Silly Saturday:  Wishing you and Richard Armitage some fun!  May 20, 2017 Gratiana Lovelace (Post #1063)

How does your weekend roll?  Silly?  Smiling?  Sexy?  Soothing?  Slumbering?  Or Sultry? Etc.

Or are Saturdays extra home chore days for you?  Paying bills and my reconciling our checkbook tends to happen on Saturdays. These days, the only heavy lifting I do, involves a mouse and a keyboard.  Although in my neighborhood, we tend to have the Symphony of the Lawn Mowers all day long.

Or are Saturdays job/work days?  Sometimes during crunch periods, I’ll work from home on various projects.

Or are Saturdays time for fun and/or relaxation with hobbies and interests?    Whereas, I am reading other people’s stories and writing my own stories.  Strangely, a whirring lawn mower has never subliminally surfaced in one of my story scenes yet.

Maybe your “Saturday” actually happens mid-week like my hubby’s—on hump day—also known as, grocery store restock day.  Check!  And though, he often mows our lawns then—warming up the weekend mower symphony folks–the used riding lawn mower we bought last Summer threw a belt last week, so he’s waiting for it to be repaired next week.  Uh huh.

As it is for many of us–or an exquisitely talented British actor like Richard Armitage (below, my edit), due to filming schedules, press events, and the like–Saturdays can be any or all of those things.

So here’s hoping that yours and Richard Armitage’s Saturday has some fun and silliness  in it!  Minus the check book reconciling, lawn mowing, grocery store scavenging, and other home chores.

Personally for my Saturday, I plan to see if my sucking on more watermelon flavored hard candies for my dry throat will reduce my blood sugar score by the end of the day.  Hey, it worked on Friday.  *wink* And I will read and write stories.  No chores.  I had already reconciled my checkbook two days ahead of time on Thursday.  Snap!

So what are your Saturday plans?

P.S. Original RA image thanks to Marlene Lugo!

Posted in Fangurling, Graphic, Gratiana Lovelace, Humor, Love and Relationships, Musings, My Life, Observations about life, Richard Armitage, Sexy, Smiles, social media | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Table Manners Tuesday!  Richard Armitage’s Thorin Hands, May 16, 2017  Gratiana Lovelace (Post #1062)

 Facebook Friend Teresa Armitage’s post of a Thorin figurine (below) with a startlingly realistic Richard Armitage as Thorin visage was breathtaking in its beautiful details.

   

And seeing Richard Armitage as Thorin again reminded me again of that oft told amusing interview quip of Richard Armitage about his large prosthetic Thorin Oakenshield hands being “so disappointing” when he needed to take a potty break while filming. LOL!

 

And I just Monday evening came across this THDofS Prancing Pony image of Thorin eating with his hands on closeup display (below).

   

Now, I see what Richard means about his Thorin hands. Poor guy.   And Thorin eating with his hands might be a necessity, versus using cutlery.  So Thorin  drinking out of a dainty demitasse cup is definitely out for him.

 

However Thorin’s Dwarven hands are massive and do grip and swing their swords and axes very well.  So there are trade offs for the fearsome warrior.

 

And because they probably didn’t want to damage the prosthetic hands, perhaps they couldn’t use their prosthetic hands too harshly between filming scenes, or they would have to be redone.  Kind of like Richard’s Lucas character’s tattoos being easily rubbed off his skin via friction—either via his costume or his love scene partner’s movements.

 

I can certainly liken Thorin’s/Richard’s adaptation difficulties to when I had broken my arm in two places just above my left wrist several years ago from a bathroom fall.  So the doctors put me in a very annoying right angle cast—bent at the elbow–from my hand to my shoulder, for 8 weeks.  Happily, I am right handed for writing and such.  But how do you put on and take off your clothes with only one working arm and hand, when you are used to having both?  So I took a thin stick and had my hubby make a notch in one end—for hooking onto clothing to push them down—and then the other end of the stick had a pinch clip to grasp onto and pull things up.  I should have patented it.  Ha!

