Sunday, September 26, 2010

Themes and Theories

As I sit here watching the third Harry Potter movie I have seen in a week, I wonder to myself, "What is it about this movie that makes me excuse the fact that this movie is entirely about magic, which ordinarily disturbed me, forgive that factor now?" Well, it's interesting, if you watch something for yourself you can observe the pros and cons of it. You see, once I sat down and watched the movie and analyzed it a hundred times, I realized that in the end, good and evil are still in conflict here. And we're not just talking "good magic" and "bad magic." In the first movie, Sorceror's Stone, the only reason Harry killed the bad guy was because of the love he had for his parents, and vice-versa. In the second one, Chamber of Secrets, Harry Potter was helped by the Pheonix, which was only called because he was devoutely loyal to his teacher. In the third movie, Prisoner of Azkaban, J.K. Rowling returns to the love Harry has for his parents when he uses his memories of them to fuel his magic powers.

So what I find more attractive about these movies is not the intense entertaining features it holds, for indeed- it is quite entertaining, but at the end of each movie, J.K. Rowling continues to teach a positive lesson. I'm not saying in any way, shape, or form that these lessons can take place of Scripture or other more important materials. But for a secular movie, I really must say that it is well-done. Now, I must finish watching the movies and read the books to really be able to say that for sure, but this is my assessment so far.

As to how this has affected me as a writer, I suppose you could just say this is how a soon-to-be-authoress analyzes materials that are already in place to see how she can better her own. In my books, I plan on teaching, first, through negative example. Then as my characters reform, show what an imperfect human being striving for virtue should look like: humble and good. Harry Potter is a good example of a "good" character, and I suppose many people would look to him as an example. However, with the Holy Spirit residing in me, I cannot say I look to anyone but Christ for my example of perfection.

It's getting late now, but I hope you can make some sense of my nonsensical post! Goodnight all! God bless!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

The Beginning

To answer everyone's questions at one time, and for many of you, this may be the second or third time, I began writing out of sheer boredom. I was not divinely inspired or struck with some cosmic knowledge of the unkown; I was doing Math. It is as simple as that. Believe me, in my mind, 14 x 3 is not nearly as interesting as creating odd names that no one has ever heard before, like Garresh, Lenna, Nella, Tyron, and Galbraieth. The fact that Greek and Roman mythology was also the preceding subject probably did not assist the matter of my lack of attention to my mathematics. For those adults who are reading this (particularly my highschool math tutor), have no fear! I passed my college requirements for Math with no sweat. My writing, on the other hand, took an unexpected flight! What began as a list of interesting names and imaginary places turned into images and scenes in which my characters acted out what I wanted them to do and say. I must say, the power to manipulate characters in the hands of a 12-year-old girl may be a bit frightening to the adults who are reading this page, but to me, it was pure ecstacy! I delighted to have so-and-so turn and say saucily, "Don't think I've overlooked the priviledge!" while tossing her amber locks, in a rather mocking disarray, to one side.

Once my characters continued in their rather odd conversations and actions, everything formed itself into story-format. At 12 years old, I wondered whether it would be right to write a fairy tale, for at that time that was truly all it came to be. I asked my mom that very question one night, and I cannot quite remember everything she said. But the main point was simply that there was nothing wrong with fairy tales. They were nice stories for people to read and enjoy. At that very moment, I decided I wanted to write my own fairy tale. There were several fairy tales I wished I could rewrite or do my own way. I mean, seriously, why didn't Cinderella just smack that snotty step-sister across the mouth with a cinder-block and say, "Clean the fire-place yourself! You've got two hands!" In writing my own fairy-tale, I could do just that if I wished. In my original draft, my main character underwent such tortures and responded in a similar way, but I found it too close to the original Cinderella story, so I trashed that idea and came up with one a bit more original.

As things progressed, I must admit, I pulled a Lucille Ball when the bread grew out of the oven and pushed me against the counter: everything grew to a size I never imagined. In my second "draft" for the book, I had planned about 40 chapters. You should be proud of me! Upon being informed that such a novel would be much too large for my younger friends to read, I scratched and shaved my child down to 31 chapters. Even now, I feel like I could continue going and going, but out of respect for my readers' eyesight, I have abstained.

All the while, a desire to share what I had written slowly grew inside me. When it came time to begin actually writing, I was about 14 years old. And by that point, I had already planned to write a prequil. The obvious action, then, was to begin writing with Book 1. However, when I sat down to write, I just could not write a satisfactory beginning. I wrote nearly 50 different beginnings, but I trashed them all! None of them felt right. Whereas, I knew how I wanted to begin Book 2. With a renewed vigor, I plunged into my task. I finished the first draft of the first chapter of the second book in a single evening.

The rest, as they say, is history. More and more, I wanted to share what I wrote. But I knew if I wanted to share my writing, my stories needed to be meaningful. Craftily, I set my mind to implementing a moral into my story. I was successful, but as for the exclusion of a symbolic diety of my Lord, Jesus Christ, I will save that for another day. Let me be satisfied with saying that I have made it meaningful to the general reader for now. Once I had successfully added that, I did not feel so ashamed to share it.

Even now, however, as I near the time to show my work to the world, I grow more and more afraid that my friends will be disappointed in me. Don't get me wrong, I love what I write. My stories are a part of me. But perhaps that is it; I am afraid that by rejecting my story, I, too, will also be rejected. So please remember as you read my story that I am a sinner just like you and this story will by no means be perfect. It is only my feeble efforts at hoping to influence my world through literature and to further the glory of God!

For His Glory Alone,

Your Blog Author,

Heather Glenn

Pen Name: Gabriella Reed