Monthly Archives: June 2016

Vikings – Definitely NOT Veggies Tales

History is brutal. Most blockbuster movies gloss over the blood and brutality nations used against one another to gain power. One of the most brutal clans in history were the Vikings. *caveat – I’m not Scandinavian, but I did stay at a hotel this month*
I never planned on watching the TV show “Vikings.” It was sheer boredom on my lunch break and a random text from my brother. I blame him for my four season rabbit hole.


*Poster for Season 3*

“Vikings”, produced and aired on the History Channel, is loosely based on the surviving stories of Ragnar Lothbrok, a Viking king. Records from the era were spotty at best. It’s hard to tell myth from history, but for Ragnar, it was a bloody life. Every day was a struggle, from farming to healing from battle wounds.


This show is NOT for anyone sensitive to gore or blood. There are axes, swords and spears. Beheadings and torture methods were used to prove a point. Gangrene and beatings were common in battles or for prisoners. Vikings scrabbled for food and murdered for gold.


It is also decidedly not Christian world view based. In fact, Vikings worshiped multiple gods and downright despised the “Christian God.” Some of the more pivotal moments are centered around the struggle with Ragnar’s tolerance of God. It was a capital offense to shun Odin.


However, blood and guts aside, the storytelling is superb. An underlying subplot woven through half a season, slapped me in the face at the end of season two. The pace is as hectic as their brutal battles. And, there are some sexual scenes. While no bits and parts are out on display, the intent and visuals make it crystal clear.


Ragnar may be the central, fantastically flawed character, but the supporting cast adds layer upon layer to each episode. Lagertha makes me want to take up sword fighting and become a shield maiden.


Always be yourself…unless you can be Lagertha. Then be Lagertha.

But I’m not sure I could get past licking the seer’s hand…ew.


Seasons 1 through 3 are currently available on Hulu. Season 4 is available through iTunes. And Season 5? I’m going to go cry in a corner until 2017.

Love and Friendship – Movie Style

I love to go to the movies. Even better? I love to go see a Jane Austen flick on the big screen. So when my friends and I decided to go see “Love and Friendship,” I was a happy camper.



This ditty is based on Miss Austen’s novella, “Lady Susan.” Being a lover of all things Austen, I was ready for new fodder. I’ve seen every version of “Emma” and “Pride and Prejudice” there is, along with the other lesser known movies. Jane Austen always seemed to touch on the fact that women of her time were little more than chattel or social pawns to climb the ranks in society. If you didn’t have the money, you weren’t much use to anyone.


Such is the case for Lady Susan Vernon. She may have the right name and connections, but she is broke and couch surfing at relatives. Her only hope rests in marrying off her eligible daughter to finance their lives.


Kate Beckinsale, in the lead role, nails the self-serving woman who digs her charms into the much younger Reginald DeCoursey, loaded with land, family and money. All the while, she strings on a married man and casually flirts with the outlandish Sir Martin.

Kate as Susan

Director Whit Stillman uses much of the original language. It takes a bit to get used to, even with a charming British accent. That said, he never loses the humor Jane Austen intended–right down to the miraculous pregnancy announcement.


Enjoy the breathtaking cinematography and costumes. But if you’re expecting lackadaisical dialogue, you should skip. Full eyes and ears on this one, folks.

Sit Still

I write this wishing I had opened my emails this morning to a long awaited invitation. Instead, there was some spam, a rejection, a loop wishing a friend “Happy Birthday,” and a couple of updates on blogs I read.



Though I feel lost in the mass of submissions, I plug along with my manuscript. Somewhere along the way, I picked up a couple of writing assignments for Fervr and PURSUE. They just kinda fell into my lap–right time, right place, whereas my book hasn’t hit that sweet spot yet.


Do I get discouraged because my manuscript hasn’t been given more than a cursory glance? You betcha. It’s like sitting at an empty intersection at a red light. My brain looks left, then right. “Should you go? You should go. No…be patient and wait. Maybe.”


Sitting still is hard for me. I’m the kid bouncing in the backseat of the car that God is shushing, telling me to sit down. “Are we there yet?”


When it comes down to it, I have to ask myself: do I trust God when His answer is to wait? Of course I do. Why wouldn’t I trust God? I mean, He invented the platypus, so I can certainly chill out. I just need to lay off the caffeine and keep writing.


Besides, until God opens the door, I’ll probably run right into it while it’s still closed and then complain about the bruise. I’m good at maiming myself.

Sliding Down The Looking Glass

Over the weekend, had a chance to take Thing 2 to Alice Through The Looking Glass. I’m an unabashed Tim Burton/Johnny Depp/Danny Elfman fan. Yes, there have been a few missteps (*cough – the Oompa Loompas in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory were just plain freaky), but as a whole, I see “Burton” and say, “Let’s go!”


Imagine my disappointment when Burton was NOT the director.


Cue overpriced popcorn, caffeine to keep my eyelids open and and empty theater. Except the three dudes who brought in their own waters and…oranges. I guess they want to be healthy.


Quick rundown: 113 minutes and rated PG. Heavy on the CGI (how else could Wonderland come to life) and lean on plot.


Well, here are my highlights:

  1. Working in Alan Rickman’s voice as Absalom. (insert my sigh here…such a magical voice)
  2. Sacha Baron Cohen in a dramatic role and NAILING IT!
  3. Andrew Scott’s cameo, sounding just like Moriarty from Sherlock.


I had my own opinion coming out of the theater and Thing 2 summed it up perfectly: “It was busy.” There were lots o’ subplots that lead, inevitably, to the ribbon-tied ending. At times, it was chaotic with a side of neon colors.


Then there is the politically correct way for explaining the Red Queen’s nasty outlook on life…it wasn’t her fault. Blech.


Here’s the deal: keep yer money in your wallet. IF, and that’s a big if, you want to throw down a few bucks, wait until you can rent it. Try not to be as offended as I was when the end credits started to roll and P!nk started playing. (caveat, I even LIKE P!nk and couldn’t stomach the abruptness of the song)

Tim's Blog - Just One Train Wreck After Another

Honoring God, Encouraging People

Better than Rubies

Christian bookish blog


Sacramento breaking news, weather, sports and social media

Jebraun Clifford

writing fearless words in far-off worlds

David N. Alderman

A Place Where Fiction And Faith Meet


Resting in Jesus in the midst of lunacy.

Quills & Inkblotts

Because the world needs good stories

For Such a Time as This

I want to be a salt shaker, light bearer, city-on-a-hill dweller

Rosemary E. Johnson

Dragon Writer

Crosshair Press

the adventure is waiting

Kelsey Messner

Compelling Christian Fiction


Courage, freedom and joy: stories that heal.

Crafting Mysteries & Suspense

Mystery author Cathy Elliott talks a bit about writing mysteries, life, faith, and the delights of quilting in "The Occasional Blog."

Nike N. Chillemi ~ mystery & a merry heart

Grace & Grit ~ Writing literature that reads like pulp fiction