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I’VE MOVED!

June 27, 2008

Greetings to all those who are wondering why I have not posted recently, I am now maintaining my blog at a personal URL. Here is the link:

www.grahamwords.com

I hope you come visit me there.

–Jeremiah Graham

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Updates on All Things Creative

June 10, 2008

I’ve been placing all of my creative drive behind completing the novel of “Scars” and am pleased to announce the first realistic timetable on the project. I expect to have the first draft done by mid-july, after that I will polish the first three chapters and possibly submit them to Tor-Forge books. I am considering Tor as the first publisher I submit my manuscript to because a) they do not require an agent for submission; and b) they publish top-level authors such as Orson Scott Card. 

I have also thrown together I quick place-holder website for “Dynamic Static Productions,” my future film-powerhouse. Visit the website here.

I have begun writing my first feature film, which will be a small comedy affair. More info on that to follow. Creativity level: Fluctuating.

 

Inspiration from Stephen R. Donaldson

June 3, 2008

I ran across an amazing quote the other day while reading through Stephen R. Donaldson’s The One Tree; the second book in the Second Chronicles of Thomas Covenant the Unbeliever. I know that most of you have never read these books, but I picked up the first chronicle a little over a year ago because, a) they came highly recommended; and b) they were tent-poles of the fantasy genre thirty years ago. I have taken a long break between the first and second chronicles, but found the second just as intriguing as I remember the first being. 

Now, as a disclaimer, these are in no way a light read, I do not recommend these books to the faint of heart. They are epic fantasy at its finest, loaded with description and above all philosophical reminiscing. Now, it is the philosophical reminiscing that really drew me into the novels, because I am always fascinated by the varying truths hidden in philosophy. Most philosophy found in these novels is a load of garbage, but beneath the constant obscuration of reality I found this amazing quote that I wanted to share with my readers.

It’s hard to explain. I guess the question is, are you a person-with volition and maybe some stubbornness and at least the capacity if not the actual determination to do something surprising-or are you a tool? A tool just serves its user. It’s only as good as the skill of its user, and it’s not good for anything else. So if you want to accomplish something special-something more than you can do for yourself-you can’t use a tool. You have to use a person and hope the surprises work in your favor. You have to use something that’s free to not be what you had in mind.

As you probably guessed, the part that is in bold stood out to me the most. In the creative world there are so many times that a single person attempts complete domination over a project. They have a vision, and no one can fault them for that, but by taking control over it they limit it to their own capacity for creativity. The only way something can be greater than the creativity of a single person is for that person to be willing to take a chance on other individuals in the hope that all the surprises that come along will work out in their favor. This quote can be summed up by saying, “truly creative content cannot exist under micro-management.”

of Truth and Pain

June 2, 2008

It is in the breeding ground of untruth that pain is birthed and nurtured. While actions are planned in the presence of any shade of falsehood, a perfect soil is created for heartache and anguish. Internalizing deception, dwelling on trickery, contemplating prevarication, any shade of untruth is coalesced with torment. The only way a strain is ever placed within a spirit is through untruth, even if that untruth stems from an outside source, it is melded together with pain to the extent that a clear delineation between the two is impossible. 

Why then do people dwell on falsehood? Simply because in the miscellany of possible decisions it is those wrought with deceit that promise relief from pain. Truth is so simple that it remains silent, shouting volumes in its dormancy. The simplicity of truth is completely separate from the pain and anguish fused together with deceit. Truth is only difficult when untruth has already taken hold, but even then the lie is lying about the pain of truth. 

Embracing truth shuts out the cacophony of sorrow that lies in wait to prey upon the hearts of man. But it is only in complete truth that pain can be avoided, ninety-nine percent truth will bring with it pain. For the smallest degree of falsehood is a host to misery, but the simple purity of truth is a ward against heartache.

Prince Caspian: Impressions

May 28, 2008

 

 

I have been avoiding reviewing this film because I have very mixed feelings about its value. While I do not find myself in the crowd that despises the absolute dissection of C.S. Lewis’ original novel (I avoid association by having no respect for the novel in the first place), I do believe that as a standalone piece of art it fell far short of what it could have been. All of the pieces were in place to allow the returning Pevensie Children to shine in the world of Narnia, but instead the director chose to destroy their opportunity by including petty disagreements and multiple instances of the “blame-game.”

