Wednesday, December 3, 2008
I used to write here, often, about my latest writing endeavors. There is more than one reason why I have posted nothing of the sort lately. Mainly - I do paid freelance work now, and spending hours researching and writing various articles sort of sucks the juices right out of you when it comes to your own stuff. I've been doing other things with my free time, in the last 2 months, that unfortunately don't trend that way.
One big thing is that, since becoming pregnant, I'm really needy for my husband. When at home, I would much prefer to spend all my time with him than do anything else. I've always been one that valued my alone time, even in marriage, but that has completely flipped during pregnancy. Now he's the one saying "When can I do (whatever solo thing he wants to do)?"
But the writing is not dead. I have multiple ideas, and a lot of notes jotted, but no tangible words that anyone can read. Last weekend, my friend and I made a deal that we would both write something. And....we both flaked.
Hopefully, that won't be the case for much longer, for various reasons. One, I really want to write again. Desire is a big chunk of motivation. Two, I'm starting a new freelance job that is permanent and hopefully effectively full-time once the baby comes. This job does not involve mass article production. It involves lots of little goals and projects (a great thing for my list-checking, goal-oriented personality) that should free me up mentally to use my creativity on my own stuff. The big prayer is that it is financially successful enough to free me up in time as well, so that I have the ability to really devote myself to the creative pursuits. I miss writing my own stuff. I loved the script writing of the summer a lot and I want to get back to the story-telling!
Wednesday, November 5, 2008
Tuesday, November 4, 2008
There's one blogger, and great friend, this fits perfectly. Her name is Jamie. She's been my partner in crime for one big writing project thus far, and I'm sure we'll do something so crazy again. She has a personal blog as well as a political/entertainment blog at HuffingtonPost. Jamie and I may disagree on many, many things, but in writing we share a passion and continually encourage each other through our quirks, fears, and craziness.
Thanks, Mom, I'm glad you enjoy it and of course I love you too.
Monday, October 27, 2008
Monday, October 20, 2008
There's not been much to say.
I really have not had time (or energy) to do any sort of creative writing in months. I get paid to do freelance writing on various topics, with various degrees of personal input, usually very little, but when it comes to creative personal writing everything seems to be on hold.
There's the fanfiction I started in April. I recently received a message asking me to please finish the story so they could know how it ends. Mmm, okay, will try!I hope I have some great things to post soon about writing. We recently purchased a laptop, which has allowed me to quickly start catching up on my paid, non-creative, freelance writing. I'm praying I can get a bit ahead of that (when I don't feel baby-sick) and then be able to dig back in to the rewarding creative work. I miss it, especially the script writing. But, alas, that may be shelved indefinitely. I think my path lays far more realistically with the novel side of things, with two babies on the way.
There's the novel that I haven't touched in...far too long.
There's the Bones script I finished. And the one I didn't.
There's the pregnancy journal. Now that, I am current on. Well, sorta. Early on I managed daily writing, now I'm on weekly updates.
Friday, October 10, 2008
But I do have a very wide range of stuff that I like...
And now I really want to watch this movie:
Links to all the videos, because for me, at least one of them won't show up on a reload.
Born on Christmas Day - Brad Paisley
We Three Kings - Blackmore's Night
The First Noel - Ella Fitzgerald
Christmas at Ground Zero - Weird Al
Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer - Dr. Elmo
Christmas Vacation Song
Wednesday, October 8, 2008
And I don't look forward to going through the headache of finding a new look again.
Friday, September 19, 2008
Yesterday I returned to get another ultrasound and lo and behold...there sure is.
We got to see both hearts beating and everything! It was beautiful.
You can see more images at this gallery, including the heartbeats, measurements, and what little we saw of baby B last week.
Sunday, September 14, 2008
Life's different. I know it will be really different come next May, or even April, but it's already different. I haven't been awake at 11pm in weeks. I haven't slept in my bed at least a full week (and my not see it again for the duration), and I'm really not liking my red meat.
And then there's the brain thing.
Pregnancy brain is real, I'm telling you. I'm not sure where this little bean put it, but it stole a good portion of my mental capacity. I feel so...unproductive.
Everyone is telling me to rest, rest, rest. I feel like I'm over-resting and under-contributing. I'm not slacking on anything paid, but I am feeling my personal pursuits slide considerably. This blog, and even my Bones blog, are not getting nearly the attention they once did. It's not for lack of love, just lack of concentration.
I run out of steam so fast. The line of demarcation is most clearly marked by one simple thing: naps. Pre-pregnancy, I loathed them. And when I gave in and took one, I invariably felt worse. I slept 6-7 hours each night and everything was just peachy.
Now, I sleep anywhere from 8-10 hours at night, and I love my naps. Of course, I don't sleep that amount straight. Nooooo. I might make it 4 before I have to visit the ladies' room, stumbling around in the dark. But there's a painful price to pay for waiting even that long. It's much better if I only sleep 2 or 3 at a time with plenty of visits. I am getting pretty good at going and returning to my couch with barely a thought.
Alright, quick U-turn back to the beginning. See what happened there? I started a topic on lack of concentration, and ended up on bathroom visits. Such is my current state.
Saturday, September 13, 2008
PS I love the image.
Monday, September 8, 2008
Yes, I fought with my brother to watch it.
He didn't like it, I did. I remember at least one incident where my Dad had to intervene. Seriously, it's ST:TNG time, give it up already!
It's been off the air more than 14 years now, and I've barely seen any episodes since then. This was one of the first shows I remember seeing in movie stores, as available for purchase.
And the entire purchase price was something astronomically ridiculous. Granted, there are nearly 200 episodes, but it was at least a 4 digit total to snag all those tapes. Never happening.
