A Relieving Return to Script-Writing

That title looks grand doesn’t it? Wouldn’t it be nice to believe that all our troubles were over? Alas, there are wounds. I have photo albums filled with once marvellous friends and relations that I may never hear from again due to them having sold their souls to device technology and social media. Wounds as such cannot fade. Time can heal but this grief is an entirely new phenomenon. The uncertainty of repair is staggering and loud. The change in human behaviour to something so close to the docile Eloi of “The Time Machine” is horrific.

Good people come forward, though. They are new friends and companions, people fed-up with what’s happened. We share this bond with each other. My woes are their woes. There is still that little denial of, “It’s not so bad,” but that denial has receded greatly in this year, 2017. We know it is all very, very bad, indeed.

And yet… shades of delightful 20th Century habits come back to us. Selecting real books to enjoy, real albums to play, true conversation in person and on paper. Recipes to cook, scrubbing to be done. Dishes to be washed. Clothing to be picked out for the weather of the week to come. The seasons remind us that we are of The Earth and of The Heavens.


 

As I sit at my desk and stare into Morning Glory Circle on Bewitched, with two characters from Maine about to knock upon The Stephens door, a wonderful thing finally occurs: The characters let me know what they likely would say to each other. Samantha Stephens is being introduced to Sam Evans of Collinsport and Captain Daniel Gregg of Schooner Bay, at long last.

Samantha

It isn’t coming out as I expected either! I predicted it would get very silly, and Endora’s arrival might have Captain Gregg hiding behind Sam in fear. The thing is Captain Gregg doesn’t really behave that way when set in motion to face a potential adversary, even if that adversary has put him through dire straits as Endora did previously in The Pit of Ultimate Dark Shadows. And so far Samantha hasn’t scolded Endora for what she did, but I feel that ought to be in there somewhere, really. (Besides, I am itching to do an Elizabeth Montgomery impression of, “Mother!”)

A book on sea-faring language, that Osheen once suggested, has come in quite handy. I had a little trouble with what Gregg would say until I opened that up. I still have to determine where Tabitha might be, but I notice they don’t always worry about that on Bewitched so maybe it doesn’t matter. (This is a rough-draft, afterall.)

Looking at the word count now I still have plenty of room. Scenes are already mapped out for Chris Jennings, Amy Jennings, Hoffman, Stokes, and later on it appears that bypassing Mr. Wells death and allowing him to live will be easier than I thought. In fact, I found him barricading the door for Chris rather than simply locking it from the outside. After The Blairs staying in Room 13? Mr. Wells is done with being curious about noise. He just wants there not to be any.

 

Vic and Mor 1

That leaves us in wondering what to do with The Addams Family, Victoria Winters and Peter Bradford. Some ideas are there. I’ve made a list of pastimes The Addams Family engage in and I must say, it’s longer than the list of odd recipes they’ve mentioned.

I know that for Victoria there will be further exercises in her powers, but that doesn’t mean she can’t just enjoy herself in a new home she’s almost gotten used to. An interest in history is even there if Wednesday’s dolls have anything to do with it. I smell a rapport happening between those two.

The main thing is finding the discussion between Victoria, Peter and The Addams Family. There is a slice-of-life element to The Addams Family that I didn’t notice before, but it was the more Gothic type I’d been rather wanting for so long. Having a problem to solve needn’t be necessary at all. It’s a staple of television shows but The Addams Family always operate so differently. A great deal of the show itself is often hanging out or goofing off. Whatever problems that come usually take a long time to be solved as they are so busy with all of their hobbies, pets, and basic housekeeping.

So far The Pit scenes I have for The Addams Family have been quite reflective. There was the great cliff-hanger in Episode 13 with, “We need you, Grandmama. It’s Victoria! …She has the gift!” And that got identified in Episode 15 with spell work, as Grandmama stared aghast at Reverend Trask’s stark image via Victoria’s memories projected on vapour. It mayn’t have been due to Grandmama having any aversion to a widow’s peak hairstyle, but the severity of Trask’s widow’s peak can rather blow all of our minds, can’t it?

For Episode 18 I am doubtful any new spell work with Victoria will take place. Perhaps some chat of doing more whilst playing a game of some kind. I still haven’t gotten a spot where Peter is enjoying the delights of Gomez and his trains. There is also Peter Bradford being Peter Bradford in official documents. With either man having practised law, however antiquated like Peter, or out-of-step like Gomez, I’m sure they could devise some method in which they fulfil that requirement neatly enough.

But will Victoria take the name of Bradford? Not yet. I wager she will eventually after discovering enough about her own history and her parents. But she started this life as a Winters and shall continue being one for sometime, married or not.


 

Still, I remain puzzled at what happened with Dark Shadows fans for so many decades that they wanted more horror, twisted troubles, and bizarre romantic pairings in the fanfiction all this time. Were libraries with bummer books and ghastly stories always out of reach? Did the wealth of horror movies not suffice? Perhaps it was a lack of having the program to enjoy that made them want to write down what happened so they could enjoy it that way, and then got caught up in altering it in random directions? Did Roger Corman’s films have anything to do with it?

