Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Charles Dickens' Writing

Not many people read Charles Dickens' novels. I admit it. Most of them are on the long side, and are sometimes considered a 'hard read' because of the style. But my thought is, so what? So what if it
Young David Copperfield
takes you a month or two to read it? So what if you have the read the sentence over again because you didn't understand it the first time? It makes the book all the more wonderful, all the more intriguing. And at the end of the 700 page David Copperfield you will feel, as I did, that you have accomplished something.

Plus, even if the writing may be on the sorta hard to read, it is amazing. The descriptions, the use of words, the use of only needed words, are amazing! I admit, there are some books where I read a description and half the words were useless, and in the end I get an incomplete picture of what the author was trying to paint for me. I know that it is hard, often very hard, to get into words what you see in your head. But that's all the more reason to appreciate the amazing-ness of Dickens' writing!

The other thing I love about Dickens' books, are the story lines. There is not one book like the other. The story lines are completely different, the character situations have a distinct contrast. Often one author will have several books that are pretty similar. Jane Austen for instance. All of her books (if my memory is correct) are based in the Regency age, are always about a girl, and, of course, romance. Now, nothing is wrong with that. Not at all. I admire Jane Austen's writing, and enjoy reading her books. But it makes me admire Charles Dickens all the more for having all of his books completely different.

Let's take a look at two of his books: A Tale of Two Cities and David Copperfield. A Tale of Two Cities takes place around 1789 during the French Revaluation (the story starts a little bit before it) and has a several main characters; a father and his daughter (a young lady) and two young men. However, David Copperfield takes place in 1820 and revolves around a little boy, following his life from the time he was born until he's about 50. Just looking at the summary of those, you can see the stark difference! 

I have not read all of his books, but I am slowly making my way through them. I started with A Tale of Two Cities and was thrown violently into complicated writing. Up until then I had been
Pip, from Great Expectations
very easy books that took me about a day or two to read - sometimes longer. It wasn't really on purpose, I just hadn't gotten a chance to read 'hard reads', and the books I was reading were good story lines, just really easy to read. So jumping from easy reads to a Dickens' novels I have admit I didn't understand half of the book. And I never took the time to re-read sentences. Believe me, there is nothing wrong with going back and re-reading sentences! I got the story line in the end, but I didn't get to enjoy slowing engulfing the wonderful writing. A while later a friend suggested I read
David Copperfield, Charles Dickens' 700 page masterpiece. There wasn't a book from her that I didn't like thus far, so I eagerly started it. It is, indeed, a masterpiece. It took me almost exactly a month to read, and I adored it! (I personally think it's a good one to start with despite the thickness of it) After that I read Oliver Twist, which I really liked though it's certainly an older kid book. And I know that some people don't like it... so be prepared. Next followed Great Expectations, which was just as wonderful as the others, though defiantly on the sadder side. Most people actually consider this to boring, and a lot of people stop half way through. But don't. Read it until the end, give it a chance! It is hard sometimes to get passed a slow part, but it's worth it! I quickly read A Christmas Carol after I finished Great Expectations, which was really good too!

I could go on and on about these four books, but I will leave it at that! I want to read Little Dorrit next, but having heard that there's objectionable content in the movie, one of my friends is kindly looking over the book for me to make sure it's alright to read. =) But let ye be warned (What am I, a pirate?) that there is stuff in some of the books that should be read with.... caution, may be the word for it. 

These books have led me into other worlds, or rather, time periods. The times that I didn't live in, but are history. They are sometimes portrayed as beautiful and happy, which they were, but there was grief , there were poor people, and there were broken hearts. And while some books focus on
Oliver Twist. NOTE: I have not watched this. Nor do I recommend it.
the happy parts of life (or time periods) and try to ignore the sad, broken parts, Dickens' carefully and accurately shows the happy and sad parts, weaving them together to make incredible stories. So if you come across a Dickens' novel that seems harsh, just remember: that's how it was then, that circumstance most likely happened often...

So my question for you, is, have you entered into these worlds? Have you accuratley seen through these masterpieces the lives of people who lived in the past?

