Category Archives: Wordy Wednesday

Long Headlines for Wordy Wednesday

All over the Internet, blogs celebrate Wordless Wednesday by posting images instead of writing.  As a writers blog, we must protest.  And what better way to protest than to post an image of what just might be the longest headline in a mainstream newspaper?

 

 

The version above was shared by Amy Vernon, and is pretty long and humorous.  But after it was captured and shared it on social media, the headline was altered, adding a word and replacing three words with longer ones, making the following headline even longer…

 

 

Can long headlines work?  I would say this is an example of when they can. A long, startling headline with plenty of words.

These pictures might not be worth a thousand words, but for Wordless Wednesday they’ll do.

 

RECOMMENDED: Wordy Wednesday – Hagrid moonlights

 RECOMMENDED: Lyrics – The Ent garage door broken boca raton the Entwife (with video)

GD Star Rating
loading...
GD Star Rating
loading...

Wreck-It Ralph and Character Jobs, Part I

Although I haven’t watched “Wreck-It Ralph,” I have read the (highly recommended) screenplay, and it sparked some musings about characters and their jobs.

“I gotta say, it becomes kinda hard to love your job… when no one else seems to like you for doing it.”

–Wreck-It Ralph

Wreck-It Ralph, as an anti-hero and video-game villain in his day job, is in fine company. In his book What Foreigners Need To Know About America From A To Z, Lance Johnson provides surveys that list some of the service industries and related jobs Americans rank as lowest and complain about the most:

  • Oil companies
  • Real estate agents
  • HMOs
  • Tobacco companies
  • Auto dealers
  • Cell phone companies (contracts)
  • Collection agencies
  • Banks
  • Auto repair
  • Mortgage brokers

If your characters hold a profession everybody hates, that makes your job as a writer more challenging, but in the case of Wreck-It Ralph, it can also be a rewarding journey.  Everyone (including, ahem, writers) can relate to days in which no one appreciates what you do. Yes, Wreck-It Ralph is about Generation X, the video game and most maligned recent generation, but it is also about our jobs and our livelihoods.

Does the job define the character? 

Does the job define the person? In our society, yes, it does.

Does the job define the character?  In the case of cop dramas, legal dramas, political dramas, hard-boiled police procedurals, stories about sex workers, stories set in the entertainment industry, stories about teachers, even family dramas in which Mom and Dad are the (toughest of all) job titles (what parent hasn’t felt unappreciated at some point?), the answer is yes.

Whether it’s Detective Olivia Benson on “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit” who lives for the job, Sherlock Holmes, Captain Kirk (when the movies prompted him to admiral and took him away from the Enterprise, that sparked major character conflict and a four-movie arc), there are many examples in which the job defines the character. But it’s also the character’s relationship to the job that creates drama and conflict.

FREE help to describe your characters!

In Wreck-It-Ralphs’s case, he just wants to be a part of society and be valued. His external goal is to get a medal, but in the course of “going turbo” and leaving his game, he develops other relationships.

This works for true stories, too: If your client has a job that the public has preconceptions, especially negative, about, such as the mortgage industry (Confessions of a Subprime Lender), IRS agents, Hollywood agents (sorry), salespeople, or politicians (if you land such a gig), your job is to make the case as to why the reader should care:  Is it a tell-all?  A personal struggle with illness?  A friendship or love story that changes lives? A how-to book on consumer advice?  A cause that’s bigger than the job?

Yes, it is hard to separate people from their jobs, because one of the first questions we ask is, “What do you do?” Why would your characters, including in nonfiction, be any different?  Also, other than their stated job title, characters have different jobs to do in your story.  Hero, comic relief, best friend, messenger, shapeshifter, mentor, sidekick…

Don’t knock the villains (even though we all love to). In my follow-up post, I’ll give personal injury attorney boca love to the antagonist/villain’s job and why, in Ralph’s words, “I’m bad, and that’s good. I will never be good, and that’s not bad. There’s no one I’d rather be than me.”

Back to the job!

GD Star Rating
loading...
GD Star Rating
loading...

Scriptless with Chantalyne

For Wordy Wednesday, I present to you a “Scriptless” episode co-starring Chantalyne. Name Your Tune is scriptless because no script – no screenplay – was ever written. An idea was presented and discussed. Three or four takes were filmed. Then it was off to post-production and the cutting room floor, where Eric Greer and some of his colleagues put it all together. Actually, in a way this is almost more of a Wordless Wednesday than a Wordy Wednesday.

I am proud of Chantalyne, her first time co-staring in a film.

For the record, you don’t have to go scriptless yourself. We have plenty of good screenplay writers you can hire if you have an idea for a feature film that Hollywood really should know about.

Enjoy this scriptless episode…

Please note that this video has also been cross-posted at http://self-help.thehappyguy.com/2013/01/09/name-your-tune/

GD Star Rating
loading...
GD Star Rating
loading...

Children of Connecticut (lyrics)

As a parent, I was shocked by the killing spree in Connecticut last week. My first thought was, “Oh my God, whatever would I do if that happened at my kids’ school?”

For Wordy Wednesday, I was moved to write the lyrics below. I had hoped Chantalyne would sing them for you. She said she wanted to, but each time she said so, she set aside the lyrics.

Normally this would be where I would give her a good nudge, to help tip the scales in a pre-teen’s constant struggle between motivation and laziness. But given the delicate subject matter, I decided to abstain this time.

Therefore, I present you the lyrics of Children of Connecticut today without vocal accompaniment.

Need lyrics written?  Click here.

Lyrics to Children of Connecticut

Children of Connecticut
My heart goes out to you
I know that I can never feel
The things you’re going through

The hurt, the pain
The doubt, the fears
The shock, the strain
The eyes filling up with tears…
[pause]

Children of Connecticut
My heart goes out to you
I’m sending you long distance love
It’s all that I can do

Killer in Connecticut
My mind is bent on you
There is no way to understand
What you were going through

You took a gun
Up off the shelf
Shot everyone
And then you shot yourself…
[pause]

Killer in Connecticut
My mind is bent on you
What makes a person lose his head
And do the things you do?

People of the Planet Earth
What are we going to do
Another crazy killer strikes
And leaves us feeling blue

It’s not the first
Won’t be the last
Not quite the worst
Wish this was all long past…
[pause]

People of the Planet Earth
What are we going to do
To save our kids from killing sprees
After all that we’ve been through

Victims of Connecticut
My prayers go out to you
Your lives were cut way too short
There was nothing you could do

You learned, you played
You laughed you cried
You slept, you ate
You lived, and then you died…
[pause]

Victims of Connecticut
My prayers go out to you
May your souls rest in peace
May God’s love be with you

(c) David Leonhardt
All rights reserved.

GD Star Rating
loading...
GD Star Rating
loading...