Sunday, May 20, 2012

Stories That Make You Feel


This has been a great week for stories. I started the week by watching Elizabeth Gaskell’s North & South (thank you Anne, for the recommendation.) Watching this made me realize how powerful a story’s ending can be. The morning after I finished the mini-series, I put the DVD back in the player and re-watched the last scene; it was just so perfect. I knew I would have to return the movie to the library soon, but I left it in the player anyway. Before dropping it off the next day, I re-watched the last two scenes. After it had been returned and a late fee had been avoided, it dawned on me what a wonderful thing YouTube is. I searched for “North and South ending” and re-watched (again, and yes, again.) As I reveled in the absolute perfection of that final scene, (next up, I must get the book) I naturally thought about the endings that I have written.  If endings can be this powerful, surely mine need reworking!


North and South was not the only story I experienced this week. I also read The Summer I Learned to Fly by Dana Reinhardt. (Loved it!) And right now I’m completely enraptured by John Green’s The Fault In Our Stars. I am laughing, crying and totally in love with these characters. And it makes me wonder a little about why we want movies, books, and songs to take us on these roller-coaster rides of emotion.
 After several months of listening to the latest Jack's Mannequin CD, I finally ejected it from my car player and turned on the radio. I heard a song called "Glad You Came" that immediately brought me to tears. I’m talking wracked with sobs, need to pull over to get myself together tears. I have no idea what the song is really about. I didn’t process any of the other lyrics.  It was just that particular line, “I’m glad you came” that struck me. There was a time, when my dad was suffering with dementia, but still living at home. I went over each afternoon to visit and bring he and my mother their evening meal. Each time, as I went to leave, he would walk me back out to my car. One day he stood there at the drivers side door and I waited as he searched for words that eluded him. Finally, like it was the most important thing in the world, he said “I’m Glad You Came.”


Maybe it’s that connectedness to our own lives that stories, songs, and movies bring to mind that make them so memorable, so important. What story, song or movie has connected with you lately? I’d love to hear from you and thanks for stopping by. I’m glad you came.



52 comments:

  1. What a touching story, Ruth. You're right, endings are so important,and I get stuck there all the time. I love stories that make me feel passionate about life--stories that are bigger than me. Makes me want to watch a movie :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I hope you do watch it Katie. I think you'll fall in love with it.

      Delete
  2. I've got North and South to call my very own, on DVD. I re-watch it now and then. It's a BEAUTIFUL ending that just makes me so giddy every time I see it again. And let's just say that my friend who recommended a new crush in Richard Armitage was right on the money. Phew he's noice! ;)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I know, I'm thinking I have to look him up to see what else he's been in.

      Delete
  3. Ruth, the parts on your father walking you out, and his 'I'm glad you came' are precious. The inevitable weeping forms a strong moment of connection. What a way to begin a week: to watch for powerful stories. :) THanks for this post-reminder. I haven't watched the drama or read the stories you mentioned here. But the titles sound amazing enough.

    Recently, I teared up while watching 'Where The Wild Things Are,' at the scene where Max and the Wild Things howled goodbye, then broke up into smiles when the boy returned to bark along with the neighbourhood dog.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Emotion can find us in the most unlikely places!

      Delete
  4. Glad I came also, Ruth. Your posts always make me feel, which makes me come back.

    ReplyDelete
  5. These are on my TBR list. I've been away, but I'm looking forward to diving back into some great books and getting this same feeling. :)

    ReplyDelete
  6. Yay! Oh, I'm sooo pleased to hear you took a chance on N&S and enjoyed it so much! And your experience sounds so much like mine, being seduced over and over by the DVD, yet rushing to get it back to the library on time! I think we both need to buy our own copies asap! ;)

    You definitely should read the book. And actually, speaking of endings, you'll be very interested to know that the end of the book is slightly different. I don't think I'm giving any anything important by saying that. The content is almost completely the same, but the setting and set-up for the scene changes. Might be fascinating to study both side by side and see which you think is better and why the movie producers made the decision they did.

    And no wonder that song made you cry... your story about your dad almost made me cry. Lovely. Thank you.

    Now off to check out The Summer I Learned to Fly...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think you are so right, Anne. We both must buy a copy immediately =D

      I am making myself finish the five library books I have already checked out before I delve in to North and South. But I will definitely check back in with you upon reaching the end of it!

      Delete
  7. Ruth, endings like that make you never want the thing to end ... yes, we read to feel and feel deeply.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I was completely unwilling for The Fault in Our Stars to end. I re-read it almost immediately!

      Delete
  8. North and South has been on my TBR pile forever. After reading your blog I realized, I really need to read it.

    ctny

    ReplyDelete
  9. Thanks for the recommendation, Ruth. I'll have to watch North and South if it's that good! Well, I can understand why that song tore you up, after it brought back that memory of your dad. Got me all emotional just reading about it. Yes, when a book, movie, or song hit a tender nerve or connect with us in a special way, it stirs up strong emotions, for sure. It's wonderful to get that involved in a book or movie, isn't it?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It is wonderful to get that involved. When a book like that ends I can't wait to find another book that good.