 

So surely the Mighty Dwarves of Durin would have come up with their own adaptation solution for using their large hands in daily life.  Though given the delicacy of the topic, we might never know.

 

But hey, if anyone has a The Hobbit renaissance fair weekend sometime– with authentic Dwarven costumes and prosthetic hands—please do pass along any wisdom you gain on the matter.  *wink*

 

Hope you have a gReAt day! Cheers! Grati ;->

 

P.S. And thanks to Terri for sharing the Thorin eating at the Prancing Pony image by the Arkenstone Tumblr!

Posted in Desolation of Smaug, Drama, Fantasy, Humor, Inspiration, Middle Earth, Richard Armitage, The Hobbit, Thorin | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Story writing again, my percolating thoughts, May 05, 2017  Gratiana Lovelace (Post #1061)

I’m finally reaching a point in my leg surgery and convalescence almost mid point that I am getting back to writing on my stories again.  During the first month, I could only read other people’s stories—for distraction.

And since I’m working from home in the daytime while recuperating—love the electronic age, and glad that I still have a job due to FMLA–I only have a few hours each night to devote to pleasure writing after checking in with friends on social media.

And I literally have several dozen (over 48+)  stories that I have started and may be about 30 to 50 to 75 pages in on writing them—in various genres, and many that I have already created the cover art for—such that I am picking a different story each day and writing a little more on it.

Partially, I rotate my writing choices to reacquaint myself with some of my in progress stories—some started long ago, but stories that I had stopped working on to make way for other stories that I have already serialized for you here and on my Gratiana Lovelace Wattpad site.  See my sidebar at right for a sampling of my recently serialized  stories–such as “Encouragement” (right), which is having quite a surge in readership on Wattpad in the last few months and is now my 4th most read story out of 28 works.  Of course, my most popular story on Wattpad remains “N&S:  John Thornton, Love Lessons” (below) that has now exceed 90,000 reads.   Thanks everyone!

But I am also trying to decide which story that I want to serialize next for you—here and on my Wattpad site.  Story selection is key, because not only do I hope that you like and read my story—but because my stories are often serialized over several months, I have to really like the story to commit my time and my energies to it for such a long period of time.

And I am a notorious re-arranger of my stories—their chapters.  In the sense that, what might start out as a beginning, ends up becoming a middle and I decide to write more backstory for it.  This was the case with “Sir Guy’s Atonement” (Book 3) (right).  I had started with the big plot reveal (no spoilers) and then I realized that I needed to work up to it more gradually.  So my original Ch. 1, ended up being Ch. 25—out of what ultimately became a 46 chapter story.  Ha!

And so I am constantly rewriting my stories until the moment I serialize each chapter—and even then some, to fix typos or strange symbols that crop up due to editing glitches, etc.

So while my in progress story writing is percolating, I just wanted to let you know I do hope to serialize a new story of mine in the next month or so.

Cheers!

Posted in "Encouragement" a Regency Lovestory, "N&S: John Thornton Love Lessons", "Sir Guy's Atonement" (Book 3), Comedy, Creative Writing, Drama, Fan Fiction, Fangurling, Love and Relationships, Medical, Period Drama, Richard Armitage, Romance, Sir Guy of Gisborne, Society, Something About Love, Storytelling | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Binge watching “Reign” starring Megan Follows in a lusty scheming role, May 02, 2017  Gratiana Lovelace (Post #1060)

I don’t normally watch many videos, and we have long since stopped watching tv—for years.  In fact we finally cancelled our cable service a few weeks ago—stopping throwing good money after bad.  We stream on our computers if we want to watch something, PBS and “Victoria” mostly.

And after receiving various endorsements about Netflix online, I tried them out and I’m hooked!  I wanted to watch then new Queen Elizabeth II biopic, The Crown.  And then I started watching a few other shows.

And being keen on historical dramas, royalty dramas, and mature love dramas—love the settings, costumes, period societies, and reframing of history–I hit the jackpot when I started binge watching the CW original series “Reign” (right) a few weekends ago.

