On Writing.

I hate writing. Well, most of the time. I guess it’s like anything else you are learning to do. When you get it right it’s awesome; when you struggle or get it wrong then it sucks. Right now I’m 15 or so pages from the finish and it has been the hardest to write. Act 1 was easy I knew exactly where the story was going and how it was all set up. Act 2 is the hardest to write because you tell yourself, “I know how it begins and then some stuff happens and then it ends like this.” The beginning and end are easy; it’s the stuff happening in the middle that requires the work of creation. I’m going to do the work. I’m going to finish this story and soon.


If you don’t know I’m writing my first feature length screenplay called “Dead Bounty.” For more information read the secound post below.


I didn’t really do anything this weekend but lay around and play Black Ops: Zombies. It’s addicting; I need to stop for awhile. I did watch “Never Let Me Go” and it was a great great movie but kind of a downer. I also watched “They Live” because I’ve been on Carpenter kick lately. The last couple of months I’ve watched “The Thing,” “Assault on Precinct 13,” and “The Fog.” I also watched the pilot episode for “Wings;” which is one of my favorite TV shows ever. I also have four more episodes of “Party Down” and am having a hard time finishing the show because after those four episodes that’s it. Why do great shows never last?

I’ll hopefully be posting more on the blog to keep you updated on “Dead Bounty.” (When I’m writing on the blog I’m avoiding the script.) Well I’m at work now so I should start writing again; got to fight the feeling to procrastinate!

Zombie Nuns from Hell!!

I’m 54 pages into my first feature screenplay called; “Dead Bounty.” It’s the story of a bounty hunter, a beautiful fugitive, and zombie nuns. It is as awesome as it sounds. I’ve been doing most of the writing at work. Sometimes it’s great having a job where you are stuck in a cubical in front of a computer all day. I’m going to have it finished by June then I’m going to take that next step or more appropriately a leap into preproduction.

Here are a couple of pages; if you want to read all of what I have so far let me know.

Dead Bounty Sample

Silent Run Pictures just finished another short called “The Trap” directed by Jake Walinski. You will be able to watch it when it’s finished with post production. So, in about a year.

While I watch”: “My Son, My Son What Have Ye Done?”

I will occasional become somewhat of a fanatic or some could say a “crush” on a particular person or idea. Well, over the past few months I have had a sudden interest in an elderly German man named, Werner Herzog…

Okay, so that was the first intro and maaaannn is it bad. Okay, I’m 12 minutes into “My Son, My Son, What Have Ye Done?” It’s the NEWEST Werner Herzog movie. (if you don’t know who that is Netflix “Bad Lieutenant Port of Calls: New Orleans” and try and tell me it’s not B.A. and Nic Cage is not  your new favorite actor)

19:59 minutes in and I can say Werner Herzog is my favorite art-house director; his ability to make the mundane oddly beautiful. The steady-cam oatmeal can down the driveway was amazing. So, David Lynch produces the movie and I’ve been waiting, for a little bit of the Lynch in the soup…  And I think I found it in the creepy Mom! Oh, and there was a guy with an oxygen mask on. 01.03 hrs in: Herzog takes his time with every shot; there is not a wasted frame in the film. Just finished. Wow, it’s nice to have a wonderful film to wash away the bad taste of “Creature.” I wonder if Herzog wrote the mariachi scene or they just turned on the camera and ran with it? Neither one would surprise me. The movie is awesome; if you are looking for some art/indie drama to cleans your palate of other crap you’ve seen a hundred times.  Ooo I almost forgot; Chloe Sevigny is hot in frumpy sweaters. You can view the trailer here.

“Creature” feature!!

Jake once said “you know, I really like ’80s movies but there is always a point in the movie when things get… weird. A wise saying indeed. It’s 0339 in the morning and I’m watching 1985’s “Creature.” The movie gets weird when Klaus Kinski randomly shows up. It gets weirder when HE TURNS IN TO A ZOMBIE for no apparent reason!! The movie is “Alien” meets Zombies. BUT!! what I think it actual is is a “homage” (insert finger quotes) to the Howard Hawks classic, “The Thing From Another Word.” Hell, I’ll quote the movie; “I saw this movie once where a carrot attacks an ice base and they electrocute the monster through the floor.” And then THEY ELECTROCUTE THEIR MONSTER THROUGH THE FLOOR! Wow, that’s either the biggest “Hey I really enjoyed your movie” or, the laziest screenwriting ever!! Hold on, the final fight with the alien is on… The Creature looks like the Godzilla suit, NOT Godzilla himself; but just the rubber suit, raped a HR Giger art piece. Did I mention Kinski was in it? For about 5 minutes, only 2 of which were as a zombie. Oh yea, there are zombies; about 4 of them total. Don’t ask me why or how. Would I recommend it? Damn skippy I would. But wait till its 2 in the morning to start it; it makes it better. Watch the trailer here.