But now we have DVR.
And unlike the A-Team, it's actually syndicated. I set the DVR to catch all episodes, after realizing Sci-Fi shows a couple each Monday night. Well, on a normal Monday. On Labor Day they had 15 hours of ST:TNG and we caught them all.
But we're really not that into constant TV, so we still have only made it through half of them, and tonight it will catch more. But, it's something we both enjoy and, thanks to the DVR, we can watch them at our leisure. It's a lot of fun to rediscover an old favorite, and watch episodes you haven't seen in a decade, or even two.
That does make me feel old though...
Tuesday, September 2, 2008
Monday, September 1, 2008
But there really just isn't enough Modern Marvels right now! Marathon anyone?
On the polar opposite of that, Lukas and I plan to walk more together. A walk every day after work sounds wonderful.
I'm still neglecting this blog a bit much but I feel a change coming on, swinging back toward updates. We'll see!
Tuesday, August 26, 2008
(You can see the main post about the release on Obsessed with Bones.)
Intro for "The Man on the Roof."
Jamie proposed this idea out of her "Patty Hearstian" love of Zack. I must be honest that I do not have the same level of passion for his character, but I do have the passion for Bones, for writing, and for a good challenge. Hence, a script was born.
It became apparent rather quickly that Zack would be a case-of-the-week B-story in my script. I wanted to find a way to tell a reasonable continuation of his story but I wanted it, more than anything, to feel exactly like a real episode of the show. I needed to have the Booth/Brennan, the humor, and the feel of a weekly trip into the show.
It will be obvious to anyone who reads my script what I love most about this show. To some, you will even be able to tell exactly who my favorite character is. I really enjoyed writing it. I loved delving further into Zack, a character I'd previously enjoyed but not loved, on the same level as others. I hope I did him justice, and I hope you enjoy the whole package.
(link removed as I've decided to work it into a full novel completely independent of Bones)
Monday, August 25, 2008
1 Envelope, ripped open with contents still inside. Back used as a hasty note surface for a business voice-mail message that I accidentally cut off mid-way and can't get back.
4 carved willow statues in the following forms:
-couple woman in front of man, arms entwined
-woman with wings and a cradled heart
-child with wings and a very thorny rose
And then we have the 5th willow statue. She is laying down, tightly clutching her 3 wire flowers. Her position could be likened to a coffin pose, an image which is helped by the fact that her head is somewhere in the vicinity of her right arm. Below it. Facing down.
Friday, August 22, 2008
AoP is in a sad state of disuse.
I blog about Bones, I blog about health, I am just beginning to ghost-write blog. I also write, ghost write, re-write and research and write for others.
I definitely do not lack for writing.
What I do lack is time. My work doesn't have defined walls anymore. I still have a day job for 4 days a week (hopefully soon to be 3) but I have many many hours of work right here. At this computer. At home. It doesn't end at 5. It doesn't confine itself to Monday-Friday.
Do I mind?
I wouldn't say that. I know that transitioning to freelancing is exactly what I need, for both the present and the future. And I already love many things about it. I love not driving to work. I love that I can go take a walk anytime I want. I love that if I need to go to the doctor or run an errand I don't have to ask anyone for permission.
I especially love the variety of topics. In the scant 2 weeks I've been doing this I've researched and written on everything from photography, to cardio exercise, to Football (UK style). I never lack for variety of topics and that keeps it interesting.
This weekend I have 5-6 hours of work to complete my first big article job. I will get it done, turn it in Sunday and hope they hand me the next quickly.
But tonight, tonight, I will veg. Monday Mourning is calling my name.
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
...that I had to sign up? =)
There's just something about that guy. I loved Knight Rider growing up. As I've gotten older I've seen the cracks I couldn't see then and David Hasselhoff has become one of those things you just can't look away from.
One of my favorite silly sites - Waxhoff!
Friday, August 15, 2008
Right now things are insane! I just found out I didn't make the cut with my TV pilot idea. But that was not unexpected. It was the first thing I had written in years and within a month of submitting it I knew a million and one ways I would have done it differently. It was a great learning experience!
I completed a Bones spec script. Jamie Frevele and I both wrote full scripts. It was her idea, as a way to do something with the Zack story. Her script is very Zack focused and will make the extremely rabid Zack fans happy. Mine is much more like a weekly episode, where the secondary story involves Zack. Unless something major happens, we're going to put them out to fans 1 week before the premier.
I would love to write for TV full-time, but I live in Eastern Tennessee, a couple thousand miles from Hollywood. We'll see though. There are still options open to me. (I like to think so at least.)
In the meantime I have begun working on a novel. I'm loving it. (Wishing I could sit down and do nothing but this.)
I wish I could wipe the slate clean and write all day but I do have a mostly full-time job and I'm in the midst of trying to transition to some freelance writing work but it's not easy. Applying for jobs is taking up all of my free time. I badly want to put up more episode reviews for the old shows but I feel like I never have the time! When we get new shows though, I will definitely be on top of reviewing them.
Oh yeah, we have enhanced TV for the first time in our marriage. What am I most interested in, outside of Bones perks?
Modern Marvels baby! I'm such a geek.
Thursday, August 14, 2008
The humor in the movie isn't the same type of humor seen here (far less crotch-related themes) but it's on the same level. It's also Not Safe for Work (NSFW).
My previous review of Tropic Thunder (no spoilers)
Tuesday, August 12, 2008
Monday, August 11, 2008
Sunday, August 10, 2008
I had a nice line of papers, separated by topic, laid out on the couch. Miraculously (not kidding on the miracle) the cat never touched them. Today, having hit something like 30 pages, I decided it was time to bind those suckers. It's mentally and spiritually uplifting to know that you've done enough work, and reached the point, of needing to organize your organization!
