Monthly Archives: January 2015

Win #1 of 2015: Two tickets to The Tempest – Globe on Screen

“Hell is empty and all the devils are here.”
― William Shakespeare, The Tempest

The Tempest was one of Shakespeare’s last plays and, in my opinion, one of his greatest. It’s most certainly the work of someone who has lived a long life and seen much. Someone who can look back at successes and failures, times of joy and sadness, and understand how they all fit into the grand scheme of things.

Yesterday, I got  to see this play on the big screen as it was performed in the Globe theatre (this is part of the Globe on Screen series). As the woman behind me said to her companion, “this is the next best thing to being in London and in the theatre itself”. One day, I hope to have such an opportunity.

Roger Allam (The Woman in BlackEndeavour) played Prospero just as I imagined him when I first read the play at age 17. I envisioned Prospero as this larger than life figure that at one moment could be a kind and loving father and the next a frightening presence with magical powers.

Caliban was just as horrific and revolting as I pictured, as well. This was due not only to the actor’s performance, but the excellent costume and make-up he sported as the island’s monster. Also, the spirit Ariel was beautiful and graceful and had the perfect other worldly quality needed.

The other characters are less interesting, and I am rather bored by the romance between Prospero’s daughter Miranda and Ferdinand in the play. Yet, how Prospero manipulates that relationship and causes the young couple to fight for one another is interesting. He basically tells the audience that love that is too easily won is not a deep or lasting love. When people have to struggle to be with one another, their relationship is often stronger.

I don’t want to reveal too much about the plot because I really hope all of you will read it, watch it, or at least check out some of the play’s great quotes. In my opinion, this play isn’t read enough, and should be appreciated as much as HamletMacbethOthello, and other more well-known Shakespearean masterpieces.

Now, to the contest details: I won this prize through an online contest put on by Bard on the Beach. The tickets were worth $29.98. The year is off to a great start and I’m looking forward to many more wonderful experiences in the “brave new world” of 2015!

Year in Review: 2014

Moving Forward
Moving Forward

In the Christmas television classic, Santa Claus is Comin’ to Town, there’s a song that always rings true to me. It’s called, “Put One Foot in Front of the Other.” The crux of the lyrics is that change can come from just standing up and taking a few steps in a new direction. And, that’s what I tried to do in 2014 with my blog.

I continued to enter contests that would win me cash and prizes, but I also entered those that would challenge me. There were three examples of this.

The first involved taking photos of public art in Port Moody. I had hoped that one of my photos might be chosen and featured in the city’s 2015 calendar. Unfortunately, none of them were, but I learned a great deal in the process. I realized that I wasn’t aware that there was so much art in this city. Also, the act of going out and taking photos from multiple angles and trying to capture the best light was really enjoyable, as was the editing process later. Thus, photography has become an even more important part of my life than it was before, and learning Photoshop has certainly helped with that as well.

The second contest that challenged me was the DAVIDs Tea Contest, which I have blogged about at length and I invite you to reread my post here, if you haven’t already. All I’d like to add now to what I wrote before was that enjoyed stretching my creative muscles for this contest. I’m not a huge fan of puns and this naming challenge made me think outside of my comfort zone. That’s a really great exercise for a writer and something I resolved to do more of.

Consequently, we have reached the third contest: National Novel Writing Month. Again, I wrote about this at length here. Writing a 50,000+ word novel in a month is a huge task that I think I am still recovering from! Yet, I’m proud that I stuck it out. I’m happy I learned things through the research process and even waxed nostalgic about the early 1990s! In the end, I did win ten free ebooks from Kobo that added up to almost $50. I will really enjoy reading these in the coming winter months, especially as some focus on how to become a better writer.

So, that’s it. 2014. Not a year that I really enjoyed, but certainly one filled with lots of learning and adventure. I’m looking forward to 2015 and more opportunities to become a better writer, editor, and person. All the best to all of you!

*Total cash and prizes won in 2014: approximately $240.00