I’m fine with creativity,  or getting wacky, heck, after I watched “200 Motels” a la Frank Zappa? It was pretty clear anything goes in some areas of entertainment. But Dark Shadows is huge on its own. So huge I’m not sure I’d want to repeat the entire thing over and over again. So with the fanwork I have to wonder if something happened to these fans. Too many drugs in the 1970’s? Sadness that the show ended and re-runs were unheard of at the time? Bafflement at Sam Hall’s wrap-up? (I just listened to Roger Davis read it and shrugged, myself.) I can’t imagine that life was so comfortable that they were in want of more drama. The puzzle remains for me.

 


 

As time goes on, I do want to do more for our Old House couple and family in the pages of “Margaret Josette Dupres”. But discussion of it is necessary and the practice of discussion itself is low. There is only so much I can do for Barnabas and Maggie’s marriage details as it’s based on Dark Shadows which is finished, and The Pit of Ultimate Dark Shadows which is not.

When a waitress is on holiday might Maggie fill in at The Coffee Shop just for kicks? Sarah and Caleb as children shan’t be a thorn-free bed of roses. Caleb has become a witch’s son after all. Will Barnabas finally get comfortable with being a vampire who is less affected by sunlight? (I have my doubts.) The only surety is the love never fades. What to do on a daily basis with that love? That’s the question. ❤

Of course, as has been very usual, people will listen to me asking for the discussion on the novel during the podcasts, or read this log entry where I explain the practicality of discussion, and rather than send an email or telephone me about it? They will blink and wonder why no one else is doing so. Time has become less of a worry with this new technology. What has really been lost with it is the art of conversation.

Cat’s got your tongue, as they say.

Looks like this time, she’s kept it, too. 😉

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For Newbies, Pen Pals and Old Hats

Hi, everyone!

I’m still here. I’m rusty at creating a radio drama episode but, like with any form of creative expression, the knack should return with practice.

I maintained Facebook abstinence for the full two-week stretch from the new pen pals and people I’m mailing CDs to. I love it! This is what I wanted and it’s the world that I know. My postman is also very happy with me. He says, “You tell them that I’m happy with what you’re doing and I look forward to getting a hug from you when I see you. You tell them that.”

There. Told. 🙂

The repeating cold/flu is still floating around. Clover and I got Version 2.0, Jonah didn’t, and my sweetheart is now on Version 3.0. I received tons of wonderful goodies for my birthday but I have to wait to have him to myself again.

So for my pen pals now getting the CDs of The Pit? Bless your hearts that you didn’t let the dead-weight of social media keep you from what you loved. And it’s fascinating to find out what you’ve been up to in the years we didn’t know each other as I struggled in the vicious Red Queen’s Race of anti-social networks. You also know it takes time to build something, so my own accomplishments might seem fantastic but not impossible to you.

And with my downgrading back to human? Other humans are doing it too. I hear from people more by email and private messages away from the social networks. Sadly some of these folks are still playing the “avoid-the-podcast-topic-game”, but not everyone. Some finally realized playing that game is dysfunctional and annoys me enough to get cranky on the podcasts! Good! I’d rather have fun on those shows, not feel the need to display rank bitterness. (Spraying metaphoric Lysol on my woes ends up making them worse. It messes up the voice-acting for the radio-drama too, just from the stress.)

In any case I’m very pleased to be spending my time getting rid of my horde of stationery. Like most forms of collecting things, too much comes when life is empty or there is a void one feels the need to fill. Now I’m releasing all the fun goodies I saved, and as I send them along? I keep finding new areas in which I’ve hoarded more! But it makes way for further space as I go. This is a good thing.

The pen pals who are interested are eager for more but in the manner they know better: The human paced postal system. However there are some trying to get links to work in a somewhat desperate sense. I always know when they do get the links to work because I tend to never hear from them again. I see the statistical growth, but the silence is a recurring problem and one I doubt I’ll ever really get used to.

barn and wads

Is a Jonathan Frid character hanging out with a Tim Curry character just too sexy? Maybe!

With the lack of information I used to have, but now am being provided with, I’m discovering an important point we all forgot about. The poor and suffering are the most appreciative of good entertainment. They were often the people I was seeking, too. Still am. It’s the especially wealthy and comfortable that have been the worst problem. They’re watching a soap-opera because, for the most part, they have few troubles, desire drama and don’t empathise much with people outside of themselves. They can download the podcast easily and get angry at me for struggling and suffering. They’re greedy and want the silver-spoon version of The Pit. Catering to people like that is detrimental. Rewarding rudeness is nothing short of despicable.

Not all rich people are this way, though. There have been many well-to-do types of privilege. I am currently thinking of a fictional one though, and one fictional character many proclaim as empty-headed and bubbly:

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Josette du Pres

She is a rare wealthy character on Dark Shadows who cares about classes below hers. Her concern and desire for comradeship with Angelique is unusual for someone of her own designation in 1795. We see something quite similar with that of Barnabas Collins and Ben Stokes, too. And when we think about Barnabas and Josette both being as such? That is certainly a match made in Heaven. ❤

Barnabas and Josette

We require wealthy people that empathise with those who suffer to make the difference, as we also need the suffering to appreciate each other. To me that’s what our stories show us.

