Friday, November 26, 2010

Thoughts on character


So that’s my thought for the day. Being somewhat creative I try to grasp the vastness of the subject (in my life: Coro, work, my friends, writing the next book with Characters). But I’m also a lawyer (focused on the actual meaning) so I typed the term into a favorite site:

I liked the note better than the definition:
Character is what one is; reputation is what one is thought to be by others.

Don’t you love that?

My character. I have 100 plus pages of Captive’s sequel. I work; have kids. Instead of writing with the time left over I’ve decided to market. That goes to my character, doesn’t it?

The book is among the most fulfilling things I’ve done. The writing also comes very easily. I could sit down – and if I could afford it – write book after book. Is character shaped by economics?

But to lead you need character. Why is it that with that quality we know it when we see it yet it doesn’t fit the confines of a definition? All of our leaders are so flawed. I’m so flawed but that doesn’t make me a leader.

My leadership principles for today (and I’ll only comment on today)”

1. Respect and caring for others (empathy and interest included)
2. Clearly thought out missions/goals
3. Standards of behavior to adhere to (and they may be controversial)
4. Willingness to compromise when necessary; strength not to when necessary
5. Faith and a belief in a higher power
6. Compassion
7. Judgment

And, gosh, for now I don’t know. The list goes on but yet character isn’t leadership and it isn’t always good.

As I learn in yoga – accept.

So, we all have our characters. Mine is to jump around and ramble sometimes as I figure out where I’m going. It doesn’t need to make sense to anyone else.

Read Michael Cunningham’s new book By Nightfall for more.

Send me book recommendations!

Friday, November 19, 2010

Thoughts on a new book

I'm seeing the next book again. I'd lost it and now I can see so clearly what to write and how the story unfolds. Since I'd started working on it - then stopped after too many comments from an agent had me lose it - now I know where to cut and what to add.

The characters are less clear; other than the main ones. And I have one huge, huge question (which will absolutely change the tone of the book). One path is a little bit sweet; something I don't usually write. The other option takes me into a reality that I've little explored in writing to date.

What to do, what to do?

Right now, go pick up my kids.

Yes, I've taken a break from beach pictures and headed downtown. Another photo from the roof of City Hall.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Link to my work blog and a review of Inside Job

I saw a screening last night of Charles Ferguson's Inside Job (thanks to The Wrap). Anyone interested...

Saturday, November 13, 2010

City Hall downtown Los Angeles

I spent yesterday at City Hall downtown with Coro and met some amazing people – elected and otherwise. While the people themselves were admirable I did need to (internally) question their commitment to what “works” within the system. Works for whom?

Los Angeles had a budget shortfall of $500 million last year and is projected to have a higher one next. They used some short term fixes to hold things in place this year but will accounting tricks work as the shortfall continues to grow? Will the municipal bond market continue to support cash strapped municipalities?

The majesty of city hall, the commitment of the people working within it and the absolute dedication expressed were impressive. I wonder at the system itself.

The picture is of downtown from the roof of City Hall.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

What amazes me is the miracles

Friday night, coming home from Coro and a drink with my other fellows in the program a car zoomed past me, lost control and hit another car just ahead of me. The driver tried to drive away and was blocked physically by the man whose care he'd just hit (with his little kids inside).

Today in yoga my teacher, Steve, told us that yoga is to help us control the mind; the body is much easier to control.

Yet how much control do we really have when so much happens independent of our actions or thoughts? Can we, through imagry and effort, control our own outcome?

I got some good news on Thursday which I'll be able to share (hopefully) soon. It was a hit of luck... that I'd worked some at cultivating. Miracles do happen yet somehow they seem to happen more for those who work hard at finding them.

A car can wreck your night or your life. Someone irresponsible (or stoned?) can do irreparable damage. But in our country we've had the opportunity to fight back and search for yet another miracle.

What will the world bring going forward? I'm hopeful. With Captive we've made some traction...slower than I'd like but it is moving.

Spread the word, write a review and thank the miracle that saved a family of four from being hurt when hit at 65 miles an hour on the freeway last Friday night.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

US - China film summit

Thank you Peter Shiao for putting together a wonderful summit.

I learned that a good story works in any culture (let's just define a good story). What is culturally acceptable changes but we all like to connect with a story in any form of media.

Sounds so basic but it really comes down to good stories connect - across divides.

Today on my morning beach run I finally saw the book I want to write next. Writing speaks to you and can't be dictated in reverse (much as such an effort has been pushed on me). The words create themselves once we see where they should be going. I lost that sense in my writing when I listened to those dictating what they wanted to see. It has come back.

Too tired for a picture right now. Perhaps I'll add one tomorrow.