Thursday, May 20, 2010

More of Cathy Jane

Things are not going too well for our young friend I fear. She has just made a wee bit of a mistake, one I'm sure many of us have made in our time.....

Monday, May 17, 2010

ConcerningCathy Jane

It suddenly occured to me that it might be helpful to post a link to my newest literary adventure as well as a bit of a sample. Let me know what you think, if anything at all...

A blog concerning the events of the life of Catherine Jane Watkins.

To whom it may concern my name is Catherine Jane Watkins. I am eighteen years of age and hail from a little known town in the middle of nowhere. I recently watched this film called Julie & Julia in which one of the characters starts writing a blog and becomes famous from it. It ends up being a book which then got turned into a film. So I decided, seeing as how I want to be an actor or a writer or some such, that it would be a good idea to do the same. So here I am. I don't know if anyone will be interested in my life but I figure I may as well give it a go. Who knows, maybe something will happen to throw adventure in my way.

I suppose I should start by giving a few basic particulars:

  • My mother, an English teacher, is slightly obssessed with the Brontes, therefore I am named after two of their most famous heroines - Catherine Earnshaw and Jane Eyre. The conclussion I must clearly draw from this is that I am destined to meet and fall in love with either a Heathcliff or a Rochester. Though hopefully without all the extra baggage those two bring along with them. Then again, would they be as thrilling without all that baggage? But I digress...
  • My father works for the local newspaper. He is one of their top features writers, though it's only a local paper so he doesn't get paid all that much and is most definitely not what one would call famous. At least not beyond the boundries of this fair town.
  • I have one brother, older, whose name, you wont be surprised to find, is Edgar, from Wuthering Heights, Heathcliff would have been a step to far I suppose. I also have two younger sisters: Emily-Anne and Charlotte. Poor Charlotte's middle name is Villette. I used to wonder at Dad letting Mum name all of us, but I figured out, now I'm older and wiser, that he loves her too much. He always lets her have way - I'm not sure it's healthy.
  • My brother is studying Law in college, but as I am determined to be a writer or actor, or someone of consequence, I desire to study the Arts, for the betterment of my mind. I think that studying the Arts makes you very worldly wise and it's the kind of thing that will stand to you if you were ever to be on a show like Eggheads or Who Wants to be A Millionaire. And just look at Stephen Fry. I think he must surely be the smartest person in the world.
  • For my Leaving Cert, which I shall be sitting in a few weeks, I am taking French, History, Music and Home Economics, (really wish I hadn't picked Home Ec, it's all so very...difficult and stereotypical) along with English, Maths and Irish, obviously. I hate maths with a vengeance though. I just don't get numbers.
  • As for my hobbies I enjoy reading, writing, listening to music and watching films. I also love to dance and to run.

I can't think of anything else I can tell you by way of introduction. No, I do not have a boyfriend, nor do I intend having one anytime soon. It would prove too much of a distraction. Are there boys that have caught my eye? But of course, I am a girl after all! But we'll leave that for another day. My best friends are Karen and Edel. We are friends because we share a similar state of mind. And all of us are virgins and have never had a boyfriend for more than a few weeks. I believe we are unique among our age group in that respect. Not that we let that get to us. We were never ones to bow to peer pressure and after all, whose to say what great romance might be around the corner for any of us? My mother and father fell in love at the age of nineteen, and have been inseperable ever since. How do I know that my...Mr Darcy or Edward Ferrars isn't about to enter my life and sweep me off my feet? I would be the envy of everyone. I'd be happy out, with a lovely, charming, intelligent boyfriend, who takes me on drives and buys flowers for my mum, cigars for my dad and treats me like a queen. Yes. That would be most excellent.

Absence of Sorts

It seems I have been somewhat absent of late. Well, actually I had forgotten this blog even existed if truth be told, hence it being well over a year since my last post. Pity really, considering just how much has changed, drastically changed at that, in that time. But that, I fear is another very long story for another very long day. Suffice to say the facts simply put are as follows:
  • The relationship I last spoke of, while in turns fantastic, terrible and one of the biggest learning curves I have ever encountered has ended, as all things must eventually.
  • I did go on to be possibly the best productions officer Dramat has ever seen. (well, at least in the time I have been there) and more recently the ISDA officer, and am even an ISDA nominated Director. (Most definitely one of the proudest moments of my life.)
  • I have been diagnosed as a Coeliac. Yeah.
  • I completed my MA with a fabulous 2.1. Job well done I reckon.
  • I am currently unemployed and still living in Cork.
So what brings me back here? Well as I have said I am currently unemployed, something I apparently do not take too kindly to as I find it incredibly difficult having nothing to do. This has lead to a huge increase in writing on my part. I have been writing by the new time: plays, stories, poems, even books, I have been scribbling away. A while back I was home alone feeling mightily sorry for myself ) as one often does when home alone with very little to distract oneself). Bridget Jone's Diary seemed the most appropriate inappropriate film to watch. As I sat there, feeling both delight and disdain for the blossoming romance evolving in front of me, I hit upon an excellent idea. It is a truth universally known that Bridget Jone's Diary is a contemporary rehashing of Jane Austen's wonderful Pride and Prejudice, and that it started life as a simple newspaper column. The same goes for Sex and the City. (the newspaper column bit, not the Pride and Prejudice bit, that would be taking a rehashing of a classic about one hundred steps too far. Although, if you replace conventional family with urban family, I suppose the base ingredients aren't too far off....but I'm straying from the point). The new newspaper column it would appear, is the blog. There are very few people in the world today who don't at the very least Tweet their existence. Getting noticed in this world of millions of blogs is never going to be easy, but where there's a will....
Which bring me to the second truth most universally acknowledged: In every girl lies one of Austen's heroines. That is to say it is most impossible to find a fan of Austen who does not identify completely with one particular heroine of Austen's. This is evident in 'The Jane Austen Book Club', while not particularly cleverly written, or appealing, the basic message I do agree with. There's a bit of Austen in all of us. It's why she's still kicking around after all. My friend Una, for example, while Emma is her favourite, were she to embody anyone, it would be Elizabeth Bennett. For my own part, while Lizzie may be my favourite and while I will always have a soft spot for Elinor, I do believe I am a modern day Catherine Morland.
I live my life in the stories of others, I really do get carried away by my imagination (much to my detriment, I assure you), I even on occasion see things that really aren't there (by which I mean see things in a way which is often the opposite to the reality) and I most definitely believe I am a heroine on the cusp of a great adventure through which I will find my knight in shining armour. That last one refuses to let up, however sensible I try to be.
So my great idea? A contemporary retelling of Northanger Abbey, told through the fascinating and increasingly popular mode of the web log, or blog as it is known.
Catherine Morland becomes Cathy Watkins, rather than leaving for Bath by way of starting her adventure, she is starting college (it is after all, among other things, a coming of age story), she is Irish, as I am, for it is what I know best, and she like me, lives constantly with her nose in a book, a film or a tv show, is easily swayed through her naivete and honesty by less than honest friends and discovers all the delights one does as one starts college. I can't say that there will be castles and cranky widowers and marriage proposals, but there will be men, drinking, parties and even a little bit of sex.
How many people read and how many people enjoy it remains to be seen, but as I said, where there's a will, there is always a way. There is nothing left for me to do now but, well, start.