Living Out A Dream by Dani.Love

It has been a while since I’ve contributed to this lovely space. There are 3 incomplete pieces still waiting to be completed and posted. But for now, I wanted to share with you a project I’ve been working on for the past 2-3 years.

Have you ever read a book and felt or thought it would make a great film. Like, as you read the book, the visuals are just so vidid in your head. The best books live on in our dreams and daydreams, those are the ones you read multiple times and bring up randomly in conversations. One of those books for me was Water in a Broken Glass by Odessa Rose.

I first read the novel in 2006 or 2007 while I was living in DC (my hometown) right after underground. That was a rough time for me and I remember reading a lot to escape my reality and also writing a lot, a lot of dark pieces that were actually pretty revealing and therapeutic. At any rate, I ordered the novel from Amazon after coming across it during my many sessions of searching for novels with black lesbian/gay woman. When it arrived, I dived in immediately. To say the book was good and I could relate is truly an understatement. Odessa truly captured the struggle of coming into your own as a woman and a gay woman. The fear, the self talk, the wanting to do “right” by the people you love, the confusion…. everything one goes through during a time like this, she captured it so authentically and beautifully. Up until this time, I’ve never read a character who I could relate to on that level. So, of course, I fell in love with the novel because I felt it was part of my story. A story I was currently living.

Before finishing, I knew I had to find a way to get this story on the big screen. How was uncertain, but I knew this story had to be shared on a bigger platform. I ended up reading the novel about once a year, usually during the summer. Each time, I fell in love all over again. I believe it was the 4th time I read it, back in 2011 when I decided to look up Odessa Rose and contact her about adapting her novel. I didn’t even know what adapting a novel entailed but I said, F* it, let’s see where this goes.

After finding her email on her website, I composed a heartfelt message to Odessa, praising her work, letting her know what her (first) novel represented to me, and proposing to adapt her work into a screenplay. I even admitted I knew nothing about screenwriting but I would make it my business to not only get it done but do her beautiful body of work justice. She responded immediately, informing me that someone was already working on a screenplay. I remember her email being really nice but I was still a little crushed, beating myself up even, because I thought I missed my chance and I should have acted sooner.

During the following months of our initial email, Odessa and I kept in touch. She offered me words of wisdom as a new writer, as well as a list of books that inspired her to write (and keep writing). A few months later, she emailed me to ask was I still interested in adapting the novel. Uhm, of course!!!! So she connected me to the woman who has been working on the screenplay for the past year.

Fast forward 2 years later, the screenplay is DONE, we have casted and hired crew and uhmmmm, this little birdie isn’t only living out her filmmaker dream, she is adapting one of her favorite novels of ALL TIME and one of THE novels she has always wanted to see on the big screen! Like, how cool is that???

I’m truly grateful, honored, excited, and part of me still feels like I’m dreaming. A few weeks ago, we filmed our crowdfunding campaign video (Water The Film) and I got to meet the author, the wonderful Odessa Rose. Needless to say, I was super excited and just overjoyed meeting her. She is such a kind spirit and I’m glad I finally got a change to express to her, in person, how wonderful her work is and how, despite her being a straight woman, she really did a great job telling a story of woman struggling to live her truth as a gay woman.

I’m not too certain how to end this blog post. I do want to share this film journey’s story and hope whoever reading this is engaged and will support us, even if it’s just sharing it with your networks. I ask, please, and I encourage it!!

Thanks for reading this far. And please watch, read, and share Water The Film.

Peace.

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Thankful Thursday – Things Moms Want Their Daughters To Know

Simple words of wisdom from Mothers to their young daughters, but really they could apply to anyone. What do you wish you were told when you were growing up? What secret to life do you wish you had learned early on? For me, it is to be fearless and not afraid to fail; those words would have come in handy. Here are the tips shared by these Mothers in this short clip.

  1. Be confident in your body
  2. Don’t be afraid to fail
  3. Be a powerful woman
  4. Fill your life with love

Share your words of wisdom in the comments section below. Stay Awesome and Enjoy!

Thankful Thursday – My New Life Philosophy

The little girl dressed for school gets me crying all the time.

I didn’t want to introduce this video because it requires no words. Yes, it is an insurance commercial but it is a damn good one that shares a very important message; one that should become my new life philosophy. Just one man made a direct difference in the lives of four people, a dog, butterfly, and plant. Through simple actions of kindness he changed a little piece of his world and made it more beautiful. Plus, through his actions others became kinder…the Woman food vendor who gave some extra food to one of her customers. The kindness expanded becoming a sort of kindness squared.

I am loving this video and its great example of how we can all live a more fulfilling and wholehearted life. Grateful and Enjoy!

Thankful Thursday – Zach Anner

This week I have been hit with a touch of melancholy. Nothing seems to really be helping but today I fell on a video that put a smile on my face. Zach Anner is a Texas comedian with a message of positivity and motivation.

Zach Anner is originally from Kenmore, New York. He was born with cerebral palsy.[5] Anner graduated from Kenmore West Senior High School. After a stint working for Disney World as a park security specialist at Epcot,[6] he started college at the University of Texas, Austin, in 2005. While attending school, he obtained celebrity interviews through That’s Awesome! a sketch comedy program on the university’s local Public-access television cable TV channel called Texas Student TV K29HW-D.[2]That’s Awesome! was created by independent filmmaker Mark Dennis (director), a friend Zach credits as the one who encouraged him to be in front of the camera. [7] In 2008, he and fellow production mates started a comedy troupe called Lark the Beard, which produced a Streamy-nominated web series entitled The Wingmen. Anner is currently involved in writing shows and feature movies with Lark the Beard.

