What's going on.

• Friday, October 31, 2008 0 comments
Some quick updates, because I'm being watched [you know who you are].

Head's better -- heart should feel as good. Trying to stay hydrated, and keep busy. Went out yesterday, hit Justin's -- we watched "Always Sunny in Philadelphia" and "The A-Team," but more importantly we found a font for the comic [Re: Calamity Cash and the Town with No Name] from the resources that Sam dug up for us. It looks really good, almost like it was put right on the page with sharpie marker, giving it just that mix of indie-ness and legibility the project needs. I'm very pleased.

Talked with Kyle today about the short [Re: Untitled Short]. He had a few suggestions, and I threw a few ideas by him. Really helpful for both of us, though I think I may have inadvertently made more work for myself in the process. May discuss this at greater length here later. Currently, just a possible scripting problem. Probably better I caught it now.

Have near twenty pages on the short, and more importantly, a beginning I can live with. Course, it's almost all on legal pad. The rest should come easily. Can't imagine it'll crack 40 pages, but anything could happen.

Kyle also asked if, on the next project, I'd be willing to co-direct. My interest in the technical side of film making is just south of 0 percent. Always felt more comfortable at the keyboard -- storytelling is what interests me, and there aren't nearly as many people to offend this way. Least not in person. Had the option to get behind the camera at Bennington, really didn't appeal to me. That being said, I'll try anything once, and if the opportunity arises I'll do what I can.

Something like that would probably get me into a film school. And while I don't know Kyle that well yet, he seems to have pretty sound judgement, and he doesn't think something like this will be a disaster, so... I am at least partially inclined to consider it.

Ah, way too far in advance. Gotta crank this one out. And Glen's work on his comic is giving me the comic book itch too, which is funny, because I have a comic book being worked on right now, but dammit, I got a few other ideas. Writing another one is the only thing I'm sure about.

Plus, I keep talking about that pilot [Re: Sweet Home].

Dedicating tomorrow to someone I don't know and never met, but I think I love. And no, I really don't want to talk about it.

Shalom.

Updates.

• Tuesday, October 28, 2008 2 comments
Taken down last night with a minor migraine. Still feeling the nausea, but I got in bed quickly enough to avoid the worst of the headache. Mostly. Going to call it an early night tonight.

Got the fonts from Sam last night before all that [Re: Calamity Cash and the Town with No Name]. Take note people: This is how you get in the "special thanks" section.

Lot of work was done on the short last night [Re: Untitled Short]. Finally got a beginning I like, and I just need to transcribe the better part of it onto the computer. Legal pad, pen to paper... like the hand of god, sometimes. Satellite between the head and page. Changed a lot from the other versions I had, but its also a lot closer to what I was planning in the first place. Strange how that works. Was looking at my outline, the pages I have done... thinking I'm going to change some of the middle narrative -- particularly as it concerns the female protagonist.

Talked to Kyle. He already has a few other ideas. Something big he wants to work on. I'm just trying to focus on the short for the time being, though.

Anna called this morning, it was really nice to hear from her.

My head still hurts pretty bad. Hoping all I need is more sleep. Hurts to have to tank a day like this just because I'm feeling crappy, but this headache has made even typing this hard.

Shalom.

P.S. You want to talk about someone getting some work done? Go check out my friend Glen's blog at Albino Raven. He's starting to put up characters from his upcoming comic work, and they loo
k outstanding.

Reminders to myself.

• Thursday, October 23, 2008 0 comments
Talked to Justin a few moments ago. Very excited about some of things he's telling me about the book. Want to share everything, but it's important to be professional, I figure.

The reason for this post : Caught Sam on the phone -- she's busy this week, but I've been meaning to get in touch with her for some time concerning the font/lettering problem Justin and I have recently run up against -- namely, picking one that doesn't look like garbage. Though on my first comic[Re: SULK], Sam opted to hand-letter, we had some good fonts on stand-by in case she changed her mind, and Sam says it'll be almost no problem to hook us up with them. So, hooray, and this stands as my reminder to ask her about them when she gets back home on Sunday.

And so it begins.

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Well, we're off and running -- Justin has started work on PAGE 1 [Re: Calamity Cash and the Town with No Name], and already he's got plans to do some pretty revolutionary things with the project. I think it's safe to say that there has yet to be a comic book produced under the conditions and with some of the tools he's decided on, and I really feel some new ground is going to be broken with this book. For a sneak peek of what's been done thus far, check out his blog here. Updates will not be as frequent on his side now that he's starting the long haul, but I'll do my best to discuss the progress to the best of my knowledge.

Talked to Casey yesterday, caught up with him and just generally covered the projects we were both working on. I told him about my writers block [well, that's misleading... I'm writing a lot, just none of it's any good] on the short [Re: Untitled Short], and unprompted, the man came to the same conclusion I posted here previously -- that I have to personalize this project to make it work. Casey's a smart guy, a good friend, and will wind up entertaining us all on TV and in movies before it's over. I can only hope I get to meet him there one day.

Who knows? Maybe not. For now my audiences are smaller, but no less important.

Speaking of audiences, something over on Facebook wiped out some of my privacy preferences, and "unlocked" my blog to the masses. Which means if it showed up on the feed, if you were looking at my profile, well you likely found my little blog here. Admittedly, if I wanted to keep that from happening, I should have just not posted it there in the first place, privacy locked or otherwise, so shame on me. The cat's out of the bag now, and since I went and told John about it too, I guess my soft open is a little more public now. Which is fine, it wasn't exactly the best kept secret ever -- I never intended it to be -- and I only ask, with Shakespearean humility, that if anyone is reading, they are not so quick to judge, as even I haven't entirely decided what this space should be.

I also now have access to high speed DSL. Though I've no idea how, I feel like this influx of information is likely to change some things.

The wind blows through me.

• Wednesday, October 22, 2008 0 comments
Productivity isn't what it should be. I keep doing pages over and over again [Re: Untitled Short]. Think I know what to do to make it work. Just... not sure I want to do that yet.

