This Peevish Messenger.

You know, for today’s post I was attempting to find something deeply witty, profound, and thought-provoking to share as inspiration with you all, but I simply couldn’t find anything that seemed to fit the requirements. And then I remembered that the main purpose of Tuesday’s posts isn’t to show off my intellectualism, but to share something that I am being influenced by. Sometimes that happens to be an inspiring and motivational quote, sometimes a movingly beautiful poem… and other times, it’s just something that I can’t stop watching.

For the past week or so, that something has been this:

This bit of glorious nonsense is from Mark Rylance’s Twelfth Night, filmed at The Globe in 2012. It’s an “original practice” production, meaning that they attempt to get as close as they can to how it would have originally been staged, which of course includes an all-male cast and Elizabethan costuming. (You should definitely check out the other clips from the play. Especially if you’ve ever wondered what Stephen Fry looks like in yellow stockings. The sight burns my retinas in the best possible way. Not to be missed.)

And I figure it’s a legitimate thing to share. Even if I can’t see how it is directly influencing me at this point, it is undoubtedly digging itself a groove in my brain, so it is certainly having some sort of effect on my way of thinking.

Besides, it’s funny. I’m trying to share it with as many people as I can. It’s a public service, really.

I simply love Mark Rylance’s Lady Olivia. She’s just so pathetic and dithery and adorable. It’s astonishing to me how well she works as a character, even though she’s completely different from the Lady Olivia I pictured when I read the play several months ago.

Oh! I just thought of something: From a writer’s perspective, there is good food for thought in that difference. On paper, Shakespeare’s characters can often be read in a myriad of different ways, which I think was part of his genius. It is worth thinking about whether or not our characters could be interpreted in different ways as well, and whether or not we want that to be the case. Sometimes it can be incredibly interesting to leave a character somewhat ambiguous, but at other times, the character needs to be definite. It’s up to us to choose the right details to expose and the right words to use in order to outline the character’s form.

So there you go. I took a frivolous video I’ve been enjoying, and found a way to make it work as inspiration. We can do practically anything if we put our minds to it.




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