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Randee Dawn
Writer. Reader. Never enough time for either.
Recent Activity
One of these days I'll write a longer post about the joys of discovering the fiction Roald Dahl wrote for adults, rather than children (most of us only know him by his "Matilda" and "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory" books). It's twisty, detailed, tightly-written and often delightfully nasty. But for... Continue reading
Posted 6 days ago at Ripped from the Headlines
I have fallen off the posting wagon, not for lack of things to say, but time to say them in. So in honor of my recent "Dune" posting, I'll just leave you with this. "Dune," in gummi worms. It is, as one wag in the comments notes, a dessert planet.... Continue reading
Posted Apr 10, 2014 at Ripped from the Headlines
UPDATE: Long term fans of "How I Met Your Mother" may also be experiencing bouts of pacing whiplash. I didn't watch the series except hither and thither and liked the ending, but I'm not invested in it. Either way, this article makes points I'm also making here: Too much, too... Continue reading
Posted Apr 1, 2014 at Ripped from the Headlines
Speaking of mining dreams for content. My pal Tamara over here has a call out for talented playwrights interested in a prompt based on a real-actual-honest-to-spaghetti-monster-dream someone had. She writes on Facebook: I am lucky enough to be a producer and actor of new short plays once a year, every... Continue reading
Posted Mar 30, 2014 at Ripped from the Headlines
Finding the right book club feels like dating. Many will be tried, few will succeed. At least, that's been my experience. Over the years I occasionally feel a need to actually share my reading experiences, which are wide and varied and as much about finding book-lovin' folk as it is... Continue reading
Posted Mar 27, 2014 at Ripped from the Headlines
Recently, a link popped up all over my Facebook thread, informing me how I could begin breezing through books at a much more rapid rate than I do. If I don't know anything more about that particular link, it's because, f that noise. I see no need to read faster.... Continue reading
Posted Mar 25, 2014 at Ripped from the Headlines
Who says dreams are dead time? I woke up with an idea for a short story on Sunday morning and pounded out a good start. The only problem now: Where to take the darn thing. Secondary problem: Finding the time to finish it up. The important part is starting. It's... Continue reading
Posted Mar 24, 2014 at Ripped from the Headlines
Life rarely melds together this neatly; if there wasn't video/audio proof of this Louis C.K/Bradley Cooper/Sean Penn connection, I'd have to think the following video was a hoax. But it goes to prove that you never know where life is taking you next, that one day the handsome nobody in... Continue reading
Posted Mar 21, 2014 at Ripped from the Headlines
This morning, I watched Veronica Roth jump into a bathtub full of marshmallows. I'm a bit behind the times -- she did this in 2010 and posted it on her blog, a promise fulfilled to her readers about what she'd do if she landed a book deal. And when "Divergent"... Continue reading
Posted Mar 20, 2014 at Ripped from the Headlines
Your dog is not meandering hither and yon and re-orienting itself twelve times before unloading its waste materials on a whim, or even probably because it wants to find a great smell first. No, says a new study, it's all based on the earth's magnetic alignment. Continue reading
Posted Jan 4, 2014 at Ripped from the Headlines
Movies are fantasy. We know this. We know that normal people living normal lives don't look like George Clooney or Angelina Jolie (though we can better imagine they might look like Jennifer Lawrence, who is accessable and beautiful), and we know the lives they are living on screen are a... Continue reading
Posted Dec 18, 2013 at Ripped from the Headlines
You'd think writing was just about putting words on a page, in a coherent and potentially attractive and compelling order. And you'd be right. But as with any interest/specialty/art what have you thing that people focus their lives around, apparently there's a hell of a lot of technical jargon, too.... Continue reading
Posted Mar 13, 2013 at Ripped from the Headlines
I'm a little late to the party, but I can't recommend highly enough Gillian Flynn's terrific "Gone Girl." I ran through it in about ten days (which considering my schedule is pretty swift) and though it'll sound like a cliche, hadn't felt a book emotionally yo-yo me like that in,... Continue reading
Posted Mar 12, 2013 at Ripped from the Headlines
In lieu of anything significant from my pea brain today, how about a list from Emma Coates, the story artist at Pixar? 22 Rules for Storytelling Terrific advice there, including: "Putting it on paper lets you start fixing it. If it stays in your head, a perfect idea, you’ll never... Continue reading
Posted Mar 7, 2013 at Ripped from the Headlines
When I got started writing for newspapers and magazines, I did it for peanuts. Not literally legumes, but CDs. I was writing reviews for a tiny paper in Boston called The Beat, which was essentially done out of a basement and given away free in stores, and if I got... Continue reading
Posted Mar 6, 2013 at Ripped from the Headlines
We've all got evidence from somewhere in our childhoods that mom thought our artwork was awesome. Frame-worthy. My mom's particularly great at this kind of stuff: She has a framed picture of a hamburger I did in pastel in an art class -- taken from an Arby's ad -- hanging... Continue reading
Posted Mar 5, 2013 at Ripped from the Headlines
Here's why I know anything about jazz, or Gaelic culture, or the criminal justice system: I wanted to write a book. Yes, NYU's continuing education program may have come in handy, a bit, on that latter one. But why would anyone bother to educate themselves on arcane knowledge just for... Continue reading
Posted Feb 28, 2013 at Ripped from the Headlines
As I told M Sunday night around 12:15 am (so okay, it was early Sunday morning), it's easier than breaking rocks to get paid to cover the Oscars from the comfort of your own home office ... but six hours in front of the TV and computer screen ain't for... Continue reading
Posted Feb 25, 2013 at Ripped from the Headlines
Me, writer's group last night: "The hardest part of writing a book is figuring out how to do it." Much raucous laughter. The thing is, that's true, even if completely obvious. People always ask "where do you get your ideas"? Ideas, frankly, are like flowers at a botanical garden. Everybody's... Continue reading
Posted Feb 13, 2013 at Ripped from the Headlines
"American Idol" is back on again, and it really is oh, so easy to look at those people and say: "Shit, I could do that." And though there's less meanness and crappy singers on than in the Simon Cowell years, it's even easier to say, "Those people are morons. Can't... Continue reading
Posted Feb 8, 2013 at Ripped from the Headlines
Right now, there's nothing I'd really rather be doing than reading my current book. (Okay, maybe something involving a hot fudge sundae and a white sandy beach while getting a backrub might come out on top.) But when you've gotten your hooks into a book that just makes you keep... Continue reading
Posted Feb 4, 2013 at Ripped from the Headlines
Good news: My writing group is preparing to start meeting again. Bad news: I haven't done any fresh writing since we last met. This should be an incentive, but it keeps feeling like the last Jenga piece you pull before the whole tower collapses in. More later today, possibly. Continue reading
Posted Jan 29, 2013 at Ripped from the Headlines
Went hiking yesterday, did about 6 or 7 miles in very light patchy snow up towards Gertrude's Nose in the Mohunk Preserve. Went with a small group of people I didn't know and had some light conversation along the way, but mainly I like to go hiking to be in... Continue reading
Posted Jan 28, 2013 at Ripped from the Headlines
Singing has a checkered past with me. I love singing, I love music, but put me in front of people to do it and things haven't always gone so well. (As a kid I was at a summer camp where we were all asked to perform in a pseudo talent... Continue reading
Posted Jan 25, 2013 at Ripped from the Headlines
So what if you gave a reading and nobody came? Not the highlight of Arisia for me, but it happens. The programmers ask if you're an author, and if you are, they'll generally slate you in with a couple of other people to sit behind a table and read some... Continue reading
Posted Jan 23, 2013 at Ripped from the Headlines