“Reign” is not for everyone.  The plots play a bit fast and loose with some of the historical facts now and again–poor party Princess Claude must be twirling in her grave.  In today’s world, she would have her own reality show.  And the first season’s seeming inability to have period appropriate costumes on the younger women was jarring, and they seemed to have fixed that by Season 2.  But “Reign” has solid and compelling storytelling.  And the actors give it their all—and they and their characters work together well as a large ensemble acting group, interweaving story arcs that bind their characters together cohesively.

The show is ostensibly about the young Mary Queen of Scots married to Francis  the Dauphin, who later becomes King Francis II of France—and I do like the young actors playing the, Adelaide Kane, and Toby Regbo, respectively (below).

However, it’s the scenes between the over 40 actors that really get my attention.  I’m 40 plus.  Heck!  I’m 50 plus.  And I find that though “young love” is sweet, I just can’t put myself in that picture anymore.  I find myself wanting to coach the young ones about the give and take of relationships, etc.  And besides, we older women are just as lusty as when we were younger–maybe more.  So Hollywood, start working on more of those plotlines.  Ha!

In that mature woman love interest vein, on “Reign” one of my favorite actresses is playing Queen Catherine, as in de Medici—yes, those de Medici’s —Megan Follows as Queen Catherine (right).  And 32 years after her spectacular rising star debut in the 1985 mini-series “Anne of Green Gables”,  Ms. Follows is a force of nature on “Reign”.     And she has been nominated for several acting awards for “Reign”, but she is still waiting to win one.

In particular in “Reign”, Megan Follows plays such  a Machiavellian Queen Catherine that she ends up in the dungeon (below) a few times after one of her many scheming plots turns out badly.  And I alternatively think that Queen Catherine deserves to rot in jail, and then wondering when are they going to get her out of there so she can create more mayhem?

And given Queen Catherine’s tendency to betray others whenever it is expedient, I really want her character to become more ethical.  But of course, would she be as fun then?  However, I’m still in the early episodes of “Reign” season 3 and Queen Catherine had a life altering moment (no spoilers) and she gives us glimpses of a more moral (however fleeting) Queen Catherine.

But Queen Catherine in “Reign’s” incarnation is also a lusty Queen.   And the real treat is that the 40 plus Megan Follows as Queen Catherine beds at least three and a half men—the “half” is because one of the men is no longer corporeal, as in he is a ghost–in the first three seasons:  her estranged unfaithful husband King Henry II portrayed by Alan Van Strung (below left), some younger courtier, and the equally Machiavellian Lord Stefan Narcisse portrayed with evil relish by Craig Parker (below right), and a ghost (no spoilers).  Love these King Henry II and Lord Narcisse images below. You may recall how fond I am of … neckage on men.  Purrrr!
    

Both of the older men—King Henry II (Van Sprang) and Lord Narcisse (Parker)—also have lusty and romantic romps in various royal bed chambers with Queen Catherine—and alternatively other women.  I would show some screen stills, but I fear they would be too steamy—yet still within PG-13.  They keep their naughty bits covered, by sheets or the other person.  And it is very romantic.  So filmmakers should take heart.  Less naughty bits skin showing in love scenes, is “more”.  Which I prefer.

 

And I find myself rooting for Queen Catherine to find a lasting, fulfilling, and corporeal romantic relationship.  But so far, no luck there.  Yet there is still time—through the rest of Season 3 and Season 4.  And interestingly, a few sites indicated that Megan Follows is dating one of her on screen love interests, Alan Van Sprang (King Henry II).  Well done, girl friend!

 

So 40 plus love is in the air on and off the set of “Reign”.  Sighhh!  And Megan Follows as Queen Catherine is definitely a key  linchpin of the show “Reign”.  Long may she reign!

