Dear friends of the unreal — I just wrote and published the first of a series called “Why I write about. . . ” in conjunction with the forthcoming release of my second novel Pretend Plumber, which will be out sometime this spring. You can read the first little piece here.
Speaking of unreal… I am trying to wrap my head around the War in Ukraine, and I keep on coming back to my personal impressions of the German Democratic Republic (aka, East Germany) and the educators from the Soviet Bloc countries whom I met during those stays. I have already written a bit about the GDR here. But I feel like I have more to say. Anecdotal things, but still, they might possibly be relevant in some way to the current situation.
I’m recommitting to the read of Proust’s “big book” (I’m a quarter of the way through volume 4), and am also reading Natashia Deón’s fascinating, genre-busting second novel, The Perishing. You can read about this sci fi/historical/mystery novel here.
Finally, I’d like to share a couple of thoughts about the film Spencer, which I just watched on Amazon Prime. The film is a kind of dark fairy-tale, showing the crisis point of a princess imprisoned in an elegant, but menacing tower. At times the film reminded me of Ingmar Bergman’s movies. It’s beautiful, creepy, and increasingly surreal in the treatment of its subject matter. But it’s not a cerebral film; it’s an emotional one, as evidenced by a scene with Diana and her two sons, where they play a game, where, under the guise of playfulness, they all reveal themselves and their intense love for each other. It’s remarkable film in my opinion. It does something that all the “realistic” portraits of Diana can’t do and that is, give us an empathetic entree into how the princess might have felt, and how the royal family might have seemed to her in this “anti-bio-pic.”
Have a good week.