Saturday, August 9, 2008
Friday, August 8, 2008
Video camera, anyone?
Wednesday, August 6, 2008
Up next...organizing the 40 1/2 size pages of notes I have made over the last week for a new story. This one is all my own, which gives it a particularly great thrill. It's even more daunting, but I'm excited to be digging in.
Tuesday, August 5, 2008
Sunday, August 3, 2008
The only thing the cat isn't is docile. Lap cat does not apply. She does join us on the bed but mostly it's to suck our heat or clean herself. Loudly. At 3 am. I had no idea how loud claw licking could really be.
My attitude toward her is in constant flux. One moment I appreciate her company, another I'm grating my teeth at the pulled threads in our bedspread quilt or sighing as I pick yet another cat hair off myself, and other times I'm simply amazed at how much she lives up to her 'tardo nickname.
Yes, 'tardo. It's not P.C. in the slightest. She's not human. And she's definitely not bright. I'm sticking with it.
Part of it's amusement at cat quirks. They focus on movement. So it's very easy to completely enthrall her with a tiny bit of light, or flipping the pages of a book, or putting your hand under the covers. But the rest is all her. We've always laughed and sighed at her seeming inability to control her own claws. She extends them, gets them stuck, then seems to forget she has the capacity to retract them so she can move freely. She gets stuck in carpet, in sheets, in the stuffed dog in her cat bed...but none of it compares to her recently aquired ability to get her claws stuck...to her own claws.
She's decided in the last few days, for efficiency sake, maybe, that she's not going to lick one paw at a time anymore. She's going to put her front paws together and lick them at the same time. You can see the realization dawn. At first she keeps licking, while slightly tugging. The tugging begins to steadily overtake the cleaning as she pulls her linked paws closer and closer to her body in the attempt to separate them. You'd think she'd get better at the separation or even learn not to link them but instead she's trending the opposite way...
I really want to 'lolcat' her...
more cat pictures
Thursday, July 31, 2008
I drop everything, including myself on occasion. I am not allowed to take off my wedding rings or engagement ring in public places. There's at least and 80% chance that suddenly, for no explicable reason, a trio of musical pings will soon follow as they hit the ground. And heaven help me if the floor is carpeted. Good luck finding them then!
It goes beyond that, however. I'm a typing klutz as well. My story, and I'm sticking to it, is that my brain is moving faster than my hands. I leave off 's's, I drop letters, I make mistakes like "I am ore than that" in place of "I am more than that" and many many more hilariously bad examples of typing: "What not to do" with a keyboard. If you can think of a typing error, I'm pretty sure I can put a check mark beside it. (And for you literal minded people, *cough* dear husband *cough*, I refuse to even address the other 'what not to do's' I have committed with a keyboard. We will not be discussing milk today.)
There was a point to this...oh, yes. Script. So, yeah, I have this script thing. It's going to be handed over early next week, I hope. In deference to my typing faux pas, I have let a few people read it. It's more than a smidge embarrassing to see page after page of marks with the most mundane of errors - 'shp' instead of 'shop', 'her' instead of 'here', 'co-works' instead of 'co-workers'.
That 14th 's' you forgot, it really sticks with you.
But, I'm happy to report that aside from typing errors it seems to be well-received in this small group who've seen it. The 2 who watch the show say it sounds like a real episode and in an equally glowing compliment, the 2 who don't watch now want to watch the show. I'm pulling in fans. Yeah!
So who else will see it? Well, we're doing something very cool with our scripts next week. I can't say more. But a couple of weeks after that, before the next season premiers, we should be posting them publicly for anyone willing to have a peek. Even in script format, I think they'll be a fun read.
Tuesday, July 29, 2008
Monday, July 28, 2008
We've talked pillows for a very long time. For the nearly 3 years of our marriage we have used pillows that my husband had before he met me. Flat and shapeless do not begin to describe. Something had to change, and the pillow talk began.
2 years ago.
We talked, we poked, we prodded, we even bought one a time or two but they barely made it out of the package before being returned. Enough is enough though, and this weekend we set out to hit Bed Bath and Beyond and not leave without new pillows, no matter the cost.
We got out surprisingly cheap, in the end. We squished and fluffed a long row of selections and walked out with 2 new pillows. (We actually walked right back into the store to look at sheets, but that's another story entirely.)
So. We get them home. Our old sheets were in the wash at the time so the new pillows, freshly de-bagged, sat perkily in their new spots with the bed spread beneath. Thoughts?
Wow those things are huge...
After a bit, the sheets are done and my husband makes the bed. I pass through the room again to see the new pillows looking not unlike a large sack of potatoes stuffed into a tiny bag. More foreshadowing, completely missed. But, I'll skip ahead a bit: bed time.
The sack of potatoes simile returns here, if not for texture, definitely for size. Huge is an understatement. I've never heard so much pillow punching. Shift. Beat pillow. Shift. Shift. Vigorously beat pillow. Rinse and repeat. Night 2 wasn't quite as bad. But it is a reasonable possibility that I was too tired from the previous restless night to care.
So, I for one, am left hoping the flatten quickly. But only a little. Is it possible to find the perfect pillow, that stays perfect for a reasonable amount of time?
Sunday, July 27, 2008
I recently rediscovered a favorite show from my childhood on Hulu: The A-Team. I absolutely love this show, for so many reasons. Every character is so unique and fun:
Hannibal - Colonel John Smith; The leader; The Brains; "I love it when a plan comes together"
Faceman - The con artist; The procurer; If they need it, he gets it.
