Super Share Saturday Serendipity (with a Surprise!)

Learnable: The Way Learning Should Be

Learnable: The Way Learning Should Be

Greetings!

Well I have a lot to share with you today, and one thing in particular that is simply awesome and exciting. I hope you all will be as excited about it as I am.

At long last, essence mapping has gone public!

My very first course on essence mapping is live and for sale at learnable.com!

* dances about in joy and glee *

So what does that mean? I am pretty sure a lot of you don’t even know what essence mapping is, or why you would care. And especially why a course you have to actually pay for would even be worth hearing about.

Or why you should even keep on reading!

Well, hopefully you have a reason to keep on reading… I have something to tell you! πŸ˜›

Essence Mapping is a system of artistic communication. It enables creative artists, whether they be designers or writers or anything else, to write down, and thus communicate, pure artistic expression without ambiguity.

Using this system, you can capture the perfect essence of a moment, an emotion, a thought, an impression, and communicate it to someone else, and define it for yourself. And you can do it without having to get any kind of software or anything like that. You can even scribble it out on paper if you want.

In the past, essence mapping has been known as enigmatic and confusing. Difficult to learn. But no more. It has been completely revamped and reexplained from the foundation up, and this course that just went live, teaches it all to you!

Imagine: in one week, you can be able to describe anything you want to describe. Even so-called indescribable things!

One week, five lessons, just for you.

So check out the course, share it, subscribe, tell everyone about it! πŸ™‚

https://learnable.com/courses/essence-mapping-for-beginners-helping-you-imagine-and-communicate-your-ideas-75

And if you still aren’t sure you want to click that link (come on… it isn’t that hard… click it!), check out this video of me giving more details about why essence mapping is just so cool:

Got it? Good. Now go click the link. And then click the Subscribe button. Not that hard. πŸ˜‰

Here is is again for good measure.

And now here are a few other videos that I have found either awesome, or super helpful.

An awesome short film using music as the main action sequence. Brilliant cinematography, acting, and music of course:

Two videos by the Gracie brothers, showing you just one of the strategies of teaching that they use, making them world renowned as some of the best instructors ever, on anything.

And then, a music video with one of the best renditions I have ever heard of Hans Zimmer’s song He’s a Pirate, for Pirates of the Caribbean:

Have fun! πŸ˜€

A Defense of Voyage of the Dawn Treader

The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Da...

Image via Wikipedia

Well, this was supposed to be written and posted last week’s Monday, but things happened and it didn’t get done. So we can all pretend like this is last week, alright?

I watched the Voyage of the Dawn Treader movie with my mom and the other two of the 3Literati (Patrick and Juliet: we are the oldest three siblings). I went with this mindset: this is a movie, not a book. Thus, it isn’t the same as the Voyage of the Dawn Treader book, never will be, and shouldn’t be. So I sat back for a good movie.

And was utterly blown away by how similar it was to the book, and by how much biblical morals they were able to include from the original book. In fact, from what I have seen from the reactions of different people, a lot of people have actually missed a lot of the lessons in the books that were brought out in the movie.

I find that a lot of people complain mostly about the plot changes from the book. A few people complain about the plot itself (i.e., the mist was clichΓ©, and etc.), but there always will be that small group of people who say that about practically every piece of media that is ever created. And besides, those kinds of things are more matters of opinion than anything else (I, personally, thought the plot was brilliantly done). So I will focus in the first part of this review on the changes of the plot from the book, and in the second part on the content itself as a movie for Christians to watch.

In the old days, people published books. And they way they went about it was quite different from the way they do it now. And the interests of the people who read books back then were possibly even more different. Actually, most likely more different. And so different things got published.

In fact, if you tried to publish practically any of the old classics now… it just wouldn’t happen. And even if you did, veeery few people would actually read it. The whole style and expected content was different. The way you structure plot, the way you developed characters, the way you set up scenes, the way you described things, the stuff you included, everything was different. Nowadays, books are a lot more like movies in a lot of ways. Now, I am not saying that either way is bad: in fact both are perfectly legitimate ways of writing books, and I enjoy both styles.

However.

The old way of doing book writing simply does not work nowadays, especially on screen. And if you put over a hundred million dollars into producing something, which is required for epic movies to be done well (though that price is lowering), you want to get something out of it. You need to rely on selling to a powerful enough market to support your venture.

So in the process of making an old book into a new movie, changes will have to be made simply to make it vendible. This is not a bad thing. This is actually a good thing. Sure, eventually, prices will lower and people will be buying movies like they buy ebooks (by the gross), and then you will be able to get away with more stuff and sell to niche markets, and that will also be a good thing. But at the moment, you can’t rely on the tiny portion of the world who actually is watching the movie because they read the books and who also actually want the movie to be exactly like the book.

