Friday, October 31, 2008

Seven things about me

The blogger Astrantia challenged me to write seven things about myself that everybody doesn’t know.

1. At my first job I earned just a little more than one third of my current salary. And my salary now is not sky-high.
2. I know how to program an industrial robot.
3. I think motorcycles are beautiful.
4. I’ve made an animated short movie called Chocolate Ballet with 3D computer graphics.
5. When I turned thirty I realized that I had my Oscars speech better prepared than a speech about turning thirty (usually held at work when celebrated).
6. I met my husband for the first time when we were both sixteen.
7. I love computer games. Especially cars.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

There was a fire

Yesterday it was ten years since a fire took 63 young lives at a disco in Gothenburg, Sweden. Here is a link to images.

About four hundred kids and youths in an area limited to one hundred and fifty.

Two doors leading out, one blocked with smoke and fire.

A reporter sticks his microphone up in the face of a police officer in charge asking if anybody has died. The police officer answers that he would estimate to thirty so far. "Dead?!" the reporter replies quite chocked.

There were interviews yesterday, in the morning paper and TV. “What do you remember?” “How is your life going now?”

The firefighter getting inside by a window, only to realize that the windows are two meters up from the floor. No way they could use the windows for rescue quick enough.

The boy in a pile with people in panic by the door who suddenly realizes that the girl on top of him is dead.

The cell phones ringing under the sheets covering the dead that had been brought out.

What I personly remember most were the hate against those who did it.

At first there where speculations that it had been terrorists or Nazis (there were lots of immigrants at the disco). It wasn’t. It was a few teenage boys who wanted to be at the disco but they were not let it. Pissed off they decide to ruin the party for the others and start a little fire with the aim to just activate the smoke detector.

These young men were the target for so much hate.

They got jail-time of course. Too short time many said. Kill them others said. (Sweden have not had capital punishment since 1910 – written in the law in 1921.)

Hate leads to no good. No good things appear from hate. Hate does not bring the dead back.

They did not intend to kill 63 people. They made a foolish and stupid mistake that got severe consequences. And they have to live with that mistake.

As for those youths who arranged the disco without thinking about the possibility of fire and panic.

Photo by Matthew Bowden
Edited by the writer

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

I will make progress soon

A few days have passed without me writing a single line on the script.

I have not been lazy. My youngest kid have had a cold and I have been at home with him. Although I have an urge to write I simply have to accept that he find me very boring when I sit in front of the computer. Especially if I write. Too little is happening on the screen.

I feel very privileged to be able to be home with my kids when they are sick. I get 80% of my salary paid by the government and by law family and work have to be possible to combine.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Knock everybody out of the chair

The dialog that follows the All Is Lost-point is difficult. What is said and done on the next ten pages will result in a major change with the main character. She will leave the old behind and step out as new.

Now is the time for that brilliant dialog that will knock everybody out of the chair.

But I don’t think about it that way when I write. That would give me a big writer’s block for sure. And the characters in my story don’t think “hey, I’m gonna say something memorable now”. They don’t know that what they say will change somebody’s life.

It still is just a scene when I write.

But although the character that speaks simply has a goal, it has to be said in a way that affects the character in the right way. It has to feel trustworthy.

This type of change in a person may take months or years and in a movie we got to achieve the same effect on five minutes.

Another thing that makes it difficult is a little boy at one and a half that likes to bang his hands on the keyboard when he sits in my lap. I don’t like to get angry and he is just telling me I’m boring, so we read some books instead.

Monday, October 27, 2008

That stunning piece of dialog

I had the prefect phrasing on my mind. A stunning piece of dialog that would give me an Oscar.

But the next second I was distracted.

And when I looked back on my text the absolute most unique lines in the world where completely gone from my mind.

What ever dialog I write in this scene now, it will never be as good as the one I forgot.

Photo by Wouter Hagens
Used under
GNU Free Documentation License

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Inspiration - Music, part VI

It’s Saturday again.

I can’t help taking this little television theme along in my musical inspiration series.

Yes, I watched 21 Jump Street when I was teen. I loved it. Sure, Johnny Depp, was handsome and all, but the adventures, the crimes, the heroes and the villains were like candy to my imagination.

I wrote several episodes just for the fun of it.

