Writing Update for August 2020.

Movie Night: A look at the Oscars.

It’s that time again, folks. The Hollywood award season is in full swing, and it started with the Golden Globes on January 5. Next was the Critic’s Choice Awards (January 12), which is followed by The Screen Actors Guild Award (January 19), The BAFTA Awards (February 2, Graham Norton is hosting this and I’m going to try and watch if I can. I like him!), The Independent Spirit Awards (February 8), and last, but not least – the Oscars (February 9).

Now, I’m not going to trash anything. I write screenplays and I follow the community (loosely, I haven’t checked out #filmtwitter in a while), so I understand how hard it is to write these suckers. I love movies, and one day I’ll take a pic of all we have, and I know for a fact some of these are going to be on our buy list for 2020.

(NOTE: I originally posted this on Facebook the day the nominations came out.)

The nominations are:

ONCE UPON A TIME IN HOLLYWOOD: SERIOUSLY? I’m sorry, but we watched this one, and shut it off probably 3/4 of the way through. The only interesting thing about this movie, IMO, are the Sharon Tate/Charles Manson possible connection. Ugh, this means I have to try and sit through the WHOLE thing.

UPDATE: I’ve had a couple people tell me that we must have shut it off before the good part came on, so yeah, Hubby and I are going to re-watch this, BUT only from where we left off.

LITTLE WOMEN: I haven’t seen this adaptation, and to be honest, I wasn’t planning on it either. I’ve seen other adaptations, but I’ve heard that it’s very close to the book.

THE IRISHMAN: Not a mafia movie person and this one is 3 1/2 hours long.

MARRIAGE STORY: I heard A LOT of good things about this one, including the joke that it’s about Kylo Ren and the Black Widow getting a divorce.

THE JOKER: Another one I heard a lot of good things about, and bad. Very dark and I’m surprised it was nominated. Good for them.

PARASITE: Almost watched this on Netflx one night by myself. Now I have too. Another surprise as it’s a foreign film and probably subtitles. I don’t know how well Hubby likes to read his movies.

FORD vs FERRARI: I have a thing for car movies. I need to watch this one.

JOJO RABBIT: I had no idea what this movie was about and hadn’t even HEARD of it until now, so I looked it up. Interesting plot and considering everything going on in the US, this movie fits the times.

1917: I’m not sure if this one is based on actual events, and I’m not much of a war movie person either, but I liked HACKSAW RIDGE so maybe I can sit through this one too.

Okay, so here are my guesses as who the winner might be;

Once Upon A Time In Hollywood: No. He might have won at the Golden Globes, but the lineup for the Oscars is much more (for lack of a better word) high-class.

Little Women: Maybe. Period pieces seem to do well at the Oscars.

The Irishman: Maybe. Maybe if there weren’t more heart wrenching movies this nomination would be stronger.

Marriage Story: Yes. This is a story anyone can relate to.

The Joker: Yes. Gritty and dark, from what I’ve heard, this movie is more about mental illness that anything.

Parasite: Maybe, but in the last sixty years there has only been three foreign films (non-North American or British made) to win Best Picture.

Ford vs. Ferrari: No. I know I haven’t seen it, but I’m thinking it’s more of a hyped docu-drama.

Jojo Rabbit: Maybe. War time movies seem to be nominated quite a bit, but it could be the content is too comparable to what is happening in the US now.

1917: Maybe: It’s another war-time movie. I researched this movie, and the script was originally conceived from a story the directors grandfather told him.

I’ll probably change my opinion of them once I’ve seen them. Hopefully before Oscar night.

Have you seen any of these movies yet? Did you like them? Not like them?

Call for A Company of Writers Blog Series.

It’s been a while. Almost two years, but I’ve decided to start up my blog interview series again, starting in January of 2020.

If you didn’t know, a few years back I was actively engaged in promoting authors of all career paths by interviewing them or allowing them to post a small excerpt of their published work on my blog. I’ve had the pleasure of hosting some wonderful authors, and I really miss that, so I’ve decided it’s time to start it up again.

The Basics

You can be published either Self, Indie, or Tradition, and in any genre. I do one interview per month which goes live on the last Friday of the month. There are ten questions and an excerpt (optional). I try to make the interview as much about you and your work as I can, so put a much detail into the answers as possible. The excerpt (if you choose) must be no longer that 1,500 to 2,000 words. Also, I will need cover art and all social media links to you AND your book.

My goal is to promote only you, so if you’re part of a blog group or writing group, that’s wonderful, but I don’t want to promote them. I will have twelve spots open; from January to December. This means it’s a first-come-first-serve situation.

Please note:

I require all potential interviewee’s have their book available on both .mobi and epub formats. This means the public can purchase your ebook on either Amazon (.mobi) or Barns and Noble/iTunes/Kobo or any other outlet that deals with epub. If your book is print only that’s fine; everyone can hold a book, but not everyone has the same ereader.     

