Time--2017 A to Z Theme

My theme for the 2017 Blogging from A to Z April Challenge was "Time". The posts are of a more philosophical, contemplative, and even autobiographical bent. No time management tips in this theme, but stuff intended to make you think.

Always a work in progress--welcome to my blog...

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Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Where or When (#BOTB)



I've never seen a pig fly, but I've seen plenty of flies on pigs.  But that doesn't make bacon any less savory.   And what this has to do with anything I don't know...




Join us on the first Wednesday of each month in Alex J. Cavanaugh's Insecure Writer's Support Group--a forum of writers who gather to talk about writing and the writer's life. For a complete list of participants visit Alex's Blog

      The co-hosts for the November 1 posting of the IWSG are Tonja Drecker, Diane Burton, MJ Fifield, and Rebecca Douglass.



November 1 Question: Win or not, do you usually finish your NaNo project? Have any of them gone on to be published?


       When I started blogging in September of 2009, I began avidly seeking out all things blogging as well as anything to do with writing.  After all, although my blog started out as a Halloween blog, within a short period I came to the realization that what I'd rather do is write and I began to put an emphasis on writing.  Not so much technique or advice regarding writing, but I just wrote whatever inspired me at the time.  I was also posting daily in that first year, so Tossing It Out became focused on writing--my writing about things that I found interesting.

       It was not long after I began blogging that I heard about NaNo.  Having always been interested in writing for as far back as I can remember, writing a novel in thirty days sounded like an interesting challenge and challenge it was--daily posts, leaving comments, and finishing my 50,000 words in a month.  I became immersed in the writing because I was hellbent on finishing what I started.

        In my first year I came up with 50,000 words in a story that I felt proud of, but that was it.  I didn't go back to finish out the details of the story or edit what was done or anything else.  I saved my work with every intention of coming back to finish it eventually.  I never did.

         Nor did I finish my second NaNo attempt in 2010.  I met my 50,000 word goal and felt good with the product I had created then, but I've yet to go back and do anything more.  In 2011 I dived into another promising idea for about three days, then something came up that put me on a different track.  Since that attempt I've half noticed each November as it passes.  For all intents and purposes I've put writing on hold.   Oh, I'm still blogging, but there are no more NaNo projects for now.  Maybe someday, but I don't know where or when...

Battle of the Bands

Battle of the Bands is the blogging event started by Far Away Series and now hosted by StMcC Presents Battle of the Bands.   This event happens each month on the 15th and on some blogs there is also a Battle on the 1st of the month.  My blog is one of those with a second Battle on the 1st of the month.   The premise is simple:  Listen to the songs presented below and then in the comments vote for your favorite and tell us why you liked it.  Then visit the links listed near the bottom of this post for more Battle action.



Where or When

        This is one of those songs I've heard for as long as I can remember.  It has one of those haunting melodies that seem to evoke memories and dreams.  I suppose that would be appropriate for a song about deja vu.   Recently I watched the 1939 musical film Babes in Arms with Mickey Rooney and Judy Garland and was pleasantly surprised to hear this song in the soundtrack.   Two years earlier in 1937 the Rodgers and Hart musical had been a Broadway hit.

         Since this song has been in my "someday" queue for a long time, I figured this would be a good time to feature this Battle.  And I thought it fit very well into this month's theme for #IWSG.

          There are so many great versions of this song to be found on the internet and done in so many different stylings.  I decided on two musical contemporaries who both are renown in the world of jazz, who have two distinct sounds.  They're both winners as far as I'm concerned, but I guess we all can pick one version as our favorite.

           Take a listen:


Lena Horne   "Where or When"  (1941)

         Lena Horne was a multi-faceted entertainer as well as a civil rights activist.  Besides her numerous recordings, Horne appeared in movies and television performances during her long career which spanned the years from 1933 to 2000.  Lena starts the Battle with her dreamy rendition of "Where or When".





Etta Jones   "Where or When"  (1960)

       Not to be confused with Etta James, the similarity in names might have had some impact on Jones' relative obscurity.  No doubt that Jones is an outstanding artist as displayed in this recording.  Jones came on the musical scene about ten years after Lena Horne though both were essentially contemporaries in their performing careers.  Etta definitely jazzes the tune up at a snappier pace with the help of a smokin' back-up band...





Time to Vote!

    
    
I think this is a tough choice, but I have my favorite.   Do you have a preference between these two choices?   Which version do you like the best?   You don't have to know about music to have an opinion since it all comes down to your own personal taste.

        Please vote on your favorite by letting us know your choice in the comment section and tell us why you prefer the version you chose. Then after you've finished here, please visit the other blogs listed below who may or may not be participating this time around. And if you've put up your own BOTB contest let us know that as well so we can vote on yours.