Social media turned that story-telling, which changed our lives for the better, into mindless nostalgia of photos to thumb-up. It preys on the obsessive-compulsive-disorder which resounds in us to click happy-buttons and lose the heart of who we are. The happy-buttons, rewards of hearts and stars, regress us into kindergarteners. Kindergartners are easy to manipulate.

I didn’t know this was happening for so long because I had barely touched the social media. I was very involved in vision-therapy, librivox audio books, and creating The Pit of Ultimate Dark Shadows while watching and taking notes of all the shows that blend into it. I knew something of the smartphone phenomenon but we all joked about that long ago. The Blackberry phone came out with its whistles and bells and what did we call it?

The Crackberry.

A lady at church told me it was once a faux-pas to like-click posts on Facebook. She also recalls a friend asking her, “What’s with all these bumper stickers? I’m seeing them everywhere. All these images with quotations. What a waste!”

As it turns out there are others like me who didn’t see this happening either. We still used the internet to educate ourselves and keep in touch with loved ones. We had to hear less and less from those loved ones to begin recognizing we’d suddenly been left in the lurch. That led to many walks of life without similar interests reaching out to at least support each other in that one obvious fact. We were alone, very alone. A guy on a Gothic forum told me, “Some of the most artistic and rebellious people I have ever known have been siphoned by this conformity.” No kidding! I’ve seen it too.

In any event, those of similar interests are finding each other again, however slowly and I am very grateful. Several pen pals don’t fear discussing The Pit episodes. They enjoy it. They didn’t know it even existed. Now they look forward to more and express:

“Please keep up with this – you will be glad you followed your muse when she called you. But please don’t burn out on it—it would change the tone. You have such a happy enjoyable tone of joy with it. Yeah, that’s it—it’s JOYFUL! Ride this mule, baby!”

Now that’s more like it! And it’s what I like to do for others.

So for all the newbies:

I bid you welcome to The Pit of Ultimate Dark Shadows!

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And for the old-hats? I welcomed you a long time ago, and I still do. But we must keep something in mind. We have flaws. That is human. You’ve felt guilty and uncertain because you fed into the bystander-effect, got caught up in only paying attention to the drama, lost the ability to talk about what you enjoyed. Is this all your fault? I don’t think so. But you still feel guilty and uncertain about me and the fact you played the “avoid-the-podcast-topic-game”. You really should stop playing that game. It’s not a fun game and no one wins it. (I prefer Kill Doctor Lucky and Tabloid Teasers, myself.)

But… what if you admitted to your flaws? What if you felt sorry and explained? In what light would you be seen if you owned up to a mistake or even several? Who would you be very akin to if you exhibited some remorse or apologetic forms of expression?

That would show you to be similar to one of our most beloved characters in the world:

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Barnabas Collins. ❤

The Promise of What Praise Can Do “Margaret Josette Dupres (A Novel)” [Note 10]

Yes, I wanted to go back to wonderful commentary on such a day like this. I’m feeling so rested by my time off of Facebook and successfully hitting my 2-week spans away from it. Plus I know people want further chapters of this novel and in order to maintain my focus for it means going through the joy of previous chapters. Hard study in passion is such a delight, don’t you think?

What I’m working on now is Chapters 42 & 43 in tandem. For some reason looking at more romance after a re-born Sarah chapter seems to help the prior chapter that is more focused on Sarah’s development to come forward. Having read and written about vampires before helps, but my original babies were far more jubilant in their long life-spans than Barnabas and Josette. (Plus my original vampires were total night-time, whereas Barnabas and Josette get some sunlight; awakening usually at midday. This allows for the more human sixteen-hours of wakefulness they deserve.)  These adoptees of mine have a spell-binding captivation from the previous traumas as witnessed on the original Dark Shadows.


However, Chapter 21 isn’t about our star-couple at all. It’s about the proposal of Tony Peterson to Carolyn Stoddard. I was sure it would come in the radio drama someday but it helped to write it out as a memory Carolyn Stoddard is sharing with our Schooner Bay writer, Carolyn Muir. The confusion of sharing the same name and working together is touched on with amusement.

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Once, when my spirits weren’t dragged into turmoil by the knowledge of silence by so many for The Pit, I was rapt in the plan of Carolyn & Carolyn eventually opening a publishing firm together. Muir has the expertise and Stoddard has the collateral. Can you imagine my amazement watching First Year Dark Shadows and Carolyn musing to Victoria about writing a book someday? I screamed!

Then with the laid-back approach to ghosts between these two in The Pit? Who might help them with a short work of fiction? The ghost of Bill Malloy and the ghost of Captain Gregg. Would they get along? I can see it happening. That part in the chapter is brief and happily inserted with Osheen Nevoy’s interest.