Murdoch - The pilot; The hilariously insane one
BA Baracus - The muscle; The philosopher; The caretaker of the weak
Here's one moment of many that just makes me laugh.
Face: Murdoch, what's going to happen?
Murdoch: It looks like we goin to crash.
Face: Oh c'mon, really, what's going to happen?
Murdoch: It looks like we gonna crash. And die.
This is right after Murdoch admits to Hannibal that he stole they plane they are currently using from a repair line. And that the plane is unfixed because obviously "they start to miss 'em once they been fixed."
Mr. T (B.A. Baracus) happens to be especially quotable. There's a consistent theme in the show that BA hates to fly. Every time they need him to fly they have to drug him and I enjoy all the different ways they trick him, both onto the flight, and afterwards when they try to hide it from him. BA stands for Bad Attitude and he's not afraid to show it.
In one scene from the episode I'm currently watching, they are carrying him away from the plane so he won't know he flew.
Face: Maybe it would help if we took the jewelry off.
Murdoch: No, I don't think we can. I think he's got it hooked up to a burglar alarm.
Later he figures it out and this quick exchange follows:
BA: Murdoch crashed the plane, didn't he?
Murdoch: No, no no no no no. I simply relocated the aircraft with extreme prejudice because of a total loss of thrust and lift functions!
BA: You crashed it, sucka!
BA: BA Baracus gonna take that lie outta each and every one a your hides.
I could really go on forever. It's a hilarious and highly quotable show. I recommend it to everyone.
Saturday, July 26, 2008
Today has been a very busy day with Bones cast and the creator appearing at Comic-Con yesterday. I've made countless posts as information comes in and spent a lot of time organizing a special podcast with a couple of people who saw the Bones panel first hand. I'm very jealous of these people, especially the one who squeaked his way behind the scenes and had a private one-on-one with David Boreanaz. He's one lucky man!
Tomorrow though, aside from the interviews with the lucky ones, I will be focusing heavily on The Final Draft of my script. It's time to rid myself of the scourge of typos and word omissions, fill in those last few holes, and proclaim it 'done'.
More writing, of course! I thought of a new story even today. It's not remotely Bones related but it could be an interesting movie ride...
It is very true: The Stories Never Stop
Sunday, July 20, 2008
I will be doing a lot of editing, especially to formatting. Jamie, my partner in this script debate, told me about The Screenwriter's Bible, by David Trottier. I resisted pulling it out until the draft was done so I wouldn't mire myself in the technical, and I'm glad I stuck to that choice. It's already a revelation that I wish I'd had in my hands back when I submitted my pilot competition script, but that can't be helped. It will, however, greatly help me now.
Jamie did score us some science help, thankfully. A real bona fide professor and coroner who was willing to take some time to answer some wild questions for nothing but sincere and heartfelt thanks. And boy am I grateful. He didn't answer every single question I posed (I did send at least 15 after all) but what he shared was invaluable and went a long way to rest my mind on the scary science. I'm still guessing on parts but he saved me from at least one big goof.
My script is over budget on length by at least 7-8 pages. Hopefully the bulk of that will be taken care of when I go back through the dialog in a couple of days and tighten it all up. My goal was 60 and I'm happier being slightly over than any bit under.
No matter what, I've really enjoyed writing this. I've written a rather long fanfiction story with the characters in their happily-ever-after glow but I have to admit...it's a million times more fun to write them as they are now: bickering, teasing, and hopeful for their futures.
I just hope it's a good story!
Thursday, July 17, 2008
Wednesday, July 16, 2008
Tuesday, July 15, 2008
During lunch I did a little of each of those last 3, and then later this afternoon I managed to squeeze in the writing of the most daunting non-scientific part of the script: a heart-felt letter from Zack to Dr. Brennan. I can't say more than that but it comprises only words spoken in the final scene of the script and there's a strong burden for it to be righteously self-important. Those words matter. They are the true resolution, as far as things are resolved, for the entire episode. They've weighed on me heavily and I've continually ignored them. But suddenly the words just came. I hope they read as well as I think they do.
Today I read that he's leaving the series. The 10th episode of the upcoming season will be his last a a cast regular. On the one hand, it will be interesting to see if a show can survive losing it's lead. I think it's been done before, in ER for example, with Anthony Edwards leaving. But on the other hand, it completely takes all last vestiges of interest I held onto in regards to this show. It does give me hope for one thing, however. This better lead to a life-time of geek love with his girl Sarah, who ended her run as a series regular last season. I may tune in to the 10th episode just to find out.
Sunday, July 13, 2008
Saturday, July 12, 2008
I think in general I might have a couple of scenes that are way too long. I'm just going to keep trucking with it and when I'm done hopefully it will be easier to then go back and see where there happens to be dead weight I can cut out. There's a scene in Act 2 with a character that gives the biggest group of details about the victim's life and tells a character story. I'm afraid to type that one into the computer and see how big it really is. But I'm running with "more is more" and the idea that it's easier to cut than add parts that won't flow as well. That or I might just be writing a 2 hour episode without realizing it...
PS Super Smash Bros Brawl (which we got for 1/2 price on Amazon) is the devil of a fun timewaster. I am Bowser. I SMASH!
Friday, July 11, 2008
Thursday, July 10, 2008
We've set the end of July as our deadline. 3 weeks. And this weekend I have a 3 day weekend thanks to some unavoidable errands on Friday. In preparation for the planned fantastic and extensive work I will do on my script this weekend...no, really...I plugged most all of my latest hand-written notes into the computer document and printed myself a fresh gleaming copy to mark up. And believe me, there's plenty of wide open prairie land on those pages, free for the marking!