I think it's probably the sign of a good writer when he can take on a project, and not invest himself personally in the project -- and I don't mean that in a "able to abdicate yourself of responsibility and feelings" for a project -- that's hacky, and ignores the fact that I actually like this concept, and am attached in a creative sort of way to it. What I'm talking about more is the masturbatory aspect to writing, and the ability to diverge from that, and write about something other than oneself.

In many ways, writing about yourself has a lot pro's. Most writers are relatively knowledgeable about themselves -- how could they not be? -- and many "newly made" writers often find their first success "writing where it hurts," I phrase I first heard on "Daria," actually. Very common in movies, especially -- look at "Clerks," or "Superbad." It is one of the few safe bets in writing, unless you're patently uninteresting or just a crappy story-teller, someone out there is going to be able to enjoy/empathize with your plight, and you've got a winner.

It is also a double-edged sword. For one, the loss of privacy is immense, and rarely can you hide behind the "based on" or "work of fiction" excuses. People aren't idiots, and even when they are, some lies are just never believable. It also means whatever you sit down to write is going to become a part of you, and you're basically scraping at new and old wounds, and trying to find a semi-technical way in order those feelings. Things that are easier when you can distance yourself from a project -- attachment, criticism, I'm sure there are more, aren't there, and while time may help you out from under them, you're now tethered to a project in a way you were never asked to be. And doing that for anyone, a friend, a boss, yourself, it just sucks. I envy the people who are idea-masters, who can write about characters and concepts, and not have them be "about anything" all the time. After college, after Steven Bach, I'm starting to think I don't have it in me anymore.

Which means... violating myself a bit. I think I see why most writers drank. I'm getting there... to the writing, not the drinking. Time for a fresh start.

Occurs to me that finishing "Calamity Cash" more or less proves me wrong, though. I guess not everything has to be personal. Maybe some projects just call for it more. Justin and I were talking about finding a font for the comic tonight [Re: Calamity Cash and the Town with No Name]. I'm going to ask Sam if she's scored anything that looks good that we wouldn't have to pay for. If not, who knows? Justin thinks he'll start the first page tonight or tomorrow.

Other news. Thinking about things... absolutes on lines. If everything could be presented on a scale of one to ten. Like say, in life, there's a the line of what a person can take, and a line of how bad things can get. And maybe for some people, they'll never see a "10" on the how bad things can get line -- some would argue that most don't see anything worst than a "6." And that's really the only line anyone ever looks at, because people tend to be pretty crappy about seeing the line of how much someone can handle. So we'll see someone having trouble with a "5" or a "7" and think, that's bad, but it's not that bad. It's not a "10." How can you get beat by something that's not a ten? But what if on that personal line, the worst someone can take is a "7"? What if what's hard, and what's bad are subjective, but still affective on one another? We're not all strong. Sometimes we fall, and its not as unexpected as everyone thinks.

Got a haircut yesterday. Pretty short. Actually not thinking it was the best decision, aesthetically speaking, but I still kind of like it. Like, it's not drastic, but its drastic enough to make me feel better, like a change was made.

Talked to Kyle. He read "Un-filmable" and was so amazingly complimentary. I'm glad. I'm always mildly worried people will find it a waste of their time, or not their style -- snuff porn and jokes about geeky nigh-pederasty is not exactly high art. But Kyle legitimately seemed to enjoy it, and is excited to see what I do with the short. I'd like to see what I'm going to do too, because what I'm doing now isn't cutting it. It was nice to finally talk to him on the phone too -- put a voice with the guy. I like his enthusiasm. Even if nothing comes of this, it feels important, and that keeps me on my toes. Good things.

The church next door is having a "Judgement House" on Halloween. I'm so tempted to go, even if it's by myself. I mean, that door is wide open for great things, I figure. But I promised myself I'd try and stay available Halloween week for friend, who I said I'd always be there for. Likely she won't need me, but just in case...

It's nearby. Maybe I can do both. I keep wishing I had more cash, a car, and a partner in crime. I'd just try to hit as many as possible, all night long. A handful of ones, and the road. Every crappy Haunted and Judgement House on the river. I'm vaguely reminded of being across the street from live mud wrestling one night with Justin, and not taking advantage -- feels like this is an opportunity in the same range.

Not sleeping well. Isn't helping the writing much either. Lots more panic attacks this week, upset stomach. Hysteria? Hopefully will pass.

Big news? Getting high-speed soon. Will that change the blog, and posting? We'll see.

Thinking of putting up a short I wrote several months back. Not likely to come of anything, but it would be interesting to put up. The same with SULK #2, which Sam and I never made, but I had a full script for. I liked it, even though it wasn't my best work. I'll have to see if it's possible.

Shalom.

Goddammit.

• Sunday, October 19, 2008 0 comments
I'm working, I swear [Re: Untitled Short].

Important to remember; I'm building, not breaking. The signs are less obvious until the end. Just ask Jimmy Carter.

Put up a Facebook note about my contact information. Never has a man so loudly and so subtly cried out for help and attention. I don't think anyone would excuse it without feeling this lonely.

Did something selfish tonight. I feel bad already, and need to learn to stop. I tell myself I'll grow out of it. Though I'll likely end up rich or dead first.

Sent Kyle a copy of "Un-Filmable." Thought he'd already seen it. Mildly flattered he'd give me this project without knowing my skill level. I should learn to trust more in my reputation.

More later. Promise.

Shalom.

Slamming my head into the wall, over and over and over again.

• Thursday, October 16, 2008 0 comments
Went out with Justin the other day, and picked up a new pocket journal. There are some things that are rattling around in my head these days I can't put here. For a lot of different reasons, not the least being that even with no one listening, this is my soap box, and I am in public, and though I would never impose that on someone else's blog, I feel there is an etiquette to be followed.

Working on the short lately -- ran into a wall, my old pet peeve, and something I've brought up here -- specifically, timing. I feel I don't have a very good handle on the cuts and jumps in time in the short thus far, and all I can say is that it's really different than what I've normally done. Controlling time in screenplays, particularly in long, dialogue-oriented scenes. I know how long a page generally is [Re: A minute a page...the reliable standard], and I know how to move and pace characters talking to each other. But to get a day into a page? To jump like I need to -- scene, this is earlier, scene, this is later, scene, this is earlier again -- I just can't quite nail it down as easily. The control is less, it doesn't read as naturally. I guess, in short form, it's hard.

