Dear god, another one!


Well, dear and gentle readers, I must, first and foremost, apologize for not having posted anything in the past 3 or so months.  I was going to apologize for not having written anything, but as the most devout of you are surely aware, I am in a graduate screenwriting program, and have therefore written quite a few things, just not blog things.

I was doing pretty well with blog posts until we hit the production cycle last semester, which is when in a few short weeks every student directs his or her own movie, and also does every other film set position on other people’s movies.  It’s sort of like undercover bosses, except that all the people you may have pissed off while you were the boss know exactly who you are, and their turn is coming up soon.

The most exciting thing that happened to me during this whole period happened on the first day, when, in a dusty and dank warehouse, I dropped a $60,000 lens onto the cold, hard floor.  The concrete welcomed it greedily, and everyone else, the whole film crew and actors, watched it in slow motion as it tumbled from my clumsy paws.  There was really nothing I could do; my arms wouldn’t react fast enough.  It’s ironic, I thought, that the thing you are most often warned about not dropping is more often than not the thing that you drop.

And warned we had been.  Every class, every day, to hold the lens securely, and cradle it, much like one would baby Jesus, unless you were a Satanist or something, and make sure the party you are passing it too has secure hold of it before you release your grip.  This point was stressed again and again.

I honestly have no clue how I dropped it, I just sort of fumbled it.  One moment it was in my hands, and the next moment I was curly from the three stooges, clawing desperately at a 35mm lens that had seemed to have turned into a Mexican jumping bean, and refused to stay locked in my grasp.

As fate would have it, the trajectory at which I had launched my expensive missile led it to strike my friend Joel’s hip, and somehow, magically somehow, roll down his leg, like a wheel going down a hill, have a soft landing on his shoe, and then roll across the floor, where my friend John snatched it up before it could crash into a wall and shatter completely.

The room was dead silent.

“Gosh” was all I could manage to say.  The director nodded in agreement.  Gosh indeed.  As it turns out, the lens was somehow completely fine, a godsend, and I was merely charged a fee for having someone look at it, which I’m not entirely sure I ever actually got charged.

I was so warn out come winter break that writing was the farthest thing from my mind, and then, in Januare, I loaded up on an airplane and flew across the northern Atlantic to make my new home, at least for the next three months, in old London town.

It’s part of the writing program.  We get sent over here to work with British playwrights and other British people.  It’s supposed to help our writing, but it’s really been is an absolutely lovely way to write one’s first complete screen play, in a fabulous city, steeped in history and time, and rich in culture.

London, I’ve come to find, is nearly the antithesis of Tallahassee.  It feels safe where Tallahassee feel like there is death lurking around every corner.  It is clean, where Tallahassee is covered in litter.   It is classy, where as Tallahassee is full of bros.  Not that I don’t like Tallahassee.  Quite the contrary, it’s a fun place.  I just wouldn’t want to live there after I finished the program, but I wouldn’t mind living in London, even during the bitterly cold winter.

What’s gotten me back into blogging, you ask?  Well, the answer is twofold.  To put it simply, the first reason is that I’m supposed to be doing something else right now, yet another outline for my screenplay, but I’m meeting with my professor later to work out some kinks.  The kinks are only at the end, but it’s still an excellent excuse to not work on it.

The second reason is that the estimable Reverend Mother has nominated me for the Versatile blogger award, my third award if were counting, and we are, and I couldn’t bring myself to not write a lovely thank you.

So, thanks for the award.

Ok, so I’m reading this list of things I need to do in order to receive this award.  15 people.  I need to nominate 15 other people for the award…

1. http://seedofbilly.wordpress.com/2013/02/28/weekly-poem-2/#comment-51

2. http://stvaltheeccentric.wordpress.com/2013/02/28/still-writing/comment-page-1/#comment-12

3. http://vincentmars.com/

4. http://ahouseandagarden.wordpress.com/2013/02/28/oh-my-word-many-words/#comment-1472

5. http://narrellemharris.wordpress.com/2013/02/28/it-means-what-it-is/#comment-1727

6. http://ramblingsfromamum.wordpress.com/2013/02/28/five-sentence-fiction-challenge-empty/comment-page-1/#comment-6574

7. http://writenaked.wordpress.com/2013/02/28/5-ways-to-make-money-writing-as-you-travel/#comment-547

8. http://screenwrites.wordpress.com/

9. http://bonesmurphy.wordpress.com/

10. http://gameoverbooks.wordpress.com/

11. http://alyssalyssa.wordpress.com/

12. http://observingvessel.wordpress.com/

13. http://clareodea.wordpress.com/

14.http://markbirch33.wordpress.com/

15. http://kamikazehermit.wordpress.com/

Dear me that took a long time.  Now I have to write 7 facts about myself.

