Alexis M. Collazo
Born and raised in Brooklyn, New York. An avid reader, writer and multimedia creator. Relocated to Pennsylvania where she is currently focused on writing, crafting and leading workshops online. Visit www.alexismcollazo.com for more info.
Sink: A Memoir by Joseph Earl Thomas
I've always liked things that were just a little bit different and outside of the usual norms. In terms of reading, the last couple of years I've really been enjoying work that doesn't follow traditional narrative structures. One genre where I've really seen some fun experimental narratives has been in memoirs. It's not just because they stand out, but because the playfulness with the form enhances the story being told.
Gone In Sixty Seconds and Nicolas Cage
Let’s Talk About Cage: Gone in 60 Seconds I have no problem admitting that some of my favorite movies are often ridiculed and generally accepted as kind of bad. I think people expect way too much, not every movie needs to be an artistic masterpiece. I am totally okay with a movie having a completely unbelievable plot, no character development and less than stellar performances. Some movies are just entertaining and fun to watch. This is pretty much the case with “Gone In 60 Seconds.” Nicolas Cage himself is quoted as saying it "has kind of a glorified '70s B-movie aura." Whether that’s a compliment or insult is up to individual taste.
Let the Right One In by John Ajvide Lindqvist
This post is just a bit different from my usual book vs movie. There are actually two movie adaptations of the book, made within only a couple years of each other. So I watched both and will be comparing all three. Second, I did not wait to finish the book before watching the movies. I watched the first just as I started the book and the other while I was about halfway. I thought it would be fun to switch it up, plus I'd already read the book previously, although it was long enough ago that I barely remembered it.
Book vs Movie: A Clockwork Orange
The first time read A Clockwork Orange was quite a few years ago. I'm not sure where my copy is and don't remember which version it is. This time around I had a library ebook, the complete original version of the novel. Until reading the introduction, I hadn't even realized there were different versions. Apparently, the American publisher decided not to include the final chapter when it was first published. This is the version the film was based on. It seems like a minor difference, but it does change the character arc of the protagonist Alex.
How I Stay Happy, Healthy and Writing
Dedication to your writing is important, but at times it can go too far. I’ve often found myself so absorbed in my work that I ignored my own basic needs. Which if kept up, not only jeopardizes my health and sanity but can also negatively affect my writing. To avoid burning myself out I have a few basic daily practices that I make time for in my schedule every day. Keeping up with these practices ensures that I take the needed breaks away from writing throughout the day and keeps me in tune with my needs. These five practices are quick and easy, so I can be consistent. There is a long list of health and self-care practices to choose from. These are the ones I have found most important and beneficial for me. Of course, I’d recommend giving them a try yourself, but everybody is different. You have to figure out what works best for you. What practices best fit your needs, schedule, and lifestyle?
Writing 30 Poems in 30 Days
I'm going to start by admitting that my title is a bit misleading. I don't know if wrote an actual poem every day, but I certainly tried. I was lucky enough this year to find a daily workshop to keep me accountable. It was hosted by the organization Surprise the Line. Without it I would never have made it through this challenge. Every year as April rolls around I feel inspired and motivated, I tell myself I'm going to make the most of the month and completely immerse myself in poetry. I'm going to write and read as much poetry as possible. Next thing I know the month is over, I've written one maybe two poems and barely cracked open a book of poems.
Put Your Writing First
Over the years I’ve struggled to establish a regular writing routine. I was constantly adjusting my schedule to accommodate school, internships, and a variety of part-time jobs. But even once I settled into a full-time job with a steady schedule, my writing routine still faltered. I tried to squeeze time into lunch breaks and scheduled after work writing sessions. But I couldn’t stay consistent for very long, some excuse or another always sidetracked me. I had a long list of excuses: needing a night out with friends, watching a favorite tv show, distracting home environment or I was simply too tired. Finally, I realized if writing was important to me, I had to prioritize it by quite literally putting it first. I started writing in the mornings and have stuck with it for the last five years.
Writing Better Dialogue
Dialogue is a major element in all stories, and it can be the hardest thing to get right. Natural speech patterns are hard to reproduce in writing. People don’t speak in grammatically correct full sentences, characters written that way would sound stiff and unbelievable. However, using fragments or other techniques to mimic natural speech can make it hard for readers to understand. Good dialogue needs to find a balance between the two while also serving the story in the best way possible. Here are couple of tips to help improve your dialogue writing.