For pure fiction I can easily write either on or off the computer. My brain flows better with a pen, but I can manage either way. However, I have this odd process for script writing. Almost none of the script first appears on the computer. I have a continual rinse and repeat cycle where I write furiously on paper until the paper is barely legible, then I plug it in and organize it on the computer. I can then print out a new copy and do it again.
I couldn't have reasoned this process out in advance, but it works beautifully for me. My brain just seems to work better with a pen in my hand, only stopping when the mass of blue begins to obscure the structure beneath. The only real evolution to this process has been learning where to incorporate blank spots so I have pen breathing room. On this latest printing the blanks are definitely crushing the blacks in sheer size, hence the near-panic at times.
The only solution is to write. And if I can focus on one scene at a time, step by step, I will get through it.
Wednesday, July 9, 2008
Sunday, July 6, 2008
All I can think about right now, as far as Buffy goes, is this:
Edit: Now I see that's someone's redraw instead of the original. The original is soooooo much better at poking fun of David Boreanaz with his long even hairline, big forehead and impossibly small ears.
Here's a crop of a screencap but photoshopping it into workable order is proving to be a big time pain.
Friday, July 4, 2008
Thursday, July 3, 2008
I'm with Lucy is the story of a woman who's relationship ends dramatically in the first few minutes of the film, devastating her. Her sister is determined to get her back into the dating mix, however, and over the course of a year she dates 5 different men. All begin with blind dates and all of the men are flawed in various ways. Lucy is played by Monica Potter, and the men are played by (in order of the dates, if I remember correctly) John Hannah, Gael Garcia Bernal, Henry Thomas, Anthony LaPaglia, and David Boreanaz. (Entomologist, Playwrite, Computer Salesman, Baseball Player and Surgeon, respectively)
The movie progresses via somewhat dizzying switches between the progression of each relationship, with a few 'present' flashes as she's readying to marry the unnamed winner of her heart. After round 1, you think it's going to be David Boreanaz' surgeon. But by round 2 you, unfortunately, know exactly who she'll marry, or at least I did. And all the while I was rooting for the most unlikely character (nerd factor!) to win the day.
I had no idea when I bought the movie that Harold Ramis would be in it. I love every role I see him play. He was perfect as Egon and now he plays a string of large teddy-bear comfort figures and it totally works.
While a bit predictable at times, I would definitely recommend this movie for those who like sweet, romantic laughs.
But I'm a sucker for Friends. And reports are coming out that a Friends movie is now in the works. I'm a bit afraid of it though. What will they do to make it interesting? Ross and Rachel are together, Chandler and Monica just got their twins, Phoebe is settled...They wrapped up the show pretty neatly in the end.
I really hope they come up with a fantastic script that defies all those questions. I will be very interested in seeing it.
Wednesday, July 2, 2008
I learned so much in writing the other spec (that's about 80% complete) that I've refined my process a lot. I outlined there, but this time I outlined more specifically and in more detail. More importantly, I made a reference version of the outline. Last time I came up with the story and started outlining in my head, and then jotted down something so I could find act breaks. This time I came up with the story, started building the scenes but wrote the outline with specific focus on the act breaks. I think it, at the least, has made my organization easier. And if you're organized it's far easier to avoid the nasty writer's block. I always know where I stand in the story so I'm not getting distracted by loose ends or other scenes or broad questions.
Despite it being summertime, the Bones blog is hopping too. There is constantly some type of cast or show news trickling out and I'm really enjoying compiling and presenting it each day. I've unfortunately been slacking on my old episode reviews, with everything else going on, but I hope to remedy that soon.
Sunday, June 29, 2008
Out of curiosity about my own reaction to Wall-E I decided to test something today. I just finished watching a movie I hadn't seen before: I am Legend. I went into this knowing human pride and mistakes had caused a disaster. I knew Will Smith was all alone trying to survive. I knew it would be depressing.
And it was, all of that.
But I still thoroughly enjoyed the movie. And I think that's the difference. I feel like I was lied to about Wall-E. Expectation vs Reality and animated, cute betrayal. I don't have a problem with negative stories but I want to know up front what I'm getting. That is why I didn't like Wall-E.
But not this one.
I left feeling like I'd been beaten vigorously about the head and shoulders by something large and mostly hurt-y. I think they wanted you to leave feeling happy for Wall-E and uplifted by what happens in the last few moments but it couldn't overcome the rest of the beat-down suffered on behalf of humanity.
The movie, as a recent email put it, is dark. The basic themes involve humans being stupid, humans being mindless, and humans being cows. A movie made in 1969 is held up as ideal, if oversimplified, humanity. If this wasn't fun enough toss in overwhelming environmentalism doomsday prophesies and here you have Wall-E.
Why would I pay to see this?
Newspapers, websites and TV are replete with these themes. Who thought it would be fun to pay to see them in Pixar animation too? All stories need conflict and negative ideas in order to show triumph in the end but I think this movie was a little light on the triumph. I wish they'd cut down the negativity and taken the triumph shown in the credits and made that part of the actual movie. I might have a different opinion of the experience if they had.
I can't fit it into some neat starred rating system but I would say that I likely won't be recommending the movie.
Friday, June 27, 2008
Security at a screening like this isn't scary but it is tight. The woman screaming that cell phones would not be allowed was not kidding. My husband took ours back to our car but many tucked their phones deeper into pockets and purses and were then invariably sent (temporarily) packing to put them in their cars. "Not recording" is serious business.
