A Tale: Romeo & Juliet by Kenneth Branagh broadcasted from The Garrick

Never have I ever read the play Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare.

As I take a step forward, head bowed, sheepish and very much discomfited, I am somewhat relieved by the truth that, perhaps, many of my contemporaries have not themselves read such a fine and tragic literary piece. From the throes of the 1968 classic, the Baz Luhrmann adaptation that sent our inner 90’s reeling, to the ’13 adaptation I still have yet to see, I honour the phrase of “star-crossed lovers” and such tragedy of love in reference of everyday.

But to re-tell the story in under a minute, of the feuding Montagues and Capulets, Romeo and Juliet, love, and eventual death, where is thy sting? It is a a plot eternal, thickened by our attention to love, oh love.

Upon announcement that Kenneth Branagh will be adapting said play at The Garrick Theatre in London with two stars we know as fair Cinderella and her Charming prince – Lily James and Richard Madden were names acquainted with panache – I was indescribably giddy.

We begin the story with my thunderous applause and hands clutched to mine heart after experiencing Kenneth Branagh’s The Winter’s Tale on the eve of a summery February. Broadcasted live on cinema screens, it was my first foray into the genre. I have only ever dreamed of such amalgamation, dear friends, so imagine my heart skipping a beat when the lights dimmed to a hush and we were treated to a birds-eye view of the buzzing theatre waiting for the opening act. I laughed and merried away, Judi Dench and Branagh himself exploding in fine performances; a cast that danced and gambolled, the set alive with their stomping and dramatics. I knew, Kenneth Branagh will not disappoint in this second Shakespearean adaptation.

In a fashion closer to cinema, the play begins with teenagers in interview who talked of love at first sight, parental rules, wisdom they could bestow to their progenitors, and a little harmless spoiling of the play. Though this preamble was unexpected, it was not unpleasant either. And soon, we are buzzing as The Garrick from above looks alive. The thrill stings your fingertips.

As the pandemonium hushed and Branagh makes a small announcement of Richard Madden’s unfortunate ankle, I hear my friend breathe a huge sigh as the show will go on… and Madden will be our dear Romeo. I must note: Branagh and co-director Rob Ashford decided to broadcast the film in black and white and 16:9 frame as a nod to their own experiences with the play: muted but stark, simmering passions, and familial vendettas in heat, folded and stroked. I accuse them for such mastery over the art.

There is a lone jive note as the curtain opens and Christopher Oram’s set is crowded by the anonymous, lighted by Howard Hudson, and the monochromatic ode captured beautifully by director Benjamin Caron. The high-contrast relieves you from the challenge of identifying the where’s who. Instead, you are pushed to focus on who has the upper beat (often Jacobi’s Mercutio whenever he is on scene) and it was delightfully fun as Caron aids you in mid-shot framing and transitions to such beats.

Madden was the perfect Romeo with his sleeves rolled up to his elbows and a lock of curls resting just above his brow. He feels the magic of love in those boyish smiles and moments where he faltered in confidence. You see him almost like a Swashbuckler but he is complemented by the La Dolce Vita of this adaptation. He was aggrieved, perfectly situated, and robust. He controlled his scene – his dominion.

Lily James was a standout Juliet. The balcony chug was as teenaged as it is unexpected. She perfected the role of a young maiden pining, unsure but also sure, fighting against parental expectations and the niceties of Paris (who really was he?) whose intentions we will never really know. She was golden, a contrast, to the direness of such love.

What I admired about this play the most was the ensemble. The casting was impeccable with Derek Jacobi at the helm but both Capulets & Montagues performed in shoes stained with discord. I applaud above all Meera Syal (The Nurse) and Michael Rouse (Lord Capulet) for opening up the play to a less narrow perspective – there is more to Romeo and Juliet than just Romeo and Juliet. Kathryn Wilder (Peter) was jovial and fun, and Derek Jacobi as Mercutio, a wizened addition to Madden’s Romeo and Hirst’s Benvolio (the other best friend). The provocative ragtime soundtrack blends in with each scene transition, and by heavens those columns! No sooner do you eventually catch on…the entire set was built like a tomb. A foreshadowing that haunts you every time Valentine’s Friar Laurence is disturbed in prayer by our spirited gli amanti.

