Monthly Archives: August 2013

Snug Like A Gun

After all that good news it’s probably time to consider what’s up next.

My listing of The Telephone Call has stopped dead, there were two people asking about it, one had a copy of the script e-mailed to him and said it sounded like an idea that ‘could go anywhere’. This probably means he hates the ending and wants to change it but I would be fine with that. The main problem is that he last emailed me around two months ago now and I’ve heard nothing from him since.

The second guy, upon reading the synopsis, sent me a simple message that basically said ‘is that it?’. I wanted to send something back saying ‘No of course not, there’s an ending involving s space station suddenly crashing down from the sky which kicks off an entire alien invasion with lasers and tank and Santa but I didn’t want to put that in the synopsis’. What I sent instead was something about how it’s ‘a simple story’ and ‘kept to it’s core elements’. I’m not sure it quite got through that this was a short movie, almost a comedy sketch, with a emphasis of brevity being the soul of wit. Once again I heard nothing.

This seems to be a regular part of the game, producers who might have spent years studying a vast amount of movies and know the names of a vast list of camera equipment from memory yet basic human consideration alludes them. So many of these people think that asking for a script, reading it and then never getting back to the writer is somehow acceptable. The message should be that it’s not, it makes you look like a complete tool and it shouldn’t be an effort to quickly write off a couple of lines saying ‘Sorry but not for me’. That way everybody knows where they stand. Being left hanging on ain’t exactly great for the confidence.

So we can probably assume that’s going nowhere very quickly right now. It’s no big deal, it was purely a quick off the cuff idea anyway.

In other news the new episode of Brake For Frogger went up last week, if you’re into video games then you might be interested in us waffling on about them. It’s had a fairly positive response so we’ll probably be back again soon. About halfway through the record I’d settled back into it again and it didn’t feel like the chore it had become last year.

There was also the small matter of the Kickstarter fund I linked to last week for Spring Fling Arts Festival here in Dumfries and Galloway. They were trying to raise money to take some of the works around the country before the 2014 event. I’m happy to say they did it with a few hours remaining which is pretty incredible. A big thank you if you followed the link and put the money down.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch, I’ll probably spend a couple of days sharpening up the synopsis for ‘Seven Lucky Stars’ to see if I can relist that then it might well be either back to the much neglected ‘The Last Alive’ or maybe something new. The Last Alive is still proving troublesome, there’s no foothold in it currently and I can’t get it working. I have an advantage at the moment of being an amauter writer so I can turf out scripts that I’m struggling with and move on.

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We Came Here To Chew Bubblegum

Looks like I can now tell you the dates on which Robotics will be shown at The Netherlands Film Festival next month. Follow the link.

http://www.filmfestival.nl/publiek/films/robotics

I’m still trying not to get too excited about it for worry that something, somewhere will occur and it won’t happen. When people I know asked about the film months ago I said I wouldn’t celebrate until it was up on screen and people were looking at it. These deals and arrangements are fragile, one slip could wreck them.

I can’t make it to the festival sadly but I shall raise a small glass to those who will be there when the screening happens. My idea has been brought to fruition by some wonderfully talented people who have placed a smile on the face of somebody who thought this writing game wasn’t going to be much good to him.

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A Kickstart

Yes, yes I know..another Kickstarter. But wait, this one’s a little closer to home and something I consider well worth it.

The Spring Fling is an arts and craft festival that takes place in my home county of Dumfries and Galloway each May. As you’ve probably noticed from some of my previous blog posts it’s very rare for things like this to happen here. It’s a rural area and it doesn’t have anything that could be described as a city in it in which such events would probably take place on a regular basis therefore it’s important.

The campaign is to get the festival more exposure outside the region, by featuring work in Newcastle, Glasgow and London but the organisers need money to do this and £3000 is the total set. It would be brilliant if it made this total as it currently sits just below halfway with only a week left. I don’t have a vast amount of money to throw around but I’ve still stuck £20 in there to help along the way.

I don’t often do ’causes’ on Howling In The Dark, they drive me nuts enough appearing on my Facebook news feed, but this is a group of people who have brought this festival to the local area for 11 years and want to do more. Go to the site, check the video and put something in even if you’re not local. The knowledge you helped if it does get there will truly be something.

http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/308013317/spring-fling-going-national

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Urban Tumbleweed

So I return once more to work only a quarter done.  My Son went back to school yesterday in a alarmingly good mood about the whole thing and I had my first day alone in the house for what felt like a very long time. I’ve come to realise that it takes me a good while to get up to speed on writing. I don’t think I can just write for a hour here or there, preferring instead to concentrate for a good few hours straight. I haven’t had much of a chance to do that whilst my son has been around doing that six year old thing of wanting entertained.

It’s only a few weeks until the nights visibly draw in again and it gets colder (without wishing to sound like one of those old folks who looks to the sky and says winter is on the way) which probably means a whole lot more time will be spent inside hopefully getting some script stuff done.

In the meantime we recorded a new Brake For Frogger episode the other night. It was a really basic episode with only two sections, the currently playing one and a retro one as well. It still felt good to be back though and we hit the moment when it became fun again. Usually this occurs when it’s just three or four friends all talking about games and being passionate about the subject matter. I’m editing the episode so I aim to have that done by the weekend and hopefully online for all to listen to soon.

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Googling Every Corner

It’s the school summer holidays still and as a result I have my son around the house on my days off. It’s been great having having him around and we’ve been doing stuff and taking walks out as much as a six year old’s patience can take. This has meant though that my chances to sit down and get some writing done have taken a serious hit over the last few weeks. The updates on this blog have, as you’ve probably noticed, slowed to a near crawl also.

Today, whilst Kyle sat beside me and borrowed my Nintendo 3DS to play Lego Lord Of The Rings, I got two reviews written down for Square Go who very generously handed me them to give my opinion on. They should be up on the site in the near future once I’ve finished the formatting. I’m also writing an article on death in video games. This is not as morbid as you think.  Also this week sees the return of Brake For Frogger, the gaming podcast which we semi-retired a year ago because hardly anybody was listening to it. A few friends of ours have encouraged us to give it another shot so you’ll be able to hear my friends and broadcast colleagues Geordie Alan, Euan Taylor and Tom Oates. I’ll be plugging it on here as soon as it’s ready. Howling In The Dark is my solo project, Brake For Frogger is my band.

Add to this the fact that I’m no longer full time at work. I’ve dropped down a day from five to four days a week which gives me a little more time for writing. The idea being that hopefully I’ll be able to concentrate on getting some more stuff done. I’ve applied for unpaid writing positions beforehand and had to turn them down eventually because I couldn’t find the time to dedicate to them. Now it’s a much more viable proposition.

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