Skip to main content

A Picture is Worth A Thousand Memories... and Ideas?

I'm in the middle of my blog tour for Wild Blue Under and this time I had a better idea of what to expect since it's my second book. So when I was writing the blogs, I tried to tie the story or my inspiration or my characters into something that would resonate with people, other than just telling them about the story.

Know what my biggest hits have been so far? The posts about the inspiration for the series, which is, basically, the television shows I grew up watching. I even did a "guess that leading man" thing on Wickedly Romantic yesterday. So I won't reiterate it here, but it got me to thinking: television had a big influence on my writing, but so did the movies. JAWS is a given because there's that whole terrified-of-the-ocean thing I gave Erica in In Over Her Head, and Failure to Launch because Matthew McConaughey's character (and fabulous gorgeous-ness) lent itself to Reel, and I loved It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World which contributed to the chase scenes in Wild Blue Under, but what else?

How about these: Anthony Newly and Rex Harrison in 1967's Doctor Dolittle? That Great Pink Sea Snail is BOUND to show up in one of my Mer books at some point. And remember Polynesia, the talking macaw? Yeah, she has a blue and gold feathered cousin named Tahiti living in the South Pacific - and she's already making her presence known.

Star Wars is definitely among my influences. The funny thing was, I had no desire whatsoever to see the first movie. I didn't like science fiction (or so I thought...). But the parental units were paying and wanted to make it a "family night" (and we all know how FUN those are to a teenager... not!), so I had to go along.

Um... I think I went back and saw that movie six more times in the theater, and did the same with the next two. (I'm not such a fan of the later movies, which were earlier in the sequence... but that's probably because I didn't really care about Padme and Anakin's love story since I already knew what happened to them and it wasn't happily ever after. And while Hayden Christensen looked great in that movie, his acting left a little--okay, a LOT--to be desired.)

I loved Mary Poppins and The Aristocats. Loved The Shaggy D.A., Herbie the Love Bug, Escape to Witch Mountain. (Yes, I know, Disney. Can't help it - they fed my imagination.) The Wizard of Oz is a classic, The Sound of Music (which probably has nothing to do with my writing other than the romance, and what a great romance it is!), The Ten Commandments (okay, I only saw it on tv, but man, what a production! And Charleton Heston and John Derek... yum!) Then came Close Encounters of the Third Kind (again, not a movie I wanted to see, but the parents insisted and boy, am I glad they did!), and then Indiana Jones (thank you God for Harrison Ford.) And, of course, the romantic comedies, one of my favorites being, Romancing The Stone.

Obviously, it's not a surprise that I write what I write: humor, light paranormal, talking animals, a little bit of magic and romance. If I could figure out how to toss a song or two in there, I probably would!

So, what were your early influences?

And just because it was so much fun on Wickedly Romantic, I've pulled some pictures from the movies. Are there any you don't know?


  1. I'll be out for a bit today at the Princess Diana Exhibit in Center City, Philadelphia, but chat amongst yourselves. :)

  2. Okay, you made this one harder. But, it's great to remember. Have great day and bring back photos if you can.

  3. Well, change in plans. Turns out there's a Veteran's Day Celebration happening at Constitution Center and all the schools in Philly are closed, so it'll be a madhouse. We've postponed our trip until Friday.

    Nice to see you Mason!

  4. I like your bits of trivia. Helps to get the mind working. Sorry about your change in plans. Look at it as your trip Friday will be a good lead into the weekend.

  5. I can't wait to read this book. I've loved your series. :)

    As far as knowing who all of them are in the pics, maybe not, but I can sure tell you there's a few I'd love to know. Heehee

    You'll have a great time on Friday. It was meant to be.

  6. I'll post the list of who's who around 5 pm (barring any kid-crises)

  7. *waves Hi to Vicki!

    Cheryl, funny enough, I was never a big Star Trek fan. For some reason that show just didn't do it for me. Although I did like the movie where they saved the whales.

  8. Ah, the movies....

    Quite obviously the movies, or in my case ONE movie, had an enormous impact on my writing. But beyond the 2005 Pride & Prejudice, I am a huge cinephile of all genres, so envisioning my story unfolding on the screen is a key in how I write every scene and dialogue. If I can't visualize it as if in a theater, I don't feel as if I have written it well.

    The photos are fabulous, Judi! There are a couple I do not know and now my curiosity is piqued. Every movie you mentioned is one I have adored. And this long time Star Wars geek SO agrees with your assessment of the later movies! But I won't go into that discussion for the sanity of all who may read this. :)

  9. What a fabulous trip down Memory Lane, Judi. You did a great job of lining up men who have been in my dreams over the years. I don't think you put Richard Chamberlin in there but I had a major crush on him after The Thorn Birds. I haven't seen or heard anything about him in years but he will always be forever young to me.

    I would love to see the Lady Di exhibit. Do you have a website about it so I can see if it will come to a city near me? Thanks,

  10. *smacks head!

    I DID forget Richard Chamberlain! LOVED him in Shogun.

    as for the Princess Diana exhibit, all I have is the one in Philly:

    but maybe if you google it?

  11. Harrison Ford's been a favorite of mine since American Graffiti. Closest I've come to meeting him is Carrie Fisher and her stand in. Not the same, but close is better than nothing.

    I remember going to see Romancing the Stone and my friend whispering to me at the beginning "is that how you see your books?" and I just nodded.

    It's so much fun to see what can influence us.


  12. What about Sean Connery's Bond, James Bond movies? To me, he's just gotten sexier with age.

  13. Fun post, Judi!

    Thanx for all the GREAT memories! Gotta agree about Richard Chamberlain in both Shogun and Thorn Birds. Heck, he even made my lil girt heart go pitter pat at Dr. Kildare... GAH! I am OLD!


  14. Here's the list as promised:

    Sid Caesar (It’s A Mad Mad Mad World)
    Richard Dreyfus (Jaws, Close Encounters)
    Rex Harrison (Dr. Dolittle)
    Ray Bolger (Scarecrow – Wizard of Oz)
    Matthew McConaughey (Failure to Launch)
    Mark Hamill (pre-car accident, Star Wars)
    John Derek (10 Commandments)
    Michael Douglas (Romancing The Stone)
    Ike Eisenmann & Kim Richards (Witch Mountain)
    God. I mean, Harrison Ford. (Indy, Star Wars)
    Dick Van Dyke (Mary Poppins)
    Dean Jones (Herbie, Witch Mountain)
    Christopher Plummer (Sound of Music)
    Charlton Heston (10 Commandments)
    Hayden Christensen (Star Wars)
    Roy Scheider (Jaws)

  15. You do create fun trivia for your readers to follow. Thanks for all your hard work. There was a few on that list that I wasn't sure about.

  16. Think I might keep that list.

    Star Trek (but I was too young to watch the first series - parental definition of young). Star Wars. Doctor Who. And books, books and more books.

  17. Mason, I am this font full of useless trivia. It comes in handy when I play Trivial Pursuit. WIth the original version of the game, I would usually win.

    Oh, and I did try out for Jeopardy once. Hardest test I ever took. And of course, they asked about WWII. I know NOTHING about WWII.

    But I did know that the capital of Burma (at the time) was Rangoon. Got that one right. :)


Post a Comment