Posts Tagged With: writer

Will Rogers Born 134 years ago

On this day, the cowboy philosopher and humorist Will Rogers, one of the most beloved entertainers of the early 20th century, is born on a ranch in Cherokee Indian territory.

The son of a respected mixed-blood Cherokee couple, William Penn Adair Rogers grew up riding and roping on the plains of Oklahoma. An indifferent student, he earned only average grades in school, but he was by no means the ill-educated common man that he later liked to pretend. He was, in fact, highly literate and well read. In 1898, he left his family ranch to work as a Texas cowboy, and then traveled to Argentina where he spent a few months as a gaucho. But Rogers discovered his real talent when he joined Texas Jack’s Wild West show in 1902 as a trick roper and rider under the stage name “The Cherokee Kid.” For all his skill with ropes and horses, Rogers soon realized that audiences most enjoyed his impromptu jokes and witty remarks. Eventually, Rogers began to focus on making humorous comments on world events and created a popular vaudeville act with which he traveled the country.

In 1919, Rogers’ first book, The Peace Conference, was published. In the 1920s, he achieved national fame with a series of movie appearances, radio shows, lecture tours, magazine articles, and regular newspapers columns. Amazingly prolific, Rogers eventually wrote seven books, an autobiography, almost 3,000 short commentaries called “daily telegrams,” more than 1,000 newspaper articles, and 58 magazine articles. Rogers’ warm, folksy manner and penetrating wit were hugely popular during the Depression, and his concern for the welfare of average folks was genuine. He contributed frequent charitable performances in support of the victims of floods, hurricanes, and earthquakes worldwide.

File:WillRogers.jpeg

Will Rogers, photograph taken before 1900

 

Hollywood discovered Rogers in 1918, as Samuel Goldwyn gave him the title role in Laughing Bill Hyde. A three-year contract with Goldwyn, at triple the Broadway salary, moved Rogers west. He bought a ranch in Santa Monica and set up his own production company. While Rogers enjoyed film acting, his appearances in silent movies suffered from the obvious restrictions of silence—not the strongest medium for him, having gained his fame as a commentator on stage. It helped somewhat that he wrote a good many of the title cards appearing in his films. In 1923, he began a one-year stint for Hal Roach and made 12 pictures. Among the films he made for Roach in 1924 were three directed by Rob Wagner: Two Wagons Both Covered, Going to Congress and Our Congressman. He made two other feature silents and a travelogue series in 1927, and did not return to the screen until his time in the ‘talkies‘ began in 1929.

He made 48 silent movies, but with the arrival of sound in 1929 he became a top star in that medium. His first sound film, They Had to See Paris (1929), finally gave him the chance to exercise his verbal magic. He played a homespun farmer (State Fair) in 1933, an old-fashioned doctor (Dr. Bull) in 1933, a small town banker (David Harum ) in 1934, and a rustic politician (Judge Priest) in 1934. He was also in County Chairman (1935), Steamboat ‘Round the Bend (1935), and In Old Kentucky (1935). His favorite director was John Ford.

Rogers appeared in 21 feature films alongside such noted performers as Lew Ayres, Billie Burke, Richard Cromwell, Jane Darwell, Andy Devine, Janet Gaynor, Rochelle Hudson, Boris Karloff, Myrna Loy, Joel McCrea, Hattie McDaniel, Ray Milland, Maureen O’Sullivan, ZaSu Pitts, Dick Powell, Bill “Bojangles” Robinson, Mickey Rooney, and Peggy Wood. He was directed three times by John Ford. He appeared in three films with his friend Stepin Fetchit (aka Lincoln T. Perry): David Harum (1934), Judge Priest (1934) and The County Chairman (1935).[15]

With his voice becoming increasingly familiar to audiences, he was able to basically play himself, without normal makeup, in each film, managing to ad-lib and even work in his familiar commentaries on politics at times. The clean moral tone of his films led to various public schools taking their classes, during the school day, to attend special showings of some of them. His most unusual role may have been in the first talking version of Mark Twain‘s novel A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court. His popularity soared to new heights with films including Young As You Feel, Judge Priest, and Life Begins at 40 with Richard Cromwell and Rochelle Hudson.

On August 15, 1935, Rogers was on a flight to Asia with the famous pilot Wiley Post when the craft developed engine troubles and crashed near Point Barrow, Alaska. The crash killed both men. Rogers was only 55.

Advertisements
Categories: History, Western, Western Authors, Writing | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Build Your Author Platform (We Grow Media, With Dan Blank)

In the early Spring I was Very fortunate to attend Dan Blank’s Build Your Author Platform 6 week course, Via a scholarship program, and weather you are a writer that is just starting, in the middle, or even an established author, I highly recommend this course. If you are any of these you may want to visit Dan Blank’s We Grow Media, and take the diving plunge into building your author platform.  What did I get out of this course? I learned how to use google analytics to make my website/blog more noticeable. I learned how to approach other authors and writers in my genre in which I have made some very good friends. I learned how to target my audience, and how to engage them on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, etc. And to complete it all I have made some great friends, confidants, and contacts along the way. The list goes on and on, and the conference calls are filled with great memories, and knowledge.

Even if you are an established author, I still recommend this course, too many authors feel their publicist needs to publisize them, go beyond that, be personal and comunicate with your audience members, they will read your books faithfully, and you gain a good pal along the way.

Dan”s course has this to offer and so much more:

Dan Blank’s online course runs from from October 31 – December 18, and provides the structure and skills you need to build the foundation for your writing career. The The full course includes the following elements:

 

  • 6 career-shifting lessons that take you step by step through the process of how to develop your author platform.
  • Personalized feedback via weekly homework assignments, where I directly address your challenges and opportunities with advice to ensure you are on the right track.
  • The ability to ask questions 24/7 via our private online forum. Here, you can discuss key topics in developing your platform with myself and other students in the course.
  • 6 Exclusive Insider Calls, where I get on the phone with the entire class and you can ask anything. Here you have a chance to brainstorm ideas; dig into specific challenges you are trying to move past; and build close relationships with myself and the other writers in the course. All Exclusive Insider Calls are recorded, so if you miss a call, you always have access to the recording.
  • 6 Guest Expert Calls from leading publishing professionals, including: Jane Friedman, Richard Nash, Joanna Penn, Colleen Lindsay, Jeff Goins and Kathleen Schmidt (more info below). These experts get on the phone with the class, and allow you to ask them any question you want. They provide personalized insight that helps you build your author platform. All Guest Expert Calls are recorded, so if you miss a call, you always have access to the recording.

You are provided access to a private online classroom where you will find all course material, and engage with the other students. The only thing you need to participate in the course is a web connection and telephone.

A close friend and classmate Kathy Pooler A memoir writer, had this to say about taking Dan’s 6 week course “You will network with other writers, have fun, and learn more that you ever imagined you could about building your author platform.”

If are available I suggest you join Dan Wednesday for a  FREE!!! Webinar: Why You Need An Author Platform (Wed Oct 24, 2pm ET)

 
 

 

Categories: Current Events, Writing, Writing Technique | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Blog at WordPress.com.

%d bloggers like this: