Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Poll! Poll! Pole! Poul?

It has been decided. I know what book I'm working on next. Little story bits keep popping into my head. The cool thing about it is, I think there could actually be three sequel lines that follow from it. One would be YA, one more adult, and one kind of all ages. Still, that's getting ahead of myself. The setting and plot have to kind of pull together into this lump of words first.

However, I'll continue to keep developing my new screenplay, as well. I really would like to enter it into that competition. So, duel development ... scary.

I figured out how to put polls on my blog :) Go me! If you have a moment, please answer the poll on the sidebar - it's completely based on your own first impression, so don't over think it! I'm just trying help focus some ideas, so even if just 5 or 6 of you vote, it'll help!

Monday, December 28, 2009

ErinĂ½es or Furies? Decisions, Decisions ...

So, my attempt at getting my writing back on track continues. I've submitted my screenplay to another competition, and I plan to enter it in at least one more. Of course, I won't hear a response from them for 6 months at least. Since I'll need to continue working, I'm going to attempt to work on a "spiritually uplifting" screenplay. Yes, yes ... those that know me are snickering at this time, however I've found a competition for Christian screenplays that not only has a very large prize, but I think I have an excellent story idea for it. I've already started my research in to Rome around 300 AD. Exciting, no?

Right now, I'm working on a short story that is pretty much kicking my ass. It's far too complex for the short amount of time I have to work on it. I desperately need readers that can turn around feedback in a day or two, so if that's you, please let me know! It's a modern urban update of a Greek myth. Well, hopefully, it is ... it may also be garbage. We'll see.

I still plan to work on a new novel ... when I decide what it's going to be. Shiloh's Way is still begging to be properly rewritten and edited. That may need to be my priority ... unless it really sucks. Any volunteers to read an unedited manuscript with an ending that's going to change?

I survived the holidays intact - I think I gave as well as I got, although I did receive some lovely presents. Two of my favorite presents were actually cookbooks given to me by my girlfriend. One is all different types of curry, which is pretty exciting to me! The second is the Manga Cookbook! If you've ever read a manga or watched an anime, food is often a big deal -- this book has recipes for almost everything you see! Terriyaki chicken, tonkatsu chicken, onigiri, homemade udon (can't wait!), and even how to put together a good bento!

Of course, I also got some great games: The Saboteur, Borderlands, and Zelda: Spirit Tracks. Gift cards were also in full bloom, as I received a $20 PSN card (already partially used for Valkyria Chronicles dlc), a $50 GameStop card which will help pay off some of my plentiful reserves, and a bunch for Panera! Yum!

The season is really about giving, though -- so I gave some to Child's Play, and I donated some games to a raffle to support Child's Play, I bought some meals for people at our local grocery, and I always support a child through Food for the Hungry.

If I don't update before the, I hope everyone has a fantastic New Year's - please be safe!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

They're all fighting each other in my head!

Although it's painful, I made myself the promise that, should my screenplay win, I would stop playing video games until I finished my next book. This was a stupid, stupid, dumb-dumb head idea ... but, I mean, what the hell, there was zero chance I would win.

In the midst of celebrating the joyous news that I did win the horror genre, the pale memory of the promise came over me. You know I'm going to get some kind of kick-ass game for Christmas now, just to mess with me. Ugh. Anyway, I've come up with a couple exceptions to the "no games" rule.

1) If I'm invited by friends or family to play. This happens less than you think, but if my girlfriend wants to play Buzz! or 1 vs. 100 or my nephew and his friends want to play some L4D2, I shouldn't give up totally on social interaction completely.

2) I can play portable games if I'm in a situation or at a location where writing isn't really appropriate.

3) If I'm notified the world is ending, I can finish the most recently released Shin Megami Tensei game.

