Friday, February 13, 2009

Superstition

If you've got an irrational fear of Friday the 13th (the calendar day, not the movie), then you are a paraskevidekatriaphobe. Tricky little tongue twister, innit? What's worse, if you can actually pronounce paraskevidekatriaphobe and say it aloud, it acts as a curse, and you are doomed to a lifetime of misfortune on the year's most unluckiest day. That last bit's not really true. Or maybe it is. Come on, say it with me: para - skevi - deka - tria - phobe. Dammit, the mirror's just broke.

Are you superstitious? Writers are a quirky bunch at the best of times so there are plenty of signs and defining moments that we like to assume are designed with us in mind, good or bad. Destiny, fate, karma, what goes around, and all that; I think we all pretty much subscribe to some sort of superstitious point-of-view, regardless of faith or belief in the supernatural.

I love all things supernatural, especially in film and TV (a lot of my scripts will have a supernatural edge), but I have long since veered from any real belief of things that go bump in the night. When I was a kid, Friday the 13th and Halloween (again, the calendar days, not the movies, although they had their moments) used to scare the bejesus out of me. Now, not so much. In fact, I like to think of Friday the 13th as a lucky day and ever since I've adopted this view, it comes and goes with little fuss, and sometimes it can really be lucky, depending on what I'm up to. But I certainly don't cower indoors with fear, or refuse to work, or pick up the phone, or whatever. Of course, by saying all this, I'm probably going to have one of the most unluckiest days of my life. That's superstitious thinking, isn't it?

If you're staying indoors today, refusing to let Lady Luck have her wicked way with you, then you might want to curl up with this link: "100 Inspirational Posts to Make You a Better Writer". It's even broken down into sections: technique, productivity, mistakes, tips, etc, and it's so useful, it's practically research. Not procrastinating. Or avoiding Friday the 13th. Have fun!

11 comments:

Neil said...

While I adore the supernatural world and wish in my heart of hearts that it were real(because I have several hearts it seems), it is not. That's what I think anyway.

Because it isn't, I intend to create it - in my writing.

I went out of my way to pronounce that word as well as most similar things. I'll deliberately walk under a ladder or break a small mirror. I'm curious. Would be interesting if something happened.

But I don't think for a second that it will.

Wait...what was that.....did I just see one magpie? Must....find....second....magpie.....argh!!!

Jonathan Gill said...

What a great link, thanks Danny.

My best man told me it was better to be born lucky than good-looking. As we waited at the altar...

Don't want to coming over all gushing and whatnot, but love the blog btw. Much inspiration herein. Cheers, Jonathan

Tim Clague said...

And all because you are number 74!

Danny Stack said...

Good spotting, Timbo. Although number 74 is about Joss Whedon, really.

Jonathan: Cheers! I humbly direct you to this link (and this, for an update), in case you'd like to extend your appreciation to my current venture.

Neil: 'Good morning to you, sir', said to any passing magpie, will cancel out any bad luck they bring. Works for me, anyway.

Jason Arnopp said...

I tend to say 'Good morning to you, sir' to everyone, at all times of day, just in case they're a magpie in disguise.

Danny Stack said...

'The Magpie Conspiracy'. Sounds like the beginning of a feature film idea...

Jonathan Gill said...

Morning General, how's the wife?

Wow, tapped up for leaving a nice comment. Ouch!

Best of luck with the short.

Neil said...

A full saga for 'The Magpie Conspiracy'. Things get bigger and bigger. it's only a matter of time before all winged creatures fall vitim to the tyranny of the magpies! A 'good morning' won't do it! For the love of god run, people! RUN FOR YOU LIVES!!!!

Iain Coleman said...

The best ever take-down of the superstitious mindset was performed by Derren Brown in the finale of his latest series of "Trick or Treat" - featuring all the members of the public from the rest of the season, including one David Tennant. I won't spoil it: it's well worth a watch.

Anonymous said...

East enders is terrible, of course. Unbelievably, I find myself looking forward to your episode. Perhaps with Dot’s monologue (mentioned on Screenwipe?) you will be able to push the envelope and go for the supernatural?
Go on. It will be the most best episode ever!

Jason Arnopp said...

"... of course", Anonymous? Perhaps in your opinion...