Cash on the barrelhead

 Am I writing this six years too late? Maybe I’m not. Six years ago I would have sat around Justin’s crappy duplex being depressed over something I had little sentiment for; and that’s just what I did. I knew someone great had died but I never really knew him I had only known of him. I sat in a quiet solace and realized a name that I always heard of would be now spoken less and in the past tense. Now that I’m older and have better appreciation of his music and music in general I feel better about writing in regards to Johnny Cash. (Plus six years ago I had no idea what a blog was) On September 12, 2003 he died as results from complications with diabetes. What I felt that day I have felt several times though out my life; most recently with Michal Jackson. I remember in 1989 when I was eight years old the Berlin Wall came down, and my mother looked at me and said this is important, you will remember this for the rest of your life. As an eight year old I remember people crying over a big piece of concrete. When Jackson died it was a vey “wow” moment; I don’t think anyone could have called that one. Michael Jackson is a different situation; because his reputation was forever changed by child molestation accusations, radical cosmetic surgery, and general weird behavior. So when he died I didn’t feel sad that we had lost the “king of pop,” but surprised by the suddenness of it. A few years prior to Cash’s death I bought a 16 greatest hits CD; not out of want really but out of necessity. My thinking was “I like music, I have good taste, I have been told that Johnny Cash is a legend therefore I must own it to be a good music listener.” I liked it, I did. I knew it wouldn’t be something I would listen to all the time but I thought Cash was a solid songwriter. Before his death my friend Justin, was listening to Cash’s American albums. The American albums are the last few albums he recorded with Rick Rubin before his death. These albums really brought Cash back into the spotlight and with good reason, they are amazing.   

 40a5ce1b91603161_landingI did some reading up on the man in black and he lived a really interesting life. His parents named him J.R. which stands for nothing, because they couldn’t agree on a name. His older brother Jack was killed when he was cut almost in two by a table saw. Apparently Jack and his mother both had premonitions the morning of his accident, weird huh. He never did any prison time just a few one nighters in a few jails on possession charges. In 1965 his truck caught fire and burned 508 acres of the Los Padres National Forest in California, killing 49 of the 53 endangered condors. He is quoted as saying “I don’t care about your damn yellow buzzards.” Cash also claimed to have a near death experience while having double bypass surgery.

I like Johnny Cash for the same reason I like some of Springsteen’s albums like Nebraska. Cash like Springsteen or maybe I should say Springsteen like Cash can tell a wonderful story through song. I would call Cash the John Steinbeck of songwriters. He really writes for the “everyman;” he hits a wide range of themes from love, guilt, sadness, God, and death. So much so he has four compilation albums titled: Love, God, Murder, and Life. An entire album on murder! How cool is that! In Delia’s Gone he sings about taking her for his wife if he didn’t have to kill her. One of my favorites is Hung My Head, he accidently shoots a man then goes on the run only later to be caught and put to death. The guilt! The sorrow!! Aww it’s such a beautiful song. His songs on love are great too First Time I Ever Saw Your Face and In My Life are a couple more favorites. He covers Hurt by NIN, U2’s One, Sound Garden’s Rusty Cage, Tom Petty’s I won’t Back Down and even Depeche Mode’s Personal Jesus.

 All of this came about the other day when I was playing guitar and I realized I was playing the first two chords of Folsom Prison Blues. So I got the first four American albums and man they’re awesome. My old boss from Fry’s; Barry, loved Johnny Cash I think he had everything he ever did. I probably won’t be that hardcore but I am really enjoying his stuff right now. So if you’re curious about The Cash those albums are your best bet to start with. Happy listening!

“Only Thing We Have to Fear Is Fear Itself”

Frankie D obviously didn’t watch enough movies. There’s a lot more to fear than that; a plethora, cornucopia, a national deficit more. I’m not talking about worries in life; like the fear of not being successful, the fear of rejection or the fear of getting cancer. I’m talking about fear! The fear that you will go to work to find your office over run by zombie coworkers, that hot girl you finally get the nerve to ask out is really a scissor wielding Lorena Bobitt copy cat serial killer or that mole on your face that your boyfriend says makes you “different” is actually an evil twin sister waiting to grow and take her revenge for you getting the good genes. You know, stuff like that.