When I watched this video on YouTube my husband looked over my shoulder and asked where on Earth I could find any interest in that. Nostalgia I replied.

Yes, nostalgia. A feeling of loss as well. I’m grown up now. As a teen the mind is flying more freely. As 21 Jump Street had finished episodes it was so easy to pick the characters and place them in my own stories, my own episodes. It didn’t matter if there were quality in what I wrote or in the original show. What mattered were my own imagination and where it took me.

I miss that.

Here it is: 21 Jump Street

Inspiration - Music

Friday, October 24, 2008

About the images in this blog

I want people to respect my work and not use it without my permission.

The way I see it I then have to respect other people’s work. I can’t steal from others and then be surprised that my work is stolen.

That is why I am very careful when I select images to illustrate my blog posts. My main source is Wikimedia Commons. There it is easy to see what license applies.

Mostly I pick images that are Public Domain.

But sometimes I find images that I really like and feel is perfect, but are under some form of license. Then I do my best to give credit to the artist or photographer and follow the directives stated in the license.

What kind of images do I select?

They have to be relevant, but they may be relevant in an odd way. Like My heroine is speechless. The image is a cliché idea of a weak and fragile woman and my heroine is the opposite of that.

I try not to use symbols and symbolisms that I am not familiar with even if the image is cool. An image from culture or a religion that I know too little about might give signals that I didn’t intend.

The blog Thru Chocolate Eyes inspired me to have some kind of theme throughout the blog. So most of the images used lately passes through an image editor to get the right colors and get a fuzzy and transparent edge.

I hope you enjoy the result.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

He will try to convince


All scenes planned for the third and final act. All character’s goals are set for each scene.

I can continue to write on the actual script. At last.

I solved the situation with my villain in my “Final Battle” scene by thinking about what got him in that situation. The villain and the hero have completely different perspectives of things. My bad guy will not plead or explain. He will try to convince.

Today I will read the script to catch up so I don’t miss something and make the story jumpy. Then I will continue writing.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Santa Claus the sadist

My great grandfather was a sadist.

In Sweden our version of Santa Claus arrive in person at Christmas to give gifts to the children. Usually this is part belongs the father or grandfather of the family. He leaves to buy a newspaper and returns just in time to miss the special visit.

When my grandfather was a child his father appeared as Santa Claus. This he didn’t know. He believed in Santa Claus the Christmas that he got a wooden sword.

Santa instructed him to take care of it well and told him that when he returned next Christmas he would inspect it.

My grandfather took care of his sword but of course he played with it. And one day it broke.

The boy was terrified for Christmas when he would have to show Santa the broken sword. And Santa did really ask for the sword. My grandfather’s dad knew very well that the sword was broken.

Yet he demanded the boy to bring it out and show it to him, dressed up as Santa Claus.

He looked upon the sword and said that since it was broken and obviously not taken care of, he would not give him the shield that he would have got if the sword had been intact.

There were no Christmas gifts for my grandfather that year.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

And my bad guy wants what?

I am working on the goals for the “Final Battle”.

This is the scene where my hero meets the villain for the last time. The scene that ties the bag together and leaves no more loose ends than its needed to make it to the final image. It’s the scene where my hero passes all the tests and proves her worthy.

Yet it is very simple.

My hero has her goal. My villain has his. The goals contradict and we have a conflict.

I wrote the hero’s goal, looked at it and erased it. No, she was not seeking revenge. I rephrased it. This time it felt better.

But my villain, what is his goal? What does he want in this scene? To my surprise, I don’t know. I know what information will appear during this scene, but I have no idea what my bad guy wants right now at this point.

Does he want to explain and excuse himself? He knows he made mistakes but pleading is not his cup of tea. And I don’t think that he could care less about my hero’s opinion of him.

He can’t wish to kill her, because my hero must have the option to do so without excuses of being attacked.


Yes, simple in the meaning that all that is needed is two contradicting desires.

But simple does not mean easy.

Monday, October 20, 2008

And he died the following day

My father told me a fascinating story where my grandmother could have been prime suspect in a murder case.

Among the family friends there was an older man, single and childless.

One year my grandmother invited him to celebrate Christmas with the family since he didn’t have any family and used to spend Christmas alone.

The thing was that the guy was a stingy fellow that hardly even eat to save money. So when he arrived to my grandmother’s overwhelming Christmas dinner that he got for free, he ate. And he ate a lot.

