What I Found in Forrester

A guest post by Victoria D. Morris.

Movie poster for Finding Forrester.

I attend a lot of movies. I appreciate what they bring to the world artistically, and visually. I especially appreciate them when they touch the core of who I am. And when they do that unexpectedly, they join my personal collection.

Finding Forrester is one such movie.

For the most part, I consider myself two different fans. One, the reader. The one who can’t put a great book down until it’s finished, even if that means it’s 3:00 a.m. with the alarm set to blare at me not four hours later. Because that was a darn good book.

And then there is the movie fan. She can’t wait for all those stories she loves on the page to come to life on the big screen. She wants to see all the wonder, hear all the emotion, and taste the magic.

She watches differently than she reads. You have to, really. No screenwriter-and I love so many of them-can take a book and put it on a screen exactly the same. Because they read it differently than I do, even differently than its author did. Than any reader does! But they always, always try their best to tell a good story.

I had no expectations walking into the theatre to see Finding Forrester. It was a movie-day out with my best friend. Watching movies is one of my favorite hobbies. Particularly since I’d moved out of state, these special treats were few and far between.

We sat down together, laughing, enjoying each other’s company, until the previews started. Then the first bits of rap were performed during the opening scenes… and I was instantly transported, through my own life, back into one of the roughest neighborhoods in the city where I was born, where I grew up and found ways to beat back the hardship and scariness of drive-by shootings and crack houses.

But Finding Forrester didn’t scare me. Nor did it threaten to be “that sort” of story. It showed, quite brilliantly to my eyes, how someone-anyone with any kind of talent-could escape unhappy surroundings to find their true place. Their true happy ending.

It showed, too, that hard work is most certainly needed, but also that dreams could come true. Even dreams that you didn’t know you had.

The movie ended, and I couldn’t contain the emotion. I was in tears as the credits rolled. The story had taken me on a visit home, showed me the inner secrets of my heart. The secrets buried there, the ones I’d barely begun to discover, had always been a deep and encompassing part of me.

What kind of storytelling lesson did I learn from the big screen? Finding Forrester taught me that I could be the writer I am becoming. Before seeing that movie, I’d written sporadically throughout my life to help get through difficult emotions. I wrote poems and short stories that sat in dusty drawers as far away from my mind as my imagination had drifted during years of hard corporate world work that moved me physically away from that rough neighborhood.

And after? I’ve completed several novels. Even more short stories. Poems come flying out for the craziest of reasons. Some happy, some sad, but all of them one step closer to reaching a goal so solid in my mind that it is physically visible all around me, moving me emotionally into the place where I could grow, build up, and withstand the riggers of a solitary writing career.

Finding Forrester started me on the path to becoming my most artistic self: the person I am today, and of whom I am by far proudest.

It very much earned a valued place among my digital collection. And watching it again for the purpose of this blog only reaffirmed that.

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Victoria D. Morris lives with her family in the Pacific NorthWest on the edge of a magnificent fairy forest surrounded by mountains.  As both writing and art have been integral to her life up to this point, she is unable to decided which comes first.  She recently found work as a professional editor to be equally rewarding.  Follow Victoria’s website for further adventures and to see where Destiny takes her next.

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