Monday, September 23, 2013

Newton Family Singers

I've been a regular blogger for the local singing group my family belongs to, the Newton Family Singers. I play guitar and other instruments, too.

For that blog, I write about songs -- their origin, stories about their composition, arrangement and interpretation.

Some of my favorite posts:

Seven Bridges Road

If I Had a Boat

The Water Is Wide

The Tide Is High

The best compliment I got on these posts was a simple acknowledgment from Carl Wiser, founder of the awesome website You know how radio djs (used to) tell you little facts about each song? They were using Songfacts.

Here's a full list of my blogposts at Newton Family Singers.

Breaking Bad Writer's Advice

Grub Street is a terrific resource for writers in the Boston area -- they offer classes, consultations and conferences. They also have a daily blog of writing advice. My contribution was about what I learned from listening to the "Breaking Bad Insider Podcast."

It starts:

I’m among the many fans who are eagerly awaiting each episode of the television dramaBreaking Bad in its last season. I’m also a fan who can hardly wait for the “Breaking Bad Insider Podcast” that follows each television show. The podcast is entertaining and, more importantly for this audience, a great lesson in writing.

Read it all here.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Breaking Bad prediction

After Breaking Bad's last episode's cliffhanger, I have no idea whether Hank, Gomie or Jesse survives, but I had a sudden flash of insight as to what will happen with Walter White and the Neo-Nazis. My prediction is based half on what is being shown with the characters, and half based on analyzing the narrative of the show.

Walt cooks meth one more time.

Of course he does! How could he not? The final season and Walt never does chemistry? After all, that is the price of Jesse's life that he negotiated with Uncle Jack. They can't bring it up and not follow through with the concept.

[Perhaps, though, he's doing the final cook as a payment for the life of his brother-in-law? Or Jesse?]

So Walt does one more cook, but perhaps he alters the recipe a little, creating a lethal gas that would kill bystanders who don't like wearing gas masks (i.e. Uncle Jack and Kevin Rankin's character). This would be a call back to the first episode and the death of Crazy 8's partner in the RV. It's possible that it would just maim, and not kill some of the Aryans ("She blinded me... with SCIENCE!"). It would also set up sociopath Todd (who wears a gas mask because Mr. White told him to) to be a new archenemy, perhaps one who would force Walt to call the vacuum salesman that Saul knows.

But in any case we have to return to Walt's strengths -- his science background -- for the epic climax of this story.

As for 52 year old Walt, armed with a huge gun and a small bottle of ricin... I got nothing.