Sure, it was no tragicomedy that left you breathless like The Winter’s Tale, enamored by the spirited, happy love of Florizel and Perdita and the spat between two persons instead of two families. But Romeo and Juliet was beautiful in its own way. I understand a bit more as to why Romeo and fair Juliet grasped at happiness no matter the cost. I appreciated that violence is often a byproduct of more than hate, but a refusal to admit wrong. And clearly, such love is, of course, not to be placed on a standard or pedestal, but it is love nonetheless. Though tragic it may be.

Kenneth Branagh never ceases to amaze me. He examines and analyses stories like how we did back in our English classes. And since he succeeds in a lauded fashion, you are moved to believe (and accept) that you also can appreciate stories and enquire; to interpret and embellish, and adore and experience without judgment.

Thank you, to the team for the live-action and to the team for the broadcast. You have all changed my life more than you will ever know.

Here’s to more screenings and viewing and preferably, at The Garrick itself!

Minds Viewed Globally

We are entreated to a psychological dance of the “minds” so that we basic people will not find ourselves at the “mercy of forces” we cannot understand let alone control. Shall we?

  1. The disciplined mind – “a distinctive mode of cognition” that characterises a specific “scholarly discipline, craft or profession”.  It works with skill-improvement and understanding. If we don’t have this “mind”, we may be dancing to someone else’s jazz squares.
  2. The synthesising mind – synthesising (combining into a coherent whole), evaluating, and understanding disparate information from a variety of sources. Very important, particularly in this day and age.
  3. The creating mind – breaking new ground by putting forth new ideas, posing unfamiliar questions, conjuring “fresh ways of thinking” and arriving at unexpected answers.
  4. The respectful mind – “notes and welcomes” differences between human groups, understanding how others function and seeking to work as effectively as possible with them.
  5. The ethical mind – a mind that “conceptualises” how we can serve purposes beyond our self-interest and how we can work unselfishly to improve everyone’s all.

Anthropological, fact-based-and-driven scholars (a.k.a. Sheldon Cooper) would find above reasonings frivolous and a humorous read. But for creative minds like us, I think we may share just a tad bit of sameness with the above minds.

The disciplined mind alludes to my constant demand to win arguments no matter the cost…against my elder brother, that is. Though I do not label this as a “formal discipline” per se, I feel that the planning, researching and executing of informed comebacks that will brook no argument is something that embodies what Gardner believes is the second meaning of the word discipline: “training to perfect a skill”. But let me just marshal away from the triviality of this.

I love to write. If I’m more of a listener on the outset then I am definitely a writer on the in. I like to tally, rally and collect. However, I feel that my disciplined mind is at an impasse in regards to the world of professional writing. Unlike Gardner, who studies a psychological issue empirically, clinically and scientifically, when it comes to non-creative writing, at most, I blanch. If someone asked me to write a 500-word article on the Industrial Revolution, paid, at first glance I would take on the challenge. But 5-10 similar challenges later, I find myself on the defensive: I cannot research and sprout nothings again, paid or paid.

If I were to conclude that I am a better creative writer than I am non-fiction, then perhaps I should focus on training to perfect this skill instead. Take on some professional writing courses, download apps for productivity, and so forth.

Future-wise, I mentioned my desire to one day be crowned the titles of director, producer and writer. But thanks to a Screen Futures panel I attended aptly titled, “Screen Culture, Identity, and Diversity on Screen”, I was motivated to be more:

Women should be in in high positions in companies and institutions, situating themselves to be part of the the decision-makers; those who “green-lit” movies/shows, etc.

A decision-maker. And to be in such a high position, I must be able to discipline my mind, body, spirit and soul while increasingly drawing on the skill of synthesising. I have to not only focus on the jobs now, the workers involved, and their current assignments and skills, but also how best to execute current priorities and anticipating “how best to carry out future missions”. I do not just want to apply this to my current craft, I want to constantly evolve, demolish stigma and nuances, and to further this industry to heights unparalleled.

