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Thread: Literary Notes

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    It's a challenge finding colours that show up well in both Tweleve 3.0 and Tweleve Light 2.0 as I have found in earlier posts.

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    It's the birthday of C.S. (Clive Staples) Lewis, (books by this author) born in Belfast (189, who grew up an Anglican, but he found religion cold and boring. He preferred the Irish, Norse, and Greek myths he read in storybooks. He created an imaginary world called Boxen and wrote stories about it. He said, "My two chief literary pleasures [were] 'dressed animals' and 'knights in armour.' As a result, I wrote about chivalrous mice and rabbits who rode out in complete mail to kill not giants but cats."
    He became a teacher at Oxford, where he taught literature and mythology, and it was there that he met J.R.R. Tolkien, a devout Christian, and they would take long walks around the Oxford grounds, debating the existence of God. The morning after one of those walks, Lewis went with his brother to the zoo. He said, "When we set out [for the zoo] I did not believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God, and when we reached the zoo I did. Yet I had not exactly spent the journey in thought. Nor in great emotion."
    Lewis went on to become a prominent Christian apologist in the world, recording a series of radio lectures about Christianity, broadcast during World War II. People gathered around their radios to listen to him during bombing raids. At the same time, Lewis was taking evacuee children from London into his house, and they all seemed poorly educated and unimaginative to him.
    So he began thinking about how he could give contemporary children what he had gotten from the fairy tales he read when he was a child. One day, one of the evacuee children asked him what was inside the big wardrobe in his house, and that gave him an idea for a story about four children named Peter, Susan, Lucy, and Edmund who are staying at a country house during World War II when they discover a secret doorway in the back of an old wardrobe that leads to a land called Narnia. The first of seven books in The Chronicles of Narnia was The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe (1950). Today, the Narnia books still sell about a million copies a year.

    ~


    It's the birthday of Louisa May Alcott, (books by this author) born in Germantown, Pennsylvania (1832), who started out writing these sensational stories about duels and suicides, opium addiction, mind control, bigamy, and murder. She called it "blood and thunder" literature and she said, "I seem to have a natural ambition for the lurid style." She published under male pseudonyms to keep from embarrassing her family. But in 1867, an editor suggested that she try writing what he called "a girl's book," and she said she would.
    The result was Little Women (186, which was based on her own family and her own experience as an aspiring writer. Alcott was disappointed at how popular Little Women became, because she was obligated to keep writing more books in the same vein.

    ~


    It's the birthday Madeleine L'Engle, (books by this author) born in New York City (191, who struggled to find any success as a writer with novels about ordinary families and ordinary situations, but after reading about the ideas of Albert Einstein, she wrote a science fiction novel called A Wrinkle in Time (1962), about a group of children who have to rescue their father from a planet where individuality has been outlawed. The book was rejected by 26 different publishers, who all felt that the book was too difficult for children but too fantastic for adults. But when it came out in 1962, the novel won the Newbery Medal, and it sells about 15,000 copies a year. L'Engle put a clause in her publishing contract that gave her publisher the rights to A Wrinkle in Time in perpetuity in the whole universe except for the Andromeda galaxy. She died this year.
    Madeleine L'Engle said, "You have to write the book that wants to be written. And if the book will be too difficult for grown-ups, then you write it for children."
    ***********************
    We must be willing to get rid of the life weve planned, so as to have the life that is waiting for us.
    ~Joseph Campbell

    There are three kinds of people : Those who can count and those that can't.




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    gimme some feedback peeps! at least I know that peeps are reading these posts. I personally find then interesting.

    colors used: grey / green / red.

    let me know what works.
    </IMG>
    ***********************
    We must be willing to get rid of the life weve planned, so as to have the life that is waiting for us.
    ~Joseph Campbell

    There are three kinds of people : Those who can count and those that can't.




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    For me red is the easiest to see in both Tweleve Light and Tweleve 3.0

    Thanks for this thread Jean, I keep in mind it is here and will look at it in more detail as soon as I have more free time

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    Red shows up best in both. Green is difficult to see in Tweleve 3.0.


    C.S. Lewis: I remember enjoying his Space Trilogy (Out of the Silent Planet, Perelanda, That Hideous Strength) quite a number of years ago.

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    It's the birthday of the playwright David Mamet, (books by this author) born in Chicago (1947), whose father was a labor lawyer and loved to argue for the sake of arguing. Mamet said, "In my family, in the days prior to television, we liked to while away the evenings by making ourselves miserable, solely based on our ability to speak the language viciously." Mamet has gone on to write a series of plays about con men, salesmen, thieves, and liars in plays such as American Buffalo (1975) and Glengarry Glen Ross (1984), which won the Pulitzer Prize for drama. His newest play, November, is scheduled to open on Broadway this January (200.