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zach_Anner

What am I thankful for? People like Zach Anner that remind us to live fully and embrace everything. Enjoy!

Thankful Thursday – Amy Purdy, Raising An Olympian

Such a moving story of a woman who beat the odds and triumphed. Amy Purdy lost her legs at the delicate age of 19, this didn’t stop her though as she went on to be an award-winning snowboarder.

At age 19, Purdy contracted Neisseria meningitis, a form of bacterial meningitis.[1] The disease affected her circulatory system when the infection went into septic shock,[2] and both of her legs had to be amputated below the knee, she lost both kidneys,[3] and her spleen had to be removed.[1] Sepsis is when an infection (any infection) causes an inflammatory response, leading to organ failure and/or clinical shock,[4][5] and is a common cause of death.[6] In Amy’s case, as with bacterial meningitis, she went into septic shock in less than 24 hours of getting sick. Doctors gave Amy only a 2% chance to survive since her sepsis was so advanced.[7] Two years later, she received a kidney transplant from her father.[1] Her friends now refer to her by the nickname Lucky.[citation needed]

Purdy began snowboarding seven months after she received her leg prosthetics. About a year after her legs were amputated, she finished third in a snowboarding competition at Mammoth Mountain. Subsequently, she received a grant from the Challenged Athletes Foundation (CAF), a non-profit organization. Through this grant, she was able to compete in several snowboarding competitions in the U.S.

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amy_Purdy

What am I grateful for…people like Amy Purdy who remind us that anything is possible. Despite great odds, Purdy is an inspiration for many as she continues to break barriers and live her dream. Catch her on Dancing With The Stars as she continues to dazzle. Enjoy!

Thankful Thursday – Bill Cosby and Jimmy Fallon

Bill Cosby on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, enough said. Watching these two together always brings a smile to my face and makes me so happy; they just seem to get on so well. The love, appreciation, respect, admiration…you can see it in how they interact with each other. It is amazing to me because these two gentleman are from such different worlds, have led such different lives yet they both share a deep love of comedy and because of that when they come together it’s magic. That is Amazing to me, this bond is Amazing to me and it give me hope.

What am I grateful for, friends, good company, and great laughs. Enjoy!

 

Thankful Thursday – Spring Equinox and International Happy Day!

Spring Equinox and International Happy Day!! OMG OMG, it’s just too much perfect. Happy Spring Equinox and International Happy Day. So exciting to have two awesome things in one day. Goodbye winter, never liked you anyway. Hello Sun and Fun!

Received an awesome email this morning with video clips of people from around the world dancing to Pharrell’s ridiculously infectious song “Happy.” Sydney, Paris, Budapest, Hong Kong, don’t you just love it when a good feeling goes viral. Well I am dancing right now and I hope these videos being a beat to your feet and a smile to your face. WHOOOO Happy!

What am I grateful for: music that can bridge culture, language, and space and remind us that deep down we are all more alike than we think. People across the globe, of different colors, genders, and places are dancing to this one song and sharing it. This brings such light and joy to my heart, that for just a moment we can all be connected, celebratory, and grateful. I just love to see people having a good time. Enjoy!

___________________________________________________

Paris

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Hong Kong

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Sydney

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Full Playlist with 10 different countries

Thankful Thursday -10 Things Every Female Should Know by Natalie Patterson

“I am enough”
“I am enough”
“I am most certainly enough”

The magic words uttered by Natalie Patterson in her unforgettable poem 10 Things Every Female Should Know. Everyone needs a pick me up. Everyone needs to be reminded of their unique awesomeness. In this amazing and soulful reading, Patterson plays the cheerleader – she is in your corner pushing you on. Forward my comrades, forward! Enjoy.

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Thankful Thursday – The Power Of I Am

Now I am not a religious person but I know a good thing when I see it.

I recently discovered this video while looking through the OWN YouTube channel; I had heard about it, but had never seen it. In this video, Pastor Joel Osteen discusses the power of words and phrases, particularly the term “I Am.” It is a life-hack of sorts, stating that the words you use have impact on the life you live. This all harkens back to the saying “Beware of your thoughts, they become your words. Beware of your words, they become your actions. Beware of your actions, they become your habits. Beware of your habits, they become your character. Beware of your character, it becomes your destiny.” I remember this saying from childhood, my Mom had a huge poster in her office with these very words. It is only recently that I am beginning to understand their meaning.

This video has really inspired me to be more conscious of how I speak to and about myself. It is a bit long but worth every minute. Enjoy!

Thankful Thursday – Getting Unstuck

How do we get unstuck? That is the question that Oprah asked in this powerful clip. While speaking with the renowned relationship expert Iyanla Vanzant, Oprah and her audience discover the rules to becoming unstuck. Simply articulated directions that are undoubtably difficult to enact. I know that I have been struggling and stuck for sometime, just as many people have. Whether it is a poor economy, past pain, or current difficulties, there are many people who would benefit from becoming unstuck. I am taking this simple and valuable lesson to heart, and I am grateful for having discovered and shared it. Enjoy!

The rules for becoming unstuck:

1) State the facts, Tell the truth 

2) Ask for what you want

3) Get a vision