The chapter unfolds with Tony taking Carolyn to the beach and proposing with an engagement ring. To Tony’s approval she is not dressed-up, but dressed-down for helping to wallpaper a room in The Great House.

Somehow Carolyn Stoddard in olive overalls, a long sleeved white shirt and a bandana scarf to cover the top of her head was endearing enough for him to think: Yes, perfect.

Rather than kneel in the sand he encourages her idea to remove her shoes on the beach, then picks her up and places her on a large rock so that she is standing above him. As Carolyn realizes that Tony is about to propose to her she feels embarrassed not to be dressed-up for the occasion.

Osheen had also helped me a great deal in trying to determine why I was getting Carolyn Stoddard’s answer to Tony Peterson. I knew it was accurate for Carolyn Stoddard but I couldn’t understand how exactly.

Carolyn and Tony

Osheen reasoned wonderfully when I explained my troubles about Carolyn’s decision, telling her, “I can’t figure out why this is. I wish I did.” Osheen’s response was, “Well, I think the example of her mother’s less-than-successful marriage (not to mention how Liz almost tied the knot with the vile McGuire) would be more than enough reason for Carolyn to decide that she and Tony can be together in a perfectly satisfactory way without having to say ‘I do.’ (!)” We talked further on this but that was the right answer.

The other wild thing about this chapter is I knew so little of The First Year but somehow I’d gleaned these things about Carolyn Stoddard’s personality without previously studying that back-history. It was even more fascinating to see, on Dark Shadows, Joe Haskell, drunkenly aggrieved, come to Mrs. Stoddard about Carolyn and blaming her for causing Carolyn to fear marriage in general. (Joe and Carolyn had become engaged at the beginning of the program.)

Perhaps this is a similar condition to Eternal Sunshine On A Spotless Mind (2004) in which, even with memories eradicated, the people involved end up making the same decisions in any case. Picking up on the personality of a character in-depth can show the trepidation they have even though we’ve rarely seen the proof of it. I trusted my intuition about Carolyn Stoddard. I wanted her to say yes to Tony, I couldn’t imagine her not saying yes to Tony, but when the story started to process in my psyche, Carolyn was saying no, yet also saying she wanted to be with Tony Peterson. How to have both? I certainly wasn’t against it on moral grounds by any means! My husband and I “shacked-up” for 15 years before finally tying-the-knot. How would Collinwood approve of such a relationship? Then again, this is a laid-back Collinwood. (And it helped to recall the love-life of H.G. Wells in the late Victorian age. Some of this stuff is old-hat.)

Music inspired me, as it so often does, and I’d just been enjoying the Vanessa Carlton song, “I Don’t Want To Be A Bride”. It was set to a wedding-march rhythm and sounding so much like a song for a bridal walk down the aisle, but the lyrics expressed not getting married and living happily ever after, or at least happily with bits of the usual-life troubles. It helped so incredibly I put it into the chapter. Not likely to make it for the print publishing, but very likely to make it to the radio-drama.

Carolyn Stoddard stared carefully at him, “How about I wear this ring to my dying day… how about I’m yours forever without all that paperwork nonsense? … how about us being engaged and that’s as far as it goes?”

Tony Peterson smiled widely and kissed her passionately, then said, “Engaged? Forever? … I’ll take it.

Much approval was gleaned for this chapter, both in 200 Years Away and Margaret Josette Dupres


Osheen Nevoy chapter __ . Feb 26, 2014
Lovely! I think you’ve worked it out perfectly. It makes absolute, total sense for Carolyn to make that decision. I love the descriptions of Tony; it’s so nice to see him portrayed as someone to be passionate about (which he is, of course, the dear man!), when he is so often more-or-less ignored in the Dark Shadows universes. The descriptions in general, in fact, are excellently done – loved the one about their boulder & how it could be the top of the world. And excellent little details such as Tony not wanting to get his trouser-cuffs all salty and sandy! And, of course, add in the ghost of Bill Malloy, and I’m happy as a clam! Nice to see him & Capt. Gregg enjoying themselves! Of course, Bill didn’t drink much (usually) when he was alive, but I can see that after death he might well let his hair down a bit – not so many work responsibilities, etc.! – and certainly with the captain around as an influence on him, that makes sense! I would love to read the two Carolyns’ books! Maine really does have to be haunted to the gills, if Collinwood is anything to base that judgement on!

Ayup! Osheen had to wait for the finished product eventually to really know what went down but I dedicated the chapter to her for helping me so much and I added Bill in the best I could with what little I knew about him.


Magical Irish Dolphin chapter __ . Mar 6, 2014
I love it! It’s the perfect agreement for Tony and Carolyn, and you explained Carolyn’s reason for not wanting to get married beautifully. And it’s also pretty fluffy in the most awesome way. I think this is my favorite story you ever wrote!

