Friday, March 31, 2006

Effin' spammers!

Sorry folks, I had to turn on the "word verification" thing. I had 4 spammer "comments" in the space of about 3 hours. From the same freaking spammer! Damn them.

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Eyes, right!

As promised, in the sidebar, there's links to my two short scripts that have been mentioned in one post of another on here. And, one short script that is being filmed. "Love, Mom" is a cute comedy and "Strangers in the night" is what I did with th 4 elements (character names, location and prop) given to everybody in first phase of the the Writer's Arc competition. Some of you have seen both of these already. "Payoff" is a drama, it's been shot and a rough cut is fully assembled.

I hope you like them.

p.s. For those never in the military, the title? It's the command for the platoon you are leading, in a parade, as you begin to march past the grandstand during "Pass and Review". Just more stupid info that some one might be able to use in a script.

Saturday, March 25, 2006

Determined or dumb?

Courtesy of a thread on the Triggerstreet message board, this is the story of how I got my script written and submitted for last Winter's Writer's Arc fellowship.

I'd written the first 40 or so pages in about 3-4 months (with about 2 more months of "head writing") when suddenly, I had made it into round 2 of the Writer's Arc competition. No more screwing around, I had to finish it in 10 days. This was a hard and fast deadline, with no way to extend it. Talk about pressure. Get this... to add just a smidge more stress... I had already made plans and paid for a trip to LA for the Screenwriting Expo. Plus, I had a meet-n-greet set up with a producer who might have been interested in hiring me for a script based upon an idea of his. (Didn't pan out, he wanted work for free.) So, how many hours a day could I realistically write while at the Expo? Not many. I don't have a laptop, so I borrowed my friend David's laptop (down to 8 days by the time I got it), get FD loaded (had difficulties), I finally get it set up so I can write on the plane; which I do, both ways. Meanwhile at the Expo, lugging the laptop, I go to several classes, see speakers, etc. and I skip the closing ceremonies as I was in the hallway busy hammering out pages. (One guy walked by and said "Looks like you're the only one getting any work done this weekend!") If he only knew...

When I got home, I had to juggle work and client demands (I remodel houses-- mostly for gay men who are positively neurotic about their homes), after I drive 45 minutes each way to get my dog (I'm single remember.. no one to help me with mundane things like oh, say, dinner.} All this, before I can try to finish the script.

Of course, I hit a software problem when I tried to transfer pages to my PC so I could open what I had written in LA and on the plane! Thankfully, I was able to figure it out on FD's site and didn't have to PAY for their assistance (I would have if I had too) before I could begin typing again! GAH! More time (my most precious resource) down the drain!

So, day of the deadline... MUST BE POSTMARKED TODAY! No exceptions. No postmark, I can kiss the contest, and any chances of even placing let alone winning, goodbye. I'm down by at least 20 pages. It's 6AM, I've got the end in mind but not in sight and I'm thanking whatever gods there are that Atlanta has a 24 hour post office. I also throw up a hasty "thanks" because I know how to get there and don't have to resort to Mapquest. Here's how the rest of the day went...

6:15AM, I've slugged down two Diet Cokes, chewed up a bagel and walked the dog. I sit down to write the hell outta this biotch, cause really, what choice do I have?

I don't move from the computer (except for answering Nature's call and letting Sophie out so she can answer that same call) for the next 17 hours. No shower, no lunch, no dinner, no nothing but the words in my head and the on the page. Phone's unplugged and cell phone is OFF. My friends? My clients? Can wait. This? Can't.

11:00 pm. I'm typing (FINALLY) "Fade Out" and the printer is spitting out pages 78 and beyond. No time for proofreading or anything else. I gotta get out the door! Where's my freaking shoes! Aghh, where's the keys!

11:30, I climb into the car with ONE copy of the script, on plain paper and beeline it to the 24 hour Post Office... Through Friday night midtown Atlanta partying (going the speed of "cruising") traffic. If THESE sumabitches don't get out my way, I'ma hafta kill somebody!

11:50, I pull into the Hapeville Post Office having driven down I-75 at over 80 miles per hour and (literally) RUN into the Post Office.

There's a line.

11:53, I step up to the counter, look the Postal Clerk right in his eyes and tell him "I know this is going to sound strange, but you're holding the rest of my life in your hands right now."

PC: "Huh?"

I proceed to explain about the contest, the deadline, I have to make another copy, etc...

