Challenge,  Fun Stuff

Been Reading and Watching Movies

We Writers Consume Story Everywhere…

I’ve been doing that over the last few weeks in a number of places. First off, I have been reading challenge short stories and novels. Almost all done and will be sending out comments soon. Some really wonderful novels and stories, I must admit, from those who took the challenge starting in September. I am enjoying the reading a great deal.

(And I might do it again for January. Haven’t decided yet.)

And I have, when time allows, been watching Hallmark Christmas movies. Not for the plots, of course, but for the structure and the characters and the relaxing aspect of them. In other words, no stress movies. Turn off the brain and enjoy. That is what they are designed for and they work perfectly for exactly that.

And we saw the Spider-Man movie with friends, which was surprisingly great. I doubt Kris and I alone would have gone to see it. And interestingly enough, I never managed to see in any form the original Mary Poppins movie, so I will watch that before Kris and I go see the new one. That should be interesting. (grin)

So over this holiday season I have been consuming story in more ways than I normally would. And that has been great fun.

And at the same time I have been getting ready to really get back to my own writing. And actually getting more and more excited about it. 2018 was a turning-point year for me and Kris, getting her healthy and both of us to Las Vegas.

As I told Kris and some friends in the car this afternoon, I first wanted to move here to Las Vegas in August of 1972. I was homeless at the time. But even though that time didn’t work out, I have wanted to live here since 1972. So for me, even though this last year was a tough one, it has ended wonderfully.

So a few more Hallmark movies, a few more challenge stories to read, a Mary Poppins movie or two, a few more sugar cookies to eat, then back to writing and exercising the day after Christmas. Damn am I looking forward to that.



  • Philip

    I love to gamble, so I’ve been wanting to get back to Vegas for a nice trip. The only other time I’ve been there was with my ex wife (yikes!) and it was no fun. I know it would be better this time around, though I still can’t believe the idea that pizza is great there.

    Your post shows two important things: one, patience pays off and your goals can be met one day. Two, creative people need to consume story to refill the well.

    Best of luck in ’19, and thanks for all you do for fellow writers.

  • Phillip McCollum

    Sounds like it’s been a fun few weeks, Dean! I’ve been trying to catch up on reading and movies myself during the brief anthology workshop break–mainly enjoying the Christmas classics like National Lampoon Christmas Vacation and Scrooged with Bill Murray.

    BTW, when you have a moment, can you check if some of my emails have been sucked into your spam filter? If you haven’t had time to get to them, no biggie. It’s the holiday season. Just want to make sure they’re making it through.

    Merry Christmas to you and Kris!

  • Maree

    I used to love reading fluffy romance novels and cheesy thrillers for probably the same reasons you you’ve stated. It’s fun and relaxing and it doesn’t require too much mental work.

    But over the last few years I’ve been more likely to metaphorically throw them at the wall than find them relaxing. It’s like I can’t turn my brain off. It’s easy enough to overlook goofy plots, but repetitive words and augh the characters are so two dimensional and unpleasant and it gets to be too much!

    Is this a stage? I hate the idea that writing more means I’m not able to enjoy light fun books, but that’s how it’s gone so far. It’s like I can see all the stage mechanics now and poorly done work is the average.

    I don’t want to be a better writer at the cost of being a never pleased reader