30 Days. 100 Pages. Are you in?

Can I churn out 100 pages of script in April? Those of you who've worked on screenplays before know that maintaining an average of 3.3 pages/day, while working 9 to 5 and having a family, is tough, to say the least.

Still, I'm betting I can. I've got an outline which is mostly done, and ideas for one more screenplay floating in my head.

This activity (can't really call it a contest, as there are no prizes to be awarded) comes from Script Frenzy. The folks behind this are the same folks who brought us the National Novel Writing Month. There are no entry fees, but they'll gladly take your donation, if your heart desires.

I'll be posting my progress throughout the month.

Take the plunge and sign up here. They've even got a Plot Machine to help you get started.



Quick look back at the Oscars

As a screenwriter-in-development and movie lover, I was rooting heavily against Avatar. Just not my type of movie.

I may be naive, but I believe the human Oscars (director, actor/actress, picture) should go to humans. Not CGI-generated, 3D-amplified creatures. Why nominate a man who sat at a computer to push keys and drag a mouse for best director? Give me someone on the set, giving actors directions, setting up shots, angling cameras. A director directing!!!

So, seeing Kathryn Bigelow (Cougar alert!) holding up the golden statue put a smile on my face!

Mark Boal took home the Oscar for best original screenplay. Heard a podcast some time back from Creative Screenwriting (get it on iTunes) where Mark explained his craft and his work as a reporter in Irak. Couldn't happen to a better guy.

Heard and read mixed reviews on the hosts. The Academy Awards are so conservative, I'm thinking they weren't given the green light to exploit their talents to their fullest. Or maybe we were expecting too much from these guys after watching them on SNL. To me, Alec Baldwin will always be Pete Schweaty!

In any event, if you haven't seen The Hurt Locker, or any of the other movies nominated, get to the theater or your local independent videostore and get caught up.



FFF # 23.2 - Mule. On the Run.

Thanks to Cormac Brown for hosting Friday Flash Fiction.

Mule. On the Run.

Mule had to kick out the back window to escape. Nick of time, it was. Killer had just walked into the apartment, going room to room with his silenced Magnum .357, a gunman’s gun. Killer, wearing black from head to toe, shades covering bloodshot eyes which always lit up at the mere sight of his prey, kicked down the door to the now-empty room.
Mule hit the asphalt and ran. The package was wrapped in his arms, held tight against his body. Couldn’t let that go. Not now, not ever. Precious, is what it was.
Behind him, Mule heard Killer curse as he leaned out the window frame. Mule shifted into high gear as Killer took his aim, fingered the trigger, but pulled back at the last second, always a pro, never one to shoot for the sake of shooting, like those amateurs in every action movie, spreading bullets like butter on toast.
Killer jumped down and hit the ground with a thud just as Mule rounded the corner and found an abandoned bicycle, ancient one with the three-speed shifter on the frame. Mule got on and pedaled, steering it down the cracked pavement with one hand, swerving around any obstacle.
Ahead, a car rounded the corner, fast, and Mule turned at a 90-degree angle to avoid it. That allowed him a look behind him at Killer, gun tucked under his jacket. Mule could see Killer looking for a way to keep up with him, finding a teenager and his longboard.
Mule pumped his legs to regain speed as Killer’s meaty paws grabbed the skating boy and separated him from his board. Killer threw the teen to the ground and hopped on the board. It took him a few moments to get it right, balancing his bulk on the narrow board. He managed it and took off after Mule.

FFF # 23.1 - Good Thing Going

Thanks to Cormac Brown for hosting Friday Flash Fiction.

Good Thing Going

Jake Monroe had to kick out the back window to escape. He couldn't take any chances going through the front lobby. The doorman would get a second, good look at his pretty face, and chances were, he'd put two and two together and come up with four whenever the cops came out to investigate the rotten smell coming from 4B.
He'd been at this for so long, had such a good thing going, it would be a shame to get caught now. So many things left to accomplish! So much space in the new, oversized freezer he'd bought just a few weeks back!
The window gave onto a fire escape. Four floors up, no way he could carry her down, no matter how light she was. Too bad! Then again, she did have a cat, which would get hungry at some point...
Monroe stifled a laugh and made his way down to the street. His car was parked a few streets over, so he had to be careful.  He put the collar of his windbreaker up and kept his head down.
As he slid in behind the wheel, he let out a sigh of relief and smiled at his reflexion in the rearview.
He replayed the night's events in his head. Damn, he was good. Couple of drinks, a bit of flattery, she blushes a few times. Bingo, good as done. He'd had to keep a straight face when she mentioned, you ever been on TV?. Must be someone else, he managed to convince her. I get that a lot.
Monroe looked at the clock in the dashboard. A few minutes past five. Too late for the morning news. With a little luck, a friend, or her brother, mother, someone, would worry about her and call it in before the six o'clock news. With a lot of luck, this would keep.
He started the car and slipped in behind a bread truck, a large smile on his face.
Ah, the sweet feeling of a job well done!
* * *
Monroe slept much of the day, waking as the sun started its descent. He turned on the tube while whipping up breakfast, catching the end of a dumb reality show where a bunch of ugly guys and girls fought for the attention of some rich dude.
The news came on just as he put the finishing touches on his egg burrito. On the screen, the gorgeous female anchor told him about the latest fight on Capitol Hill, another suicide bombing in Irak, and flash floods in California.
No mention of his work. Oh well! No sense being down. Good things came to those who wait.
Time to get ready for work.
* * *