Gardner is right to conclude that these five minds must be cultivated if we are to have the kinds of “managers, leaders, and citizens needed to populate our planet”. I fully agree as one who is personally aiming to be one also.

Educationally, there is no current system that yields individuals who are all of the above. However, we are capable of putting ourselves in situations where we do learn and cultivate these mind and apply them in various situations also. By jumping into a cold pool of the unknown by going on a student exchange in a land I know only through movies, TV shows, and books, I was able to cultivate my respectful and ethical mind through interactions with international and globally-driven young people from different backgrounds and culture. By volunteering, internships and working odd-jobs here and there, I was able to cultivate my disciplined and synthesising mind, and by enrolling on a higher-education course, I was (still am) able to cultivate the creative mind.

Of course, those are very short and sweet, but you get the gist, right?


Who has time to find time in this digital age anyway?

Machines have not liberated us from work…

The unparalleled velocity of computerisation, telecommunications, and transport, which was expected to free up human time, has paradoxically been accompanied by a growing sense of time pressure.

…as a culture we have a shared experience of temporal impoverishment.

Judy Wacjman writes “Finding Time in a Digital Age and impresses upon us this approach into understanding the “fraught and complex” relationship we have with technology, its sovereignty in our lives, and our ability to choose exactly how, with what and with whom we allocate our precious, precious time to.

This reading is an explosion of understated ideas that often boils in the back of my mind (and perhaps yours too) concerning how much time we spend on our phones, computers, tablets, iPads, consoles as opposed to well, not. Wacjan says that a “digital detox diet” isn’t the best New Year’s Resolution out there. Why? Because technology, whether one likes it or not, plays a very significant role in our everyday lives. How does one successfully man a ship of balance then? By adapting the allocation and value concept, of course.

I once used my phone as a means to establish a boundary from itself and though it is contradictory in some if not, all respects, it is a “powerful resource that enables [us] to take control of time”. Do I agree with it? Somewhat, but a tool as powerful as a smartphone has its consequences; your phone as an alarm clock is one of them.

An anecdote:

A good two months ago, I decided to go in what I like to call the 21-day social media fast. As an avid user of social media, most of my time has been allocated into checking these sites every morning the minute I wake up and down to the wee hours of the evening, 2 a.m. and you have a class the next day. It was a prison routine and I wanted, needed a breather. So I deleted all my social media apps from my phone, re-arranged my bookmarks tab and settled into a journey of detoxify and #freshen.

A Social media fast is an example of time-allocation. I choose which activity I spend the most time on and I choose the ones that matters: notifications for e-mails only, birthday celebrations, group meets in half an hour. Without the distractive influence of people’s photo posts and diary entries online, I get to write on my own diary, reflect on bygone days, Xbox with the little sister and watch X Factor with the ‘rents.

“Technology barely figures in any of these discussions about the politics of time, except as an external factor that eats into leisure.”

I agree 100%.

What needs to be sought out is the idea (to be put into practice) that latest technologies can be “recruited as a resource in our quest for discretionary time”. We need to get into a mentality that slow is good also, that it doesn’t necessarily negate the importance of the instance of consumption. The key for me is the balance act between your work life, your tech life, your social life et al. You can enjoy technology, use it for its purposes and not miss out on the pleasures and sensory delights of Mother Nature. You can go to work and buzz in the cash just as long as it doesn’t eat up the quality time spent with mum, dad, grandma, sister, cousin. There is no impossibility to harmonising them all, to be honest.

Be so, so good – it’s not always about your passion.

In this industry, everyone talks about passion, everyone talks about “doing what you love” that it not only bordered on cliché, it trumps it with an american-accented “see ya later, losers!” And I’ve trained my psyche to be commanding enough to own this phrase of passion and make sure the little children in my little circle are given same advice. Clearly, Cal Newport or well, Steve Martin wonder of my childhood for comedy classics such as Cheaper by the Dozen and well, its sequel says otherwise:

Be so good they can’t ignore you.

