earned their wings.”
 
“This film made me cry, sad and happy all at the same time.”
 
“…it’s a reminder of why we love film so much. Sometimes movies tap into our emotions in an important way.”
 
I share these not (just) to toot my own horn (although it’s fun to have a reason to!), but because this whole movie-making adventure has been a path on my writing journey that I never expected. I write horror and thriller stories for young adults. That’s what I love to do, and I never planned to write anything else. But this story came to me out of the blue, and even more unexpectedly came the opportunity to turn it into a movie (if you want the longer story about those events, click here). To now hear about the ways the story is touching people is truly rewarding. The entire experience has taught me to stretch my writing in ways I never dreamed, and I hope it encourages you to try new forms, styles, and genres of writing, too.
 
If you’re interested in watching Saying Goodbye, it’s only sixteen minutes long and available for free at: http://www.sayinggoodbyemovie.com/content/watch-saying-goodbye  If you enjoy it, please share the link with family and friends – thank you!!
 
Are you participating in #writemotivation this time? Are you expecting obstacles in meeting your goals? Have you experimented with writing beyond your usual style and genre? Have you watched Saying Goodbye yet, and if not, why the heck not?!?

Zombie Zeal

Freya with the letter ZWe’ve finally made it to the last day of the Blogging from A to Z challenge!  There were definitely days I wasn’t sure I was going to make it to the end, but I’ll save that for my reflections post next week. For now, it’s Movie Monday and the letter is Z, so you know what that means - zombies!!  Which is kind of ironic considering I feel a bit like a zombie after a month of daily blogging.

I’ve always been a fan of zombie movies.  Zombies may seem slow and bumbling, but their sheer numbers and determination make then pretty dang scary.  Today’s Netflix Watch Instantly selection is called Zombie Apocalypse (in some listings there is a 2012 in the title).  For my previous Monday Movie selections, I picked ones I’d never heard of until the Netflix ratings predictor assured me I was going to love it (and the ratings were always right).  But in this case, Netflix tried to warn me off, saying, “Girl, you are NOT going to like this, turn back now, you could do so much more with this hour and a half, like trim your dog’s toenails.”  Usually I listen to Auntie Netflix because her rating system really ‘gets’ me, but I had another reason for wanting to watch this particular zombie flick.

Jocelyn Rish, Gary Weeks, and Brian RishTwo months ago, my short film Saying Goodbye was screened at the Beaufort International Film Festival.  While there, we met a charming guy named Gary Weeks.  He introduced himself as a screenwriter, but my sister thought he looked familiar, so we looked him up on IMDb.  Turns out he’s also an actor who’s played several parts we remembered, including Fiona’s paramedic boyfriend from Burn Notice.  We chatted with Gary several times over the course of the festival, and he was very nice; so since we are zombie fans, we decided to watch him in action as one of the main characters in Zombie Apocalypse despite Netflix’s dire prediction.

Well, the Netflix rating system enjoyed having another chance to say, “I told you so.”  As much as I wanted to like it because of Gary, I was not a fan.  I think Gary did a great job giving his character depth and pathos because I’m 99% sure none of that was actually on the page since the script was so bad.  It was as blandly typical as a zombie movie gets - a random group of survivors trying to… survive.  The dialog was cringe-worthy to the point I was embarrassed for all the actors who had to deliver the lines.  And there were actually well-known actors involved in the project like Ving Rhames, Taryn Manning, Eddie Steeples (Crabman!), and Lesley-Ann Brandt (aka the gal who left the buzz-worthy show Spartacus to be in American movies. Oops!).  I guess the producers spent their entire budget on hiring familiar faces because the zombie makeup and special effects were bargain basement terrible.

Zombie ApocalypseIt wasn’t all bad.  There were a few creative zombie kills, and the characters actually wore sports gear when wandering around to protect themselves from potential zombie bites (I don’t recall seeing that in previous zombie movies I’ve watched, but I’ve now added looting a sporting goods store to the top of my to-do list when the zombie apocalypse actually happens… ‘cause you know it’s coming!).  Also, there was one character who got some funny one-liners, but I actually think it was more the actor’s delivery than the lines themselves.  Annnd… that’s about it as far as bright spots.

So even though I thought Gary was a great guy, I can’t recommend this movie.  But I will be checking out some of Gary’s other movies and following his career as both a filmmaker and an actor.  

 

Have you seen Zombie Apocalypse?   What did you think of it?  Any really good zombie movie recommendations?  How Zonked is Freya with her letter Z (just like I feel!)?

eXceptional eXample

Chloe with the letter XI imagine today is the most dreaded day of the Blogging from A to Z challenge – the infamous letter X.  There just aren’t that many words out there that start with X, and most of the ones that do are pretty strange: xenolith, xylograph, xanthic.  If today were Willy-nilly Wednesday, I’d just grab one of these weirdos and start babbling about them.  But it’s Film Friday, and since I couldn’t find a short film that started with X, I’m going to have to cheat a little (don’t judge, I’m sure lots of a-z bloggers got creative today!).  So my “X word” is eXceptional, and today’s short film is Sebastian’s Voodoo, which definitely lives up to that description.  It’s only four and a half minutes long, so if you haven’t seen it yet, give it a watch:

As you can see, in addition to being eXceptional, the voodoo dolls have X’s for their eyes and hearts - another connection with today’s letter, so I didn’t cheat too much.
 
Anyway, I first saw this short at the Charleston International Film Festival a few years ago, and I was blown away by it.  I actually teared up, which feels a little silly.  I mean, they’re voodoo dolls – they don’t even have real faces!  And they’re only on screen for four minutes and don’t utter a single line of dialog.  Yet the message of sacrifice is so powerful it really makes an impression.  It’s bolstered by amazing animation and a perfect musical score, but it truly demonstrates that sometimes the simplest stories can be the most effective.
 