But I need to know how to do it. And I know this is what will make this story work. So...

Back to the wall.

Ask me how I am.

• Tuesday, October 14, 2008 0 comments
Plans to work on the short tonight [Re: Untitled Short]. Hoping to make some headway.

John sent me a gift today -- he called it a Birthday Gift... which was in June, but he's a funny, great guy like that. "All-Star Superman Vol. 1" ... looking forward to reading it -- I like Supes, which I know isn't cool at all, but this won lots of awards and acclaim, and Grant Morrision and Frank Quietly are guys whose work I enjoy.

Probably post again later. We'll see.

Measure for measure.

• Sunday, October 12, 2008 0 comments
Eye's improved a great deal. Throbbing is almost gone. Minor swelling.

Heard from Anna. A phone call before she got on the bus. We talked about a things... she thinks I should take the GRE.

Went for a walk today, wound up out for hours. Went far off my usual path, wound up walking through people's driveways, backwards -- didn't jump any fences, but got into a few. Head swam, and I was hot, but I dressed warm, like always. Kept expecting to get stopped, someone stick their head out there back door "Hey, hey you. Don't walk through here again. Get lost. You don't belong." Yes. But it was Sunday, and everyone was away, places to be -- Church, and Sunday brunch.

Found a lilac bush -- surprised, had been thinking about the ones back at school lately. This one was big, but sickly, the cold has already come, and it was dying. I tried to take one of the healthier flowers, but it didn't come off easily -- wasn't it supposed to? -- like a begrudging gift. And then when I had it, what did I want it for? I stood there with it, looking, thinking, and then I dropped it in the dirt. What else?

Nothing. That's all there was. Today.

Well, I think it's a black eye.

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It also might be an infection. Or I could have scratched it. Or it could be a mystery black eye.

Makes no difference. The treatment is the same for all three [do nothing], and it's still throbbing pretty much all the time.

Not feeling well, but its more than just the eye. Been irritable for the past several weeks. It's been really easy to make me angry lately... about really stupid things. I haven't had an outburst or anything. I'm just really... raw? I guess that's the word. I'm worried about that. I don't want to take my shit out on other people.

Had trouble looking at the screen to type yesterday. Still, thanks to John, got some much needed editing done to the comic script [Re: Calamity Cash and the Town with No Name]. Few dialogue issues... sure I'll find a way to work through it. Minor changes at best. But it means a lot that someone with John's taste actually enjoyed the script. There is always a fear of being a bit pat when you're doing anything that resembles a western. Plus, so much of the comic turned out to be action, which I'd never done before, and having a set of eyes that isn't directly tied to just helps immensely.

Not a big couple of days. Figures after I spent an evening writing about my "Schedule O' Productivity" that I would completely fail at keeping up with it.

I have a black eye.

• Friday, October 10, 2008 0 comments
And an unexplainable black eye at that. Been irritated the past couple days, was afraid of infection, or worse, pink eye. Started throbbing today, and upon looking in the mirror, noticed the lid was swelling near my nose. Can't figure out where it came from, or how I got it. Recall running into a door several days ago, but where I hit my head was no where near my eye or nose. Lucky I wear sunglasses.

Difficult to deal with at the moment, doing my best. Have been putting off posting here a little bit -- recently made headway on the Letter-writing screenplay [Re: Untitled Short] in the usual way -- sleep deprived myself well into the next morning until inspiration struck moments before giving up. Wish desperately my mind didn't insist on this on such dramatic timing.

Final product turned out to be 3-5 pages of a sort of outline/note hybrid -- not at all an odd thing for me, all considerably better than anything I'd come up with earlier in the week. Looks to be two-to-three major characters, and a time jump between the opening and the end of the opening credits -- of roughly a year. Showing the quick progression of time has always been a problem for me, but I'm optimistic about this. It seems easy, and controllable.

I've mentioned before I often cannibalize other things for new projects. I've decided to dig "Eddie" back out, a White Trash Nation character [Re: Sweet Home] who popped up in the play I wrote back at Bennington called "Mall Sequitur." Yes, that title makes me cringe, but that also the reason I find it mildly redeemable. Eddie is a character a lot of people know -- that sort of obnoxious co-worker who's your age, and you could almost see calling a friend if they were an absolute doucebag. Nevertheless, Eddies populate the world, and for my purposes, he fits well within the confines of this project [Re: Untitled Short].

So does this mean I'm integrating the short into my "Living Dead" mythos, like "SULK" and "Sweet Home?" I don't know. Admittedly, Eddie never appeared in any of the "Living Dead" work I did outside of the play, but when I was doing initial notes and outlines for "Sweet Home," I had him pencilled in for a minor role -- something which likely kept him present enough in my mind for me to notice how perfect the character would fit into this short. Still, finding other places for "Sweet Home" characters has happened before -- the ex-girlfriend in the vampire script [Re: The Familiar] was a White Trash Nation character who I was trying to fit into the story with a hammer -- but somehow she blended right in with the new screenplay, and was promptly not needed anymore for White Trash Nation. The same could happen here. It's also entirely plausible nothing will come of the short, and Eddie will be back home. Or, hell, maybe despite the city vs suburbs settings of the two different works, Eddie has managed to eek out a living as a sleezeball in not one, but two places.

Twenty-somethings are like checkers -- really no rules on how to move them around.

So that's the gist of the work on the short. Should be cranking out real pages soon. Like everything I start, the middle is a little funny, but the beginning and end are clear enough in my mind to carry on. Talked to Kyle [Re: Kyle Christian Quinn...sorry, I just love the dude's name], and he's had a few more ideas, some very similar to this one -- he's intensely interested in the idea of people's inner thoughts becoming public in private ways... which is a little waspish, and pretty much perfect for high drama. Also, since the ideas in his head are all pretty much in the same vein right now as the one I'm working on, it gives a lot of possibilities for expansions. Likely, this short will be over 20 pages, but still far from a feature length... still, if things go by my outline, it would [as I keep saying] make a great framework for a "Slacker"-like ensemble piece. It's welcome enthusiasm.