That’s so unfair. There is a misdemeanour here and I feel absolutely cheated. How come no one told me this when I jumped into the pool of media and communications and fell in love with filmmaking and watching ‘perfect’ people express who they really are in BTS vids from a Vogue shoot? I thought the key had always been passion. I’ve expressed this vehemently when I landed on the shores of Boston Massachusetts and screamed an anthem of success for the international revenue a twenty year-old could be so favourably blessed with.

And then Newport grunts something like the craftsman mindset focuses on what one can offer the world while the passion mindset‘s about what the world can offer you and then I was slapped by the realisation of its opposite: what did offer Boston when I came through its chilly, almost-Melburnian doors? What did offer my Advanced Production in Directing class when I signed up to do a short film and auditioned two talented talented young kids who I know will make a name for themselves in this industry faster than you can say Cara Delevingne? (ps. love her)

Have I been mistaken all along? Has my epiphany come and I’m barely twenty-one? Should I be writing my autobiography already?

I’ve always had this problem of feeling like I am missing out on what I truly love the most when I am doing something, or even when I’m just thinking about doing something that will not benefit my future endeavours to become a Director, Producer and Writer in an industry as fastidious as E&M. And then I volunteered for community television shows and unpaid short films where I got to be on set surrounded by people who are as passionate as I was but are so good at what that they do that I recognised, finally, that to be better is to do better. I learnt more about the craft by allowing myself to be taken under *insert collective noun* of eagles and driving myself to wake up every morning to learn, flippin’ learn, and to best my yesterday today.

I had doubts and I had self-pity about who I felt I was upon my return from the grandest international adventure I’ve been on knowing that I’m on my graduating year. I was all jittery and ready to flight more than fight. But I’ve finally awakened my dormant alter ego – it’s time to adopt a crafstman mindset and be so freakin’ good, the world cannot just ignore you, they cannot handle you. Supervillain, anyone?

No one owes you a great career…you need to earn it.


The Informal Media Economy – what’s to do about that?

I’m feeling pretentiously self-deprecatory at the moment, particularly with all this job talk and yes, the inevitable discourse of a media career, but allow me to to alleviate this post from its seriousness with an overview:

Ramon Lobato and Julian Thomas has a basket aplenty of discussions rolled into one focus: “informal modes of media work”. To sum quite liberally, informal means flexibility but insecurity, creative freedom but little to no pay, and enjoyable, career-minded work but unpaid overtime and mostly unregulated overwork. Formal usually means full-time, well-paid, regulated but less flexibility, to some extent.

This subject is quite intriguing in that most of my cohorts probably share the same anxiety I have towards this fissure between the two polars. As a fully-driven, career-minded graduating media student, aiming high, there is an equivocal appeal to the positive characteristics of informality. Freedom, autonomy, entrepreneurial prospects. It’s worth the candour that that kind of life sounds pretty sweet. However, having concluded internships and volunteering projects myself and hearing others’ stories in regards to the exploitative nature of the informal employment sphere, it’s not difficult to be apprehensive, but also unsurprisingly roused to action.

Problematic aspects of informal work in the creative industries:

  • Underemployment
  • Unhealthy working conditions
  • Unpaid overtime
  • Self-exploitation
  • Discrimination
  • Lack of unionisation and minority representation

And one informant writer’s anecdote of an “intoxicating” and “rapturous” feeling of exploitation since she was working late in the city of dreams New York City as something akin to jealousy, eventually, through time, you realise the necessity of things like holidaying back to your parents through frequent flyer points, which you can only earn if you buy a new toothbrush, and of which can only be bought via money and well, time. You can’t exactly run to your nearest grocers at 2am in the morning after your fifth consecutive 15-hour shift now could you?

So where am I getting with this exactly? Addressing the travesty of the under-regulation of creative/media jobs in industrialised countries without sounding like a schmuck to the poor outsourced freelancers from less-fortunate backgrounds and economic surrounds who benefit from such informal employment conditions.

Regulation and also a significant support in the creative and media industries in industrialised countries is important in addressing Cunningham’s argument where he states that “very significant proportion of creative workers, including designers and multimedia artists, are located outside the creative industries, in sectors ranging from automotive to financial services”. Regulation means autonomy and freedom does not equal “unpaid” time, because, let’s face it people, though we enjoy our “jobs” and would be willing to “contribute” and “gain experience”, we also need a good night out watching Captain America in his spandex. And we can’t look cool that way when we’re not given the financial support also.