Here are a couple graphics I made of the movie version of David Copperfield. It was really good, and really close to the book!
<3 Eva
Click all 3 images for full size!!
The book, David Copperfield, is in first person. And this is the very first sentence of the book. (That is my hat. haha, and the book I borrowed from a friend.)
Graphics made by Miss Evelyn

Thursday, April 11, 2013

A Piece of My Writing

   I like to read. I love to read. It is the #1 thing to do
in my free time. So the result? I have read a ton of books. At least, in my opinion. A couple years ago, I tried writing a book. I was... younger. It was a start, but not much of one. It wasn't that impressive, but after all it was my first time. I tried writing another one probably about a year ago. I was actually quite pleased with my writing but wasn't please with my characters situation in life - it seemed to close to something I had just read. She was a rich girl that had everything she's ever wanted - oh, except her brother who went off to fight in the Civil War. Nothing's wrong with that, not at all. But it seemed to much like Elsie Dinsmore. Which I love, don't get me wrong. I just don't want my book to be another Elsie Dinsmore. So with that discouraging thought, I discarded the book as something to work on later - to change later, because parts of it I still liked. Not that I had gotten that far. ha. Not even a chapter, but I had the story line in my head, right? Anyway, I decided to work on what I call Tales. Or Short Stories. They explain one scene in a small amount of words. I would practice writing until I could come up with a worthier story line. I wanted to share with you one of those Tales:

A young woman sat in a crowded train looking around at the coming and going people with and impatient air. She rested upon an iron bench, her back leaning against the stone wall of the station. Her hands toyed with her gloves as she glanced anxiously at a large clock hanging on the station wall: two minutes to five. She sighed and tapped her foot impatiently. Suddenly the five ‘O clock train screeched into the station, filling it with steam. The natural noise of a busy train station grew louder as men in uniforms poured out of the train, women shrieking with joy as they were reunited with brothers, husbands, lovers, or fathers. The young woman was on her feet in an instant, pushing her way through the crowd. Her eyes searched through the men looking for the one that would make her heart leap for joy. She heard a voice from behind her calling her name, “Evelyn? Is that you?” Evelyn turned with joy on her face, “Jim? Oh Jim, you’re back!” Jim weaved his way through the crowd to her, reaching for her hands hold in his firm grasp. He stood there for a moment, looking down into her smiling face before he replied, “Yes my dear, little, sister, I’m back…..” Tears of joy streamed down her faces as she was enveloped in a hug from her big brother. “….I’m home.” He finished in a whisper.

                                                                                <3 Eva
P.s. I am not meant to be the person in the story. I wrote this before I made this blog, and well, Evelyn is one of my favorite names so that’s what I choose for this story.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

New Photo Blog!

  Just a quick post to tell you some news. I have made a new blog for my photos! It is called A Wisp of Time, and will be used just for photography so that I can use this one for reviews, etc. =) I'd be pleased if you'd visit it and let me know what you think. And, if you visit this blog regularly to visit that one just as often! Click the picture below to go to it!
 <3 Eva

Friday, April 5, 2013

The Power of the Cross

    Last week was Resurrection Sunday. Or as better known, Easter. I was planning on doing a small post about it, but it slipped my mind and it is now a week after! Sad, I know. =) But, we are not to celebrate Christ's resurrection only on the last Sunday of March. It is to be celebrated every day, and every minute of our lives. It should be in our every thought as we go about our day, and in our prayers of thanksgiving. So being a week late shouldn't matter that much. =) Instead of doing a huge long post of rambles or trying to put the wonder and power of God into words, which is impossible, I thought I'd share with you a song. A song that I think does very well in telling the story of Christ's, death and resurrection. Singing this song and actually thinking of the words, and thinking of what Christ did for us all, makes me want to cry. Cry with happiness that we have a God who is gracious, a God who forgives, a God who loves us, and who sent his only Son to die on our behalf so that we might have eternal life.

 The Power of the Cross

Oh, to see the dawn
Of the darkest day:
Christ on the road to Calvary.
Tried by sinful men,
Torn and beaten, then
Nailed to a cross of wood.

This, the pow'r of the cross:
Christ became sin for us;
Took the blame, bore the wrath-
We stand forgiven at the cross.

Oh, to see the pain
Written on Your face,
Bearing the awesome weight of sin.
Ev'ry bitter thought,
Ev'ry evil deed
Crowning Your bloodstained brow.

Now the daylight flees;
Now the ground beneath
Quakes as its Maker bows His head.
Curtain torn in two,
Dead are raised to life;
"Finished!" the vict'ry cry.

Oh, to see my name
Written in the wounds,
For through Your suffering I am free.
Death is crushed to death;
Life is mine to live,
Won through Your selfless love.

This, the pow'r of the cross:
Son of God-slain for us.
What a love! What a cost!
We stand forgiven at the cross. 

On a last note... I've been listening to Les Miserables. In the song that Les Mis is most famous for, 'I Dreamed a Dream', Fantine says "I dreamed that God would be forgiving". My only thought is that, Fantine your wrong. Because God, the one true God, is forgiving. It's not just a dream....
<3 Eva
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