But the first and most important thing is getting the first piece done, and capable of standing on its own.

Writing this has made me realize I should probably do a blog about "The Living Dead." Explain that, too. Make it all the more hilarious if I never achieve anything, but still have all this laid out like I'm being interviewed by Wizard.

Grandma went to the hospital today -- her potassium was too high, but she made it back home in a couple of hours. Worrying, mostly because of her insistence to not take her time, and get the problem fixed -- was more hung up on leaving home than getting better. That scares me. Too few people in my life these days to want to lose one of them from stubbornness.

Spent the evening on the earlier entry -- was spurred on mostly because I felt very trapped, and out of control. Writing up how my doldrums play out helped some. Felt better when I was done, posted it here, and on Facebook. Too long to believe anyone will actually read it. Amazingly masturbatory -- even by my standards.

A lot of my friends have stopped watching television -- only noteworthy really because it comes up regularly, likely because I watch as much as I do. The funny thing is, I can't really defend my position -- while I know there are good shows on TV, things like "Monk," "Chuck," "South Park," "The Simpsons," "Pushing Daisies," "Californication," and a lot of other things, I don't really watch them religiously enough to take up a banner in defense of television. Honestly, I guess it's a personal choice, though I could no more stop watching television than I could stop reading books or watching movies. Storytelling interests me too much, and I can't honestly believe that any medium that participates in storytelling is completely without merit -- and I can say that just from periodic viewings of "House" and "It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia." Also starting to catch re-runs of "King of the Hill" on FX -- I'm surprised by how funny I find it. Like all things Mike Judge, it just takes me a little while to come around.

Realize my problem in arguments today -- often time I could win more easily if I just kept my head, and stuck to short responses. Though I can't explain it, I prefer to try and reason it out with the person -- a useless endeavour. John says it's easier to attack than defend -- absolutely. Should settle for being clever, rather than being smart.

Check out the New Town [Re: Calamity Cash and the Town with No Name]. Toned and everything. Justin's great... I just hope he doesn't mind my notes.

Another realization about myself today -- would like confirmation, if possible. Vocabulary is no longer so impressive to me anymore. I remember when I was younger, using big words as power against kids who would ridicule me, to make myself feel better and smarter. Doubt I'm more secure, but I'm more interested in words now -- I use the ones I like, and use them excessively. Like to bring back dead phrases, and pick up what others might consider ridiculous colloquialisms. Don't feel arrogant about it anymore, hardly notice I do it. Not a crutch anymore, they're an actual enthusiasm of mine, something I exercise without thinking how it'll strike other people. This is in some ways a flaw. But I do think this is one of those ways I've grown, because I can't think anything but pretension when I see someone else write "dramaturgy," on their myspace page, yet still think it might be a fun word to work into my day-to-day. I can use "hubris" and "bangin'."

Likely, none of this makes any sense.

My eye is throbbing. I think I'm done.

Shalom.

Day of the Living Dead [I will get to real updates soon]

• Thursday, October 9, 2008 0 comments
Some are going to find this really funny, and others are going to find it a little sad. As always, fair warning.

I was thinking earlier about my daily routine, and how it breaks down. It’s funny, when you don’t really do anything, you have a lot of people call into question your level of productivity, so I thought maybe for my vindication, I might write something up, and just show people [mainly myself], how I fill the hours, and the semi-schedule I’ve got myself on.

I should preface by saying this is an outline of my “ideal” day – not ideal in the sense of what I want to do, but ideal to the description presented here. Real days tend to fall on one side of this or other, but I figure if you were to average my activities together on a much larger scale, this would be about accurate.

As most of you know, I’m currently living with my grandmother, and remain unemployed, with the possibility of a sorta cool job/opportunity come December/January. Because of that, and because I’m apparently the least employable person to ever fill out a resume, I’ve been using this time to assist her, and focus on some of the artistic projects I’ve had in mind lately.

To the matter at hand. My day tends to start about 11:00 in the morning, which for most people isn’t morning at all, but I haven’t been sleeping well, so the few hours I get as the sun is coming up has become pretty important. I keep things from 11-2 pretty loose – I sometimes read, get up, have coffee or a soda, watch TV news, look through the paper, or take down some notes. I also grab a shower, and occasionally breakfast. Sometimes, usually Sundays, I’ll just take this time to sleep if I can.

A literature professor of mine used to praise post-sleep time as excellent for coming up with new ideas – and my imagination does seem quite a bit more fertile then. So it’s not at all odd for me to get 2-3 pages of notes/writing/dialogue scrawled out on yellow legal pad without ever having put pants on or getting out of bed. I won’t say my best stuff is done during this time, but my most out there stuff usually is. Plus, I’m a real sucker for my own dreams, and if there’s anything I can remember that strikes me as funny or cool, I like to jot it down just for my own sake [“That one’s going in my dream journal.”]

I find this is a good time too to deal with/make contact with people on “normal schedules” – any phone calls, any resumes that I’ve sent out, or jobs I’ve applied to, I like to give a check-in or follow-up call on, plus anything I have to do to manage my financial aid with VSAC or similar adult-type activities. Calling earlier like this tends to make people feel more comfortable, and assures them you haven’t been sleeping all morning [hah].

After all that, I get on the internet, usually to take a look at my e-mail, Facebook, read the blogs of friends of mine to see if Justin has posted anything on the new comic [Re: Calamity Cash and the Town with No Name], or if John has a new Bathroom monologue up. Then news sites and entertainment news sites – I use Slate.com as my hub for the most part, unless I find something that I’d like to see from a Republican/conservative POV [useful AND infuriating], throw up anything I find interesting on Facebook [rare], and just generally dick around on Wikipedia and the like for ideas, things of interest, and useless trivia, until roughly around dinner time. I’ve also been playing video games around this time, and just generally spending the 2-7 hours doing things that I can easily get up from and leave for later, or not have to pick up later at all.