Throughout the film the characters communicated how sorry they felt for themselves by whining so much that the children in the audience cringed. The two leading characters of the cast, High-King Peter and Prince Caspian, squabbled for attention at the expense of everyone around them; neither of them ever successfully engaged in any on-screen activity and were both, in my opinion, a couple of blubbering idiots who needed to be euthanized, even if this meant changing the title of the film. 

Characters who were not whining were still completely unbelievable. Susan had a suspenseful near-death incident when she fell three feet (in terror-fringed slow motion). When she was not engaging in heart stopping falls she was slaughtering her enemies with stature-defying strength (using techniques taken straight from the quiver of Legolas in Lord of the Rings). Reepicheep was entertaining, but he had an unbelievable ability to move faster than men with legs ten times as long. This led me to believe that he was a teleporting mouse who was uninhibited by the restraints of gravity. Aslan, the christ-like lion, shows up at the last minute (likely due to the high price of Liam Neeson’s out of place voice) and proceeds to engage in acts similar to most deus ex machina, that is, acts unwarranted. 

However, despite all this I did not hate the film. Why? One character shone through the mirk: Edmund. The younger of the Pevensie brothers dominated all of his abbreviated screen time. He exemplified morale strength, courage and integrity. However, instead of capitalizing on this brilliantly created character they limited him to a minor, supporting role. I believe that if they cut out the majority of Peter and Caspian’s whining, bickering and cowardice; if they ended Susan’s antics, and instead, added more of Edmund the movie would have been amazing. If the movie were called The Chronicles of Narnia: King Edmund the Just, then I know it would be a brilliant film. Or, failing this, the filmmakers could simply give the other characters more of Edmund’s qualities.

un-Biblical Theology

May 27, 2008

When discussing theology I find more and more people never once use the Bible as source for the core of their argument. They instead rely on the thoughts and ideas of other men, or in the worst cases the thoughts and ideas they have come up with. I instead have founded myself firmly in the Romans 3:4 concept, “Let God be true, but every man a liar.” No matter what how brilliant a man is, no matter what degree is attributed to their name, no matter how respected they are in the theological community, no matter how many times they claim to be inspired by God, if a man argues anything that contradicts the Bible what that man says is wrong. Founding a theological concept on the doctrine of any man or even angel is un-Biblical theology; theology outside of God’s words. 

Some will doubtless argue that the Bible is not the word of God, to those I provide the following scriptures all of which declare or assume that the scripture is God’s word: Deuteronomy 6:6-9, 17-18; Joshua 8:32-35; Psalms 1:2, 12:6, 19:7-11, 93:5, 119:9,11,18,89-93,130; Proverbs 30:5-6; Matthew 5:17-19, 22:29; Mark 13:31; Luke 16:17; John 2:22, 5;24, 10:35; Acts 17:11; Romans 10:17; Colossians 3:16; 1 Thessalonians 2:13; 2 Timothy 2:15, 3:15-17; 1 Peter 1:23-25; 2 Peter 3:15-16; Revelation 1:2, 22:18.

Having established that the Bible is the Word of God we must then judge every word that contradicts it as being contradictory to God Himself. Therefore, I never want to hear anymore theological arguments that are not founded on scripture. No matter how clever or clear an argument or concept seems, without scripture it is worthless. 

Constant Research

May 15, 2008

I promise that more parts of the story will be posted sometime in the near future, currently I’ve been in a constant state of researching the history of the world where the story takes place. My biggest find so far has been a collection of genealogies that give a very clear portrayal of the generations leading up to the reign of Ethian and Galvant. There are two characters in the genealogies that I am really trying to learn more about, they are brothers, born one year apart, named Athonar and Dyathonar. According to the genealogies they died on the same day as their sons in the year 866.

There were at first innumerable possibilities for this strange occurrence, but, when I uncovered more genealogies I discovered that 866 saw the death of a huge number of people. From this I am able to derive a conclusion that Athonar and Dyathonar, along with their sons, were killed in a war. However, though I can be fairly certain of this I am never quite sure until I uncover a history of that time. 

For now I am going to continue analyzing and preserving the genealogies that I have discovered. Creativity level is rising!