Sunday, June 22, 2008

ode to Aaron

Yesterday was about other people's writing. John Taylor's, Andre Dubus's (I'm alittle over 100 pages into The Garden of Last Days), and Aaron Sorkin (mom and I love The West Wing, so we watched a few of those this week, plus I rented and watched Charlie Wilson's War last night -- haven't seen it since it was in the theatre).

A word or more on Aaron Sorkin.
As is the case of so many of my favorites, I was a latecomer to The West Wing. My grad school friends and my mom were hooked on it. I had tried to watch it once, but found it moved a little too fast for me. Besides, I so rarely watch prime time tv anyway. It was always the time for me to get my grading done.

Anyhoo, w/ everyone telling me that I have got to watch The West Wing, I jumped on the chance when Bravo picked up the syndication from episode one. This is when Bravo was good, mind you. And from episode one, I got hooked and quickly adapted to the fast pace.

Then I made the connection that Aaron had written A Few Good Men (which I always loved despite the fact that cable tv played it to death) and The American President (which I didn't care for, more because of casting than anything else). This discovery of Aaron was also around the same time I had started writing my novel. And because I had become such a student of his dialogue and rhythm, it greatly influenced my own. I am proud to say that I get so many compliments on my quick, witty dialogue. And I owe that to Aaron. I even participated in a collaborative short story w/ a writer's group last year, and my contribution definitely echoed a West Wing sit-room scene.

It wasn't long before I watched Sports Night and Studio 60 (both containing plusses and minuses) and became an all-out Aaron Sorkin commentator -- I could easily teach a course on him. More than that, I am a student of his craft. In this case, I like being the student much more than being the teacher. I even tried to attend his play The Farnsworth Invention in NYC while I was on Long Island for Christmas. Didn't work out, unfortunately (caught Charlie Wilson's War instead).
Aaron is one of those writers I want to meet and engage in a conversation about writing, be it his, mine, others', or the craft itself. So Aaron, if you just so happen to have stumbled upon this blog, Elisa says hi and thanks for the inspiration. Keep writing!
p.s. Notice how savvy I've gotten w/ the links and the pictures? The blog's looking much better and feeling much more interactive these days, yes? And it was really quite easy!

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