The reason for this is mainly because these are the hours when my grandmother is most active, and usually needs my help, so the majority of chores – taking care of the dog, cleaning up, getting the mail, doing dishes, taking out the trash, grocery shopping, drug store and convenience store runs, even some dinner-related activities take place in this span, and I just like to be available during this time. A lot of this stuff she can still do herself pretty easily, but its nice if I can manage to get out ahead of her and take care of some of the day’s little annoyances so she just doesn’t have to mess with them.

I also take about an hour of this time to go on a walk. I know I’m not really the type, but I’ve been thinking about my health a lot, and even though there’s no way in hell I’ll ever take up running, a nice long walk around the neighborhood makes me feel a lot more active, and gives me time to order my thoughts. I’m vaguely worried about getting hit by car one day while I’m out talking to myself like this, but hopefully the paramedics will marvel at my resolve and environmental consciousness. Because deep down, that’s all any hipster can hope for.

My nights and evenings are when I watch television the most… there are a few shows I follow, but rarely do I find something to fill the whole four hours. Of course, I’m not all that attached to any particular show – maybe House – and I tend to miss shows pretty regularly, but have always managed to catch up later. The benefit of having cable again.

I tend to get back on the internet near the end of this, talk to people on AIM as they’re headed to bed, just to say hi, see how everyone is doing, what’s up with their days and in their lives.

My grandma goes to bed around midnight, and I usually turn on South Park or Adult Swim, Viva La Bam, Law and Order, Scrubs, or sometimes a movie, and hop on the computer to get the brunt of my writing done for the day [night]. My goal is usually to get about 5 [rough] pages done on whatever I’m working on, or if I’m just doing notes, 10 pages.

Whether you could count these pages as actual accomplishments is probably up for debate. The biggest part of my writing tends to get deleted or tucked away as “useless,” only to be cannibalized later for other projects. Notes are the same way – I periodically have to go through my stack of legal pads to see what’s even relevant anymore. Still, another professor once told me doing 5-10 pages a week was exemplary, especially as far as scripting is concerned, and since the bulk of my work is either screenplays or comic scripts, I actually feel like I kind of surpass that these days.

There’s also editing – usually older, finished work. It’s rarer that I’ll take that on, since it’s especially rough going, but in some cases [with a little help], I’ve managed to use this time to completely finish something like my screenplay “Unfilmable,” which had been begging to be polished off since the first time I “finished” it in college.

So that is typically my night, with some research and mild distractions – nothing that gets too much in way. Since I don’t sleep, writing during this time is really the best decision I could make, as it gives me the privacy I need to talk lines out loud. The solitude is a little hard to manage, and yet with the television or a little music I never have to sit and work in complete silence, something that I never particularly cared for.

I do get occasionally derailed, either by video games [I’ve been playing some old SNES games, not mention Fire Pro Wrestling on the PS2], or with the mandatory resume time I force on myself. Resumes and cover letters is real teeth grinding work [for so far zero pay-off], but I try to keep at it, and send out as many resumes I can. Lately I’ve only been getting out a few each week… five last week, for instance, but I also include in this sending out writing samples and looking for possible jobs online, which I don’t have to tell anyone in my situation can get involved and [sometimes] pretty depressing.

I try to make myself available on AIM to Justin on the nights he’s working on the comic, too. Which coupled with everything else takes me well into the morning hours until I have a cup of detox tea, write in my blog [which seems to save even the most unproductive day], and crash until I start over.

Lather, rinse, repeat.

And that, generally, is my day. It gets shaken up occasionally – I usually go out with friends once a week [do wish it was more], and usually no writing gets done then, and if my parents – not Dad, I see him pretty regularly without incident, but Doug and Mom – want to have dinner or something, that’ll usually be my whole day, since there’s never any telling just how its going to go. And even though I try to write every day, it seems actually finishing stuff comes in “sprints” – so sometimes I will spend all night and well into the following day putting an end on a project. I would imagine in rare cases, like when I wrote that vampire script, I would probably set this whole schedule aside and only work on the one thing – but this has yet to happen since starting this routine.

Having gone written all that out like this, I’m seeing some patterns, some I like, some I’m not wild about. On the one hand, it’s really cool being able to map my time out like this and see that I can and do give myself almost 6+ hours a day just to write. Remembering doing the 9-to-5 thing, I really appreciate how little you can actually get done when you have to clock in somewhere – this time last year, I had all these ideas, some of which I’m only getting to start on now, which really speaks to how much time and energy the crappy job took back then. A lot of it is about momentum, just having the time to really get going at whatever I’m working on, and not have to work on it in spurts – stop, start, stop, start. In some ways, it a privilege having this time.

On the other side, I have no money and no social life, something painfully apparent by just looking at this, and seeing how little people-to-people interaction I really have. It’s a trade off, one I can afford for the time being, but not for long, certainly. I don’t like being this lonely. And I think the same might be true for my sleeping habits, but that’s not a new problem, and it doesn’t feel unmanageable yet. Still, I am tired, even though friends of mine have assured me that doesn’t really mean anything.

As far as time wasting goes, I’m surprised my television/video game time is as little as it is – little over 4 hours of real television watching everyday [really expected that to be more], and unless I get on a tear, barely an hour on the emulator or the PlayStation. I guess the television number would be significantly inflated if you took into consideration that I usually have it on while I work – but TV has never been a distraction for me [I wrote my first comic script while watching “Casino”], and as long as I’m not editing, it helps to have some other stimulus going while I work.

The things that are impeding me – even though I have this time, not having my own computer, not having the laptop to work from, not being able to go into town for better internet – all this literally slows everything down, and I just no from prior experience that resumes and just my day-to-day web surfing [that bit I talked about after I get out of bed] takes a lot longer on dial-up, and I have to wonder if not needing a chunk of my evening for that – if the internet could go back to being a side-thing like in college, instead of a pointed operation every day, would be a helpful thing. Then again, since I do like to be available for Grandma, it may not be as much of a game changer as I think it might be. Still, I miss the laptop, and the convenience of my own computer.