To this I respond-reviewed (which I tend not to do anymore because we’re a little less shy about email):

Daryl Wor chapter __ . Mar 7, 2014
Oh, thank you! It means a lot. I had my husband read it to me and then we played the song. Osheen really helped me crack the nut on why I wanted what I was channeling from them. I could not figure it out until then. I had a number of ciders throughout the weekend while I was writing it and it’s one of my favourites, too. It’s one of my proudest achievements and I’d love it if more Tony & Carolyn fans appreciated that. I felt like, okay, no matter what, she HAS the ring, and right there on the beach, in this beautiful way, they *are* married. As Tony’s says to himself, “This is what I want, this is what I have, and this is what always will be.”

Plus, I know where they’re coming from as my chap and I were together 15 years before we finally did get married. So between Tony & Carolyn, along with Maggie & Barnabas… we know… 🙂 It’s wonderful.

More was reviewed for the renewed MJD posting:

Magical Irish Dolphin chapter 21 . May 27, 2014
I really love this. I think this is the cutest thing you ever wrote. I love Tony and Carolyn on the beach. It’s perfect. I’m glad more of your readers are giving this pairing another glimpse and seeing them in a new way. You certainly made me see them in a new prism. And I know what you mean about developing couples that harbor potential but were never fully realized on the show… Thanks for adding this chapter in your novel.

Thanks for enjoying it so effusively as I do! 🙂


Oddly enough I noticed, after Cassandra’s wily ways, Tony & Carolyn getting back together, however briefly, on Dark Shadows. I’m starting to wonder if the relationship fizzled due to Tony Peterson losing favour with the story-lines. I’m getting the feeling it’s actually that. Tony’s final appearance on DS is episode 578 after an attack by Adam who is jealous and wants Carolyn’s affections. Beyond a few bruises, Tony’s relationship with Carolyn is apparently intact. Go figure. This is why I like to remind audiences everywhere that Dark Shadows is a daytime-drama and when the potential for happiness arrives it’s often thwarted in that style of storytelling to keep the viewer on-the-edge. (Luke & Laura’s longevity on General Hospital is anyone’s guess! Princess Diana even sent champagne for their fictional wedding.)

I already know the dwindling of attention-span in book-reading. I fear the general population has also lost the ability to discerningly watch television. It’s often based on the availability of the actors. Was Jason McGuire removed from Dark Shadows because the production team wanted him to leave? Nope. The actor, Dennis Patrick, bless his heart, wanted to leave in the strongest terms. Real lives alter the story-telling of a television program. But for soap-opera material Jason McGuire was a villain to be reckoned with and who kept you tuned-in with major hate for him. Tony Peterson and Carolyn Stoddard didn’t have an edge-of-your seat romance going without trouble. Their romance was likely dropped due to running out of trouble for them with which to wrestle.

Mainly I remember feeling like Hell that Tony & Carolyn were being parted via Cassandra and her mind-control on Tony that by the time the show may randomly have healed their love and then drifted-off from the relationship, I was already invested in the relief-series idea and wanted to see those two, not only happy but, having plenty of fun adventures. And I still do!


 Ms. Karen Trask chapter 21 . May 21, 2014
I enjoyed reading this though with my own thoughts about it, as you might imagine 🙂 but it was a very nice telling of a story line many fans wanted to see happen. Great read!

Thank you! We do like to see lovers succeed. I believe it’s very natural when they are mutually attracted.

katieyoung1960 chapter 21 . May 25, 2014
Perfect!

I was relieved when my husband and I read the chapter together to believe so. I happily sighed with astonishment, “I couldn’t have asked for anything better.” 🙂

Helena Clara Bouchet chapter 21 . May 21, 2014
That was a romantic chapter although I was as confused as Tony at first. But we get it now 🙂 I am happy for the couple. So when is their engagement celebration or party?

I’m guessing it will be during the radio drama someday. As for this log entry I think one chapter is more than enough to dwell on considering all the studying and consultation that was required to make it happen. As a soap-opera relationship? It ran it’s course. For a humour-mystery audio serial? I shall always be on the edge of my seat for Carolyn & Tony. ❤


Before the lyrics the chapter ends wonderfully with Tony Peterson’s understanding of his relationship with Carolyn Stoddard.

Tony held her up about her middle, her knees around his, and swung her around on the beach, kissing her intently. It doesn’t make any difference now, he thought, this is what I want, and this is what I have, and this is what always will be.

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One More Try…

Vic and Mor 1

I just don’t understand. Usually when someone makes a person laugh that person tells them what was laughed at, or when they are touched they express that. I want to give more, I want to do more, and I want to get through it.

If anyone tried to post comments on podomatic that didn’t go through please let me know. The only comments that I didn’t let through were double postings of the same comments.  (Helena and I are discussing email traffic so I can post her comments when she can’t get in.)

I’ve worked so hard, I’ve spent so much, I’ve given so much and I just want to go on. I remember a day last year when two writers were so excited to be posting their new chapters… I was happy for them.  They were looking forward to what their audience might say. Then I went to my kitchen to eat my lunch..  and I couldn’t.  I was in tears. “This isn’t fun for me anymore. This is a slow death because people can’t talk to me about what they enjoyed.” And I just kept crying.

