Friday, 13 January 2012

Different But Similar - Savita Kalhan

Different But Similar
Sara’s post last week, The Same But Different, really made me think. I’ve written guest posts for bloggers where I’ve been asked for my top ten favourite films, but I’ve never actively linked them with what I write in terms of themes or the heart beat at their core. Yes, my stories are all different, but does the same heart beat at the core of each of them? Very possibly is the answer. Sara, brought to my attention Julia Cameron’s Vein of Gold in which one of her writing exercises explores the idea of mining themes in your favourite films for your writing. When I look at some of my favourite films, films I’ve watched more than a couple of times and would watch again, I don’t have to dig too deep to see that I might already be doing that.
Amongst my favourite films are these: 

The Godfather
One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest
The Night of the Hunter

The three words I wrote in my comment on Sara’s post last week were: loyalty, betrayal and survival. Thinking about them now, I would also add hope. These are all central themes which figure pretty high in my list of films. They are also at the core of my writing. Publishers and readers like to brand writers, fit them into niches and genres, and shelve their work under particular headings. I’m often asked, “What kind of stuff do you write?” I usually respond with, “Contemporary teen/YA fiction, dark and edgy.” I guess that’s my brand. It doesn’t mean that I might not write, or am not allowed to write, a romance, a fantasy, or a comedy. It just means that if I do, it’s likely to delve into some of the themes that are at the core of my writing.
At its core, the central themes of my novel, The Long Weekend, are loyalty and survival and hope, and as for my current works in progress, yes, they share the same central themes, the same heart beat. That’s my brand.
What are your favourite films or the films which share a heart beat with your writing?

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