I’ve actually seen the film several times since then, and it gets to me every time. One of the places was a screenwriting class where the instructor was showing it to drive home the point that oftentimes less really is more.  I also think it’s a great illustration of the writer’s mantra “show don’t tell” – the body language of the voodoo dolls and a few simple actions not only tell us everything we need to know, but also impact us emotionally.  Sebastian’s Voodoo is an example of simple, yet powerful storytelling I think we should all keep in mind while writing.
 
What did you think of Sebastian’s Voodoo?  Do you think it has anything to teach us as writers?  How eXited is Chloe with her letter X?  (Actually I’m not sure what kind of eXpression that is on her face!)

Time’s A-Tickin’

Baily with the letter TWe’re in the home stretch now – only a week left of the Blogging from A to Z challenge – I think I can, I think I can…. Today is the letter T, so on this Movie Monday, I’m talking about the 2009 romantic comedy TiMER.  Here’s the Netflix description:

In this comedic fantasy, science has facilitated the search for a soul mate via biotechnological implants that count down to the moment one is supposed to meet his or her match. But Oona (Emma Caulfield) is worried: She's nearly 30, and her TiMER isn't ticking yet. Will her dream guy get snatched up by someone else? John Patrick Amedori co-stars in this film from first-time writer and director Jac Schaeffer.
 
I have to say, TiMER is one of my favorite movies Netflix Watch Instantly has recommended for me - not so much for the quality of the movie (there is some dodgy acting and low budget production design issues), but for the idea itself and how much it has made me think.  It’s been almost two years since I watched it, and I still find myself thinking about the issues it presents.
 
The writing is very clever, and the dialog is quippy and zips right along.  Emma Caulfield (Anya!!) does a great job as Oona, so that you become invested in her even though most of her problems are of the whiny woe-is-me variety.  As a hopeless romantic who really does believe in soul mates even though I haven’t found mine yet, I was fascinated by this idea of a timer that counts down to the moment you meet your soul mate.  It sounds like exactly what I need, but the movie does a great job of showing the pitfalls of something like this.  
 
The driving force of the story is the fact that Oona’s timer hasn’t started ticking. Having a timer implanted is not mandatory, and your timer will not start unless your soul mate also has a timer, so if your person doesn’t have one, you’re left hanging. Therefore Oona is constantly on the prowl for men without timers, and after they have a few successful dates, she pushes them to get timers and drops them as soon as hers is not activated.  After many disappointments, she starts to wonder if she even has a soul mate out there.  Then she meets a man who doesn’t believe in timers and really falls for him, but he refuses to get one.  So does she follow her heart or turn away because science hasn’t told her he’s “the one”? 
 
TiMERHer sister has an arguably worse situation.  Her timer is ticking, but it says she won’t meet her soul mate for another 40-50 years (I can’t remember the exact time left, but long enough that she would be an elderly woman).  So how is she supposed to behave knowing she has to wait most of her life to find her true love?  Find someone else to temporarily love?  Only have random flings with no emotion attached?  
 
The movie really made me think about my beliefs about love and fate and destiny.  And the idea of a biological timer has stirred up many different story ideas in my head, which is always a great thing. The biggest downfall of the movie is the ending.  I won’t say I hated it (even though I kind of did), but I will say I strongly disliked it.  I think the writer-director did a huge disservice to the story she crafted over the first three-fourths of the movie with the ending.  But despite that, I still think it’s a great indie film and well worth a watch.
 
Have you seen TiMER?  What did you think of it?  If you could have a device implanted to tell you exactly when you would meet your soul mate, would you do it? How Tuckered out is Bailey with her letter T?  

Resolute Robby

Molly with the letter RToday’s short film for the letter R is a cute student short called Robby that clocks in at an easy-watching four and a half minutes.  The most impressive thing about it is that the animator made a worm (a worm!) absolutely adorable.  Worms are nasty, slimy things, yet this lil’ guy is so charming. I think it’s the giant, googly eyes – they make anything cute.  

If you have a few minutes to spare, give it a watch:

So what’s my main takeaway from this short?  That I want a magical purse like Robby’s backpack!  My current purse has some pretty impressive clown-car like abilities, spewing forth all manner of cosmetics and personal care items, but a girl never knows when she’s going to need a backhoe . . . or a stick of dynamite.

Like last week’s film, this one deals with the importance of determination and striving toward your goal.  Robby has equipped himself with the tools he needs to dig, similar to writers learning different “rules” and techniques and styles to stuff our writing packs with helpful tools.  Robby has a compass to help guide him, just like we need to map out a plan of what we want to accomplish with our writing.  

I even think the progression of Robby’s tools mirrors a writer’s approach to revising a first draft.  First we start by shoveling some shit around (or maybe that’s just me!).  Next we kind of pick at it until we realize that ain’t getting it done.  Then we bring out the big guns like drills, backhoes, and dynamite to blow whole chapters away and make massive changes.  Then we’re ready for the detailed edits, the kind done with a delicate tool like a plastic spoon.  Then finally, after lots of hard work, we reach our goal – the cherished completed manuscript aka top of the apple..  

And the very end reminds us that no matter how hard we try, sometimes life is going to gobble us up.  Oh, wait, that’s a sad, pessimistic ending.  How about instead, it’s a metaphor for an agent/editor loving our manuscript and gobbling it up in one sitting?  Yeah, that’s much better.

What did you think about Robby?  Does his trip through the apple work as a metaphor for revising?  How Resplendent is Molly with her letter R?