Derry, Northern Ireland

Derry, Northern Ireland
A book I'm working on is set in this town.

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Nyle won!

A man who cannot hear...
...won a contest based on sound as well as movement. And he won it fair and square.

No boundaries.

No limits.

No walls.

'Nuff said.

Congratulations to him and Peta, his partner.

Monday, May 23, 2016

Sounds of Silence

I've always been able to hear, but I haven't always listened. This was brought home to me by a single 3 minute dance, tonight, by a man who is deaf and does not speak, but has said so much more than I ever could think of saying.

Right now I am speechless. If you want, the show's site has a poor-quality video of it. Maybe they'll put up a better one, later...but at this site you can get an idea of what it was, from prelude to finale...

Sunday, May 22, 2016

Carli's Kills, redux

Today I reworked CK to change it up. Meaning all I did was make the sheriff a woman instead of a man. Didn't redo the story or action or even much dialogue...and yet, it altered everything. Now the ending is even more horrific...and acceptable. Funny how that works.

Then I read a shooting copy of The King's Speech, which won an Oscar in 2011 for Best Screenplay. It's got so much in it that I've been told one should never do in a's like the screenwriting gurus are handing out misinformation. It's got CUT TO's and camera directions and tells the actors what to think and on and on. It's amazing.

I also watched Spectre, the latest James Bond film. It was fun, but the script was very lazy. Things happen because they have to happen to keep the story going. Anything inconvenient to the pacing of the story gets ignored -- like totally trashing several cars of a passenger train, during a fight, then being let off at an isolated stop in the middle of the desert, without a peep...or visible injuries. And the ending was so damned obvious, it was an insult.

So it's not the quality of the writing or the beauty of the structure that gets films made; it's finding the person who so desperately wants to make your script into a film, they won't take No for an answer from anyone. Nor will they care if all the i's are dotted and the t's are crossed. And that is like finding one particular grain of sand on a beach that's 5 miles long.

All the screenplay competitions in the world won't do you a bit of good for that. Well...they might help you narrow down the search...and even increase your luck in making the right connections to get to someone who will get it done...but only if you're lucky enough to hit the right reader at the right time. Because if you get someone who's sick of thrillers and is assigned one, you're getting harshness in response. Same for guys having to read rom-coms. And that is something I need to reconsider, because the damn things ain't cheap.

No...what gets movies made these days is a producer, director or actor who will fight to get your script made. Writers have no pull in Hollywood...which is silly, because Hollywood wouldn't exist without them. But try telling that to the powers that be. Well, I'm not wasting my breath, anymore. I'm aiming for actors who have some pull but aren't so high up the food chain, they are unreachable.

I'm aiming for Russell Tovey, Aidan Turner, and Chris Salvatore.

Saturday, May 21, 2016

Rebooted, yet?

Okay, it looks like RIHC6's updated e-book is live; I've even sold a copy, already. However, I don't have the official word, yet...and expect Apple to piss and moan, but that's what weasels do. Enough of it, already; it's time to get back to writing...really writing.

Though I do want to expose more of my writer's ego, for a moment. I submitted Carli's Kills and Marked For Death to Table Read my Screenplay in London competition. They've been doing them all over the place, and while I doubted they'd help me achieve anything, it was worth trying to see if I could get a table read of one of them.

Neither one made the finals, which was fine. I was a bit surprised because MFD is set in London and has a good solid through-line, but NBD...until I noticed in the list of finalists are two scripts I've read -- both of them poorly written and packed with cliches -- and another screenwriter I know and whose work I'm familiar with...and enough said about that. My scripts weren't as good as those? Seriously? I feel insulted.

Fortunately, I saw the new Star Trek: Beyond trailer (I didn't see the first one) and it looks like the crew is back on track. Put me in a better mood.

If those fools can't tell a good script from a crap one, it's their loss, not mine.

Friday, May 20, 2016

I just love today's electronic age...

Seems I'll have to start over with my Table of Contents for the e-book of Rape In Holding Cell 6. After discussion with a techie at Smashwords, the decision is my file is corrupted. So...clear out the chapter links and re-input them. That'll take a day. Dammit. So much for my day of artwork.

I've updated my website -- -- to link the Vanishing of Owen Taylor page to Amazon. Not crazy about them, but they do make buying the book easy. And since it's now available through them, may as well join the crowd. They don't offer it in e-book, yet; they always have been pissy about that, since I don't publish through Kindle. So that link still returns to Smashwords. Which had no problems converting OT to e-book from a Word doc.

I found out, today, the copy of an actual 1865 Alice's Adventures in Wonderland that's going on sale at Christie's, next month, is the same copy I packed and shipped to the owner when I first started at Heritage. The catalogue even references Lou Weinstein as the broker who got the book for him. This is so wild.

I wonder how I can use this to get interest in my script, The Alice '65.

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Having a lovely time with Smashwords...

When I finished The Vanishing of Owen Taylor, I updated all my ebooks on Smashwords, and everything went great...except for Rape In Holding Cell 6. They keep bouncing that one back to me, saying the NCX links aren't working (that's the setup that does an electronic Table of Contents synchronization for certain ebook suppliers).

I can't figure out why there's a problem, because I did them exactly the same as all the other ebooks. But they're giving me grief over it...I think mainly because of Apple Book...who won't carry it anyway; they're too lazy to do an adults-only setup like Smashwords.