It doesn’t need to be exactly like the book. It shouldn’t be exactly like the book. And with a book like Voyage of the Dawn Treader, which is a prime example of old-style structure, changes have to be made to make it able to be made into a movie. No changes, no movie. Pretty simple.

And if you think about the changes that they actually made… they were pretty small.

* listens to the shouts of consternation and gasps of unbelief *

Right. You heard me right. πŸ˜€

They weren’t all that big. Think about it, what did you expect? That they would drop an island or two (they dropped only one, unless you count Felimath and Doorn), and that they would merge others (which they did). They did this quite masterfully, and retained a ton of detail from the book.

What else would you expect for them to change? I expected them to add a more obvious plot arc that tied everything together: the book was very episodic in nature. And they did. And they did a great job of it too, tying together the events from the book by their common elements and elaborating on those. They also added on several bits of plot without removing any of the original. And in the case of the morals, they actually made the original morals much easier to see (judging by how many people missed them completely).

No, I am not giving any spoilers, haha, in case you haven’t watched it yet. But my advice to you is this: watch the movie as a movie, without expecting it to copy everything exactly from the book. And then you will absolutely love it. Especially the ending.

Now for the content. This should be pretty simple: it was great. πŸ˜€

For an epic fantasy, in which there is generally somewhere some kind of immodesty in the female portion of the cast, it was incredibly perfect. There was no immodesty at all, which is awesome. As far as language, it was clean: no words you wouldn’t want to repeat. Gore was innocuous (non-existent in the cases of humans, and vanishing into green smoke in the cases of monsters). And in truth, the book was more ‘gory’ than the movie, especially when Eustace had to be un-dragoned. The movie handles this absolutely splendidly.

There was only one element that I would advise caution for younger viewers on: the sea serpent is pretty intense and… freaky. Totally freaky. Awesomely sends-chills-down-your-spine kind of freaky. I loved it to pieces, personally, but little members of the audience might have to close their eyes a bit. πŸ˜‰

If you have questions about specific pieces of the plot, asking for justifications for changes they made, I would be more than willing to answer with my views on the matter. I wanted to keep this spoiler-free, but I will lift that ban on the comments section. πŸ™‚

So have at it. On guard.

Cute Daddy

And here is your weekend video from me. πŸ™‚

This is a nice illustration of why cribs are … err … less than optimum for raising children in, for the most part. This guy doesn’t know what to do with fussy-sleepy babies, but at least he has the heart. πŸ˜€

What do you think he should have done?

Validation, an Awesome Movie

If you haven’t noticed, I love movies. Period. Even movies that are from worldviews that are absolutely opposed to mine. I just like movies.

But this one I love.

I absolutely think it is one of the best short films I have watched, and I think you are absolutely missing out if you don’t sit down and watch it sometime. It is only about 15 minutes.

It teaches beautiful and important lessons in a beautiful and striking way.

So without further ado…

Validation.

Love it doncha? πŸ˜€

What do you think? How has this inspired you to live your life differently?

And you are awesome if you comment. Seriously. You are. Most people wouldn’t take the time to do it. Most people just drop a ‘thanks’ or something like that. Even those people are awesome. But you guys who comment on my posts with great thoughts (that often times put my writing to shame)…

You.

Are.

Awesome.

πŸ˜€

A New Look for Holy Worlds!

We are very excited over at Holy Worlds, my site dedicated to Christian fantasy writing. We just went over 100 members on the forum! This is a big milestone for us, and in honor of the occasion, I put into place a few special changes.

The homepage, the blog, and even the forum header all got new looks!

But even cooler than that, we have our very first promo video up on the homepage, and on youtube! Check it out below:

Let me know what you think of the video and the new looks everywhere in the comments!

Disturbing Movie

Greetings,

Yes, I know, I am a movie conduit. (If you want more of a certain kind of video, let me know πŸ˜‰ ). This one I wanted to post on my blog because I need to include a caveat.

It was disturbing. Even for me.

But it was worth it. So I suggest that if you are unsure (there is no gore or language or anything like that), have it previewed first. But in any case I still highly recommend it. It might make you cry.

Watch it here.

A Fun Family Set of Videos

If you have been following me on Facebook or Buzz (or on Twitter for that matter) you probably have noticed a flood of videos coming through my stream. Of course I understand that if you are not one of those nice people who read and comment on them all, you are probably intimidated by the vast quantity of things I share. So I wanted to put a few of my favorites on here for all you people who have lives. πŸ˜‰

Enjoy! These were both entries for contests on christianfilmmakers.org.