We were ushered in more than 1/2 an hour before the showing and accommodations were tight but once you've made it past the cell phone Nazi and the 4 (or was it 5?) other people who have to verify your admittance they mostly leave you alone to wait. And in this age where cell phones are the de facto watch for many time stood still. In the bad way. We passed the time mostly by talking over my spec script project and other inanities and watching a mustached man with a legal pad picking various attendees out for extra questions, baffled at his purpose. (We later realized he seemed to be picking out people for on-camera comments.)
At 5 after the appointed time a congenial but business-like bald and be speckled man moved front and center to yell some announcements at us and then it was on with the show.
I wondered, as the lights dimmed, if the credits might be one of the as-yet incomplete parts of the movie and if so if we'd jump right to action or what. I was very confused at the first images I saw. Without trying to spoil anything; just before the movie you will see fake trailers and/or advertisements for the actors being portrayed in the movie. I won't say more than that but some of them are very funny.
I expected, going into this, to see a caricature of a war movie, presented Ben Stiller-style. I was not remotely prepared for how well they portrayed a war movie. Think of We Were Soldiers, Saving Private Ryan, Band of Brothers and more. If the gory blood and guts in those movies bother you then be forewarned about Tropic Thunder; you get that level (in a farcical manner usually) and more. In one instance I actually felt sick to my stomach and a couple of times had to look away. The entire audience gasped 'Eugh' all together in more than one instance.
Additionally, another warning: just like other war and Hollywood movies the language is very heavy. It fits the scenarios and characters portrayed but it's crude, offensive and/or vulgar for 80% of the movie.
That's it for the warnings. Everything else I have to say is glowing. It was a hilarious movie and not always predictable. They really play the audience well at times to wonderful results. I laughed so hard at some of the gags and still smile now thinking of one particular line of jokes. Unfortunately there's really not much else I can say without giving away gags that should remain unspoiled.
Favorite character? Robert Downey, Jr.'s, hands down. The man not only steals the show, but runs off with it, locks it in a chest and sits on it with a come-and-get-me-'tude. He piqued my interest with Ironman and now he's totally hooked me with this role. The guy is a fantastic actor and I'm hopeful we'll see much much more of him now that he's straightened out his personal life.
Least favorite character? Jack Black's. Not to confuse the two I want to say that Jack Black played his role very well. He's a great comedic actor. I just didn't like his character. It's very Rob Schneider on the bad side and he grated on me. It rounded out the mix well and some of his scenes were very funny but overall the character didn't grab me in the slightest.
Biggest surprise? Tom Cruise. I knew he was in it but I was unprepared for how hilarious he would be. This is not the Tom Cruise you've ever seen before and you will love it. When he first came on the screen I hated the character and it took me a few moments of screen time to even realize who it was. But by the end (and I mean complete end) you should be laughing hard at him. He pulled off a brilliant spot.
The movie clocks about 1 hour 45 minutes. I think it's perfectly paced but there's still a chance they could change things before the August 18th release. Most of the movie looked completely finished though I noticed a few little coloration issues. Additionally, there is still some sound work to be done but nothing major.
With the caveats about the gore and language, I highly recommend the movie!
Promo "Viral Video" for Tropic Thunder
Tuesday, June 24, 2008
Monday, June 23, 2008
A big chunk of time yesterday was committed to the 2nd installment of the podcast I do with a girl from another Bones fansite, The ABY. We have a blast.
It sounds like so much but it feels like so little.
I was definitely completely distracted almost the entire evening last night rediscovering photoshop. I tend to pull it out, learn so much, then forget about it for 6 months or more. Then the cycle of wailing and gnashing of teeth recommences. I wanted a new signature for my forum access on the ABY and here, in the 3rd attempt, is what I'm now using.
My previous 2 attempts:
That distraction may yet continue for awhile...I really want to play with image layering next.
Wednesday, June 18, 2008
Guys and Dolls happens to be one of my favorite movies of all time. I love musics in general - Sound of Music, Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, and more - but this one never gets old. I enjoy most every song and even as I sit here I find it hard to chose a favorite. But I will chose a Favorite-of-the-Moment, at the least.
Monday, June 16, 2008
The first was an email. I saw the handy little mail pop-up showing me that I had mail from the festival to which I submitted my pilot script. I swear I think my heart stopped. Rationally, I knew it was too early for any positive notification but rationally didn't exactly kick in quickly. "Could they want more info?" pushed heartily to the front of the line. I stared at the box for what seemed like an eternity. Confirmation of submission and a cheery Thank You aren't nearly as mind blowing, but still...neat.
The second was good old fashioned mail mail. I had no heart stopping trepidation when staring at this one. It was another submission confirmation, this time of my script registration with the WGAw.
Both these mails are confirmation of something important that goes beyond this one contest submission. I have a dream. I want to write. And I'm reaching for it.
Saturday, June 14, 2008
Lots of busy too.
I have a lot on my plate right now:
Writing a Bones spec script
Doing prep work for upcoming Bonecast
Writing posts for another Bones blog that's going to have me in a list of guest bloggers next week
After those 3 things are done:
Writing a Zack episode where he deals with his 'rehabilitation'
Doing more background work on the Pilot I submitted
Writing another spec script for another show...probably NCIS
And that's not including a bunch of other things that don't including writing. Busy busy busy. And loving it!
Wednesday, June 11, 2008
In the first book I pounced on a section about outlining since I'm currently teetering back and forth between refining my outline and the actual writing for the spec script. The few pages I saw made me feel good in that my story creation method is already good (organic, not linear). I'm sure the rest of it will be an awakening on how it could be so much better but reading that gave me a nice boost.
In the second book I've learned...that the authors wrote for Baywatch. Baywatch?! To be fair they also have written for Monk and Diagnosis Murder but the Baywatch stink just won't leave me. Sure, Baywatch had a plot...somewhere. But who actually remembers more than girls running on beaches and David Hasselhoff's chest?