And the other thing is, again, the social aspect, because it seems like I get a whole hell of a lot more done with things I’m working on when I have someone to bounce things off of, and talk me through them. Without that, its exceptionally easy to get off-track, follow stupid ideas and plans for too long, or stall out completely and have to wait for unprovoked inspiration to kick in. Never underestimate having someone to talk to.

I think it’s good to take stock of yourself sometimes. I feel much calmer than I did when I started this.

Seems I got my blog back...

• Wednesday, October 8, 2008 0 comments
If you stopped by yesterday, you might have noticed that Google flagged this little blog as spam. To paraphrase them directly [think about that], what this means is that this blog posts "repetitious words and link" which apparently sets off some automated buzzer that I'm not a real boy.

Hilarious.

Even though I've gotten no e-mail telling me that this has been rescinded, they're letting me post today, so I'm guessing I'm back.

I actually have a couple of updates. I'll be back later to talk about them at length.

Shalom.

Doucebaggery [on my part].

• Monday, October 6, 2008 0 comments
Okay, so I'm still a bit new to this blogging thing, and a couple of days ago, I name-checked and linked the blog of a Huntington-based photographer that a friend of mine turned me on to. The reason I posted this was mainly because I am a fan of the guy's work [when he posts, which is apparently less these days], and because I wanted to remember to post the blog address in my google reader/blogspot dashboard to catch later.

Now, being painfully new at this, just about every time I've added a blog to follow to this account, I've forgotten and chosen to follow it it publicly. As I still consider my blog to be semi-private and semi-launched, and since I've no intention of trading myself off the successful reputation of others [at least until then... hah], I'm writing this up as a mistake on my part. For the few who found me after this screw-up, hi there, how are you doing, trust me, I know how stripped down and sub-par this place is right now.

I also realize that there's probably a great laugh to be had about how I post here. The honest fact is that I do follow the one great conceit of blogging, in so much as I write as though someone is actually reading this. I wish there was some way to break myself of this habit, but at this point, it almost feels like a necessity to this genre of writing. I apologize if you saw my profile "publicly following" another blog you think highly of and came here for more of the same, and assure you my ego is not so big as to believe anyone is actually out there reading this.

Well, except for right now. Funny that.

Mine cart carnage.

0 comments
Slept until 5 today. If it wasn't Sunday, would have been deeply bothered by that.

Dreamt this morning about Ms. Kloth. She apologized, then said it looked like I'd lost a lot of weight. Road a bicycle, with a black lace hood over her head. Was carrying pizzas, probably for her class. The rest of the dream was spent running around the island in the rain, and getting kicked out of stores for not buying anything.

More buildings today. http://justincornell.blogspot.com/2008/10/still-more-buildings.html. Interests me to see this... just the smallest part of a greater work, yet I kind of like seeing it at this basic level. This is only a piece... a single gear, the actual background. Justin's really cranking them out [Re: Calamity Cash and the Town with No Name]. Excited to see the new stuff everyday.

Very little to talk about. Didn't write any today. Blog starts to become useless, if there's no creative process to chronicle. Still hung up on this letter-writing thing [Re: Untitled Short]. Overwhelmed with the urge to give it the happiest, Hollywood-ending. I must be out of my mind.

Here's a funny conundrum -- man gets angry because no one is there when things are bad. Yet man insists on hiding from everyone just how terrible he feels. Can anyone really be faulted for paying no mind to the man behind the curtain? Maybe I can work it into the short.

Shalom.

Payment plans and general malaise.

• Sunday, October 5, 2008 0 comments
Missed one. That'll happen, more often than I'd like.

First, some links. Justin has some more town sketches [Re: Calamity Cash and the Town with No Name] up over on his blog, here they are, for reference: http://justincornell.blogspot.com/2008/10/more-buildings.html. Looks like we got a pizza place, a church, and a nondescript building. A little more urban than I expected, but I know it's best to trust your artist.

The pizza logo belongs to a friend -- Glen Brogan, who also has a blog, and has been at it/is a lot better at it than I am. I've talked about him before, and he's put up where he's become a little more internet famous with his t-shirt designs. That link would be here : http://albinoraven7.blogspot.com/2008/10/my-shirt-on-gamesniped.html.

Glen's blog is an extension of his impressive website, which I remain exceedingly jealous of. Really got his act together over there, and I hope one day this little endeavor becomes as impressive. Well... maybe not, his will always have the visual edge, but it would be nice if I could eventually extend my page to include an impressive resume, some of my better work, and less ramblings about the struggle with creativity and my psyche. Though, as it stands, that seems to be my theme.

To the resume; the regrettable thing with mine is that you don't get much credit for writing screenplays that never get looked at or made into movies, and I can't imagine that any of the jobs I've been turned down by were all that impressed that I self-published a comic book [Re: SULK]. So for now we wait. And try to keep building that body of work. Savannah says that's the important thing, and she's getting paid to do this.

Maybe I should put up a couple of things I've written in the past. But this format seems to edge more towards prose work, and that stuff when I do it, well... it always seems kind of private. Then again, this seems kind of private. But I've noticed, interestingly enough, that my profile views have been knocked up 20, which once you remove the 11 or so times I've looked at that barren page, means someone knows I'm here now. So, if you're reading, feel free to comment and say hi. I know you're out there.

I do have a short or two that could go up [Re: He Walks with Angels].

Some other linkage, while I'm thinking about it. The girl who came up with the concept of "Calamity Cash," [Re: Oh... you know] Laura, one of my ex-girlfriends from back high school days, and current, though often absentee, friend [that's just Laura though] turned me on to this photographer's blog. He's from Huntington, I've never met the guy, though from his blog, I feel we might be friends, or at least be able to engage with one another in an antagonistic sort of way, and I enjoy checking his stuff from time to time. By his own admission, he shoots just about everything, so adult content warning, and go check it out. That addy would be : http://www.mpadkins.blogspot.com/. I've broken a few internet courtesy rules by not telling him I'm linking his blog over here, but hey... somehow, I don't think "Hi, we've never met, I'm telling people to look at your photography" would go over so well. And I don't really want to wait and get "in" with the guy before I talk about how awesome his stuff is here. The blog will not wait as I stand on ceremony.