Here are some other places where you might find BOTB posts:

 StMcC Presents Battle of the Bands

 ‘YOUR DAILY DOSE’ 

  'MIKE'S RAMBLINGS'

'Curious as a Cathy'

Sound of One Hand Typing

The Doglady's Den 

Angel's Bark  

Jingle, Jangle, Jungle 


Cherdo on the Flipside 


Winner of this Battle Announced on Monday November 6th

       You can have a few days and most of the weekend to vote, but please don't tarry--you might forget!   In the meantime, be nice on Saturday and every day for that matter.







58 comments:

  1. Lee,

    I don't think I ever attempted to participate in the NaNo challenge. I know my limitation and to write 50,000 words just isn't something I'm either up to doing or want to do. At one time I could do that but not so much anymore. Although it would be a nice accomplishment. Who knows maybe I'll give it a stab one day. :)

    Your battle song is new-to-me. I know Lena Horn and I'm glad you pointed out that she wasn't up against Etta James. Etta Jones may be new-to-me. Both versions of the song make me feel different. Horn's rendition is dreamy even a bit romantic sounding. Her polished vocals really suited the tone; her cover transported me to the time when folks dressed up (women in long flowing dresses) for dinner and mewsic on the town. Etta's vocals are not-so-polished but again suited her jazzy, night club cover purrfectly. Her version had my toe tapping as my mind drifted off I imagined sitting in a smoke filled bar with a long cigarette in one hand while sipping on a martini (you know this is my imagination working OT since that's totally unlike me). These artists did the song justice with their own brand and style. For me, this morning I'm going to have to go with the cover that moves me and this morning I really enjoy the soft, mellow sound of the first. So, please give my vote to Lena Horn. Here's to November!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Cathy, I found doing NaNo to be very time-consuming especially when combined with blogging and life in general. Not impossible by any means, but a challenge to take on.

      I enjoyed your thorough evaluations of each version and that is pretty much how I'd see them as well.

      First vote goes to Lena Horne.

      Lee

      Delete
    2. Lee,

      I enjoy taking on blog challenges. That's why you sucked me in with the A-Z in recent years. The thrill to set a goal and to finish it, then happily along the way I meet a whole of new people. Some hang around afterwards but most fall by the way side returning to their normal routine. Perhaps one day, I'll consider the NaNo event. It's definitely something that gets me thinking every year I read of it. Have a good weekend!

      Delete
  2. A very hard choice this month Lee, eventually I chose Lena Horne, I recall her from my Childhood and it was great to hear from her again.

    Yvonne.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yvonne, I can understand the difficulty of choosing between these versions.

      Another vote for Lena Horne.

      Lee

      Delete
  3. Hi,
    One of the reasons I'm not participating in NaNo this year is because I want to get those three manuscripts I have written during NaNo out of my slush pile and do something about them. It seems a lot of us writers tend to finish the NaNo goal and forget that that is only the first step. I know I am one of them and finally made up my mind to focus on finishing the ones I've started.

    Now about the Battle. I have to say that I am an admirer of Lena Horne. Always have been. However, there are times when I hear her sing that I think her voice is squeaky. In where or when I thought, yes she did a nice job, but something was missing.

    On to Etta Jones and I have to confess I have never heard of Etta Jones, and I consider myself to know music. You surprised me with this one and I am so glad you did. The woman has a voice that is absolutely fantastic. Now, I am looking for more of the CDs she sang on. I like the swing. When she sang the where or when it was like she was throwing a curve ball. I like how she played with the text using her voice. The woman was a fantastic singer. I even went on the internet to find out more about her and was shocked to find out she born and raised in Aiken, South Carolina. Forty miles from where I was born in Georgia. No wonder the sway of her voice appealed to my heart so much. It's southern style all the way. So my choice is ETTA JONES.
    All the best.
    Shalom aleichem,
    Pat G @ EverythingMustChange


    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Pat, good decision on your writing. Now I should do the same thing.

      Initially I wasn't paying too much attention and thought that "Etta" was the Etta James with whom I was familiar. Finding Edna Jones was a cool discovery. You did a nice critique of her style.

      A first vote for Etta Jones.

      Lee

      Delete
  4. Even if you never do anything with those two projects, it was good practice and good feeling knowing you did it.
    I liked Etta Jones' version best.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Alex, Nano is definitely good writing practice. I see writing essays at school in the same way--not something I'd likely publish, but the writing polishes one's skills.

      Another vote for Etta Jones.

      Lee

      Delete
  5. Hi Arlee! Well done for participating in those November projects. I've never had the motivation to participate. Take care and enjoy the month ahead.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Nicola, motivation is what it takes as long as the who challenge is something you really want to do.