If you’re interested you can email me at the address below. Please include how you are published (Traditional, Indie, or Self), the name and genre of the book you wish to promote and several links to where your book can be found. I WILL BE CHECKING OUT ALL BOOK LINKS. This is just a reassurance for me that people of all ereader types can purchase your book.   

My email is darkewhispers69 (at) gmail (dot) com

I look forward to working with you.

Welcome to my new distraction!

The title says it all.

September 3, 2017: Dark Matter fandom unleashed!

This is an incredible show. From the first episode I was hooked.

Joseph Mallozzi's Weblog

Whoa!  I’ve already written about how blown away I was at the response we received following the news of the cancellation, but Dark Matter fandom continues to amaze.  Witness, for instance, this –


A petition in support of the show has amassed over 15k signatures in 48 hours.  I had a cast member point this out to me today and they were overwhelmed by the love.  Thank you.

Also, thanks to all of you who continue to sound off on the various social media platforms.  I’m all over reddit and Facebook, but much of the activity is on twitter where I’m, quite honestly, having a hard time keeping up with the deluge.  I want to try to  acknowledge all of your posts (I’m unemployed now.  I’ve got all the time in the word!) but it would help to have a single hashtag Dark Matter fandom could unite under so…

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From The Garden: Summer Garden 2017

Our garden exploded in the summer months. The beautiful spring bulbs gave way to a wave of green, purple yellow and white.

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I found this little guy hiding behind some weeds along the side of the house.


And these are our peonies from our house in the country. They always do well. Not bad for a fifty-year-old plant. My lavender is doing well too. I want to see just how big it can get.


Mother decided she likes the cedar mulch to keep the weeds down so we’ve been putting it on the garden, and then put some under the evergreens that run along the property line.



We don’t have much in the way of fall flowers. Maybe I’ll take some pictures of trees turning. I’ve seen a few already. The usually start about the beginning of August.

From The Garden: Spring Bulbs 2017

Last fall my mother and I planted 150 bulbs. I’m not exaggerating. We had so many bulbs, it was nuts. In particular, we planted special Canada Day bulbs – tulips that were red and white. Now that spring is here, we’re starting to see the first of our efforts pop up.


Husband said he saw someone stop in front of the house and take a picture. The red and white tulips changed colour on us and are yellow-cream and red. We may have to move them and replant.

Cherry tree is looking nice this year too.

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This is a wider angle of the front gardens.



































And here are a few from the backyard.













































And these are the special tulips Mom got for Canada 150.

Nail Art: Gel Nails and Dotting Tools

If you’ve been following my Instagram account, you know that about a year and a half ago I started posting pictures of my nail art. Most of it was on short nails because my nails have become weak and brittle. Gel nails solved that problem and I just learned that I can put regular nail polish on gel nails! Using nail polish remover (with or without acetone) doesn’t hurt the gel overlay! Yes, I tried it and the shiny surface appeared without a hint of discolouration or damage. I am so impressed, so you know what this means right?


I came up with so many ideas in the last year and now I can work on making them happen.

One of the first nail art tools I bought were dotting tools. They’re inexpensive and easy to use, mind you, I had to get a feel for them first before I attempted anything. My tools came in a set of five, double-ended tools ranging in size.

dotting tools

Dotting Tools

Dotters are probably the easiest of nail art tools to use and perfect for beginners like me. They add a bit of flair to your manicure, and using them was way easier than the sponges for the gradient work I did in the summer. This was the first time I used them. After two coats of base polish (Revlon Red) dried, I put two large drops of black nail polish (My Gondola or Yours) on some paper and dipped the large end of my #5 dotting tool into it. I did a few test tries on the paper first, and when I got the feel for it, randomly put black dots over the red.


Reminds me of ladybugs.

A Company of Writers: Script Writing with Ally Turcotte

When I started script writing, I was lucky enough to know someone in real life who was knowledgeable in the formatting and layout of writing scripts. I had no idea where to start and Ally has helped me tremendously over these last few years. She’s in the process of staring her own blog depicting her life as a woman, screen writer and disabled person. Please welcome Ally in first guest blog post. 🙂


My parents were practical people. Their favourite words were “Be realistic.” When I came to them and announced one day that I was going to be a writer, the response was predictable:

 Okay, but what else are you going to do?

They weren’t unsupportive. They assumed it was good for me to have a hobby, and I’d grow out of it. I was physically disabled, shy, and, I don’t mind telling you, weird, with giant pink glasses that covered half my face, terrible haircuts mainly designed to stop me gnawing on and tangling my hair when I was nervous, (often) and the habit of turning anything within arms reach into a person, and then using the “person” to tell a story. When I told them I wanted to write movies? Well, what little girl didn’t want to be in movies, right? But then, I went out and did it. At twelve years old, amid a torrent of unfinished books I swore I was going to write one day, a pile of poems and an endless array of journals, I actually finished something. And it was a screenplay! That was about the time they started realizing, to their horror, I might actually think that screen writing was a real job.

