I thought I’d do a little post and let you know what I’ve been up to. I’ve not done a personal post for a long time now, mainly using this blog to post my 100 word episodes of The Package.
I’ve been getting some good writing done just lately but I have a feeling that’s going to quieten down as my work schedule starts picking up again. I have promised to manage my time better this year, so…hopefully…writing will still be on the agenda.
I’ve been working on my novel and I’m also looking at putting a short story collection together but they will mostly be new stories — that need finishing up. Not sure when that will happen, though, as I have no idea how Kindle Direct Publishing works. I’m sure it’ll be straight forward enough when I actually come to do it.
I’ve been doing a lot of reading.
I didn’t start ‘serious’ reading until I was, say 18-19. I can still remember that it was a rainy day on holiday in Majorca and it was a Jack Higgins novel. I finished it in a couple of days and thought to myself, “What have I been missing out on?” Since then I always have a book on the go…sometimes 3 or 4.
I read it years ago and originally watched the film years before. It has to be said that they made films in those days the way the book was written. I decided to watch the film in segments, and only watch what I’d read of the novel. Apart from the obvious little fillers, and, I have to say, there aren’t that many, the film is absolutely true to the story. Dialogue wise, you can almost read along to the film.
Hammett was a fantastic writer, his ability to set a scene within a couple of sentences a major strong point. I will certainly be getting hold of his other novels. It just shows how your mind and appreciation of fine writing never stops learning. As I’ve mentioned, I read The Maltese Falcon years ago. Then, I probably read it and never really thought that much about it. Now, though, and probably due to my love of writing, it certainly is a thing of beauty. Well written is an understatement.
Sam Spade is a wonderful character and through the terrific writing you certainly get to know and love him instantly. Humphrey Bogart plays Spade to a tee. His steely expression and his ability to smile whilst frowning was faultless. It almost feels as though the character was created for Bogart to play, although George Raft was originally cast to play Spade but turned it down because he didn’t want to work with a ‘rookie’ director – John Huston. Hindsight is a wonderful thing!
I’ve not seen the original 1931 version, starring Ricardo Cortez, but I don’t think anyone could have played Spade better than Bogart. I just hope that, in this current trend of Hollywood re-makes, nobody ever tries to beat Bogart. To try and re-make this classic would be a travesty.
I cannot speak any more highly about this novel/movie and I urge anyone trying to improve their writing and their love of the craft to read The Maltese Falcon. It’s a must!
Well, that’s me for a few days. Enjoy your Sunday, my friends.
P.s. Pop back later in the week for part 7 of The Package. Catch up with it here.