Besides, some of his girls I recognize -- not really, but they look like Bennington girls, and that makes me feel better. Everything here seems so plain.

Mood has turned downward considerably over past several days. Find even goofing off tedious. Haven't been feeling particularly well. Slight cough, stomach upset, and I'm still sore for seemingly no reason. Chest pains as well. Nothing I should probably worry about/complain about. Likely stress/depression, especially since the panic attacks have been so much worse the last week or so. Long periods of time seem to be just wrangling myself in -- one happened while grocery shopping for my grandmother the other day, so I just sort of stood there, knowing there was no one I could call to calm me down, and hoping that no one decided my obsessive staring at the dates on the bread was an invitation to strike up a conversation.

A lot of time passed for just running in for bread and soda, and I practically shouted at the cashier that I didn't need a bag. I told grandma that the line was long, and she didn't take issue.

Also working on the letter-writing thing [Re: Untitled Short]. Not coming along as quickly as I like... find myself apparently House-like in my abilities... inspiration only seems to come to me in an epiphany, or by bouncing things off other people. What many who use the creative process won't tell you is that bouncing ideas off of people is not as much about them giving you suggestions you can use, but rather the ideas and possibilities you can glean by fixing what they're doing that you wouldn't. Explaining it like that makes you out as a bit of an asshole, however. Also helps when the person you talk knows your work well.

Either way, couldn't get Casey on the phone. Anna stays pretty busy. Feel like I'm bothering Sam more often than not these days. Didn't feel right distracting Justin either -- one involved creative project from Randall Nichols per-person. Just floundered on it for a bit instead. Suppose there are other people I could call, but time-delays make me feel odd about calling people when they're either sleeping, or starting work.

I miss everyone, though.

Either way, as to the short, did decide on a ending for the current treatment, even though I'm not as attached to treatment anymore. Really would like to start pages in the next couple of days. Might meet Kyle soon [Re: Kyle Christian Quinn], would be nice to have something to share. Or at least have the ideas in my head.

No matter what, leaning to beginning focused on a postal worker, a bike messenger, or my favorite one of those black and gold mail boxes they use in the cities and suburbs, right there next to the door, nailed into the brick with the address right on its front. I like that, empty, overflowing with letters. It's the one image that's been in my head since the start.

Ah, how my mind will be remembered -- first come, first served.

Shalom.

Abject failure and you... plus, a town comes alive!

• Friday, October 3, 2008 0 comments
First sketches of the town with no name! [Re: Calamity Cash and the Town with No Name.] Link is here: http://justincornell.blogspot.com/2008/10/beginnings-of-no-name-town.html.

Justin has been putting all of his work on the comic over on his blog. I'll be getting a permanent link up soon, when I figure out how. Likely, when I start giving out this link, someone will tell me how. Up today is the Red Jet Diner, the Garage, the Gas Station... a post office that Justin put in to deal with a problem with my lazy scripting. The stuff he's doing is really good, and he's generally so into work that he'll have an existential crisis to go along with all the pretty pictures.

Well, not every time.

It's heartening. He's very aware of himself, and his work, and the space he inhabits. Sam was the same. I think it might be the sign of a real artist, that ability to be working, and just stop, whether finished or not, and hold the project back, and say "Hm." It reminds me of this part in Chasing Amy, when Banky says to Holden over the desk "That's the best street light you've ever drawn." Course, scene is actually about something else, which has nothing to do with this conversation, but still.

I guess I'm not making much sense. From this perspective though, it feels clear.

How I remember Sam best, actually. Sitting on the bed in that blue sweater, laptop to one side, great big drawing board laying cockeyed in her lap. Diligent, and aware, and interested. Could watch her for hours like that, though she wouldn't often let me. Sometimes would pretend to read, or play video games. Just so I could.

Guess I'm thinking about her because of old Venture Bros. that's been on. Hard to untangle people from things. Least I think so.

Can't pass Justin's work off for my own. Did nothing of note today. Wealth of time, and I waste it.

Thought mostly on what was next. Occurs to me these days something will have to happen soon. Will continue to wait and see if freelance gig comes through in December, try and use excess time to work on my own creative projects, but then what?

So much failure. Some preemptive. Gurus would shit. Looked into grad school months ago -- few problems arise. Didn't plan. Always a big one. So, no grades, no promise of letters of recommendation, no mentors telling me what my next move should be. Money, also a problem, but a small one. Other things as well. The GRE. Also small... but for literature, film, writings... would need a published scholarly work. Wouldn't know where to begin, and even then, honestly don't think I'm that good yet. May never be. Important to know your limitations... and there seem to be so few means at my disposal.

Shame. Thinking about Anna. A doctor one day. And Thompson. "Doctor of Journalism." Gads, man, and Jesus-God! Hah. Tease myself at the thought of that. Title would be nice. Would take just figuring out how to get smarter without school.

Been hard to read feeling like this.

Heater keeps kicking on, then off. Winter here. Year ago, in my head, singing "Waiting for October." Not happily, but expectantly. Hard to explain. One person will understand. Maybe.

What else? All this talk about the future. Keep thinking about the Muppets. Grew up with them. Commercials with Jim Henson stock footage, and if there's a documentary or a retrospective on him, or Sesame Street, or anything like, I stumble on it. Kismet [Kermit?]... laugh at me for being superstitious. Again, wouldn't even know how to begin chasing something like that. Maybe I should? If that plagiarist douche bag from Bennington could...

Frustrated. Think about the world, what people are doing, Jim Bentley and Genevieve Belleveau are going out to art talks, learning about off-shoots of postmodernism that have a shorter life than some insects, sipping wine, and laughing with friends, never taking black topcoats and scarves off. Jealous. Somewhere, people, people like me, better maybe, are talking about the universe and making out to Death Cab for Cutie, while others are seeing plays, or dancing on top of exclusive buildings on the exclusive New York skyline. Some are working in vintage clothes stores, and some are working in bars, and some are getting coffee for people I'd likely melt upon meeting.