And died the following day.

Now it turned out that this stingy fellow had a fortune on the bank.

The man’s will was opened before the funeral to see if my grandmother or her family benefited by the man’s death.

That was probably the only time my grandmother was happy to not be mentioned in a will.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Invite inspiration

Planning scenes is major boring.

No, it isn’t once I’ve started. But thinking about it and consider whether or not to bring the notebook up…

I use this blog to help me. I know that most of the World has other things to do than following my blog, but still it feels a little like the whole World is watching. So a progressbar has to be dynamic and moving otherwise I look bad.

And to make it dynamic and moving I have to write.

Some people might say that I’ll have to wait until I have inspiration.

Then I'll probably have to wait.

Inspiration that just comes to you with a desire to write happens from time to time. And yes, those moments are terrific. But, if I want to produce material in a tempo needed to be a professional writer some day I can’t sit on my butt and wait.

I need to learn to know how to get the inspiration to come to me. I need to be able to write when needed, not when I need it.

Other blog posts on the theme:
To start the creative flow
Creative flow among nappies

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Inspiration - Music, part V

I continue my Saturday-theme with Suzanne Vega’s “Luka”.

This song and its video is one of those I remember from when I was a kid. The seriousness and the helplessness in the text were so different from most songs.

It is so easy to look the other way.


I present to you "Luka" by Suzanne Vega:

Inspiration - Music

Friday, October 17, 2008

January 1980

Photo Ronny Ilvemo

I was a little bothered by the fact that I formed four nice positive images into a depressing story.

I asked my mother (who send me four images each week for my thinking-out-of-the-box exercise) to send me four "negative" images instead.

Since the exercise is meant to find other aspects of an image it is not that strange that nice photos become used in negative situations. But I don’t like finding negative things. I am a very positive person.

I got what I called for. One of the images she sent for was a photo from January 1980 when the ship Star Clipper brought down the Tjörn-bridge. Here is a link to the news that morning.

And the first thing my brain screams is “how on earth should I find something positive about that?”

I was about to turn seven 1980. We drove up to the bridge (or rather what was left of it) to see it with out own eyes. What I remember best is the road that was folded on top of the ship. I still have my drawings that I made when I got home.

Seven cars drove over the edge that foggy night. None in those cars survived.

I might have too many emotions surrounding that image to use that photo for that exercise.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

No, I'm not depressed.

I got four new images for my thinking-out-of-the-box exercise. Four nice images that turned into a depressing story. When I glued them in my notebook it was so obvious it was almost scary how I could turn these nice images into this:

(The first image might need a little explanation. It is a photo of a simplest form of railway crossing in Sweden.)

You are a free mind. You walk your way ahead. The road has its bumps and it gets muddy and is difficult to pass sometimes but hey, that’s life you think.

Someone halts you on your way and says: “Your way through life is way too difficult. It does not need to be that way.

Look! Follow this path and you will never find any bumps and the way is always smooth and easy.”

You look and it looks nice and green. Sure the option has its limits, but hey, you can always leave. There are no walls to stop you.

So you follow the new road.

As time passes you like the carefree and smooth way of life more and more. No bumps and no mud are in the road to stop you. You can move quickly and fast.

But the wilderness and unstructured way of life beside you does no longer give you comfort as a possible escape route. Danger might lurk behind the trees. You want to see what is ahead.

So you choose to have walls on each side. For comfort, so nothing can harm you. So you can keep your road free from bumps and mud.

Sure you got a ceiling as well, but it doesn’t matter. You can’t reach it, so it’s no real limitation. And you can still see the sky, so you can live with it.

And hey, you can always leave, right? There is a door out at the end.

Is there a door at the end? And how do you reach the end of the tunnel in the first place?

Look, it is green outside.

You don’t remember what wet moss smells like any longer.

You don’t remember what a bump felt like under your shoes. Or slippery mud.

You are safe.

And there is no door at the end. You closed it yourself.

Photos by Ronny Ilvemo

Look here for previous entries: Extercise

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Angelina Jolie

FR: Angelina Jolie, UNHCR Goodwill Ambassador, Brad Pitt and Kofi Annan with his spouse
at the Annual Meeting 2006 of the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland
Photo by: World Economic Forum from Cologny, Switzerland

Not too long ago I watched two movies (not at the same time of course) that both tried to tell me that horrible things go on in the world. The two movies were “Beyond Borders” with Angelina Jolie and Clive Owen and “Blood Diamond” with Djimon Hounsou, Leonardo DiCaprio and Jennifer Connelly.