There needs to be a re-evaluation of what companies – big, small, start-ups – believe are “opportunities” and “gaining experiences” through the exploitation of creative talents for the benefit of their business reach. I’ve heard a quite a number of stories from people who has worked with huge companies that did not pay their interns and their ticket out of it was the experience of working for such a big name/big brand. Some friends who have graduated had taken care to point out to me to do internships but to not be used as a capital. Hence, my apprehension also.

Of course, personally speaking, I’ve interned with a number of great companies for no salary and indeed I benefited through experience and practical knowledge, networking and professionalism. But these organisations are self-funded and not-for-profit. It was a beneficial exchange between me and them. So how about the other way around?

Lobato and Thomas states a proposed solution to this creative labour problem: a “call for formalisation of workplace and recruitment practices, along with better and more extensive government regulation”. This should be emphasised because the creative industries is an industry itself also, similar to finances, medical, and corporate communications.

This, of course, is an open and very debated topic but it’s surely an issue that should be addressed for the greater good of future creatives.

TV-rhythmia and logging my “productivity”

They say, don’t be a couch potato if you don’t want to lose a year. I said that, but I also fail at actually realising that because I signed up for a class titled Television Cultures and we are more than encouraged to well, be a couch potato.

Oh, aren’t I living the dream?

Well, I mostly have digital copies of my favourite shows thanks to friends, romans and countrymen, and even when I got Netflix, I pretty much only use it to watch throwback favourites like you know, Lion King or whatever. And I want to watch Vampire Diaries but it’s not updated, and I want to binge on something like Orange is the New Black but I am constantly distracted by the “Suggestions for you”.

Epitome of First World Problems, isn’t it?

Television Cultures is surprisingly an interesting approach to the study of this century’s TV consumption. As per anecdote above, you can see a kind of digital dilemma that perhaps, more than one of you dear readers have faced yourselves in your entertainment-mongering happy hour/s.

Here’s a list anyway:

  • Orange is the New Black
  • The Last Kingdom
  • Suits
  • An anime or two – I just watched “Kids on the Slope” and I’m feeling rather jazzy.

And then maybe I’ll do some reviews, I don’t know. But don’t count on it because I cannot even finish a chapter two. I will do my best in expanding on this current study and maybe provide a good read on reflections and discussions.

Here’s to leaving you with featured image above. See if I can elaborate on that a bit more on my next post.

Entertainment & Media Future: age DOES matter, prediction (or prevention?), and content still rules

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This report, issued by the Global Entertainment Media Outlook 2016-2020 aggregates data in regards to the “great strides” that Entertainment and Media (E&M) companies are making in serving digital consumers both globally and locally. They claim that the biggest shifts occur in five different dimensions: demography, competition, consumption, geography, and business models.

My particular talk show, er, text post, focuses on these shifts relating to a generational bias in my locale in Melbourne, Australia and in an international, global-driven career. Let’s start with demography.

“…there’s an almost perfect correlation between markets with more youthful populations and those with higher E&M growth… Younger people consume more media than older people, and are more open to adopting digital behaviours — and therefore more open to digital spending.”

This information is more important to me as a graduating student as for once, in this ever-shifting media landscape, there is a percentage of accuracy in its predictability: the young generation consumes, consumes, consumes. We are the biggest consumers of media and we are more open to adopting and adapting to digital behaviours and emerging new media platforms that enhance these experiences.

Prediction or prevention?
“To understand the young and be able to predict” the shift from, say, direct downloading/renting of movies and television shows to streaming services like Netflix is a mere personal anecdote. I believe that the reason E&M companies are foreseeing this change does not necessarily attribute to our adaptability. There are underlying, immediate digital changes that occur that force us to look to these new avenues of digital spending. For instance, the Government’s shutting down of several torrent-based websites that limit the illegal downloading of movies and television, advertisement “abuse” in third-party hosting websites, and of course, the ever-powerful social circles that talk, talk, talk. Maybe you get to be included more in your social club when you’re enjoying the same kind of shows and complaining at the lack of options on Netflix Australia (yeah, I’m looking at you).