    ~


    It's the birthday of Jonathan Swift, (books by this author) born in Dublin (1667), who was ordained as an Anglican priest and spent much of his early life trying to curry favor with politicians in England, so he could be assigned to an English parish. But it didn't work out, and he got an assignment in his home country of Ireland, which he hated. But after a while, he began to sympathize with the Irish poor, who were being oppressed by their English rulers, and he started writing political pamphlets in protest of England's rule, and he became famous for his sarcasm and satire. In his most notorious essay, "A Modest Proposal" (1729), he suggested that perhaps the best way to deal with the Irish poor was to feed their babies as a delicacy to the English aristocracy.
    Swift's masterpiece was Gulliver's Travels (1726), the story of a man journeying through a series of exotic places and meeting all kinds of strange creatures, including a race of miniature people, a race of giants, scholars who think so much that they constantly run into each other, immortals who can't remember anything, wise and virtuous horses, and a disgusting race of beings called Yahoos, which he eventually realizes are humans. The novel was full of vicious inside jokes about the politicians of the day, and Swift was so nervous about publishing it that he dropped the manuscript off at the publisher's house in the middle of the night.

    ~

    It's the birthday of the man who wrote under the name Mark Twain, Samuel Langhorne Clemens, (books by this author) born in Florida, Missouri (1835), who was a Western journalist and humorist when he persuaded a San Francisco newspaper to pay for him to take a steamboat pleasure cruise to Europe and the Middle East. The result was his book The Innocents Abroad (186, which made him famous. Travel books were popular at the time, but Twain's was the first to be written in such a distinctly American voice. He wrote, "In Paris they just simply opened their eyes and stared when we spoke to them in French! We never did succeed in making those idiots understand their own language."
    Twain became so famous that he was accepted into the elite literary society in New England, and he began publishing his work in the prestigious Atlantic Monthly. But, in 1877, Twain was invited to give a speech at the poet John Greenleaf Whittier's 70th birthday dinner, and he made the terrible mistake of turning the speech into a roast, poking fun at Whittier and other New England writers like Emerson and Longfellow. The audience reacted with horrified silence, and Twain was so embarrassed that he left the country with his family the following year.
    When he came out with The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn in 1884, it got terrible reviews. He spent the rest of his life struggling to pay his debts, writing and publishing all kinds of things, and going on endless lecture tours. It took decades before people began to recognize Huckleberry Finn as a masterpiece. Ernest Hemingway famously said, "All modern American literature comes from one book by Mark Twain called Huckleberry Finn."
    Mark Twain wrote, "It's lovely to live on a raft. We had the sky up there, all speckled with stars, and we used to lay on our backs and look up at them, and discuss about whether they was made or only just happened."
    ***********************
    We must be willing to get rid of the life weve planned, so as to have the life that is waiting for us.
    ~Joseph Campbell

    There are three kinds of people : Those who can count and those that can't.




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    It's the birthday of director and screenwriter Woody Allen, born in Brooklyn (1935), who became obsessed with magic tricks, comedy, and the clarinet when he was a boy, but he did all his performing alone in his bedroom. He said, "Performing for my parents would have been like serving tennis balls into the ocean." He began submitting jokes to gossip columnists when he was 15, and he was selling jokes regularly before he'd graduated high school. He went to NYU but got an F in English and a C-plus in film production and flunked out from poor attendance. He got a job writing jokes for The Tonight Show, but it wasn't until he was 25 that he started doing his own stand-up comedy onstage. He was so nervous the first night that he stammered through his jokes, and something about his nervousness just made the jokes funnier, so he adopted the persona of boundless insecurity. He would say things like, "How can I find meaning in a finite universe, given my shirt and waist size?"He knew he wanted to make movies, but he'd never been to film school, so he bought the rights to a Japanese spy film, and dubbed in all new dialogue. The result was What's Up, Tiger Lily? (1966), about a secret agent trying to track down the recipe for the world's greatest egg salad. He's since made, on average, one movie every year for the last 40 years, most of which he wrote, directed, and starred in. Woody Allen said, "Life [is] full of loneliness and misery and suffering and unhappiness, and it's all over much too quickly."It's the birthday of American detective novelist Rex Stout, (books by this author) born in Noblesville, Indiana (1886), who was a hack magazine journalist for a while and then developed a popular savings-account scheme for schools that made him a great deal of money. So he retired to Paris and at the age of 46, he wrote his first detective novel featuring Nero Wolfe, who solves crimes even though he weighs more than 300 pounds, collects orchids, and never leaves his house. The first Nero Wolfe novel was called Fer-de-Lance, and it was published in The Saturday Evening Post in 1934. It was a huge success, and Stout went on to write another Wolfe novel almost every year for the rest of his life.
    ***********************
    We must be willing to get rid of the life weve planned, so as to have the life that is waiting for us.
    ~Joseph Campbell

    There are three kinds of people : Those who can count and those that can't.