Both movies were good and great efforts and passion were put into these films.

Never the less, it is not likely I will watch them again. Why? Because I want to be entertained. I don’t want to look at the horrors out in the world. I know there is, and I want to forget about it.

I am ashamed of this reaction. I should react to the messages in the movies and act. Help the world a little bit.

Like Angelina Jolie does. Sure, she earns money enough to support six kids and still use one third of her income to charity, but people with money tend to have an urge to keep them. She tries to make the world a better place for more people than her family.

And she goes to the places in need herself. She aint just paying her consicence to shut up.

I don't think she is doing this to stay famous. With that look and that bust she could be famous just staying in Hollywood.

I support Kiva and Médecins Sans Frontières. Maybe it is just to shut my consicence up, but the money is needed.

But I want to do more.

I can write a movie script. A great movie that will affect everybody.

Yes, sure, like Blood Diamond or Beyond Borders.

First of all, if I don’t like that kinds of movies, should I write one myself? And secondly, how can I write something about it, when I’ve never been there?

Filmography links and data courtesy of
The Internet Movie Database.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

About my script The Recreators

The Recreators is a saga about wizards and magic but mostly about our environment.

Some people have said it is alike Ursula LeGuin’s Earthsea novels. On one major point they are alike: They both have worlds that consist of islands. And yes, there are wizards in both, but completely different wizards. And the magic is all different. The message also.

Another has said I make fun of religion in this story. That is not my intention. I do not deny that I ask questions about God and God’s existence, but in my opinion that is not to make fun of religion. I take religion seriously and have great respect for other people’s beliefs. But all things can be questioned and discussed. That does not mean lack of respect.

This story started as a novel many years ago. I finished it but for some reason I never sent it to any publishing company.

I learned how to write movie scripts and after finishing my first script I started to adapt my novel into a script.

An interesting transformation that made the story a great deal better and more focused.

But as a movie script… The most common comment about it is: Can’t you write this as a novel instead?

I will. Again.

I consider to start this project during my 30 day break from my current project.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Inspiration - Music, part IV

When I watched this video for the first time I thought that it was the most beautiful images I’ve ever seen.

That may not have been an impression that lasted entirely, but then in 1985 I could not get enough of this video. I still like it, but it's hard to tell how much that is nostalgia.

Yes, I was a great fan of A-ha, and I thought the singer Morten Harket was incredibly handsome, but this is amazingly enough not a video that exposes the artists, so it can’t have been a only a pretty face that made me love this video.

Here I present: “Hunting High and Low” by A-ha

Inspiration - Music

Friday, October 10, 2008

Looking back and planning ahead

I have reached the point in the story that Blake Snyder calls ”All is lost”.

That is as far as I have made proper planning. See these two blog entries for background story: Dark night of the soul and My heart and my brain in cooperation.

Now I must stop writing and start to work out goals for each scene, as I did for all the previous scenes.

It has felt great so far. It has really been worth the time to work with the beat sheet and to notebook. Now when I have been planning ahead, the writing itself has been much easier.

“He had simply written down music already finished in his head.” Salieri said when he saw sheets of music by Mozart’s hand in the movie Amadeus.

I will not by any means say that I’m a genius like Mozart. And I am quite certain that there will be corrections.

But when I have been planning ahead like I had now, the scene is finished in my head when I get there. There are descriptions and phrasing to consider but I am very clear about the contents of the scene, its where and whys. I can see and hear it in my head.

I “simply” write down what is up there in my noodle.

And that feels great.

I feel great.

Even if I know that reality will hit me when I have a finished script that I want to sell, I think I can allow myself to enjoy the superb feelings that I have now.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

When pen and paper ain't enough

On Rouge Wave II – a site I recommend by the way – there is a discussion about the first ”buzz” in the head and what you do about it.

My first buzz is a strong scene where I only have vague ideas about the characters and where they came from.

When I write this down it feels so flat and uninspiring. There are two reasons why. One is that I don’t make much effort with the text since it is only a sketch for my own. The other reason is that the scene is so filled with emotions and those are difficult to put on paper.

