Basically, I've been working on a book: a collection of essays on certain French films and filmmakers from various eras of film history that I adore. I have some previous experience studying and writing about French cinema for other publications, not least of all Intellect Books' Directory of World Cinema: France, which includes an essay of mine on the French New Wave. With this newest adventure, I simply wanted to try out a longer, freer form of film writing than the film reviews and blog posts I am so used to, to really explore and put into words what fascinates me about these films and the wider legacy of art and culture they are a part of that has gripped my heart and imagination for so long. As I go along, I'm certainly discussing their historical contexts and special places in cinema history, but I'm also taking a more philosophical approach and reflecting the things about life, love, work, history, travel, and more that they communicate. I hope that, as a result, the essays are appealing to readers who lie beyond the cinephile crowd, perhaps intriguing them to discover some of the films for themselves.
As of right now, five of the essays are more or less complete (the one I'm now in the process of wrapping up is about the life and work of Jean Vigo); I'm expecting to wind up with twelve in total when I'm finished. When that will be, I'm not exactly sure. This is definitely something that I know will take a fair amount of time, which is how I want it to be. I want to make sure each essay reflects the point I am at with my current writing ability, but at the same time, I simply want to have fun with the whole process - researching, thinking, watching, writing, editing. This is very much a labor of love for me, and I intend to enjoy every moment of it. When, one day, I do reach the point where I think this thing is complete and polished enough to put out in the world, I think I'll call it Riches Upon Riches: A Personal Journey Through French Cinema. As of right now, I have absolutely no idea which avenues I'll be taking in terms of publication (if you have any ideas, I'm open to hearing them!), but I'll certainly work towards making something that folks will appreciate and enjoy as they read what I've written.
I have shown some of the pieces in varying states of progress or talked about the overall project to a few of my friends so far - you know who you are, are I am most thankful for the advice and feedback you've given me. And for those who might offer their interest, support, or input further along the road that I'm treading with this thing, I offer in advance my thanks to you as well. And now, as I leave you with these behind-the-curtain shots of the notebooks I've been using to write the essays, please wish me luck as I continue onwards!