      Delete
  10. Oh The Fault in our Stars was SO good and SO sad. I read it a couple of months ago, but I can still get the emotional feel I got while reading it!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's a book you're eager to recommend when you're done. I just want everyone to experience it!

      Delete
    2. It's a book that leaves you eager to recommend it. I just want everyone to experience it!

      Delete
  11. Love North and South! Loved the story about your dad. That was beautiful Ruth. Like Lynn, it got me emotional and the hairs stood up on my back. Wonderful post! *waves*

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Robyn, *waves* Thanks so much for dropping by!

      Delete
  12. Such a poignant story, Ruth. It's so true, that sometimes stories and songs just hit us where we live. I'm not familiar with North and South, but after that recommendation, I think I'm going to have to check it out! :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh, good, Susanna. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did!

      Delete
  13. Ruth, you've done it again, made me cry! But it's a good thing. I'm glad I came :) Made me think of the final words with my dad before he died. And, of course, I cried a number of times during North and South (and I always qualify that with either "the English one" or "Elizabeth Gaskell's" because there was an American one set during the Civil War). It is one of my all-time favorites. One of the times I watched it was with my husband, who was watching it for the first time, and he (he who had initially thought it was just a "chick flick") pronounced it "one of the best things I've ever seen."

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Awww, Jean, I didn't mean to make you cry.

      Love the story about your husband loving North and South. My husband tolerates such movies - and usually not for very long, before he moves on to watch something of his own choosing on another t.v. But I have made true converts of my girls. They used to moan when they saw me putting in a movie like this. Even, so, they always get hooked and must watch to the end ;)

      Delete
  14. Nothing better than a great movie ending to make you want to read the book. I haven't seen North and South, so guess I'd better get hopping! Right now I don't seem to have time to see anything. I'm hoping that will change sometime this summer!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hope you find more time this summer to watch/read the things you're dying to watch/read ;)

      Delete
  15. Thanks for the great recommendations, Ruth. This past weekend my husband and I watched the BBC series, The Impressionists...again. Since my husband is an oil painter, this is a favorite in our house - we own it. However, I am always inspired by the perseverance that the French group of painters had to have to keep going in the face of ridicule and rejection - something writers are familiar with as well!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oooo, sounds like one I'm going to have to look for. Thanks for the recommendation, Victoria!

      Delete
  16. I've heard SO MUCH about this show! I must watch it! And you're amazing, Ruth. You always have great posts ;) (And I'm still screaming about your success with your agent! Gosh, it *can* and *does* happen. Sooooo cool... :D)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Awwww, thanks so much, Morgan. It's so cool to have writer friends who "get it." It absolutely *does* happen. I know it will happen for you soon, as well =D

      Delete
  17. I just finished watching North and South last week. It took me a few months to finish the series...I'm not sure why. But I do know, like you, that I found something special at the end. Now you have inspired me to go back and rewatch the last scene...thanks for your post,

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sounds like North and South is really making the rounds lately. Glad you enjoyed it as well.

      Delete
  18. Ohh, North and South sounds yummy. I recently finished The Fault in Our Stars. I sat there hugging the book and weeping when I was finished. How often does a story send you to that place? Amazing book.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I know! Amazing, right?! I actually re-read it before returning it to the library.

      Delete
  19. And I'm glad you came by my blog this week. I see we have a lot in common. How are you doing with the Novels in Verse challenge? I just finished May B--loved it.

    Your post was touching. There's nothing more satisfying than a perfect ending.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Angelina,

      Are you doing the Novels in Verse challenge, too? I loved May B as well! I'm doing pretty good. I think I signed on to read 8-12 and I've read eight books so far, although I haven't posted reviews for all of them yet. I really need to crack down and write them and get them posted.

      Thanks so much for stopping by!

      Delete
  20. The Fault in Our Stars is an amazing novel that requires many tissues. I loved it. And now I'll have to check out North and South. : )

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, many tissues. And it's also good to skip the mascara while reading.

      Delete
  21. I just started The Fault in Our Stars. Love it.

    The movie that undid me--don't laugh--was Forrest Gump. I still haven't figured out quite why. I sobbed uncontrollably the first--and the second--time I watched it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Would you believe I've never actually watched Forrest Gump? My husband has had it on several times while I was home, so I guess I've caught little bits of it. But it never interested me enough to sit down and watch. Maybe I haven't given it a fair chance.

      Delete
  22. I keep stumbling across "North and South" and wondering if it might be my kind of thing. I'll have to give it a try!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oooo, I hope you do, Anna! And I hope you love it =)

      Delete
  23. Oh, isn't The Fault in our Stars wonderful?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It is wonderful, Marcia. I love how the sadness is balanced by the humor, which keeps it from becoming overwhelming.

      Delete
  24. Have been kind of thinking along the same lines lately. My Mil is going through some things and it reminds me of my Mom, who suffered from Alzheimer's before she passed away. Thinking on good memories and trusting for the grace to process everything. Thanks so much for sharing.

    Have a wonderful weekend,
    Karen

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Karen,

      Sending prayers your way for you and your mother-in-law.

      Hope your weekend is blessed.

      Delete
  25. Right Steps play bazaar websites new creating ideas satta king going to your way.

    ReplyDelete