 

Posted in Drama, Gratiana Lovelace, Historical Fiction, History, intrigue, Love and Relationships, Mothers, Period Drama, Society, Something About Love, Women | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

“Audio Recording: Three scenes w/ Richard Armitage in Pilgrimage”, April 25, 2017 Gratiana Lovelace (Post #1059)

With Special Thanks to @mooseturds on Twitter for sharing these audio clips:

“Audio Recording: Three scenes w/ Richard Armitage in Pilgrimage” video by Short RA Clips

 

And according to @mooseturds, the “Pilgrimage” film will have subtitles for the non-English dialogue. Yay!

So we can focus on the velvety deep voice of the exquisitely talented British actor Richard Armitage portraying Frenchman Raymond de Merville in “Pilgrimage”.   *THUD*!

Posted in "Pilgrimage" film, Audio clips, Drama, Fangurling, Gratiana Lovelace, Love and Relationships, Middle Ages, movies, Mystery, Period Drama, Pilgrimage, Raymond de Merville, Richard Armitage, Sexy, smoulder, Society, Something About Love, Thriller, Too Hottt 2 Handle Tuesday, Video, Voice | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

“Hidden Figures–Don’t be delicate. Be vast and brilliant.”  April 22, 2017 Gratiana Lovelace (Post#1058)

Last weekend when Liesbeth Lap shared this Shinedown music lyric quote and a beautiful dancing lady illustration (see below) on Twitter, the image and quote moved me.


On one level, I like the sentiment about women being strong and independent.  We live in an age when women have more freedoms than my mother or grandmother had—though they were both women of uncompromising spirits.

And yet, we live in times that also challenge us/women at every turn—
with the beautiful people issues of magazines, when beauty is a cultural and generational (a 1520 beauty at right, Venus by Titian who would be considered “plus sized” in modern times) construct that is ever changing, or reminders to women of the “gender pay gap” compared to men’s salaries, etc.  It sometimes seems like one step forward, two steps back.

 

And then we have wonderful inspiring examples of women empowering themselves and each other—even to the moon and back, in the 2016 film “Hidden Figures” (see Wiki excerpt below):

“Hidden Figures is a 2016 American biographical drama film directed by Theodore Melfi and written by Melfi and Allison Schroeder, based on the non-fiction book of the same name by Margot Lee Shetterly about African American female mathematicians who worked at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) during the Space Race. The film stars Taraji P. Henson as Katherine Johnson, a mathematician who calculated flight trajectories for Project Mercury and other missions. The film also features Octavia Spencer as Dorothy Vaughan and Janelle Monáe as Mary Jackson, with Kevin CostnerKirsten DunstJim ParsonsGlen Powell and Mahershala Ali in supporting roles.”

Hidden Figures | Teaser Trailer [HD] | 20th Century FOX

These ladies of NASA weren’t delicate.  They were being vast and brilliant!   And their examples shine in my heart–and make me want to dance like the lady in the illustration above.  Will you join me?

Posted in African American, Beauty, Drama, Empowerment, Gratiana Lovelace, HERStory, Hidden Figures film, History, Hope, Inspiration, Love and Relationships, movies, Observations about life, Period Drama, Positivity, Quotes, Role Model, Social Justice, Society, Something About Love, Video, Women | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Entertainment Tonight Online touts Pilgrimage as one of the Tribeca Film Festival’s Must-See Films for 2017,  April 18, 2017 Gratiana Lovelace (Post #1057)

Entertainment Tonight Online touts the exquisitely talented British actor Richard Armitage’s (in foreground below from “Pilgrimage” film still; Thanks to Chrissyinwm) film “Pilgrimage” as being one of the “must-see” films for 2017—and ranks it in the top have of the films being shown at the prestigious Tribeca Film Festival April 19 – 30th, 2017.  For more about the Tribeca Film Festival, click here.

2014 Pilgrimage as Raymond de Merville

I have pasted an excerpt below from the ETonline article about the Must-See films for the 2017 Tribeca Film Festival:
“11. Pilgrimage

Starring: Tom Holland, Jon Bernthal, Richard Armitage, Stanley Weber (Dir. Brendan Muldowney)

What It’s About: A cadre of 13th century Irish monks are tasked with transporting their land’s holiest relic to Rome, but first they must traverse a deadly countryside filled with violent marauders and warring clans. The pilgrimage teaches one of their youngest members some brutal lessons about the savagery and self-delusion of man.

