Monday, November 27, 2006

Back at Home...

Okay, here's the week agenda. I have four Icono obs to do for last week. The computer went down for a bit but it's back. I have about twenty pages to write for my 434 script, The Bestsellers. That's due by Wednesday. And my USC script is due by Friday. I've driven 2800 miles in one week, and I need to get my locs done asap. But I can see the light as my writing projects are one by one getting closer to completion. Holla at ya later.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Life at a La Quinta Inn...

It's about one in th morning, and we luxuriating just outside of Las Cruces, NM. In about an hour, I'll get the crew up to keep on stepping toward Dallas. More than likely, we'll get there around mid afternoon.

The wife has been fighting a cold, never fun on a road trip, but the boy has been having a ball. You forget how "exciting" hotel rooms are for a seven year old, but man, Langston reminded me. Can I bounce on the bed? Can I spin in the chair? Can I get something from the vending machine? Can I watch Cartoon Network? Yada, yada.

This is going to be a working Thanksgiving, by the way. I have four observations to write, and I need to finish the first draft of the USC script. My boy Dave referred me to a friend of his who writes for NCIS (who says film school doesn't work?) and he gave me some tips for setting up the five act structure. The tips reaffirmed what I was doing, and how Krystal and I set up the beats for the story. So go Krysal and Lawrence!

For my 434 script, I'm now into the second act, having rewritten the first act five times. But those rewrites were well worth it. Remember, my goal is to have a better first draft than I had during my first year.

The old weight loss thang is completely out of the window right now. I'm out of shape and about to gorge myself with food. I'll get back on the Lifecycle after Thanksgiving.

Sunday, November 19, 2006

The Sweet Spot and Other things...

For the past week, I've given myself a bit more time to sleep. I'm now going to bed around midnight, but something strange is happening. At 4am, I wake up. Apparently, my brain is relaxing and then going over my script. Problems with The Bestsellers are becoming much more clear, and like my boy in A Beautiful Mind, the answers are lighting up in my head. So I've been rushing to my whiteboard and writing down what I've figured out. Rest and illumination? Sign me up for life!

Anyway, I'm rapidly rewriting the first thirty pages of The Bestsellers, and then shooting them off to my classmates and prof for quick critiques. This is pretty par for the course for me as I constantly plow, rewrite, and then plow some more. I'm not looking for perfection, but a solid first draft. Everything else can be rewritten.

This is going to be a working Thanksgiving, as much as I'd like to just chill. Today, I'm finishing a couple of trend articles for Icono, and then tomorrow I'll finish my observations. We have a shortened schedule, so it'll be easier to finish in one day. I also have a proposal to forward to MK. It's a post graduate documentary project.

The USC first draft script is due December 1st, and then Money Shot on December 14th. It's going to be one helluva couple of weeks coming, but once I'm done, I'm done. My Spring should be a breeze, with only scripts to write.

I went to the Cal game and they damn near broke my heart. Win the game and we get to the Rose Bowl. We didn't. Nothing like listening to an obnoxious USC fan recite the words to their song about one hundred times. At least the Lakers are playing well, Manchester United keeps winning, and Cal plays Stanford in two weeks. We should beat them by 80.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

My Ultimate Goal...

I want to be the first African American to win an Academy Award for screenwriting. To hell with those who say they don't care about awards. I like awards. I like big awards. And I have stories that are award worthy. Sure, there's that little thing about writing good enough to actually have a script purchased, but that's simply a matter of time. Five minutes. Five days. Five months, Five years. Five decades. But a matter of time. And then after that, the award. You watch me.


It's a quarter till 5am and I'm working on my script. It dawned on me, as I stay up all night for the umpteenth time, that when writing, you spend a lot of that time pondering. Your brain relaxes and begins to work out what you're going to write. I wonder if I put myself in a meditative state, could my brain relax to the point that storylines become more clear, or dialogue more crisp? Or maybe I'm delusional because I'm up all night for the umpteenth time over the past three weeks? Anyway, I'm at the end of Act I and we're in week seven. We don't meet next week because of Thanksgiving, but I'm going to write during our time in Dallas.

Started the USC script, and it's moving relatively quick. It's definitely going to be a first draft, versus anything polished, but I'll have plenty of time to work with it later. And then there's Money Shot. Let's just say that the first two weeks of December are going to be writing slug fests. But I'll get 'er done because I don't want ANY work left for late December or January. I want a relatively clean writing slate for the Spring and Summer.

Sunday, November 12, 2006

My Day...

I worked on Iconoculture stuff today, writing the observations I collected throughout the week. My editor asked if I could also do some Gen-X observations along with my African-American obs. I was like hell yeah! I'm interested in how people are forgetting about Gen-Xers and have moved on to Gen-Yers and Millenials etc. Anyway, knocked those out.

Talked to my mom about Thanksgiving. We're having a ton of fam over and I think I'll drive the fam unless I can find a really good flight. The trip to Dallas is not that bad, particularly if you have Sirrus or XM Radio as we do. Thanksgiving for us is like Christmas and New Years rolled into one. We eat so much, and it's all good.

Tonight, I'm going to continue writing my script tonight. Tomorrow, I meet with my boy Ben from the producers program. MK, Ben and I have a post graduate project to do. Also on the agenda this week, finish my USC thesis script.

After Thanksgiving, it's two days in a hotel room to finish Money Shot. I can see the end y'all. I can see the end!

Friday, November 10, 2006

Did I Mention...

How happy I am now that my country has been taken back? How optimistic I am about the future now that my Democratic Party has broken through the Bush hold on this nation? Go Democrats!!!

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Needed a break and got it...

The brain was a bit stressed over the past few days, and so I shut it down. Did my observations, and cleaned up the work of the previous person in my position. Didn't work on my 434 script today, but I did finish the first 10 pages to my satisfaction. This week, I'm going to change up and do about two observations per day versus waiting to Saturday. That way, I can save the weekend for writing my script. By Wednesday, I'll have at least another ten pages. By this weekend, I'd like to get to page 40. If I can get to the end of the second act by Thanksgiving, then I'm good to go.

I have the USC thesis to work on. I've started it, but it's in the infant stages. I promised Krystal that I'd get a first draft done by Thanksgiving, and that's probably right.

I can finally see the end of the quarter coming. Yes, I still have a BUNCH of overnight writing sessions left to do, but everything's starting to come together. After Thanksgiving, I will take a weekend at a hotel and knock out 2/3rds of Money Shot.

And TheYack is going swimmingly.

PS: Went to the gym tonight. Felt great!

Saturday, November 04, 2006

Today I rested...

You know how you're so tired that sleep is no relief? Well, that's how tired I was. I slept all day long. My brain kept telling me to get up and write, but I ignored it. I slept, woke up for an hour, and then slept again. And now I'm refreshed. I have my Icono work to do, but I think I'll start it this evening.

Friday, November 03, 2006

I've gotta destress...

Seriously. I'm feeling mad tension right now. A lot of projects, and not a lot of time. My script received WONDERFUL notes during my last 434 meeting. I'm still doing my fourth version of my first ten pages. But I stayed up all last night, writing pages and also watching Kinsey. Very interesting movie. Anyway, my fellow students gave me an idea about how to really punch up my inciting incident (my main problem) and getting these two authors on the road. Pressure and choices along with something like dynamite to get them together and on their journey.

I'm too tired to go over everything else I have to get done, but y'all know.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006


I'm very sleepy.