      Lee

      Delete
  6. I don't Nano because I think if I forced out that many words in a month, they'd be worthless.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Tamara, I've heard people say that and it seems like a possibility. I wouldn't consider what I wrote in past NaNos worthless at all and someday I hope to go back to finish those products up.

      Lee

      Delete
  7. November is crunch time for me every year, so I don't have time. Wish I did.

    The second version of the song is pretty.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. L.Diane, I guess I could always make time for NaNo if I wanted to, but that criterion is the key.

      I'll take that as a vote for Etta Jones.

      Lee

      Delete
  8. Every day is crunch time for me. Will I find enough time to accomplish writing in amongst blog visiting, email, social media or won't I?

    I don't participate in NaNoWriMo, but try to write every day. I enjoyed reading how your blog has morphed and grew. All power to you, sir.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Victoria, I hear you on that "crunch time" as I'm in the same boat. Each day it seems like I have more things to do without getting more time to do them.

      If it weren't for the blogging, I would have little to no writing the way things have been going.

      Lee

      Delete
  9. I've always wondered why they chose November for the NaNo. It's one of the busiest of times if you have any family to think about--I'm counting the days before Christmas. As to the vote today, I have to go with Lena!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. C.Lee, November doesn't seem like the best time for something like NaNo, but I guess the same argument can be made for other months.

      A vote for Lena Horne.

      Lee

      Delete
  10. Etta Jones is my vote. It kept me involved. Lena Horne had a wonderful silky version.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Susan, thank you for your vote!

      Etta Jones.

      Lee

      Delete
  11. They say no writing is wasted so I'm sure you learnt a lot completing NaNo in the past. Maybe one day you will feel like going back to explore them further. For me, the thought of writing to such tight constraints of time gives me shivers!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Suzanne, all writing serves some purpose. I did learn a lot in my NaNo participation. I haven't let go of the old projects, they are just lying in wait.

      Lee

      Delete
  12. NaNo is indeed a perfect impetus. For me, it's the time (or lack thereof) as well as the timing (I love the holiday season!) that keeps me from participating. Time aside, you're a great example of what we can accomplish at our own pace ;-)
    I enjoyed both choices in this battle! I'm going with Lena Horne for the pleasant memories it conjures.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Diedre, I wish I would accomplish more, but I get so distracted in many directions.

      A vote for Lena Horne.

      Lee

      Delete
  13. This matchup really excited me. Go figure, some of my earlier Time Machine forays paying off! Gimme Etta on this one!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. CW, I think this match-up is an outstanding--and a tough one.

      It's Etta Jones again!

      Lee

      Delete
  14. I love Lena Horne's voice, but her version ain't got that swing. Etta Jones takes it for me.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. John, guess it's a "swing day" for you.

      Etta Jones.

      Lee

      Delete
  15. You never know, you might go back to those stories one day. You did really well to win on those two occasions.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Nick, I might go back and I intend to go back to them. I might even do another NaNo one day!

      Lee

      Delete
  16. I hear you on the busy turn life takes us on. Here's to getting stuff accomplished!

    I vote Etta Jones.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Loni, maybe a writer's retreat is in order! I have a difficult time getting a lot of writing done when I'm at home.

      A vote for Etta Jones.

      Lee

      Delete
  17. I liked both these versions, but I like Lena just a WEE BIT better this time. This isn't a song I even remember, but it is a nice one.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sheboygan, I'm surprised you don't know this song. You might recognize later hit versions by either Dion and the Belmonts or The Lettermen.
      I think it is an outstanding song.

      A vote for Lena Horne.

      Lee

      Delete
  18. You're the second person I noticed so far who said they won NaNo twice but never finished or looked at those projects afterward. Hmm... Maybe that's why I never joined, because I'd want to write a book during NaNo that I know I would continue to do afterward. Usually, I already started and didn't have 50,000 left.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Chrys, those NaNo novels of mine aren't gone yet. I still hope to do something with them eventually.

      Lee

      Delete
  19. If you love blogging then that's where you need to be. :-)

    Anna from elements of emaginette

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anna, I won't say that right now I'm loving blogging, but it still serves a purpose for me. And it keeps me writing something.

      Lee

      Delete
  20. Sounds like NaNo doesn't work so well for you. You make me realize that one requirement for it to really work may be a willingness to extend it a few weeks further to finish the draft. Then there's the whole re-writing thing. I couldn't become a writer until I learned to pull up my socks and attack that. But I'd still rather just draft another one...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Rebecca, NaNo works okay for me if I'm really working at it, but guess something has kept me from going back to do a new NaNo project or finish the old ones. Lack of motivation in that respect I guess.

      Lee

      Delete
  21. I've never done NaNo, but I do take advantage of the writing retreat the local writer's community organises for it every November. Hope you can go back to your novels and get them published.