1. One time, upon leaving my house, I witnessed a possum eating another possum; on my very doorstep no less!  It’s one of those images you can’t ever unsee, and it haunts my dreams to this day.

2. I’m living in london right now.  The weathers been quite bad the past week, but it seems to be getting better.  I might even go to the farmer’s market!

3.I quite enjoy tea and coffee, but here in englan i’ve somehow been drinking more tea than coffee, I guess because it’s cheaper and easier.  It’ll be nice to get back to florida where coffee is a plentiful as fire ants and the rain.

4. I had never seen Tarentino’s from dusk till dawn until this weekend.  It’s quite good.  You should wach it.

5. I’m an aspiring screenwriter and I care more about sports than the academy awards.  Is that bad?

6. I fought a grizzly bear to the death one time.  With a knife.  I won’t say it was easy, but I’m still here.

7.I know how to sail a sailboat.

Cool, there we go! Thanks gain, http://lifeaswedontyetknowit.wordpress.com/ for the award!

Job and the Burger


Here’s a scene that I wrote for my screenwriting class.  The prompt was that we needed to write a scene that reveals the flaw in the main character.  It could be no longer than 3 pages and had to have dialogue.  Can you guess who my protagonist is and what is his flaw?

(Note: the formatting is less than desirable here.  The first two caps (A BURGER and A MAN) are scene introductions.  The rest are dialogue, which i have painstakingly formated in the center.)

JOB AND THE BURGER

———————————-

A BURGER
…Sits on a food tray. There are some fries and a drink next to it.

A MAN
…Glares at the burger on the counter of the fast food restaurant, incredulous. The fools! 34 years old, JOB is a nuclear bomb, anger barely contained by the paper thin veil of society, ready to go of at any moment.

JOB
What’s this?

BRITTANY, 19, looks up from filing her nails. For Brittany, life is perpetually dull, and each day always proves more boring than the last.

BRITTANY
You’re food, sir.

Job continues to glare at the burger, like it had just slapped him. He lifts up the bun. Lettuce. Lettuce.

JOB
This isn’t what I ordered.

BRITTANY
You asked for lettuce.

Job screws up his face, and forces the red back down.

JOB
No, I didn’t. I hate lettuce. I asked for a burger without lettuce.

Brittany rolls her eyes and dramatically punches some keys on her computer like she was playing whack-a-mole. She turns her screen around so Job can see.

BRITTANY
One burger. Ketchup, tomato, cheese. With lettuce.

Brittany goes back to filing her nails. Job stares at the screen.

JOB
Can you just make me another one?

Brittany pauses her filing.

BRITTANY
No.

Job’s hands begin to shake visibly. He breathes deeply. It isn’t working. A man behind Job taps him on the shoulder. Job turns to see fat, middle aged man with his equally fat family standing behind him.

MAN
Sir, just take your damn burger. We’re hungry too.

Job roars like a lion. He grabs the food tray and smashes it on the counter, fries flying like shrapnel from an IED.
He lifts the tray up and smashes the man in the side of his face. The man goes down among the raining fries.

The man’s family cries in fright and his wife tries to tend to him.

Job throws the tray like a frisbee and pegs the man at the drive-through window in the back of the head.

JOB
BULLSHIT! I DIDN’T WANT LETTUCE!

Job pulls a revolver from a pocket inside his jacket and fires a round into the air. The bullet strikes the ceiling and chalky dust covers Job’s face, making him even more terrifying.

The other patrons make a mad dash for the exits. Job hears them running and spins around. He does his best to point his gun at all of the dozen patrons.

JOB (CONT’D)
NOBODY’S LEAVING. IM GONNA GET MY BURGER, AND WE’RE ALL GONNA SIT DOWN AND HAVE A NICE FUCKING MEAL. YOU GOT THAT

Job points his gun at a frightened, college aged woman by the door.  Not so fast!

JOB (CONT’D)
YOU GOT THAT?

WOMAN
Y-y-y-yes?

JOB
GOOD!

Job spins back around to Brittany, who has dropped her nail file and is staring at Job like a deer in headlights. This is the best day of her life.

BRITTANY
Ok. Ok! Here!

She reaches behind her and grabs a new burger. She opens it up and removes the lettuce, and then hands it to Job.
Job puts it back on the tray.

JOB
SOME FRIES TOO!

Brittany gives him some fries. Job glances quickly between his food and Brittany, and then nods.
He holds the food to his chest like a bag of money from a bank heist, and slowly backs away, randomly pointing his gun at people behind the counter.

JOB (CONT’D)
Good, thank you. Good.

Job sits down at a table and places his food in front of him. Everyone is eyeing him nervously.

JOB (CONT’D)
It’s ok. We’ll all be alright. Sit down and eat. I got my burger.

Everyone hesitantly sits down and eats. Job smiles happily at his food and takes a bite. We can hear sirens in the distance, steadily approaching, like a distant storm.

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