I don’t understand. Most of the people enjoying this are writers and artists. Why is it so hard to type up a synopsis of what was enjoyed then copy and paste it into a review box? Of all that I’ve done, of all that I want to do, how is it people have become so inhuman?

In any case, here is the text link to it. Episodes unfold in various buttons and drop down menus. I doubt this will do anything but as many have said, “I have to try.”

Episodes One – Thirteen

Margaret Josette Dupres continues…

Barnabas and Kitty

[Adult] The baby is asleep, but this couple is not. Well, it’s Winter. Is anyone cold? This part is rather intense and I’m told one had to roll in the snow to cool off. ❤ Here is the link to chapter 37:

https://www.fanfiction.net/s/10240300/38/Margaret-Josette-Dupres-A-Novel

new bed

Wedded Bliss

Michaelmas 29 September 2014

Archangel Micheal

Before my husband left for work he wished me a Happy Michaelmas. Trying to remember everything I had to do after I woke up and had my pumpkin spice coffee. Some of the new delights in this blog may have been inspired by all of those spices that stimulate this time of year. Nutmeg, cinnamon, allspice, cloves… ahh… And the touch of rain that ignites warmer passions as the year grows colder.

I tried catching up with facebook and email. A stunning pair of messages reached me. One director at a college station got in touch with me to say he’d received the parcel and passed the postcard on to someone. He enjoyed the atmosphere and said all of my actors were good! Oh, dear, I had to confess, those are all me! And I consider that a huge compliment. Next I notice this response to a forward, perhaps via the first gentleman. This chap preferred mp3s to CDs being sent and also suggested a radio drama group on facebook. A-ha! So I got over to facebook with the link he’d left me. Wow! Over 800 members to this group! I put in a request to join, made a post about everything which gave delight to pals. Next I began an email to an old co-worker of my husband and about to provide the links to my show but a button got pressed wrong and the whole thing got eaten to my anger. I finally released that anger and decided it was just as well as I had to scoot out to the shops sooner than later.

As I arrived at the market I forgot what I’d gone for. My pal at the sample counter had redone her hair even more flamboyantly to my interest and then who was there sampling? My in-laws! Hey! Excellent. I finally got a chance to let my pal know the recent drama and the good news, the latter being far more exciting. Then I finished up my shopping and my in-laws gave me a ride home.

It was getting into the late afternoon so I looked over the recipes and got the oven going, cleaned out the sink, cleaned out the goose, put slices of garlic into the areas I’d opened, sprinkled it with a seasoning mix I just bought, found a cookie sheet, placed the pan on top with the goose and some water inside and set the timer.  Now I’ve got hours to settle down and do more.  This table desperately needs a change of cloth. The one on it now would have been preferable with the Autumn colours but it’s filthy. Let’s get the basic black.

Ah, yes, no tin for the pumpkin cornbread, get paper cups and muffin tins, that’s cleaner and easier. Now on to the pumpkin soup; the market had presented a recipe for that with chunks of baked potato and kale. I’m using apples instead for lower carbohydrates. So no pomme de terre but just pomme. Ah, a pie tin. That’ll work. The goose has been in the oven for two hours while I listened to recordings of my Aunt’s radio show for a change of pace. Oh, I love this episode in the coffee house and the old house mate suddenly being their waiter and offering them meals gratis. “Well, now I’ve gotta look back at the menu and see what the most expensive thing is,” one of the characters complained.

I spray the pie tin with olive oil, put on the apple chunks and kale and started a timer. My mum-in-law had suggested half an hour to bake them. Glad I ran into them so I could ask that! Then I got the pumpkin cornbread mixture into the papered muffin tins. The timing would be close to the baking time of the apples and kale and the goose would be in a bit longer because I couldn’t find the damn thermometer for it, so might as well bake it a while more, just in case.

I manage to throw up on facebook what I’m doing and attend to various notifications. Oh, great. ABC is running the 2012 Dark Shadows movie on Halloween. Here’s a thread that’s going to get negative attention. Well, I’m already half a sheet to the wind on cider. I’ll say again how glad I am people hate that movie that cleared my way, likely allowed those Barnabas/Maggie and Barnabas/Josette stories to start taking place all around the same time in the Summer of 2013 while the DS World was harping on the darn film ad nauseaum! I’m okay with that film ‘cause the bastard finally jumped for his bloody woman and TWICE. But what the Hell? We don’t have basic TV anymore and I’ll likely spin “The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown”, or perhaps my VHS mixture which includes a bad ending for Raggedy Ann and Andy’s “The Pumpkin Who Couldn’t Smile.” (The one I taped ends right after it looks like the pumpkin splat on the ground, and then the credits roll.)

Rootbeer Brothers Halloween A&W 5

                Daryl’s Husband arrives and helps out with the muffins, makes the green peas which I’d completely forgot about. Hmm… they’ve been in the freezer for months. We’ll see. And so we finally get it all squared away and take a few photos. Because there is a dragon theme in Michaelmas I also placed that wonderful Green Dragon story Michael Hutchence read in the film “Dogs In Space” to my facebook post. Hmm, I want to hear that song about contemplating suicide and not doing it. I’ve certainly done a lot of that in the last year. So with that, the “Dogs In Space” soundtrack becomes the music for Michaelmas. Kinda fits considering its main icon is Michael Hutchence. (R.I.P.)