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    It's the birthday of American detective novelist Rex Stout, (books by this author) born in Noblesville, Indiana (1886), who was a hack magazine journalist for a while and then developed a popular savings-account scheme for schools that made him a great deal of money. So he retired to Paris and at the age of 46, he wrote his first detective novel featuring Nero Wolfe, who solves crimes even though he weighs more than 300 pounds, collects orchids, and never leaves his house. The first Nero Wolfe novel was called Fer-de-Lance, and it was published in The Saturday Evening Post in 1934. It was a huge success, and Stout went on to write another Wolfe novel almost every year for the rest of his life.
    ***********************
    We must be willing to get rid of the life weve planned, so as to have the life that is waiting for us.
    ~Joseph Campbell

    There are three kinds of people : Those who can count and those that can't.




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    It's the birthday of short-story writer George Saunders, (books by this author) born in Amarillo, Texas (195, who has published a series of surreal, comic stories in his collections CivilWarLand in Bad Decline (1996) and Pastoralia (2000). His most recent book is The Braindead Megaphone (2007).

    ~


    It's the birthday of novelist Ann Patchett, (books by this author) born in Los Angeles (1963), whose first big success was the novel Bel Canto (2001) about a hostage crisis in which terrorists take control over an extravagant party and hold the guests hostage for months, and over time, some of the hostages and terrorists become friends and even lovers. Her most recent novel is Run, which came out this year (2007). Ann Patchett said, "I believe that my gift in this world is not that I'm smarter or more talented than anyone else: it's that I had a singular goal. I don't want other stuff: friends, kids, travel. What makes me happy is writing."
    ***********************
    We must be willing to get rid of the life weve planned, so as to have the life that is waiting for us.
    ~Joseph Campbell

    There are three kinds of people : Those who can count and those that can't.




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    It's the birthday of novelist Joseph Conrad, (books by this author) born in Berdichev, Ukraine (1857), whose father was arrested for trying to start an insurrection against the Russian government. The family had to go into exile in Northern Russia, and both of Conrad's parents died there from TB. He was sent to live with his uncle, and he started to dream about traveling the world. He once looked at a map, pointed at the middle of Africa, and said, "Someday I will go there." He began hopping French Merchant Marine ships, and by the time he was 21 he had joined the British merchant Navy, even though he spoke barely a word of English. He spent the next decade sailing to Australia, Borneo, Malaysia, South America, and the South Pacific. And in 1889, while stationed in London, he began writing his first novel, Almayer's Folly (1895).
    But it was in 1890 that he got to go to the Africa he'd dreamed about as a kid, with a job piloting a steamboat up the Congo River. He thought the journey would be an exotic adventure, but he later described what he saw there as "the vilest scramble for loot that ever disfigured the history of the human conscience." The Congo was under the control of King Leopold II of Belgium at the time, and the colonists forced the local Africans into slave labor camps, gathering ivory and rubber. They arrested, abused, or killed anyone who refused to work. It's been estimated that between 1880 and 1920, half of the local population in the Congo was wiped out. There were stories of colonists sending home African heads to be stuffed by taxidermists.
    No one knows exactly what Conrad saw in the time he worked in the Congo, because he didn't keep a diary at the time or write any letters about it. But instead of staying on the job for the three years he had planned, he quit after only four months. And it was not long after that that he gave up the life of a sailor altogether and settled down to life of writing.
    His early novels were tales of adventure at sea. It took him more than 10 years to write about his experiences in the Congo in his novel Heart of Darkness (1902), about a steamboat captain named Marlow who pilots his ship up the Congo in search of mysterious trading agent named Mr. Kurtz who has set himself up as a kind of god among the natives of the jungle, and has surrounded his trading post with severed heads on stakes. Critics had long thought that Conrad's description of the brutality in the Congo was exaggerated, but scholars in the last decade have discovered that there was a Belgian man there at the time who surrounded his house with severed heads on stakes, and it's possible that Conrad met him.
    Joseph Conrad said, "The conquest of the earth, which mostly means the taking it away from those who have a different complexion or slightly flatter noses than ourselves, is not a pretty thing when you look into it too much." He also said, "The belief in a supernatural source of evil is not necessary; men alone are quite capable of every wickedness."


    ~

    It was on this day in 1947 that Tennessee Williams' (books by this author) A Streetcar Named Desire premiered in New York City. Williams spent months writing and revising the play, and he had three different working titles for it: The Moth, Blanche's Chair on the Moon, and The Poker Night. Then he moved to an apartment in the French Quarter of New Orleans, where he could hear two streetcars rattling by, one named Desire and one named Cemeteries. He changed the setting of his play to New Orleans, and he changed the title to A Streetcar Named Desire.
    Stella was originally played by Kim Hunter, Blanche by Jessica Tandy, and Stanley by a 23-three-year-old Marlon Brando. The play got a 30-minute standing ovation on opening night, and it ran for over 800 performances.
    ***********************
    We must be willing to get rid of the life weve planned, so as to have the life that is waiting for us.
    ~Joseph Campbell

    There are three kinds of people : Those who can count and those that can't.




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