Otherwise, what's left is to decide which book it's going to be. I have multiple options here - I'm just not sure what I'm feeling, because I want to work on them all. Here are the ideas I kind of have to work with:

1. Shiloh's Way sequel (high fantasy)
2. Sea of Clouds book (new world, cloudships, political intrigue, pirates, etc - Jules Verne-type thing)
3. Modern steampunk book - mix of steampunk tech & magic - very big picture, lots of diverse teams coming together to fight a big bad.
4. YA book about a team of gifted teens trouble-shooters. Very quirky, very giant robot/super-science type stuff.

Any suggestions?

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

ChaNge the WoRLd

Two posts in one day? What could possibly cause such an unprecedented occurrence?

A short while ago, I received a call from Fade In. I won the horror genre. They said it should be posted on the Web site by the weekend. I don't think I've ever won anything for my writing ever. I was a little stunned that publisher and editor-in-chief of the magazine actually said that she'd like to see my screenplay as a film and that it was very good -- she seemed to imply that it was actually competent! I know! It's shocking! For one thing, it's my first one! Yeah, seriously ... I didn't really know what I was doing when I wrote it (I still don't, to be honest). I just knew the story I wanted to tell.

Anyway, winning just means a couple things. I'll get a few dollars in prize money. I'll be able to tag my screenplay as "award winning." And, it might help in my search for an agent or bring the screenplay to the attention of a producer. Just winning doesn't mean anything about it actually getting produced and turned into a film. However, it's a first step ... and, although the chances are extremely slight, it's one of the only ways a guy from Tampa could ever expect to get a Hollywood film made.

... almost hung it up

Thought I would just take a moment to collect my thoughts here before getting back to work. I just received an e-mail from the organization that held the screenplay competition I entered. They requested information that leads me to believe I may actually be a finalist. How crazy is that? The contest had over 1600 screenplays submitted, and I may be one of the 10 to 20 finalists.

The way that it works out is that they pick 1 to 3 finalists in each genre, as well as a single grand prize winner. I can't win the grand prize for two simple facts: my screenplay isn't that good and it is a genre piece. However, how cool would it be if I had one of the best horror screenplays? I'm sure out of that 1,600 at least a couple hundred were horror - so, it would still make me really happy.

I really consider mine more of an adventure/horror. I think with the proper editing it would still be a scary, creepy PG-13 ... or, it could be pushed over to R rather easy. I also love that it's a period piece set in antebellum Georgia. Anyway, I think I'll know something by next week. What a Christmas present, huh?

In any case, I'm still working on it -- there is another competition I want to enter it in. Maybe if it places in one or both, I can finally get it represented! I'm also still working on that short story that I want to place in an anthology, so I'm gonna have a couple busy weeks.

As a side note, if anyone knows Nathan Fillion - tell him I have a great screenplay for him!

Saturday, December 5, 2009

What's going on ...

So, here are my plans heading into the new year. I've just submitted one short story to a publisher - it sucks. I expect to hear back that my e-mail has been banned from ever submitting again, which is ok -- it was mainly an exercise. The next story, however, I really want to dedicate a lot of time towards getting it right. It's a retelling of a Greek myth in a modern urban setting. The story that's kind of stuck to me has involved another character of mine ... one that I haven't written about yet. I tried to ask her to leave the story, but she refused, so I'm stuck with her. In any case, it should be interesting. I hate sharing too much before I actually write something -- for some reason, it makes it harder to write ... so, I'll post the plot when I've done the first draft.

I'm cleaning up my screenplay for one last contest. I think it's come a long way, although it probably needs some more touching up in the dialogue department. I just re-read it for the first time in months, and I actually kind of like it. You have to understand, this is a rare thing: I rarely like anything I write.

Once the short story is submitted (early January), I'm thinking about actually writing this weird amalgam novel of all the genres I like. The basic set-up would be kind of a modern steampunk setting where a whole bunch of disparate teams start moving towards this showdown threat that could possibly destroy the world. It would have magic, science, demons, soldiers, hackers, mercenaries, airships, and "goddamn fucking elves," (to quote one of the characters).

Who knows if it will happen ... we'll see in January.

Oh, and by the way, here's my current JPop obsession - MiChi ... watch the video, it's cool song. Love it!