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 Posted:   Jul 4, 2014 - 11:27 PM   
 By:   Ron Hardcastle   (Member)

July 5th -- happy 69th birthday, Michael Blake, who wrote "Dances With Wolves." I found this piece about him from IMDb fascinating, particularly sleeping on the couches of friends and working as a dishwasher before his book was published. I was so happy when he received the Oscar for his screenplay adaptation of his own book, and would have been even more thrilled for him had I known about his struggle leading up to it.

Mini Biography:

Date of Birth 5 July 1945, Fort Bragg, North Carolina, USA

Michael Blake was born in Fort Bragg, North Carolina, USA. He is a writer and director, known for "Dances with Wolves" (1990), "Stacy's Knights" (1983) and "Winding Stair" (1998).

Survived bouts with Hodgkin's disease in 1990 and 1992.
After staying with Viggo Mortensen and Exene Cervenka, he wrote "Dances with Wolves" (1990) as a wedding present for them.
Was homeless for a period in the mid-1980s while struggling to make it as a screenwriter and writing the novel "Dances with Wolves." He lived out of his car and slept on friends' couches, eventually giving up on Hollywood and moving to Bisbee, Arizona. He was living there, working as a dishwasher in a Chinese restaurant, when the novel was published and his old friend Kevin Costner asked him to return to Los Angeles to write the screenplay, for which he later won the Academy Award for Best Adapted Screenplay.

Personal Quote:
Characters do not come out of the thin air. I think writers acquire characters by living a life in which something is risked. It's only by being defeated, rejected, exalted, by going through all the peaks and valleys, that you can acquire anything worth writing down.

So that book and the subsequent film transformed his life! Happy birthday!

 Posted:   Jul 5, 2014 - 10:52 PM   
 By:   Christopher Kinsinger   (Member)


I am a writer too, and I'm going through some of the very same hardships that you experienced before your ultimate success arrived.
I find your story to be positively INSPIRATIONAL!

AND…I expect the very same results that YOU achieved!

THANK YOU for inspiring me!

 Posted:   Jul 6, 2014 - 12:18 AM   
 By:   Ron Hardcastle   (Member)

Christopher: That's why I posted his story! I had read that inspiring info in his IMDb bio about a week earlier, and noticed that his birthday would be coming up soon, so I made a mental note to paste that info in a birthday wishes posting on July 5th! Glad that I did!

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