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Superb dining is to be had. So this is what it’s like to be a guest-judge on Iron Chef! It must be the best meal I’ve ever put together for Michaelmas. The goose is better than ever, the soup is to die for, the pumpkin cornbread is tasty as all-get-out and the peas are fine. Old, but fine. But, uh-oh, husband isn’t too keen on the soup. Did I throw too much Parmesan on top? How is it without? Oh, he’s not good with the kale. Damn! And the whole tureen is infected with kale now because I couldn’t find a place to separate the ingredients like they did at the sample table weeks ago.

Michaelmas 1

Michaelmas 2

And now for the traditional discussion: Because this is like an Anglican Thanksgiving but involves an Archangel that conquers a dragon, I’ve likened the discussion not for thankfulness solely, but for that which we’ve conquered both internally and externally. Or inner demons that we’ve managed to make friends with since last Michaelmas. And as usual, we have the celebration of not having committed suicide through everything. (This is not mentioned facetiously, but with a hint of chuckling awkwardness.)

“I made it through this year of a roller-coaster ride with you and your project and your own emotional roller-coaster.”

“Yes, I was speculating how all that stuff came out last year and thinking, ‘What the Hell is going on with me? This fricken erotica?’ Spewing out here and there and the old version was all over the place and I would switch chapters, move them around as I called out to friends, ‘What’s happening?!’ Asking friends who don’t really know the characters, ‘What the Hell is going on? What is this?’ And they’re just like, ‘This is the best fricken smut I’ve ever read!’ And I say, ‘Well, that’s great! But who the Hell wants this???’

“Then to finally have the people be able to come to me and they did want it, it’s an inner demon I’ve made friends with; to be okay with writing erotica for characters that were very suppressed and hadn’t reached each other yet and my being overtaken by these characters… Then we have encouragement not to leave the reader hanging. I was waiting for it to collapse on me again completely. Then ‘The Wedding Day’ came out and I was amazed. All the stuff to figure out how to reach those who did want it after wondering so long why I was pressed to pursue the erotica at all. Then the encouragement increases the vibrancy of each chapter, creates new ones and the entire novel starts blending together into an actual story. The experience is like an inner demon that I made friends with from last November when it was all coming out randomly. I’m happy about that. “

dragon and michaelmas

Another dragon conquered for Daryl’s Husband, “Your emotional roller-coaster; the valleys on that were certainly a struggle, more so for you than for me, but they were a struggle for me as well.”

“Then,” I said, “you joined me in the podcast intros.”

He nodded, and blushed, “Certainly been appreciative of the romance that has been re-ignited.”

Yeah,” I responded, smiling, “that’s kind of an accomplishment, too, to take what was given and be able to use that channeling for ourselves. In a way that fits… right now… a thankfulness in receiving something that we weren’t sure about as you read the chapters with me. And there were moments when you were surprised by something that went down on paper and wondered if there was a boundary that we were crossing that we hadn’t crossed before… because of them. I think that’s the best way to say it.”

He agreed, then added, “And getting a job for me, to be able to finally pay the bills. At times all of this included has been pretty overwhelming.”

He was switching gears, but I went back to the previous topic after assenting to his feelings about that one, “And I’ve gone with this to the point of stretching beyond the call, and seeing if there was anything I could make up for that I’d done wrong in all of my angst. As it turns out… not really, but knowing that I tried my best to extend myself and offer olive-branches to anyone whose feelings I might have hurt. Knowing that I did my best with various people, and knowing that in the long-run there are people who won’t listen or understand. But having done my best to make that attempt to bring understanding to those who are so negative… there’s nothing more to be done. There’s nothing you can do but do your best. If it doesn’t work, it just doesn’t work talking to some people.”

We continue the meal, wondering what to do with the additions on the goose in order to make a soup and not waste anything. Putting all of the goodies away as we finish up. I think this is one of the rare times we have major Michaelmas leftovers. I’d almost added fried zucchini and was glad I didn’t. A glass covering for the pumpkin cornbread… and then we rifled around for something to put the goose in. What the heck is going to fit? Remove things from the fridge and, ack, that’s not working, it’s not big enough, where is that long Pyrex dish we got from Rick as a wedding gift? Scrambling through cupboards we finally find it, clean it, and it’s a perfect fit. THANK YOU, RICK! (I wonder if he’ll ever even see this journal.)

The green peas made it in so the soup pot could go on top of that, but my husband suggested turning the pot lid upside-down to make sure the handle didn’t jam for space. It worked!

There was a wind-up of one more struggle to note on this day. I had made friends who ended up making the work much harder and more stressful, and as it turned out they weren’t friends, but trying to control what I was doing, being so obsessed with the original program to the point I had to wonder what stake they had in all of this. Obsession is understandable in the Dark Shadows fandom but I had more reason to be obsessed as they are spectators to what I’m doing and I’m the one creating it with so much more. The hope now is to find the people who want it.