Why We Want to See It: Tom Holland — aka Marvel’s Spider-Man — plays a young monk who has to fight his way through the horrors of the Middle Ages! The only way that could be cooler is if he somehow got to actually play Spider-Man doing that exact same thing.”

 

Grati’s 2 cents:
Tom Holland — I have to say, that the gushing about the 21 year old Tom Holland—
because of his spandex wearing Spider Man role– seems  incongruous with his role in Pilgrimage as an innocent young monk (image below, far right in backgoround).  Dare I say, product placement for Spider Man films with this ET article?

And if Holland’s youth is being relied upon to evoke innocence and naivete, I for one will be closely analyzing his hand movements—especially to see if any Medieval spider web like lace erupts from the palms of his hands, or if he swings from tree to tree on their journey (rather than swinging from building to building as Spider Man does).  *facetious alert* if you’re a Tom Holland fan.

However, since the central plot point of the Pilgrimage film is purported to be about faith, morals, intrigues, betrayals, deception, etc., I will look to the more heavy weight actors in the line up to supply the gravitas:

Jon Bernthal – 2nd billed, but playing a mute (without even a character name provided thus far) in Pilgrimage (I believe that Bernthal’s character is in the extreme foreground in the image above), the not quite 41 year old actor will have to create his character portrayal not with words, but with actions.  I am unfamiliar with Bernthal’s work, but have hyperlinked his name to his IMDB page for those who are interested.

And interestingly, Bernthal’s resume also includes a reference to superhero land via his voice performance work in the role of Trigon for the animated video Justice League vs Teen Titans.  Yet he portrays a mute in Pilgrimage.  Having no dialogue has often been said to be the greatest of acting challenges.  So I look forward to seeing how Bernthal pulls it off in Pilgrimage.

Richard Armitage – 3rd billed, but a man who easily is a more recognizable star than anyone else on the Pilgrimage cast roster–for his compelling portrayal of Thorin Oakenshield (image pasted below) in The Hobbit trilogy of films by Sir Peter Jackson in 2012, 2013, & 2014–Richard Armitage can wield a crusades era broadsword like he was born to it.  In fact, Armitage’s earlier roles included a 3 year stint playing Sir Guy of Gisborne on the British tv show Robin Hood, as the Middle Ages bad guy that everyone rooted for to become good by the show’s redemptive finale.  That was a soul searching journey!

And not the least of which, the not quite 46 years old Richard Armitage’s deeply resonant baritone voice –that has also leant itself for prominent audio books produced by Audible such as the recent Hamlet Prince of Denmark: A Novel, David Copperfield, and Romeo and Juliet the Novel–will be sure to have a dark and treacherous quality to it as, perhaps, one of the more menacing characters in Pilgrimage.  I wonder if Armitage’s Raymond de Merville’s  (right) character arc will also take him on a redemptive path?

Of course, I’m an avid Richard Armitage fan, so I am more conversant with his past role portrayals.  But it will be interesting to see how the ensemble of actors fit together to make the story of Pilgrimage come to life.  And despite the fact that no women actors are touted with major or any roles in Pilgrimage—as if women did not exist in Medieval times, it seeming so far that none of the characters had mothers or sisters, etc., who impacted their character development–I can’t wait to see the film!

P.S.  For a listing of more of my posts about Richard Armitage in Pilgrimage, please click here.

Posted in "Pilgrimage" film, Audible, audiobook, Fiction, Gratiana Lovelace, Hamlet Prince of Denmark, Historical Fiction, Middle Ages, Period Drama, Pilgrimage, Raymond de Merville, Richard Armitage, Robin Hood, Romeo and Juliet: A Novel (audiobook), Sir Guy of Gisborne, Sir Peter Jackson, Society, Something About Love, The Battle of the Five Armies, The Hobbit, Thorin | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments