Tuesday, October 30, 2007


I could feel the flu coming on Sunday and it hit today. I REALLY hit today. Yesterday, I tried to sleep it off, but to no avail. Today, I had waves of nausea that hammered me, along with that eye ache that only comes from the flu. We had a meeting with a client last week who said he had the flu, and I'm sure I caught it there. Anyway, I shut it down early today and I'm hoping things go better tomorrow. I have a bunch of work to do.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Please Vote For Me...

If you get a chance, check out a documentary called Please Vote For Me. It's an absolutely mesmerizing, hilarious and fascinating look at three Chinese third graders who are running for class monitor. Now, you first have to understand that these kids don't know what the heck "democracy" and "voting" means at first, but when they learn, you won't be able to take your eyes away from the screen. You'll be amazed at how fast they learn oppositional research, negative campaigning, debating skills and lobbying (ie bribes). And you'll also wonder if our school system is falling behind when you listen to these eight year olds. You can find it on PBS' Independent Lens series.

Saturday, October 20, 2007


I'm back home from Miami. I got a lot of rest today and that was good. On the writing front, I'm writing my novel THE DREADED BEAUTICIAN (I know, it sounds absolutely crazy, but I swear that it works)right now to the sounds of a This American Life podcast. I've made the decision to concentrate on two writing projects over the next month and two only. I will write the script MISS IRRELEVANT and TDB. Nothing else. I'm trying to de-stress and clarifying my writing goals is the first thing on the list. So, it's 2:10am and I'm writing the first draft of TDB. Talk to you tomorrow because I have a feeling I'll be blogging more often in the next two weeks.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Lost Writing Week...

I didn't really get a lot of writing done this week because of the Miami trip. I leave here this afternoon and get back home late tonight, but for some reason, I was jet lagged for the greater part of the week. And I'm never jet lagged. But combining my bad sleep habits, writing until 3am and no chance for naps meant that I was thrashed at around 10:30p last night.

But my company conference is mad cool and I really do enjoy my colleagues. They're damn smart and every time I go to one of their presentations, I want to start a company. We only meet twice a year, unless you are in the Minneapolis headquarters where about 60% of our employees live, so it's like a family reunion each and every time we get together.

And I can see why our clients like coming. We had chef Anthony Bourdain as our speaker today and Ze Frank yesterday. Both were entertaining as hell and media immersed which provided an added benefit for me.

On the pitching front, after three hit or misses, we're finally going to pitch our shows to BET and A. Smith on the 23rd. I need to find out if another show idea I sent my boy David at William Morris has caught the fancy of this icon I want to attach to it. The icon's agent had been out of the office until the 12th, so we'll see.

That's all until this weekend. In my never ending waffle on what fiction project I'll write next, I finally made a decision. And my agent liked it. Remember, I write about stuff I like, while understanding that there are horses for courses. I think my readership will like this new novel. And by the way, I'm going to have to get in the ass of my publishers because they're supposed to have a publicity plan for my books, but they've been lagging. So it's time for the caustic call.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Gray skies in Miami...

I just landed in Miami for my company's annual Iconosphere conference. For those of you who don't know, for the past year, I've been a senior director for Iconoculture. Iconoculture ID's consumer trends, and we're damn good at what we do. Iconosphere is a conference where we invite clients to hear our latest insights and I must say that I'm always amazed at what I learn. I'm doing a presentation, but I just watched one on eco clothing and it made me want to start a label.

Anyway, the skies are gray, but no hurricane in the offing. I'm on PST time right now, so I might get some writing in before the clients come in tomorrow.

Sunday, October 07, 2007

Blood Diamond

Just watched Blood Diamond on HBO, and I swear it made me go into my son's room and thank God he won't have that experience. As a little black boy in this country, I know the terrors he has to navigate, and most of it revolves around the abnormal closeness of death in my community. It's what every black father at his Catholic school and his martial arts school talk about. Getting them through childhood unhurt. My job is to prepare him for those possible experiences and make sure he doesn't fall victim to it. But the pure terror in Sierra Leone is just hard to imagine. When I was in Ghana, I talked to an African American woman who'd lived in Liberia during their civil war, and she was just as calm about the situation. But it's a damn shame that war is such a constant presence on the continent. Away, I'm rambling because I haven't slept.

Saturday, October 06, 2007

On a roll...

My son Langston is on a roll. He just got his progress report and everything is outstanding. From religion (no thanks to this lapsed Catholic) to math, he's knocking everything out. And he's also been excelling at his martial arts class. He goes three times a week and this is not some suburban style kids class. This is hardcore inner city martial arts and he's been putting in a great effort. He sparred today and fought some really great matches.

Okay, tonight I'll write a bit on my Black College Days novel. It's 1am and I'm tired, but I'll see if I can write about one thousand words. My chapters tend to be around 3000 words each (I don't know why, I think it goes back to when I wrote feature articles for Rap Sheet and those would be around 3K), so this will finish the first chapter.

Friday, October 05, 2007

Busy Week...

We're prepping for our big confab for Iconoculture, so I've been working on that mostly. Decided to kill some of the dead links on the blog. Also, I have lecture dates and appearances coming up, so I updated those.

Decided to update the progress bars of the scripts and novels I'm working on. You can check out their titles.

I'll write more later.

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Second Act...

I was writing the vomit draft, got to the second act and got stuck. And I'm glad I did because my second act was beginning to suck. Like most folks, my first act tends to be well thought out and my second act less so. But the second act is the entree to the first act's appetizer. The second act is the meat of the story and if you don't have a solid second act, really what do you have? So I stopped and reexamined my second act to make the conflicts stronger, more drastic and I think I've made my characters make harder decisions. So even though I have to go back thirty pages, I think it's for the better.

Speaking of meat, I watched Fast Food Nation and I swear, it's made me think twice about eating meat. But the movie itself was a bore to me. It was all over the place trying to tell too many stories.