Perhaps E&M companies know that security and piracy prevention measures are taking place through a Government-mandated council, or they just have talented analytics and overseers on board. But truth be told, whoever’s steering the ship, manning the wheel – that’s what’s making a huge difference in the growing digital consumership.

Content Kings & Queens

Much of the E&M industry is growing more global, but cultures and tastes in content remain steadfastly local.

The popular opinion is that technology and communications is playing the Hannah Montana part while content plays its less glamorous counterpart, Miley Stewart. Unfortunately for y’all, statistics show otherwise.

There’s this compelling article written by Elizabeth Avram titled, “Finding Australian National Cinema in Nemo” which argues Finding Nemo (2003)’s resonance with Australian audiences in a national and Australian context: set in Sydney and the Great Barrier Reef up in Queensland and use of Australian voices for certain characters, to name a few.

According to Box Office Mojo, Finding Dory currently holds the highest gross total for all movies released in Australia for the year so far, beating out big titles such as Batman vs. Superman, Captain America: Civil War, and animated Zootopia and Kung Fu Panda 3. By these numbers, it would suggest that content-based business models should take an immediate leap to support the “co-existence of global and local content”. There is a universal appeal to certain genres of television shows (and movies to some extent also), but they succeed because of their “local characteristics”.

Personally, I get piqued quite quickly when national TV introduces a “new” show (i.e. The Voice) because frankly, it’s not new. Just adapted to our national screens. But what makes Australians (and other countries also) tune in? The local talent and the local “flavour”, of course. These “local characteristics” not only gives us a sense of nationalism and pride, but it’s also a lot closer to heart. You could not have made me watch The Bold and the Beautiful back in my soap-watching days, but I religiously followed The Neighbours like it’s my job.

To sum, the E&M industry is growing faster than the GDP (shocker, I know). And as a media student, current consumer, and amongst the youth age-range, it’s both enlightening and supremely helpful to have these shifts in mind as we go about in the business of media: from digital/online to film/TV production and beyond!

Credits to respective owners, of course.
’I declare that in submitting all work for this assessment I have read, understood and agree to the content and expectations of the assessment declaration (http://www1.rmit.edu.au/students/assessment/declaration).’

oh, to travel back to you

I don’t think it was a good idea to listen to Augustana’s Boston just before bed because now I’m on a tangent… far, far away from the home-view, longing to return to my beloved second love: the greens of Massachusetts, the soothing, ethereal roads from Montreal down to New Hampshire, the cold puffs of breath as you wander through the avenues of New York City, the remnants of Washington D.C., the clinking of trinkets on dusty Santa Fe….

Can you have such love and affection for things that do not breathe? Can you hold them so deep inside you, longing to caress it with footsteps and breathing in’s?

Oh, I could sigh.

This is a love letter to you, dear cities, dear memories, dear ones.

I could start a new life with you.

…and I will.

The 4th Industrial Revolution: what does it mean for content-makers?

The Industrial Revolution is defined as the transition to “new manufacturing processes” that took place from the 18th to the 19th centuries. It’s Anne Shirley on her horse-drawn buggy VS. Morgan Harris on his engine-powered automobile (If you don’t get that reference, I am quietly judging you).

Klaus Schwab articulates the Fourth Industrial Revolution from the the drivers of this historical movement, the economic transactions of labour and work, and the national and global changes, to the various societies’ response, absorption and accomodation of this new leap in modernity.

There are a couple of points that resonated to me in this reading but I’ll begin with the “human cloud” concept. My personal experience involved my participation as a self-employed writer in the dissection of precise assignments and projects that I found in the “virtual cloud”. In doing so, I was able to write for a company of whom I have no contractual obligation – and neither do they. I agree with Schwab; there is an “unrivalled” mobility and freedom with this type of work.

It begs the question, however, if job satisfaction was attained in this personal employment and if so, to what end? In retrospect, I was still under the creative-constraints of this post and as part of a generation who is aspiring for a more “harmonious work-life integration” and personally, my own creative development and freedom, it comes into question whether this particular economic exchange is merely an upskill event to further one’s careers and ambitions or if it is a solid start in integrating themselves into the web of this type of industry.

