I saw in the New Year watching Bright Star (Jane Campion, 2009), one of my favourite films. It was a quiet start to the year but I have to say I was more than happy to end 2015 calmly and ease my way into 2016. 2015 was relentlessly busy. There was so much thinking to be done, so much musing, I could have been thinking out loud on this blog a lot. But I kept thinking the better of it. The result? Just the one post for 2015. There were many words elsewhere and along the way but I found it hard to commit to them.
Something of a love affair
Perhaps ‘affair’ is not the right word. It was more a love-hate scenario, I’m afraid. I found myself really quite liking the delete button on my keyboard. I spent more time that I ought to have communing with the delete button. Not just the delete button, I’m afraid. There were also untold numbers of erasers (I started writing in pencil specifically so I could rub words out), shredders and wild ripping of pages in half and then half again. … Not a lot of what I wrote in 2015 survived.
There was writing for work, of course. I’m not thinking about that. The main issue was writing for uni. That was fraught, more so than I expected. I danced about my ideas for everything, finding it all frustrating and didn’t really want to bring that to this space. I’m only bringing it up now because I’m in the process of regrouping and making some plans for changes.
This is not just about the New Year
I’m not just posting this today because of it being 1 January. That is a nice coincidence. Today also happens to be a day that I have taken off. I wasn’t going to. I had planned to head to uni and get some work done. In the end, I just couldn’t resist. A day off is golden, such a beautiful thing and I’ve fallen into the trap of the public holiday. They can be so alluring, so glamorous – in its archaic sense of casting a spell.
Ensnared I may be but I’m pleased that I have not frittered the day away. I’ve pottered about in my study which is not before time. As I tend to race in and out there is a lot of ‘sorting my environment’ to be done. Filing and cataloguing books and DVDs are tasks that I know should be routine but … Let’s just say it is good to have dealt with a couple of the piles that were teetering precariously. I’ve been able to tick off a few jobs and tomorrow beckons as a productive day back at my desk. Yay. Seriously.
Refreshing this blog has been on my list of things to do for months. Some of the planning I did for the 2015 revamp that never happened is sitting nicely in a file, ready to go. I sketched out a project last night for the year ahead.
The plan – as it stands at the moment
I acknowledge it is possible that I don’t need another project. I’ve just handed the first 10 000 or so words of my thesis and they need to be radically reworked before I head into the next chapter I’m writing. I’m looking at it more as a recreational pursuit. It is sort of ‘studyish’ but also my kind of fun … Have I mentioned before that I’m a bit of a nerd? I am.
I’ve started the year with Bright Star. I’m thinking it would be nice to watch a film that links to poem on a regular basis. Read the poem – watch the film – engage in some related (but not too much) associated readings – write about it a bit. As I’ve already indicated, I know this is my sort of fun and certainly not for everyone. I haven’t sourced copies of all the films yet so there might need to be changes. I also don’t know how I’m going to go for time. That said, here’s my list so far. You may notice I’ve gone for an eclectic mix and am open to versions that received less than glowing reviews…
- January Bright Star (Jane Campion, 2009)
- February O Brother, Where Art Thou? (Joel and Ethan Coen, 2000)
- March Jabberwocky (Terry Gilliam, 1977)
- April The Raven (I’m not sure which version … Charles Brabin, 1915; Louis Friedlander, 1935; Roger Corman, 1963; James McTeigue, 2012?)
- May Howl (Rob Epstein & Jeffrey Friedman, 2010)
- June Lady Lazarus (Sandra Lahire, 1991)
- July Winter Days (Kihachirō Kawamoto, 2003)
- August Beowulf (Robert Zemeckis, 2007)
- September Beowulf and Grendel (Sturla Gunnarsson, 2005)
- October Under Milkwood (Andrew Sinclair, 1972 … or, Kevin Allen, 2015?)
- November The Nightmare Before Christmas (Tim Burton, 1993)
- December How the Grinch Stole Christmas (Ron Howard, 2000)
My year is packed already but I’m looking forward to knowing there is poetry on my horizon.