Friday, July 30, 2010

Script-a-thon Mystery Readers

Started editing: On Wednesday

Total time: lots of minutes

Goal: I took Michelle's suggestion and decided to ask some of my target audience to review my screenplay.

Result: I spent Wednesday getting the copies ready and then delivered them. I also created an anonymous online survey for my helpers to complete once they have finished reading. The questions are basic, but I'm curious to see what they think.  There are three girls and two boys, all in high school, and all experienced actors. I should have most of their thoughts before I need to submit for this contest next week. And then there is more time to prepare for the American Zoetrope contest deadline in early September.

I also hope to get the reviewers together sometime, if they are interested, so that we can talk more about what worked for them and what didn't.  The question I'm most curious about is what age group they think would most like the movie.

So thank you, my Mystery Readers. I can't wait to read your comments!

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Script-a-thon, Day Twenty-Six

Started editing: All day until 2AM

Total time: I have no idea

Goal: I took a few days off, then we went away for the weekend, and I have so much to do! Ignoring the laundry, I want to get through the notes I've taken so far and see where I end up.

Result: I can't believe it, but it is almost finished! I had some major changes to make, mostly because the ending was getting way too cluttered with characters. Backtracking took some time, but I managed to get through most of it by 10PM. Then we watched a movie (I won't bother to go into that - let's just say it wasn't worth the time) and I was still awake and wanted to keep going. At 2AM, I typed the last correction and closed my laptop for the night.

Today I print and get out the red pen for final edits. I'm nervous and excited and trying to make sure I haven't missed any big mistakes - plot holes, inconsistencies in the dialogue, etc. I am toying with the idea of reading the whole thing and recording it, then playing it back throughout the day to see what mistakes I can find. Reading with my red pen works sometimes, but other times I need to hear the words out loud before I realize they don't work together. Do you think that will work? Any suggestions for the best way to record the whole screenplay?

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Music as Muse

Photo from
Years ago, back when I first started writing a novel, I had the idea to create a book soundtrack, similar to a movie soundtrack, that a reader could listen to while reading a book. I wanted to include songs that influenced the author or fit the section or chapter. It was a way to connect with the author's creative experience on an entirely different level.

This was 1996, and there were no iPods or even mp3 players yet, so I was talking about a CD version. Ancient history.  Now, the soundtrack is not only possible, it's on my blog! If you scroll all the way to the bottom of the page, you can see the exact songs I listened to and still use when I work on Between Souls.

I know I'm not the first to use music as muse, as evidenced by the recent post on Music Mamas by Allison Winn Scotch, author of The One That I Want and other delightful books. The title of her book may awaken thoughts of Olivia Newton-John and John Travolta  - not necessarily a bad thing, but not the mood created by her playlist, and I completely understand.

For me, the playlist was what I used to get in the rhythm of my screenplay.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Newly Published Articles

Because working on my screenplay and keeping up my blog weren't enough for me (ha ha), I am now writing articles for two additional websites.
Both are information hubs, but with different styles. Both have a need for articles that I'd like to write. And both now have links on the right side of this blog so you can quickly see what I've written lately.

I do have plans to work on my screenplay this weekend.  Outlining can be exhausting, though, and I find I'm much more productive if I take a couple of days off in between sessions.

Have a great weekend!

P.S. - I did not win the Best Opening Page mini-contest for Script-a-thon.  Oh well...

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Script-a-thon, Day Thirteen

Started editing: 12:45PM

Total time: 1 hour 4 minutes

Goal: I would love to finish the laptop edits, then start outlining the whole story. I know of some gaps that need to be filled, but I'm sure I'll find more if I do a complete outline.

Result: Finished the laptop edits. After four failed outlining attempts, I finally found a method that works for me. Got to page 43 of outlining. This should be exactly what I needed to fill out the story.

Also entered two mini-contests - best logline and best opening page.  Did not win best logline. Fingers crossed for opening page...

Friday, July 9, 2010

Thanks For The Love

I was overwhelmed by the wonderful comments I received in various forms after my last blog post! Thank you for reading, liking, tweeting, emailing, and commenting - it's great to know I have so many supporters. And I love that I have some new friends reading my blog now, so welcome to all.

As I work on editing Between Souls, I want to be productive, but I certainly have those moments when the internet calls to me, and the allure LOL cats acting out Eclipse is too strong to resist. To thank you for coming back to my blog, here is a short list of my favorite procrastination sites. Enjoy, and have a great weekend!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Pursuing A Hollywood Dream (While Keeping Up With The Laundry)

A little while ago, I was asked to write a guest post about my screenwriting adventure for a website I follow on Twitter and Facebook. It’s called and it’s perfect for me. Created by Becky Beaupre Gillespie and Hollee Schwartz Temple, it is a dose of sanity in my day. Together they are co-authoring Good Enough is the New Perfect: Why Modern Moms Are Aiming Lower — Yet Reaching New Heights, a nonfiction book about how the working moms of our generation are redefining success and taking control (yes, I copied and pasted most of that sentence from their website). Even the title of their book appeals to me – I like the freedom from guilt that it promises, but that nagging voice in my head still screams “It has to be perfect!” I’m one of those moms they mention with a “mommy war” going on inside, so I can relate to just about every word they write.

I was excited when Hollee asked me to write for her site, but a little nervous, too. My family knows I wrote the screenplay, as do the friends who follow me here, but I hadn't really "gone public" yet. This is taking my little writing project to a new level, and I'm very grateful to Hollee for nudging me in the right direction. So after you click the link to my article and read all about me, check out the rest of Hollee and Becky's site. And thanks again, Hollee! :)

Pursuing A Hollywood Dream (While Keeping Up With The Laundry)

Hollee on Twitter - holleeinbalance
Becky on Twitter - beckyinbalance

Monday, July 5, 2010

Script-a-thon, Day Five

Started editing: Random times over the past 3 days

Total time: 44 minutes

Goal: I want to finish the red pen edits, then start correcting the laptop version.

Result: I managed to squeeze in some editing at the pool, on the couch, and on the patio. I did finish with my red pen, and I got to page 55 with the laptop version edits. Now I want to start to fill the gaps. When I wrote the first version, I wrote like crazy, then cut it way back and only kept the parts I loved. Now I'm realizing that this version reads easily in my mind, but not everyone may make the same leaps that I do, and I need more backstory. So I think I need to fill it out again, but then cut back like I did the first time.

I also heard a song in church yesterday that would fit perfectly in the story, so I'm trying to figure out how to make that work. I love how I stumble upon little things through the course of my normal life that blend so nicely into this project.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Script-a-thon, Day Two

Started editing: 11:50AM

Total time: 33 minutes

Goal: I'm starting where I left off yesterday, but I'm in the hair salon, so not sure if I'll be quite as productive.

Result: I did find a few more gaps I need to fill. And then I reread one scene that I LOVE, and I'm so excited to keep going! But it's time to get my trim, so Lucie will have to wait until later or (sniff) tomorrow.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Script-a-thon, Day One

Started editing: 7:50AM

Total time: 42 minutes

Goal: I printed a copy of the Between Souls screenplay weeks ago, but couldn't seem to get out my red pen and get started. I hope to get through the first half this morning, but if it gets too difficult to edit on paper, I'll have to pull this laptop into the mix.

Result: Great start! I got to page 52 with edits before the kids woke up, but I added notes for about five new scenes that are needed to fill out the story. I'm going to go through the whole script once, then go back and add big pieces that are missing. This is probably my only session today, so I'll have to try to get through the remaining 48 pages tomorrow morning.