If I could do this in a way that didn’t find the people who either enjoyed it and despised me, or didn’t appreciate the direction it’s heading, I would love to find that way. So far there are several complainers. All they seem to be doing is making more noise which brings me to receive more numbers and downloads as lurkers wonder what the Hades these complainers are even talking about. It’s a little like what happened with Monty Python’s film, “The Life of Brian”. That movie was more publicized by haters who didn’t understand it than any advertising Monty Python could have achieved if they tried. I remember the troupe suggested sending gifts of fruit-baskets to the picketers of it.

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BrianTitle

                Who is watching, I wonder, when these haters rise and I speak or shrug? How much can this creator take? Do they wonder that? Well, now I’ve been pushed so hard by silence to reach all the fandoms involved, email every college radio station in the United States, plunk down links to any Barnabas/Josette video on youtube when I discovered what specific fans I needed to look for, yearned to be with my fellow creative Goths again, pursued podcasting sites, and now a place that embraces radio dramas specifically.

How big shall The Pit of Ultimate Dark Shadows become? I don’t know. But I do know I have goals. Five perspectives per episode would be sufficient. Will I hear more? Will people finally de-program from this internet laziness The Powers That Be may have been incorporating into our lifestyles? Could this radio series bring the kind of change Barnabas Collins sees in the bride he desired for so long? Her gregarious nature finally bringing the crux into his home and estate and the people there?

Many a groaning woman wonders, “Why do you love me?” to their mates. One so romantic as Barnabas Collins has given his answer in my series, “I love you, because you love everyone, my Maggie, my Josette.”

I am thinking of aurochs and angels, the secret of durable pigments, prophetic sonnets, the refuge of art. And this is the only immortality you and I may share, my Lolita.

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More Stations Contacted and Illness Lifting

VictoriaMorticia rose

As several packages to college radio stations have been mailed in the last week I can only deduce part of why all of this happened as sorely and unfortunately as it has is Providential in purpose: to reach more and more people. Why folks have become even more distracted away from communicating and sitting in the complacency that information-overload and lack of dialogue is what this online world is all about, there must be more need to change lives beyond a small shipping town.

I am hardly the only individual who works very hard online only to see numbers and feel a sense of pointlessness in it all. I hear from these creators on a regular basis and they aren’t just writers of fanfiction or articles. The point in sharing is discussion. Book clubs still take place for this purpose. College radio? It very likely continues to retain listeners who don’t skip around on audio. They have to listen carefully and they’re used to doing that. They have longer attention spans and due to being outside the mainstream they make decisions about what they like and aren’t guided by the nose as to what they should enjoy. As one station expressed themselves on a website I saw today: “We play none of the hits.”

Very nice indeed.

My husband and I are sick of coughing and want that element to leave like so much of the rest. But we hold close and smile widely and gratefully when either of us comes into view after hours of separation. And it looks like a number of characters will be of stuffy nasal passages. Maggie and Sam make sense, they’ve likely shared tears together after what occurred in Episode 12. Hoffman and Stokes? Well, they’re a little scratchy in sound so that could work. Caleb? Hmm… Not sure if I’ll use any of those re-performed lines. Will it matter there was a train in the distance as I recorded that?

Victoria and Morticia from the original demo are fine. My Cara Mia got that snippet and said she howled with laughter over the one line I gave Uncle Fester. Just an alteration in pitch for Morticia Addams. “You really do have a voice made for audio, Querida.” So lovely to hear someone tell me these things. I’ve got to investigate more of The Addams Family and hold fast to them. They truly have been a larger beacon for The Pit of Ultimate Dark Shadows that I did not expect.

The interesting part in all of this is how young the more vocal readers and writers are. These are old programs and films but younger people love them. That’s also the sad part. I get the terrible feeling many Dark Shadows fans are much older than the rest of us, got used to not saying anything or being encouraging, so our work gets read or in my case heard, and we’re looked at like 1) the fanzines of old, in which there were no comment boxes, 2) not needing any commentary because we grew up with the internet (I didn’t, by the way) or 3) as if we are people who are… their… age? Nope. Talking to these younger creators who are doing this to find their people, their feelings have been harmed and they’ve been unhappy or lonely just as long if not longer than I. What happened to caring about the younger, anyway? Especially from folks who grew up writing letters and using the post-office. Did all of those skills just die?

Speaking of which the blue-box that I used for Captain Gregg’s sound effects in helping Sam mail the check during Episode 12? That box just got yanked off the street. Pisses me off but it was in a crappy location. So, for posterity it still exists in that audio. But the post office isn’t going away, I think that’s what needs to change as well. We need to write letters again, tap into the thoughtful discussion we’re capable of; long-term expression, not quick-fix ephemera.

Pop Evans

As “Pop” tells Maggie in my 13th Episode when she wonders if she could ever trust Barnabas again, even as Josette:

“People can change, you know. They really can.”