What I really want to do is download that scene to the computer, so I can watch it on the screen. Like Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within.

You see, I need to get the scene out of my system, because it gets so strong that it blocks everything else. If I write it down things sort of settle and goes back to normal.

But it would be so great to be able to see that scene as it was, not rediscover it by the writings done.

Has anybody felt the same?

Filmography links and data courtesy of
The Internet Movie Database.

Here in another blog entry of interest: A scene pulled out of a unknown story

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

When the first draft is finished

I know that my current script is far from done but I start to feel the victory never the less.

When I have written the final page on the first draft I have a little plan about what to do next.

I will not do a single change for 30 days. I will place a countdown on this blog to remind myself.

During this time I will send the script to a few friends that usually are the first to read my writings.

I might place the script on TriggerStreet to gain further feedback, but usually the feedback there are unprofessional. That kind of feedback can be useful in a rough way.

When the 30 days have come to an end I will start rewriting. Not before. I will need a great deal of dicipline here.

Is 30 days a too short time to look upon the script with new, fresh eyes?

Monday, October 6, 2008

My heroine is speachless

It amazes me every time how a problem with the story can be solved by writing it down.

I had this scene with my hero and my villain that felt awkward and wrong. It didn’t make any sense. The logic was vacant.

I brought up my notebook on the bus and wrote the problem down and continued to write down my thoughts. Other questions appeared. Answers revealed themselves.

Practical problems appeared. A supporting character has overheard the conversation. How do I make it obvious that he has not heard a certain part?

If the villain speaks in a low voice or whispers his threat, it can’t be overheard. But why would he do that? He thinks they are alone.

He is a man that likes to demonstrate his powers. He corners my hero, forces himself close to her. Then there is no need to yell anything. It is even more threatening that he does not have to yell.

After awhile I have the scene ready in my head. Just to write it down.

This amazes me. Every time.

Sunday, October 5, 2008


Internet is amazing.

I can understand why musicians can look upon it as a threat. Because selling CDs is a vital income.

But Internet makes them immortal as well.

I have found old music videos on YouTube that I thought was long gone and forgotten. But some kept their videotapes and converted their treasures and uploaded them on YouTube. Things that used to be hidden deep into the vaults of the television companies are now there to see and rediscover for everybody.

I think that is amazing.

That is immortality.

There is a backside to every coin though. Everybody does not want to be immortal, but on the Internet it is not your choice to take.

And immortality alone does not make money.

Should our artists do their things for free and only keep it as a hobby?

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Inspiration - Music, part III

My father has great interest in music and I grew up watching music videos. Some I remember well, several years later.

“Over the hills and far away” by Gary Moore is one of those.

I liked it at once and bought the record (Wild Frontier). I don't think I ever listen to the whole record, for some reason. But “Over the hills and far away” was played alot.

When I met the guy that I later married and he browsed through my records this stood out. Mostly I had musicals, happy-pop and classical music. And Gary Moore. I’ve always fancied music with a good beat, rhythm.

I really like the images in this video. Here it is: “Over the hills and far away” by Gary Moore

Inspiration - Music, part II

Thursday, October 2, 2008

About my script Broken Pieces

Broken Pieces is a short script I wrote a few years back. It has not been produced yet. It’s not because the script’s quality. It had quite a few interested people that considered it. It’s because of the budget.

A producer of a short film is usually an inspiring producer and/or director. The budget is limited.

Broken Pieces demands computer generated effects.

Otherwise I think it could be made with a small budget, but I doubt it could be made without the computer generated effects.

I wrote the first version of the script when I read a short story with the same name that my mother had written. It inspired me and I asked if I could use her story and she said yes. I didn’t however just adapt her story, but made it my own.

Her story was about a relationship she once had. I thought she had made herself the villain which wasn’t fair. There are always two in a relationship. So I gave the story a little more balance, in my opinion.

The ending was not happy though. And a little weird. I got questions and complaints about the ending. Why did it end like that? It didn’t make any sense they said.

So I left the basic true story behind and considered my script as it was, free from background stories that only I knew about.

Then a happy ending revealed itself. And it felt much more logical. A happy ending is usually also more comforting.

Would you like to read it? Here it is. Please feel free to leave feedback.