Monday, December 19, 2011

My New Obsession: The Book of Mormon

No, not the actual religious text, but the Broadway musical by the creators of South Park. I turned on the car stereo Friday night and “All-American Prophet” came on at full blast. I was flabbergasted - a total WTF moment - but then I was intrigued. Trust me, if you ever turn on a car stereo that is always set CBC and hear instead an epic song that starts talking about digging in your backyard, golden plates & angels, you will also be supremely confused.
But I was also in love. I got home and immediately starting listening to the songs on YouTube. I discovered a lot of crude language and crass humour, but there was so much more to the show than that. The show is a huge parody of both religion and Broadway musicals, but the former is sweet - Matt Stone called the show “an atheist's love letter to religion” - and the latter is more of an homage.
Basically, The Book of Mormon’s point is that religion is at it’s best when it is local, community-oriented, and not taken too seriously. In terms of former Broadway musicals, for me the two most obvious take-offs are “Hasa Diga Ebowai” and “You And Me (But Mostly Me)”. Have a listen and see if you can guess what songs they were inspired by.

In other news, I heard “the Kijiji snowblower ad guy” on the radio early in the week, with the exciting news that because of his Kijiji ad, he’s gotten freelance work and more recently a legit job offer. He’s some sort of accountant type in his day job, and hearing about his random success reminded me that giving up on your writing dreams is foolish, no matter how foolish you think the dreams themselves are.
“You are the only one in the world who can kill your dream.” — Jim Butcher. That’s my desktop background right now, because for writers at least, it’s absolutely true.
Harkening back all the way to last week…. remember all those critiques I was so excited about? Well, some of them have come back, and it kinda sucked reading them. I knew my story had issues, but having them all laid bare like that was not fun. It’s good for me, and good for my story, since now I have a direction for revision, but it was certainly unpleasant.
On the bright side of writing this week, I did pseudo-finish another story of mine. I had a sparse plot outline, but instead of writing through from A-Z and ending up with all sorts of extraneous crap, I decided to approach the writing in a totally new way. I wrote whatever scene I felt like writing, in whatever order was most convenient, and skipped the boring bits. I now have all the important scenes written, and can fill in the blanks without being held back by useless filler.
Before I go back to my useless French homework, in case you didn’t already realize, I’ll reveal that “Hasa Diga Ebowai” is a parody of “Hakuna Matata” from The Lion King and that “You And Me (But Mostly Me)” draws heavily from lots of Wicked’s song in terms of musical and melodic motifs.
Off to listen to it some more… goodnight all.

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