NaNoWriMo: Day 1

Tuesday, November 1st, 2011 by Rachel

I began this day hungry. Today was the day of my fasting blood work, and I hadn’t had anything to eat for 12 +hours. As I waited for Derrick to wake up and shower (he was my chauffeur to the doctor’s office), I decided, “what the heck! Why not start writing?” It was magic. I already had my first 400 words down by the time he got out of the shower.


I didn’t feel so great after the blood was taken out of me. Even after our celebratory Chili’s dinner, I want to get into bed. I probably will once I post this. I’m nauseous, cold, and thirsty. My arm still hurts. Typing stinks. This afternoon I wrote my remaining 1200 words in spurts, when I felt a moment of nausea reprieve, when I got on the computer to check my email, when Derrick was working on some projects of his own. Today didn’t really work to get me set in a routine of any kind, but I am very proud of myself for making it through the first day. I hope, like a teeny tiny snowball tossed down a mountain, that I continue to gain momentum from here.

GRACE–movie review

Thursday, February 25th, 2010 by Rachel

grace_movie_poster_sundance_2009It’s taken me a week to get this down. I don’ t know what that says about me or the movie. I kept the DVD for nearly a week, wanting to get back to the extra features. That never happened either. I wonder if Grace isn’t a movie with much repeat viewing value, and that’s why it really felt like work to even get this down.


This is a movie that I came to on a mission. I remembered seeing the trailer 6 months or so ago, but I couldn’t figure out the movie. Finally, after asking around and googling combinations of “modernized” Rosemary’s Baby, I came up with Grace. Yes, I enjoyed myself watching it, but I wonder if my enjoyment was only because I’d gone through such lengths to find it.


In a lot of ways, I think that the trailer is better than the movie. The trailer plays up the suspense of the film and it makes it seem like a pretty scary ride. But it’s not. If I were to begin to categorize Grace, I’d be more likely to shelf it as a drama than horror. Yes, there are some gross out moments that made me squirm only because I’m freaked out by the idea of nursing, but those moments are few and far between. This movie also works to insert a lot of social commentary on issues like doctors vs. midwife, veganism vs. meat eating, overprotective parents, etc. These are the kind of things that I think lift it out of the horror genre into drama (not that a horror film can’t address social issues, but it normally wouldn’t try to tackle so many.)


This is a story about a woman who is pregnant. When her baby dies, she decides to carry it to full term and “give birth.” When she finally does “give birth,” she wills the baby back to life and names it Grace. Of course, we figure out pretty quickly that something’s not right with Grace when she wants to drink blood instead of milk. There is never any explanation provided, and I wish that we did have Grace’s strange dietary preference justified in a “it’s the devil’s baby” kind of way. Instead, we just have to roll with the punches and accept that this is the way it is and this is the way it’s going to be. Unfortunately, it’s sometimes a bit hard to swallow, with the extremes the mother ends up going to care for her baby.


Jordan Ladd is fantastic as the mother (I’ve loved her since Cabin Fever), and I really hope that this film’s success at Sundance can put her in more of these kinds of roles. Unfortunately, the rest of the cast remains mediocre at best. In particular, the receptionist at the midwife’s office is HORRIBLE. What can you expect from a low-budget independent film? Better! Seriously, the drama students I’m working with in New Play Development/ Scriptwriting would have been better actors in this movie than some of the people who were cast. It was disappointing.


So, what would I rate it? A pretty wishy washy 2.5 out of 5 stars. Is it worth a 5 dollar rental? Probably not, but if it’s on TV and you can watch it for free and keep yourself from puking, go for it.