I could blame my situation. Where I live. Not finding work. Sad. But would things be different if I were in some city alone, with all the opportunities I never get passing right by me? Do I want what I want? Or would I even be able to find it, without some friend or some girl to drag me to it? I don't know.

Think I'll write that mission statement soon. In my head, the words are almost right.

People are asking about the blog. Ally, then Justin, same day. Might unveil soon. Do sort of like it like this, though. Decisions, decisions. More worried people will feel I'm hiding something. Not here.

Should sleep. If you're wondering why I didn't mention debates, it's because they don't matter...

Shalom.

Call a doctor.

• Thursday, October 2, 2008 0 comments
Annoyed.

Felt sick all day, sore and tired. First cold day of fall, a nice 57 degrees. Would have liked to take a walk.

Talked to Kyle on Facebook. Seemed perturbed. Likely from the papers he was writing. Ran my idea for the letter-writing short, he responded favorably [Re: Untitled Short]. Feel behind already. Odd for me to have a plot before I have characters. Need supporting cast... round up usual suspects. A friend, an ex, and a pretty new girl.

Kaley brought this to my attention today --> http://myblogthebword.blogspot.com/2008/09/my-holiday-with-john-mccain-it-was-just.html.

Couldn't let it rest. Tried to play it off with a joke, no good. Spent the night on dial-up, downloading Supremely Gratifying [Re: SG] free pornography, and scuttling around the darker political corners of the internet. Found this on Facebook: http://www.new.facebook.com/topic.php?uid=2231653698&topic=57628 , then this elsewhere: http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.php?az=view_all&address=385x191045#194821 ... difficult to gauge. DU is full of crazies, but there are a few levelheaded Dems in the bunch.

Found no extra information -- gleaned those links from Google search of "Ana Dubey"in first 5-15 minutes, did no better. Everything else was just confirming other confirmations. Hours, reminds me of why I opted to do fiction over journalism. There are rumblings of NBC looking into this -- right now, only covered on sites ruled by the crackpots, or sites where the legitimate and the crackpots are allowed to mingle. Be nice to find the story at someplace with a more stringent man at the door.

Maybe the fact that they haven't means I'm wasting my time.

Feelings on the Old Man aside, apprehensive of this story. Seems too sensational, too little is available about it. May yet be earlier in the cycle...could all be cleared up tomorrow. Still, story turns my stomach... have spoken well of McCain in the past, no easy feat, feel his character should reflect that. And I expect the undecided and the Republicans to be fair to Barack -- not believe every outlandish e-mail about Muslims and flag burning they read. But the chance of real vilification for the Old Man? Won't lie... tantalizing. Glorious bastard, steps from the presidency. Hunter would say a reason to throw a trash can full of rats right on the White House lawn.

If he wins. Which I still doubt, whether this story is true or not. Can't help it though. Compelled to keep looking. Feelings say this will be like the cold today. All blow over.

Dreamt last night I was showing Anna tornadoes. Then she turned and asked me how I was feeling. I miss that.

Hannah had a headache, but still stopped to say hello on AIM. John and I almost got into a fight, because I didn't think before I spoke. It seems like so much I say to the few people I talk to is so rehearsed, when I get relaxed, I sometimes throw out words that are more loaded than I realize. Hurt feelings by accident. Reconnected, at least momentarily with Justin Teter from Middle School. [If we hang out, I wonder if he'll still let me call him 'Teter'?] Also heard from Kristen Hale, who I never knew her name, but always saw at Taylor books. Apparently, she's with some guy named Bo... I'm sure he's a nice guy, but I've never met a Bo who couldn't dole out an "ass whuppin'", so I guess I'm glad I never flirted.

Ego boost, knowing someone who's only talked to you sparingly would think to look you up on the internet, though.

Justin sent me a short layout for the town [Re: Calamity Cash and the Town with No Name]. It's looking good, and he even fixed a planning snafu in the script that I didn't realize we had. My mistake. Forgot what it was like having someone who can work out a problem when you're not around. If he puts it up on his blog, I will link it tomorrow.

Shalom.

97% and counting.

• Wednesday, October 1, 2008 0 comments
It has been less than 24 hours since my previous post, and yet I still find myself regretting posting it. I will admit that I am not entirely sure why -- I'm not exactly wild about the thought of someone coming here, finding that, taking exception to it, and getting pissed at me. That being said, I still think it's true, and those are indeed the exact sentiments in that were in my head when all subjects were initially brought up.

Will be honest. Has little to do with feeling like what I was saying was wrong, or that someone close to me will make my life more difficult for what I wrote. I don't mind repercussions so much as, well...

I don't know. I know it doesn't happen very often, but in some way, I think we owe to our friends, all of our friends [at least the ones who aren't
douchebags] to not call them on their shit. It seems like a minor, but ultimately important courtesy to extend.

So I'm going to think on it for awhile. There's still some time before I announce this
url, and take the blog "public"... And if I decide before I do it that said previous post is just going to be like kicking a hornets nest, then I might just delete it before that. Who knows... after a couple of weeks of no one knowing this is here, I may have a lot of posts to do that with.

That being said, if it seems insignificant in that same amount of time, but you do come to it, and it does bother you... then I apologize. As a friend, I don't think I should be the one calling bullshit on the way you see the world, a courtesy I'm sure you'd extend to me. And even if not, well, then it was still uncalled for.

Now, can't wait until someone finds this, and blogs about people who bitch, and then apologize for bitching.

Other news... there isn't much. Did not write today... did not even log what I could laughably call "conceptual hours." Still trying to decide what to do next, both as it concerns to writing, and possibly real employment/moving out. Occurs to me that I should do a profile, and I'm thinking also a mission statement for this blog. Calling it "The
Mojo Wire" is sort of loaded, and I feel the need to explain myself.

Talked to Anna for a little bit today, about Mercedes Marxists and Arthur Miller.

Went to get pizza today, also did massive loads of laundry -- likely the reason nothing got done, errands tend to throw off my flow. Perhaps tomorrow will be better. Find it odd that I feel that way. Would describe myself as depressed, but find myself with this overwhelming feeling that after sleeping tonight/this morning, something about tomorrow is going to be better and okay.

Shalom