He looks ME right in my eye and says:

"I'm sorry, I cain't help you. I get off in 6 minutes."

He glances right at those BIG RED numbers that announce to my sinking heart 11:54:08 PM

I beg. "Please, isn't there ANYTHING you can do?

He says: "I cain't, but those two down on the end might could, they working all night."

So, I bolt down there and repeat my pitch. Miracles do happen kids, one of the two (BLESS that woman!) says "Well, I'm not 'posed to do dis, but if'n you need me too, I can hold back one of them hand cancellers and not change the date 'til you ready."

I could have kissed that woman! But, she might not have liked it. Being straight and all.

Then she says the most amazing thing:

"But, you gonna hafta buy stamps!"

"Stamps? Lady, I'll buy ALL the stamps you got in this building if that's what it takes! Whadda I care, if it's stamps or stickers? Long as it GETS there!"

Besides, I had more pressing problems, I needed two, count'em TWO copies, properly bound with brads and with the correct covers. Did I mention it's PAST midnight? I got ONE copy and not only is there no three hole punch paper, there's no three hole punch or cover stock to be had at the Post Office. So, I belly up to the counter again, and beg the woman to wait on changing that hand canceller until I get back from Kinko's. She waivers. I give her the puppy dog eyes. She agrees. (BLESS HER!)

I scurry off into the night to the nearest (and only) Kinko's that I know of, which is (of course) 6 blocks from my home. Which, it turns out, USED TO BE open 24 hours. Some time ago, I (obviously) don't know when, Kinko's ceased running ALL of their stores on a 24/7 basis and now just runs one or two, in various locations throughout Atlanta.

Which location? Well, your guess would be as good as mine or the Security Guard's. Unless your guess is "How the hell am I supposed to know that shit!?!" Then, you'd just be repeating me. So, now that I'm back in midtown Atlanta, I decide to go home and jump online to find out where I can go get the copies made.

Did I mention it's closing in on 1:00 AM by now?

Finally, (Kinko's site suxs!) I discover that the ONLY 24 hours Kinko's that doesn't require a 45 minute drive is, in fact, not THAT far from midtown Atlanta, because it's in DOWNTOWN Atlanta. Which, at this hour of the night, is desserted except for the homeless, the winos, the possibly criminal gangsta and the occasional conventioneer, lost, drunk and broke after his trip to the local strip joints.

Sometimes, a girl has to do what a girl has to do... I headed down there to join them.

When I get out of my car (carefully parking it in a well lit place), a wino lifts his head off the pavement and softly burps at me. I politely ignore him, and his horrid manners, to go inside the desserted office building where the Kinko's is located on the second floor. After I sign into the building under the sleepy eye of the "security" guard, I proceed to the counter to get a pass key, where the skinny guy behind the counter proceeds to cross examine me about what weight of cover stock I want. Evidently, they don't keep 110 lbs stock on hand. Would 80 lbs cover stock do? DAMN, MAN, just gimme whacha got! After we get that squared away, I tell him that I need 3 hole paper. They were OUT. (Of course!) I made him drill some for me. Yes, they can do that, although they don't like too... think I cared?

THEN as I wait for the guy to ring me up so I can get the hell out of there, a VERY large (not in height) man comes in and begins to flirt. "PLEASE! MISTER! I AIN'T GOT TIME FOR THIS BULLSHIT!" I felt like shouting but didn't. I merely paid up and beat feet.

Time check? 2:25.

I finally got to the post office, and bellied up to the counter (again) in front of that lovely lovely lovely lady and hand her my crumpled package; a cardboard box with my 2 scripts, properly punched, properly covered and properly number 6 acco brass brad bound. She weighs the package, slaps a boatload of stamps on it, gets the hand canceller which (BLESS THAT WOMAN) is still marked with the correct day, and makes damn sure that the date shows, plain as day, right on the label.


I thanked her profusely for her help as I pay.

Her response?

"Oh, gurl, 's least I could do for someone as determined as you. Good luck!"

(Bless that woman!)

Btw, that script got me into the finals.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Coming? Going? Who the hell knows.

Please forgive me for my rather abrupt disappearance, there's been an epidemic of flu here, both the human and computer kind. The computer kind came from a friend who'd unwittingly passed it on via a "joke" email, which I opened (more fool me) and the human kind came unwittingly from the twin 7 year old (boy) cousins that had the day off from school last Thursday and Friday.

I hope all of YOU have been well!