    I liked both the renditions of the song, really hard choice to make. But I think I'll go with Etta this time.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Nilanjana, I need to get the focus and then get back to writing. For now I'm in a place of certain contentment that puts writing on a back burner.

      Thanks for your vote for Etta Jones.

      Lee

      Delete
  22. Maybe you'll get back to them some day. I never bothered with it, already do that with ease, so meh.

    #2 gets the vote from our zoo.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Pat, some day. Oft said by many but many of those never see that some day.

      Another vote for Etta Jones.

      Lee

      Delete
  23. You've got yourself a pretty competitive Battle here, LEE. Good on ya!

    This is a song that's undoubtedly very familiar to all us geezers (meaning you, John, and Yours Truly). I'm really surprised the old goat, Sheboyganboy XI, didn't know it. Or maybe he's just pretending he doesn't so he can appear younger than the rest of us geezers(?) Ha!

    Wasn't it Lena Horne that Fred Sanford had such a crush on? Or am I confusing her with some other Jazz singer?

    This is a very pretty song -- I've always liked it.

    The way the horns are all playing very much in the upper register, and the manner in which the arranger employed the strings, it makes the version by Lena actually "sound" older than 1941. Not that that's a bad thing.

    I liked the Etta Jones version well enough, but her rougher edged, more aggressive vocal approach and the way she stresses certain phrases, combined with the quicker tempo, her version mostly abandons the pretty, lilting melody the song was created with.

    I prefer the "sweeter", gentler vocals of LENA HORNE. Her rendition retains the original melody and the very romantic, almost mystical mood indicated by the lyrics.

    Good Battle, Lee! Start with a great Standard and it's hard to go wrong.

    ~ D-FensDogG
    Stephen T. McCarthy Reviews...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. STMcC, I rarely watched Sanford and Son so I don't recall who Fred Sanford had a crush on. Lena was crush worthy in her day.

      You and I are in sync on this Battle. Everything you've pointed out and described is pretty much the way I see it as well. There are so many great versions of this song that many Battles could be waged.

      A vote for Lena Horne.

      Lee

      Delete
  24. I never went back to my nano project either. I'm not sure why. I think I like the process better of being able to work at a slower pace and work through plot issues as I go instead of flying through it. I got a buzz off of writing fast the time I did NaNo. But, I didn't really think about why I didn't ever go back to it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Nancy, the root of my lack of completion comes down to motivation. Motivation is what drives any of us to do anything isn't it?

      Lee

      Delete
  25. I'm leaning toward Lena.
    As to the stories, if you get back to them great. If not, also great. Some stories are never to be completed, and others can take an eternity. We do what works for us.

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    1. TD, my stories are essentially complete, but there are parts to fill in and a totality to finish. Maybe I have an insecurity that if I finish my novels then I'll have to do something to get them published. There are all sorts of issues revolving around that factor.

      A vote for Lena Horne.

      Lee

      Delete
  26. That's an interesting history of your NaNoWriMo efforts. Twere I to do it, I think I'd be similar. I've chosen instead to do the A to Z Challenge--lots of writing with deadlines. It seems to fit me better.

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    Replies
    1. Jacqui, I'm better with the A to Z Challenge as well. And if you're playing by the rules you can do A to Z posts ahead of time whereas I think you're only supposed to work on the novel during Nov. which is how I did that.

      Lee

      Delete
  27. From my cousin Tom a vote for...

    Etta Jones.

    Lee

    ReplyDelete
  28. What does NaNo mean again? I just keep thinking of Nanu-Nanu from Mork..from Ork:) as for the battle, I give it to Lena Horne because I prefer the original styling of this song and she sang it so beautifully. Etta Jones is good but her voice is sharper so I felt it didn’t go as well with this song. Now if you would have had Lena up against Judy Garland, I would have been undecided

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Birgit, NaNo is National Novel Writing Month in which participants attempt to write a 50,000 word novel during the month of November. Yes, kind of crazy in a way, but it's an interesting exercise.

      A vote for Lena Horne.

      Lee

      Delete
  29. I've tried NaNo a couple of times but the pressure (self-induced) was too much.

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    1. HR, you've gotta be in the right frame of mind and have the will to finish. I haven't been there in several years, but I've had some busy Novembers that would not have been conducive to that writing.

      Lee

      Delete

Go ahead and say something. Don't be afraid to speak your mind.
I normally try to respond to all comments in the comment section so please remember to check the "Email follow-up comments" box if you want to participate in the comment conversation.

For Battle of the Bands voting the "Anonymous" commenting option has been made available though this version is the least preferred. If voting using "anonymous" please include in your comment your name (first only is okay) and city you are voting from and the reason you chose the artist you did.

If you know me and want to comment but don't want to do it here, then you can send me an email @ jacksonlee51 at aol dot com.

Lee