Speaking of that. Check out this awesome site.
Monday, June 9, 2008
Sunday, June 8, 2008
I wish I could find a complete Bones teleplay online so I could check their format better. I can find transcripts, which are useless to me, and I can find the 'sides' that leak out every time they audition a guest-star but those are usually 1-3 pages only. I'd love to be able to go through an old episode and break down scenes, pages per, formatting - everything. Not even Ebay is helping!
Friday, June 6, 2008
One of my favorite sites has turned out to be Jane Espenson's blog. She's insightful, experienced and humorous and I feel that I've picked up so much information already... and I've only read the first 2 months of her archive.
Thursday, June 5, 2008
I completed all the teaser dialog for my Bones spec script during the lunch time today. So the first 5 minutes are complete and just need proper formatting. Step by step I progress. Give it a week to 10 days and I'll have a new script to pass out to friends. Surprisingly, no one is running from me in avoidance...yet.
For the stuff that involves my writing future...I've slacked for a few days. I did brainstorm with 3 people more depth to the Pilot, so I've not been a complete bum. But I haven't worked on the newest deadline at all: the Bones spec script. Time to get busy!
Tuesday, June 3, 2008
Edit: They killed the embed on this, grr. It can be viewed here.
Monday, June 2, 2008
Some make sense, some are absolutely terrible and some are just odd. T
Ones that spark comment in me?
The Brazilian Job: That is far too much like The Brazilian Wax. I can't think of anything but that when I read that title.
Shrek 5: They are really going to take this too far and run it into the ground. Oh, wait...I hear Rocky calling!
Jurassic Park 4: Bad, just bad. And even worse...rumors of David Boreanaz attached to the movie. No, please no. Say it ain't so. I will have to see it then but I will still hate it. Sigh.
The entire list:
The Brazilian Job: the follow up to Paramount’s US remake of The Italian Job is still on the cards, and it’s got a 2009 release date marked. Jason Statham, Mos Def, Mark Wahlberg and Charlize Theron are attached, as is director F Gary Gray.
I, Robot 2: All we know on this one is that it’s in the scripting stages still, with a potential 2010 release date planned in. No news on Mr Smith's involvement.
I Am Legend 2: Warner’s huge Christmas 2007 hit could also have a follow up, although it’d be interesting to see if Will Smith returned to it. A 2010 release date is also being mooted for this one.
Beverly Hills Cop 4: If Die Hard can still do it at the box office, why can’t Axel Foley? Er, because the third BHC movie was crap, and a flop. Still, it’s not stopped development work going ahead on number four. No further news than that, though.
National Treasure 3: Not a huge surprise, but as the Nic Cage Indiana Jones knock off franchise has proved to be quite a juggernaut, you’ll only have to wait until 2011 for the third film in the series.
Cars 2: We spotted this on AintItCool – is Pixar really looking to make a sequel to its weakest film? Apparently so…
Toy Story 3: This one, after lots of umming and ahhing, appears to be a goer. It won’t, as was speculated, be a straight-to-DVD affair, and Tom Hanks and Tim Allen are both expected back on voicing duties. It’ll be out in 2010.
Jeepers Creepers 3: MGM is running the rule over a potential third instalment in the horror franchise, with director Victor Salva still attached. Hmmm.
Shrek 5: The fourth film was a no-brainer after the tepid third outing made so much cash. But a fifth instalment has also been confirmed. No wonder Shrek is the same colour as an American dollar…
Night at the Museum 2: Ben Stiller is returning for his most commercially successful role outside of the Meet the Parents franchise. We can wait. No news on the proposed Meet The Little Focker, though.
Crank 2: High Voltage: This is more like it. Crank is a guilty pleasure right up there with Snakes on a Plane, and it’s coming back for more. Shooting starts next month, for a 2009 release, and Jason Statham returns as Chev Chelios. As he should.
Transporter 3: Statham again. He’s making this too, and it’s in pre-production. Presumably, he’ll go from Crank 2 straight onto this.
Super Troopers 2: A sequel nobody asked for! Hurray! Expect it in 2010, as it’s in the early writing stages still, we believe.
Silent Hill 2: Sony is looking at a follow up to the crap-but-popular video game adaptation. 2010 is the current slated release date.
The Descent 2: We understand that Neil Marshall won’t be directed this one, which has the, er, working title of The De2cent. He’s attached as Executive Producer, with Jon Harris stepping behind the camera (he edited the first film, as well as the more recent Stardust).
The Grudge 3: Yup, it’s in pre-production now, for release next year. That’ll likely be the scariest thing about it.
Ice Age 3: 1st July 2009. That’s the date you’ll need to avoid if you want to miss the next Ice Age movie. Hopefully it’ll be better than the second one…
Ghost Rider 2: A surprise hit last year, Marvel is developing a follow-up to the Nic Cage comic book flick, and tentatively has 2009 marked for release. No director is thus far attached.
The Untouchables: Capone Rising: A prequel to Brian De Palma’s cracking prohibition thriller of, er, twenty years ago. De Palma is back behind the camera, and the project is in the pre-production stages now.
The Thomas Crown Affair 2: Weird, this. It’s taken them ages to do a sequel, and then they draft in Paul Verhoeven to direct a follow-up to someone else’s film. Pierce Brosnan returns, and filming starts shortly.
The People Under The Stairs 2: No sign of any Wes Craven involvement, though, and release may even be this year. Hmmm. We'd wager DVD will be its home.
The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor: Er, that’s what they’ve called The Mummy 3, which is out on 1st August. Brendan Fraser and Jet Li star.
