Under the Influence

This weekend, I started a mini-revolution over on Twitter, by tweeting about The Dark Crystal. Earlier on Saturday, I had been in a very busy Barnes & Noble, editing my manuscript on the floor in the children's section because there were no chairs or tables available. I wandered downstairs to the movie department, and even though I heard my dad's nagging voice whispering, "Only buy Blu Ray, my daughter, Bluuuu raaaaayyy..." I still headed straight for the normal, discount DVDs. Lots of good finds, my friends! One of which was Drop Dead Gorgeous for a ridiculous price, one was The Karate Kid box set, and the other was The Dark Crystal. I eventually put The Karate Kid down, though now I regret it because it would have been the PERFECT THING to marathon on Thanksgiving Day weekend (mental note: go back and purchase).

I remember being terrified of The Dark Crystal when I was a kid, but also having a fierce love of it. My brother and I were what you might call "obsessed" and we watched it pretty religiously from ages 5 to 13 when we finally got rid of our VHS player. I'm happy to say that the Skeksis are still just as horrible and scary now as they were back then:

Deliciously awful, right??

I guess I was lucky to grow up in a household where watching and reading all kinds of Fantasy and Sci-Fi was encouraged. My dad is far better read in both genres than I am, and you wouldn't believe the kinds of bed time stories my mom used to concoct for us. I suppose it's natural that my inclination is to write Fantasy, especially when you consider that this was--and still is--my favorite movie:


I'm starting to realize more and more that movies (along with the books) I was obsessed with as a child have had a huge impact on me as a writer. From a very young age I was introduced to a kind of storytelling that was near-perfect in this mythology and characters. Though I don't think that same can be said of the prequels, the original series has a surprising--and often very touching--depth to it. Every time I watch one of the movies, I notice something new--small character ticks, the way the mythology flows seamlessly into dialogue and motivations, how the pacing is built up to a major confrontation. You get the picture. :)

Have you gone back and re-watched some of your old favorites recently?