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Sunday, September 23, 2007


A couple of minutes ago I pushed the send button on an email containing my MA dissertation – this email was addressed to the binder. Yes, I’ve finished my dissertation, and I think I’m quite happy with it too. I’m convinced that the creative piece, which is a piece of my novel The Battle, is a good one – and I’ve spent lots of time working on my commentary so I am quite confident in that as well. The binder will have the job done in about a week, and when I get it back I’ll send it to the university.

And now I can focus all of my energy on my Nordic language and literature course, and polishing my Viking novel for the competition deadline on the 1st of November.

Exciting days indeed – and I’m also eagerly waiting for the 10th of October to arrive. Then I’m flying to Gran Canaria with a friend and we’re staying there for 2 months. A bit crazy, I know, but still, when I’ve got the opportunity to do this, why shouldn’t I. What I will be doing this autumn is working on my writing and taking this Nordic course, and I might as well do it somewhere warm and sunny, yes? I am actually also going to be taking my exam in this course in Gran Canaria, on the 27th of November, at the Norwegian school. That should make this whole exam-thing a bit more exotic!

Sunday, September 16, 2007

So fu****

I can’t believe how fu**** I am after having started on this course in Nordic language and literature this autumn. At some point I gathered that it would be a good choice to do this course, I mean, being an aspiring author and all… I thought that studying Nordic literature would be a good idea simply because, well, I’m not very good at doing so on my own. But if someone were to force me, through a course or something, to read Nordic literature, you know, that would be helpful.
So, what I’ve discovered now is that I’ll have a 4 hour written exam on the 27th of November. That’s fine, even though it’s been a couple of years since I last had a written exam. The problem is that this written exam is to be in “Nynorsk”. Everyone in Norway will know that this means trouble, for a person who’s grown up with “Bokmål”. For those foreigners out there; at some point, somewhere in the 1800s, there was a huge debate on what should be the official Norwegian language. At that time the two big options was a Norwegian based on Danish, called “Bokmål” – the other option was a Norwegian based on the Norwegian dialects called “Nynorsk”. Most Norwegians today are taught “Bokmål” in school, but still there is this “funny” rule, that says that everyone has to learn both types of Norwegian. So, when I was still in school, I was taught “Nynorsk”, but I have not read or written anything in it in the last 17 years. And now, in just 2 months, I’ll have to do an exam in it. As if this subject wasn’t tough enough to begin with.

Somehow I’ll have to get through this, but right now, all I can think is that I’m just so fu****, and not in a good way…

Monday, September 10, 2007

In Celebration with Orlando Bloom

On Friday the 31st of August I went to London and saw the play “In Celebration” at the Duke of York’s theatre. For those of you who are new to my blog, I’ll tell you that one of the actors in this play was Orlando Bloom – those of you who read this regularly should already pretty much be aware of this!!

And now I have to write a review, and since I am a huge Orlando fan this is a bit hard – but if I am to say anything about this play, I have to be honest.

The play itself was excellent, really worth while seeing. It’s set in 1969 in one of the mining cities in northern England. A couple is celebrating there 40th anniversary, and in connection with this their 3 sons Steven, Colin and Andrew are coming home for a visit. Steven is the younger, I’d guess in his late 30s, Colin is 2 years older and Andrew is 5 years older. At the beginning everything seems quite nice, we get the impression the sons don’t visit that often, but still everything is nice – and then, at the night of the anniversary, when everyone’s had a bit to drink the skeletons start to fall out of the closet. There was this older brother who died when he was 7 and Andrew was 5. And the mother may or may not have had to marry the father because she got pregnant at 16 – and oh well, I guess all of you know how these stories go.

Tim Healy plays the father, Mr Shaw and he is really very good in this role. Paul Hilton plays Andrew and I must say he is excellent. Most of the other actors do a great job as well, except for… you guessed it, Orlando Bloom.

The character Steven is the youngest of 3 brothers. We learn that he is married and has 4 children, he works as a school teacher. For a long time he’s been working on a book but he’s now given up on this. He really is a very quiet and awkward character, and we understand that he too has a lot of emotional struggles concerning his parents, and especially his mother – but unlike his oldest brother, Andrew, he chooses not to speak about it. So, through the play Orland is on stage quite a lot, he just doesn’t speak much. He keeps walking from one end of the stage to the other, twisting his face a lot, and answering questions with “ay” or “no”. And he is really not a very convincing character. It could be the role of course, but I have to admit, after having seen him in this I’m wondering about his qualities as an actor.

Oh well, you say, you weren’t there to see him act anyway, you were there to stare at his handsome face and body. But here's the thing, he wasn’t really handsome in this play either. His hair was kind of very black and strange, almost looked a bit oily, I guess in the style of that time, and he had the most dreadful moustache. The clothes they’d put on him looked like they were a size to big – and honestly the way he was dressed and the way he looked, for some reason he reminded me of some of the characters out of Monty Python and I kept waiting for him to say something funny. He never did!

I don’t really know why Orlando would want to be in this play in the first place. The role isn’t that big, even though he gets a lot of stage time, but so few lines, and it’s a very awkward role that is a bit in the background of the “big events” with the father and the oldest brother. I’m not sure this was the best of choices for Orlando, when he was going to do his stage debut. This spring I saw Daniel Radcliffe in Equus, and I was so amazed with this young actor and what an excellent theatre actor he turned out to be. So sad I can’t say the same for Orlando after having watched him in this.

I’m still happy I went to see it though, it was a good experience getting to see Orlando live, and I’m still a fan. I just have to realize that he’s only human and not everything he does will be up to the Pirates or Lord of the Rings standard.

And the play in itself was, as I mentioned, very good!

A cold from England

You’ve probably all been curious about my trip to England last week. I meant to write something about it as soon as I got back, but unfortunately I managed to pick up a cold while I was there, and 14 hours travelling to get home last Tuesday didn’t really do miracles for that cold – so from Wednesday I was pretty much knocked out through the weekend. Feelin’ a bit better now, but still not fully recuperated.

England was excellent. So great meeting my friends again, and one day we made a trip to Arundel Castle. I always wanted to see this castle when I lived in Chichester, because it’s not that far from Chichester really, but never got to do that until now. I can’t help but loving these old things, and this castle really is in a very good shape. Really an inspiring place. I’ve posted some of the photos I took here in this blog.

I did of course also go to London to see “In Celebration” with Orlando Bloom – I’ll review that in another blog post.

So, now I’m back home, working on my MA dissertation and my “Nordic literature and languages” course, and writing on my Viking novel – and looking for a place to stay in Gran Canaria for 2 months (from October). Quite a busy life.