In those days we lived in what I now cheerfully refer to as the back end of nowhere, on a tiny dirt road. We did have one neighbour within walking distance, and that neighbour was friends with, wait for it, a real live writer! When we met he offered to read my work. He said I was already better than he had been at my age, and handed me a copy of It’s a Wonderful Life because “Your formatting is a mess.” I went home, opened a new document file, and started again. If my parents biggest concern was that I should be practical, then dammit, I was going to learn how to do this the right way. And there, my education began.

All this is to explain the important stuff. Firstly, that anyone, anywhere, can learn how to write, no matter how little experience or resources they have, and second, that there are three major forces in my life: The desire to tell a story, the desperate need to legitimize myself in spite of my blue-collar upbringing and physical disability, and a sense of isolation that drove me, in spite of all my self-consciousness, and my stubborn (okay, controlling) ways, to an industry which requires me tell a story with other people. Eventually, there were other things I liked about the format, the explicit rules, at first so intimidating, the rigorous structure, that offers the perfect format to tell the story in, so I don’t even have to wonder where a chapter ends or begins, or whose perspective it’s in, and the fact that I can literally spend hours trying on various voices for various characters or looking up photos of various attractive actors and calling it “research” if I want to. But the biggest draw, for me, has always been the idea of writing as a collaborative process; Someone finds value in your work, and improves on it, just by adding how they see the characters, or the world, or the story.

Writers are possibly the lowest rung on the entertainment industry’s ladder. Often, a talented writer’s work is taken, stripped to its basic concept, utterly changed, and then given to someone else, who gets the credit when the work is finished. So much advice for writers of any type, but especially women, and especially in entertainment, is “Get used to rejection.” And it isn’t unfounded. When I did go to film school, I was asked to leave, because my disability made it impossible for me to do all the things the school promised their graduates could do. But I kept writing, and I kept waiting for the opportunity to go back to my first love. I wrote stories for other people as a ghostwriter, I did some freelance blogging, and ad jobs. I could get paid to write, but I wanted to write film and television. And here we are, a decade after I left film school in floods of tears, and I still do. And suddenly, the industry is being turned upside down. The world is no longer looking at 25-40 male as the ideal demographic. We’re in a media glut, which means terror to marketers who have to hold our attention for longer than the average YouTube video, but also means anyone with an iPhone can make a movie, and the world needs writers more than it ever has before. Am I going to sit by and watch everyone else have all the fun? Hell no! Okay, you ask, so what am I going to do next?

I don’t know.

And how great is that? As a freelance blogger and ghostwriter, my name is a blank slate. It’s possible yours is too. In an industry that is all about who you know, you may feel like you know no one, but I promise you, people are out there, making movies with what little they have. They’re not famous, but oh my God, do they love to talk about their projects. To anyone who will listen. All you have to do is take notes, and know when to offer help.

I’m probably not going to make anyone famous. But I never fell out of love with movies, the challenges and charms of the format, and the mythology of the right person reading the right script at the right time. I don’t care how unrealistic or impractical that is, because it’s also exactly the kind of magic that makes the whole thing matter. I couldn’t write a decent movie if I didn’t believe in a happy ending, could I?

You know those books with titles like The Girls Guide to Having It All? I like to think of what I’m doing as having none of it at all. No education, no credentials, no contacts. Just a lot of time writing scripts, and a lot of love for what I’m doing. A lot of friends who want to help out, and maybe, enough talent to get by on. There are a million ways this could go badly, but that’s only true because there are two million ways it could go. I don’t have an ending in mind yet. But I’m excited to do it here, because this is also a way to write with people. So hi! It’s nice to be here! I’ll be talking about formatting, free screen writing software, and how to begin, for a start, but feel free to chime in with a comment, if there’s something you want to see, or you have a specific question.

Let’s figure it out.

From The Garden: A few odds and ends from 2016

Last June I planted a container veggie garden at the side of the house. It was the first time I’d attempted something like this, and it might be my last. The summer was so hot, and between work and school, I couldn’t keep up with watering. We got tomatoes late and those had black bottoms. The cucumbers did well on a trellis and two of the three herbs I bought did well too. I lost my dill. Apparently bunnies like it too.


I pulled the rest of the veggies in early September and forgot about the ones in the flower boxes, that is, until I went to store them for the winter. The carrots really took off. They must need a longer growing season and the warm fall was perfect.







My Christmas Cactus did well this year. I’ve seen some that are so huge, but I’ve never been able to grow them large. Either they end up with root rot, or I forget to water them all together.

img_20161105_144141We planted all sorts of spring bulbs this year. Mostly tulips, but some daffodils and others. The front garden looked like a mine field, but I can’t wait to see if they all come up. We planted a bunch of special tulips for Canada’s 150 anniversary and she said she bought a lot of just red and white ones too.

Here’s a link to what the special ones look like.

Canada’s 150th Anniversary Tulip Bulbs

And lastly, a squirrel and bunny in the back yard nibbling on greens. There were two bunnies, but by the time I got my phone the other was gone. This was taken in November when it was still really warm. We don’t rake the leaves up just so the critters can have places to bury their food. I’d rather mulch them up anyway. Good for the grass.


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