So I've sent off an email asking about it. Because I went back and did the tutorial on doing bookmarks and hyperlinks for NCX. I've tested it and checked it and can see nothing different about it. Makes no sense.

Anyway, OT is now available on Amazon. Haven't sold a single paperback yet, but you can buy 3 used copies. Very strange...and typical for Amazon.

An Alice '65 is going up for auction at Christie's, next month. If there is any way possible, I want to go see it. I held one, once, years ago when I started working at Heritage. It went into the hands of a private collector. I wonder if this is the same one. I'll have to check the catalogue.

I'm doing some artwork, this weekend; give me a creative break from writing.

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Headed for LA

It's set...I'm heading for LA on June 7th and returning to Buffalo on the 11th. Not much time, but more than I thought I'd have. I decided to stay a couple days extra...well, a day and a half. I'll be in Claremont the first couple days then down by LAX till Saturday. Can't wait.

I've heard they're remaking The Rocky Horror Picture Show with Lavergne Cox as Dr. Frankenfurter. Talk about a complete travesty. I got no problem with Frankie being black, but he's not a transsexual...he's a sweet transvestite from Transsexual, Transylvania. And apparently there's talk of Rocky being played by a woman. SACRILEGE!!! Man, if you ever thought Hollywood was run by maniacs and fools who have no idea what they're doing, this is proof positive.

I learned a long time ago very few people in the film biz had the poetry or soul to be filmmakers -- especially producers, writers and directors. I have no idea why they even want to be in it, except to try and make a lot of money. But they do get jobs because they come up with crap that's anything but dangerous or forward-thinking, while those filmmakers who do push the envelope get interfered with and beaten up if anything goes wrong, so they struggle to keep making interesting movies.

More proof of this was the live broadcast of The Sound Of Music...from the stage play, not the movie. Some idiot somewhere thought it would work fine if they used a non-actress who can sing in the role of Maria, and cast a black woman as Mother Superior because she's got a great voice. I couldn't watch it. Nothing against Audra McDonald as Mother Superior (her singing and interpretation were great), but a black woman as the head of a nunnery in pre-war Austria? Seriously? Color-blind casting works fine, most of the time; just not when dealing with a country that was both racist and anti-Semitic, when the story is set. What idiot thought that was a good idea?

Okay, I'm done venting, and tomorrow it's back to the writing. I'm beginning to feel withdrawal from not having done much in the last several days. This is my drug...and I think I'm going to follow through with a wild idea I had for Carli's Kills -- making the sheriff female. I like the script as is, with that role being a male...however, it does seem a bit familiar and easy. But a corrupt bitch who's a match for Carli and has a crush on Zeke, too? That is SOOOOOOOO Russ-Meyer-tacky-tits-cat-fight.

And makes me grin, even though I'm not into girls.

Monday, May 16, 2016

At long last...

I finally got a good proof of The Vanishing of Owen Taylor and authorized it to be released for sale as a paperback. It will probably take a week for it to finally hit the distribution channels, and I'll do what I can to move things along, but as of's over what I hope will be the final hurdle.

I watched Dancing With The Stars, tonight, as I did 2 weeks worth of ironing, mainly because I want to see how far Nyle DiMarco gets. He's in the final round, and he keeps amazing everyone. Not only can he not hear, tonight he danced part of his second dance blindfolded, so he couldn't even see. He's showing the world being deaf is not so much a handicap as just another detail in his life...and that's how it should be for anyone.

Doesn't hurt he's gorgeous.

I'd post the video but they cut out the music on YouTube due to copyright issues. And...Youtube forces ludicrous ads on you in the middle of the video. I don't like going there. But I can't find that clip on the show's website. So...that's life.

Now I just need to get out of the habit of whining so damn much and get down to he does.

Sunday, May 15, 2016

Possible jobs near San Bernadino...

There's talk of 2 packing jobs in SoCal, maybe the second week of June. Still preliminary but will have to be settled soon so everything can be planned and expenses kept low as possible. Might be for the whole week. God, it would be so nice to be out there, again...I'm feeling homesick...

There's discussion about us shutting down for a month, meaning no salary for a while, but we were going to do that last year and August wound up being too busy. I'm too broke to go anywhere if we do...and yet I might just say Fuck It. I dunno. I'm sick of being in debt.

I'm also pissed off about how Bernie's being dissed by the DNC. What happened in Nevada, this weekend, was classic Fascist putsch...and perpetrated by Democrats. The Dem Chair in Nevada shut the meeting down after illegally denying delegates the right to vote and then ignored a voice vote demanding a recount, but instead declared the decision was made and walked off. I keep telling myself I will vote against the GOP in November, but this march to anoint Hillary as the candidate has so sickened me, I'm close to just writing Bernie's name on the ballot in November and the hell with the bitch.

What's pathetic is, because I gave money to Bernie and a couple of specific Democratic candidates -- a total of $45; yeah, I'm a real power-broker -- I am now getting hit with e-mails and phone calls begging for more money for the DNC and DCCC and even the people I've already given money to as well as candidates I've never even heard of. Well, forget it. I will not give one more dime to the Democratic Party, and if I don't like the candidate they run in my area, I'll vote Green.

And if it means the end of the world, let's just get it the fuck over with.

Saturday, May 14, 2016

Music soothing and fine....

The video is 6 years old, but since I was in Lisbon not that long ago I thought I'd share...