Monday, March 13, 2006

Something about songs, again

So, yesterday I'm driving around town shopping for my Uncle's birthday present which is today (Happy Birthday Uncle Al!) and I'm doing my normal change the radio station when the commercial comes on thing. Top 40 station? Nope. Other top 40 station? Hate that fucking banana song. Jazz station? Ugh, not Kenny G again. Alternative station? Not interested in thrash metal, pass. Country station? Commercial, next. R&B station? Caught the last few moans from Barry White. Classic rock station? Surprise! My first "our song", ah, the memories... taking me back in time.

It's my senior year in high school and I've a new boyfriend, Mike. Mike, with the grey/blue eyes and the perfectly chiseled face. Mike, who wrestled and played third base. Mike, who lived 27 miles away from me and called every single week night to talk to me for hours on end about who the hell knows what. Mike, who I had sex with in his bed when his parents (what the HELL were they thinking?) left us alone in the house while they went out to dinner. Mike, the guy who taught me how to bowl (I still can't bowl... I think it was because I really WASN'T concentrating on the "finer" points of anything but Mike when he wrapped himself around me to show me how to throw the ball). Mike, who's battery died while we were making out in the empty field up the road from my house and had to spend the night on the couch under penalty of death if he so much as stuck a toe in the direction of my bedroom. Mike, who confessed that he'd been walking a girl to her classes (she went to his school, I did not) and whom he thought he might want to go out instead of me... the first person (sadly not the last) who cheated on me. Mike, who would become a Marine, and the last guy I ever slept with.

Wonder what ever happen to old Mike?

And, really, what is it about songs? They seem to crystalize and encapsulate a part of our lives, freezing them in time, preserving not only our memory of that time but somehow getting us in touch with exactly how we felt. Even if those feelings have faded with the slow erosion of time. Would that I could write something, anything, that has that much power and resonance. Songs are so powerful for me that I can not listen to songs that remind me of my ex. Perhaps, one day, I'll be able to listen to those songs with the idle nostaglia that I experienced when thinking about Mike. One can only hope...

Today, out of nowhere, 2 songs on two different stations... both of them, "our songs". Yeah, well, honey, it no longer looks like "You're still the One" and I've run totally out of "Patience". Sigh. Stupid songs.

Monday, March 06, 2006

CRASH? Seriously?

Wow. Hated that movie. It was nothing but "A very special episode" of The Love Boat set in drydock (LA), complete with gapping plotholes and trite "coincidental" character interactions.

I thought Jon Stewart was going to be funny. He wasn't. It was a snore of a show.

Friday, March 03, 2006

Worst President. Ever.

Party considerations aside, THIS fucker? Absolutely the worst.

This ain't about "liberals" vs "conservatives", it's about how the WORST President we've ever had lies to the people, and continues to boldly lie to whomever, whenever because he believes that "Father (him) knows best"

Clearly, this is NOT the case!

The video showing he'd been fully briefed? Made me ill. My stomach twisted into knots. He then shows up days later claiming that "No one" could have forseen the levees failing. WHAT A FUCKING LIAR! They foresaw it, and they told him. He acted as if he were still in that third grade class, calmly reading while the towers were getting hit. THEN, as now, the White House claimed that "no one" could predict a terrorist attack. Oh wait, yeah, seems that did get predicted too... in his daily breifing. But, hey, the man was "on vacation" so why should he be bothered with a stupid report entitled "Bin Laden determined to strike US."? Just like he couldn't be bothered to ask a SINGLE question at these briefing warning of imminent disaster to the Gulf Coast. Of course, he was "on vacation" during the Katrina briefings too... although not a vacation from photo ops and fundraisers. Fucker.

The White Houses response to this? "Well, no one, not even the President can control a hurricane." No shit, Sherlock.


The President could have (and should have) controlled the response to it. Once again, he's asleep at the wheel and innocent people died. What I can't believe is the people who buy into the spin. I'm tired of being "spun". I've been spun so much I want to throw up! How many times are we going to be lied to?

Valarie Plame?
Unauthorized wiretaps?
No bid conracts with Haliburton?
Wierd deals with the UAE to "run" our ports?
Didn't know he needed to do more for the people affected by Katrina?


I say his ass should be impeached!

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Geeky, nerdy, cool...

Pretty cool huh? It's what all flights over the US look like in one captured moment.

Check out more cool and geeky pictures here

Yeah, I can be a nerd... so what?