Punisher: War Zone: Ray Stevenson becomes the third person to play The Punisher on screen. You’ll be able to find out how he did on 12th September this year.
Starship Troopers 3: Marauder: Casper Van Diem is back, but it’s still going straight to DVD, as the piss-awful second film did. It’s due out later this year.
Pink Panther 2: Oh dear. And I’m a Steve Martin fan. It’s out on 13th February 2009.
Ace Ventura 3: No Jim Carrey though, and no chance of it seeing the inside of a cinema. Head to Blockbuster later in the year if you want to catch it.
War of the Worlds 2: The Next Wave: Another straight to DVD sequel, but this one’s of note because it’s directed by Soul Man/Hitcher star C Thomas Howell. Blimey.
Jurassic Park 4: It’s taken them ages to sort this out, but the latest is that Laura Dern is still attached, and that it’ll be released in 2009. Don’t hold your breath though, as shooting would need to start really very soon...
Scary Movie 5/Saw 5: You could have guessed at these if you didn’t know about them already. Both should see the light before the end of the year. Sadly.
Friday, May 30, 2008
So, now what?
First, there's a lot more to do with this script and idea. I can work on that story more, flesh out the characters, more plot, etc in case I get a call for more info. This I will be working on as a constant back project. I don't want to write more scripts for this show as it's highly likely that even if they do select me there will be significant rewrites but being prepared to hold an intelligent discussion on my ideas and plans is a must. At the least I could take all this work and down the road flip it into a novel where I could be much more free in ideas and plots.
Second, there's that novel I started that's languished for a month. I still have so much enthusiasm for it but I feel it can wait a bit while I deal with other things.
Then there's that fanfic I haven't touched in 3 weeks. I left it at a moderately crucial but not cliffhanger moment. There are promised events that have yet to be written. I owe the 50 or so fans a completion. There are at least 3 chapters to write.
But then we have this set of ideas I can't get past unless I give into them: spec scripts. Specifically, Bones spec scripts. I've already started writing one. I have the opener laid out, ~5 minutes worth, and the rest of the 38ish minutes broadly planned. I'm very proud of this story and I'm feverishly writing out the details as fast as they come to me. I'm trying to ignore that big hairy question of how you actually get something like that into the hands that could use them. I'm passionate about this particular story and I just know that if the right person read it...yeah...I'm just going to go write now.
I can't worry about that, at least not yet.
Thursday, May 29, 2008
1) I guessed John was in the coffin at the start of that scene. I was unspoiled and had no clue until right as Jack walked in. Wild guess - he had to move the island which banned him.
2) DES AND PENNY ARE TOGETHER! My LOST wish is fulfilled.
Wednesday, May 28, 2008
This template obsession, combined with a random audit at work (yay government paper pushers!) has kept me pleasantly distracted from screwing with my tv script. I think I'll stick with this template now that I have performed a few minor tweaks on it. I'm still messing with link accent colors but overall I think I like it.
Tuesday, May 27, 2008
"Who would have guessed that when you remove Garfield from the Garfield comic strips, the result is an even better comic about schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and the empty desperation of modern life? Friends, meet Jon Arbuckle. Let’s laugh and learn with him on a journey deep into the tortured mind of an isolated young everyman as he fights a losing battle against loneliness in a quiet American suburb."This is my favorite thus far:
You can see many more here.
It's at once exciting and scary. I wish I could imbue it with the essence of my intent: blessing it with all the enthusiasm and hope I can hardly tamp down. Blood, sweat and tears come no charge.
Sunday, May 25, 2008
I really don't like Buffy.
I love both shows, and I think Sarah Michelle Gellar does a wonderful job but when it comes right down to the character I just...don't like her. Seeing Angel brought that into focus. Angel is a tragic hero but he bears that with grace and strength. Buffy is in some ways equally tragic as Angel but in many ways she's got it much better. Yet she is barely more than a spoiled brat most of the time. And much of her tragedy she brings upon herself. She listens to no one at some crucial moments and can easily get in the way of solutions.
I hope I like her more in the end.
Saturday, May 24, 2008
Edit: Embed gone. Video can be viewed here.
Friday, May 23, 2008
First, the 'tunnel' must be complete.
Today, it was.
And now, people in London can look into New York scenes like:
Something like this should be permanent. This article goes into fantastic detail about the enjoyment of the Telescope. You can view the official website here.
I like old things - old farm buildings, old pictures, old cars. Anything with a fantastic vintage feel. I like flowers of all kinds. I like quilts, old styles of dress from turn of the century through the 50s, old leather bound books...you'd think with such broad ideas it would be easy to find something.
I have flipped this template many times. I've tried this one, this one, this one, this one and this one. Likely as not, you're looking at one of those right now. I find her templates to be creative and of high importance - they don't break important parts of the blog. Some do. So I'm leery where I find templates because of just that reason.
Why not make my own? See I have this problem. I WRITE. A lot. I write for my novel, I write for my TV script, I write for this blog, and this blog, and I write comments here and emails to this guy and chat with this person. I have no patience left for painstaking image work and composition.
There is no point to this other than to look each at rock and hard place and congratulate them on a job well done.
Thursday, May 22, 2008
# Pieces Written
4 if you count re-writing Sleeping Beauty, Hillbilly-style, in High School
Novels- 1 + .1 + .7
Can I count my 14 or so mentally composted story ideas? No? Drat.
Short Stories - 2
I'll say two officially, so far (one of those still needs to be typed up)... I lost at least 2 of my old ones and I've wiped the slate clean.
Poems- 3...4? 42?
I won awards for 3. After that I lost count.