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I have a fondness for the ancient, archaic, Victorian, medieval, minimalist, french gypsy swing outfit and something to do with living in a cottage in Switzerland, pet cow for fresh butter and cheese, and wheat and vegetables growing in your backyard. I am solicitous to all things draconian.

As a content-maker, I surround myself with the vestiges of the past and as best I can, incorporate it into my own creative productions. How does one

“absorb and accomodate the new modernity while till embracing the nourishing values of our traditional systems?”

I came across this article, “Don’t burn your books – Print is here to stay” that almost funnily juxtaposes the innovated changes to society’s functioning towards the shift on the more advanced technology. Apparently, “pundits have assumed that the future of book publishing is digital” and they could not be more wrong. Unlike the successful shift from page to screen in music, photographs and maps, the traditional paperback is resilient with a market that is finally on an incline.

I personally had no means of ever purchasing an E-Book/E-Reader and though I do have a Kindle account, I found it more to be a supplement to my traditional reading pleasures (i.e. further reading and research on certain passages). In saying that, would such response be similar to the other forms of media and content consumption? For example in the entertainment industry where there’s been a varied selection of films/television shows released in the last decade that ranges from the intergalactic, Star Wars-kind of advancements that seem more and more viable each year, to the Legend of Tarzan, Game of Thrones-esque that glorifies the classical past?

Is there a more growing audience in one genre than the other? And if so, is this affected by the technological advancement of the fourth industrial revolution? Do content makers such as myself who thrive and are especially attuned to the “bygone” days make less of an impact than those in the “modern” hemisphere? Would fundings and opportunities be negatively/positively affected and in what way?

Apart from digital media creating substantial benefits in the dissemination of information, the forming of communities and the “empowerment” of our “individuality”, there is that undercurrent issue of the separation between those who “adapt” and those who “resist” and whether society will deem one to be right, while demeaning the latter. In saying that, “technological advances are pushing us to new ethical frontiers of ethics”. Should there be a form of regulation in these advancements then? And how do we determine what is ethically correct?

More to come.


’I declare that in submitting all work for this assessment I have read, understood and agree to the content and expectations of the assessment declaration (http://www1.rmit.edu.au/students/assessment/declaration).’

Project “Read the Movie”

Quite self-explanatory – I want to read the novels of which many, many movies are based on.
The catch: I must have seen the movies first before I read the novels.

Why? Because I am melodramatic.

A list then…

A Walk to Remember by Nicholas Sparks
The City of Ember by Jeanne DuPrau
The Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants by Ann Brashares
The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold
The Great Gatsby by F. Scott. Fitzgerald*
The Notebook by Nicholas Sparks
The Time Traveler’s Wife by Audrey Niffenegger
The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan
Atonement by Ian McEwan
The Devil Wears Prada by Lauren Weisberger
The Martian by Andy Weir
I am Number Four by Pittacus Lore
Jurassic Park by Michael Crichton
Coraline by Neil Gaiman
The Silver Linings Playbook by Matthew Quick
The Golden Compass by Phillip Pullman
Stardust by Neil Gaiman
Inkheart by Cornelia Funke
The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum
The Three Musketeers by Alexandre Dumas
The Silence of the Lambs+
James and the Giant Peach by Roald Dahl
A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens
The Princess Diaries by Meg Cabot
Peter Pan by J.M. Barrie
Like Water for Chocolate by Laura Esquivel>
The Bourne Identity by Robert Ludlum
The Invention of Hugo Cabret by Brian Selznick
Watchmen by Alan Moore

I’m going to stop there because the Goodreads list have 45 pages and I’m only on page 5. *sighs* This is one heck of a challenge to start with.

*I half-read a friend’s copy during a private study class oh back when.
+I really probably won’t, to be honest.
>I’m frightened to read this after the movie took me to places I did not dare be taken.

To begin, a tear-jerker:

I’ll make a Goodreads list, don’t you worry, little phantoms. Now, let me enjoy the peace of my beanbag. Landon and Jamie, await!