I think I once heard an anthropologist say that the reason we like to be scared is that at the end of the experience we feel more alive. That experience has taken us to one extreme on a “life scale” and catapulted us to the opposite end. We faced death, gave him the finger and escaped his warm embrace. (I always imagined death’s embrace as warm because if it’s warm and comforting it would be harder to leave; pretty messed up huh.) Anyway, I think that there are basically two types of horror the “man that’s F’d up” and the stuff that is psychological or very personal. I think good horror falls more into the latter category and great horror is a little bit of both.

An example of “F’d” horror would be the Saw movies. Those movies never scared me and I didn’t enjoy any of them but I did find myself saying “that dude’s head is in a vice and that pointy stick is going where? Man, that’s F’d up!” The second category is what always got me.

As a kid I would stay up late into the night and watch episodes of Unsolved Mysteries and In Search of… hosted by Leonard Nimoy. These shows would help nurture the fascination for UFO’s and aliens that the books in my elementary school library had already started. They would also scare the living crap out of me. I loved all that kind of stuff as a kid; UFO’s, Sasquatch, Nessie, ghosts, the Bermuda Triangle, the whole nine yards. What stuck with me the most was the stories about UFO’s and abductions. I would lie in bed at night and literally pray that I wouldn’t be beamed up into a space ship by little grey men that could read my mind. (Mind reading how awful to think about) There used to be this channel on TV; the TV Guide channel is what I think it was called. It would scroll what was on TV for the next two hours or so and if you missed a channel as it passed you had to wait a couple of minutes for it to come around again. (This was way before digital cable guides) Anyhow they would show trailers on this channel and that’s when I first heard of a little movie called Fire in the Sky. Mother of pearl that messed me up fun time.


To this day if people are discussing what scares them like snakes, spiders, and clowns I always get the weird look when I say “being abducted by aliens terrifies me to the core.” I slowly recovered from that trauma when in college Signs came out and did it to me all over again. I’ll be honest I let out an audible gasp when you see the figure on top of the barn and when you see the birthday party video from Mexico every feeling of dread came back. It reminded me of all the home video footage of UFO’s and ghosts that I saw on Unsolved Mysteries.

That wasn’t the first time that I had been so scared in such a public theater. In high school I went to Pampa’s only theater which was a crappy four screener that switched ownership every few months. I was 16 and a friend and I thought we would see the space adventure movie we had kind of heard of call Event Horizon; in case you haven’t seen it, it’s not a space adventure movie. The nice paleontologist from Jurassic Park rips out his eyes and some crazy shit gets said in Latin. After the movie I ran inside my house and told my parents I had just seen the scariest thing ever and apologized for seeing a rated R movie. I didn’t sleep well that night. When The Ring came out I saw it with my roommate in college who had already seen it. He sat next to me with his knees to his chest and he kept punching me saying things like “Oh shit, oh shit this is crazy. Fuck it; I’m not watching Boyd look! Look!” If I had seen a little girl that night I would have dropped a load in my pants.

Since then I have seen only a few horror movies that I liked. Frailty, The Orphanage and The Descent are all pretty great. May is awesome and comes highly recommended as well as Inside. Inside comes with a warning: if you are pregnant or are thinking of becoming pregnant in the near future and have a problem with blood, you might want to wait on that one.

Of course there are the horror staples like The Exorcist which I’ve never made it all the way through. (Demon possession also really scares the crap out of me) Alien is great too, but since the franchise has become so saturated now, I don’t know if it still holds up as well as it used to. The Evil Dead is one of my favorites but I tend to watch that in awe of the filmmaking that went into it. I could go on and on with stuff like Steven King, Wes Craven, and John Carpenter’s work but you already know it all.

Scary 1

New horror seems to be lacking; especially since it’s a lot of remakes and reboots. Friday the 13th has already been made with another one on the way along with Nightmare on Elm Street and I think another Hellraiser might be coming out. I watched the new Friday the 13th and it wasn’t scary at all. A Haunting in Connecticut wasn’t terrible until about half way through the movie when they started to figure out the mystery of the house then it became unbelievable cheesy.

So what scares you? Have you seen any good scary movies lately?

I saw a trailer for The Fourth Kind and it’s all about alien abductions. It might be bad but I’ll see it then regret it as I lie in my bed that night. I hope to one day direct another horror movie. It was in college; my first film actually, you can see it here part 1 and here part 2.

Let me know what scares you!