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Monthly Archives: November 2020

I’ve recently gotten very interested in screenwriting. In part because I have an idea that seems to lend itself better to film, and that got me thinking. It seems like whenever a book is adapted to film, and I have read the book before seeing the movie, the movie ends up disappointing me. How about you? That said, when I do it in reverse order, watch the film first, and then read the book, I don’t judge the film nearly as harshly. Usually. My experience isn’t scientific, so take it with a grain of salt, but I’m curious what others think. Share your thoughts in the comments.

I do believe, as in the case of the screenplay I am working on, that some ideas are better suited to the screen (big or small) and others are better suited to the written word. I can’t put my finger on exactly why, it is just that when I come up with some ideas, they tend to fall one way or the other in my mind. There are plenty of exceptions, I’m sure. Perhaps you can think of some. Armageddon comes to mind. I can’t imagine it as a book. The Rocky movies are some more examples. Any Quentin Tarantino film, of course. Those come to mind for me, but I’m sure you can come up with a lot more.

Sometimes, it isn’t that the book wouldn’t make a great movie, it is just that the filmmaker made a bad movie. To be fair, at other times, it could be that it is a very good movie, but it disappoints those who read the books because changes have been made. Changes to beloved characters, for example, are high on my list of annoyances when watching a movie that was adapted from one of my favorite books. Clive Cussler novels are a good example. Some decent movies have been made from his novels, but they have never measured up. I think that Sahara was good as a movie, but they took a lot of creative license. Matthew McConaughey wasn’t my idea of the ideal Dirk Pitt actor, but he actually did a good job. The same with the actors who played the key roles of Al Giordino and Rudi Gunn. None of the actors looked like I imagined the characters in the novel looked, but I’d rather have good actors in the roles than doppelgangers who can’t act.

I have been reading the Syd Field books on screenwriting and I do recommend them for the shelf of every aspiring screenwriter, as they make up the bible of screenwriting, but I have also found another one that I am really enjoying. It is “Save The Cat!” by Blake Snyder. So far, it has been a very fun and eye-opening read. If you too have a dynamite idea for a movie or television show, you might want to add Blake’s book to your library. I’ll provide links below and if you buy though these links, I will get a modest commission, and it will be much appreciated. I will share some more about my screenplay in future posts as I learn this craft that is still new to me.

I’m back! It is hard to believe that I haven’t posted an update here in over four years. I’ve really neglected this space. That ends today, though actions speak louder than words. I’ve posted occasionally on social media, but even that has been meager. I’ve let my sequel to Terminal Tendencies, titled Malicious Machinations, languish at about 50% complete. So much has happened, but let’s get to the good and fun news.

I’ve got a new determination to get back to writing. Since January of this year(2020), I have been writing a column, twice a month, for the Augusta Medical Examiner. The column is called, Adventures in Middle Age. Please check it out and tell me what you think. Writing this column has gotten me back into the habit of writing and a few recent incidents have put things in perspective. I don’t want to work the rest of my life on things that aren’t nearly as fulfilling as writing is for me. I have too many interests and too many hobbies, but those all need to fade into the background so that I can do what I like best. I feel like I just woke up to realize what life is all about and I have to go for my dream to do what I love instead of just working to get by. It might take me a few years, and I wish I had gotten a start earlier and stuck with it, but as the Chinese proverb says, “The best time to plant a tree is twenty years ago. The second best time is now.” I’m planting that tree right now and not just one, but many trees, but all of them related to writing as my career.

I have found some excellent books that have inspired and informed me recently and I will start sharing them here in posts. Perhaps they can help you, if you also decide to pursue writing, or maybe they just get you to think about what it is you want to do for the rest of your life, whether it is writing or something else entirely.

The first one I will mention is Joanna Penn’s How To Make A Living With Your Writing. You can buy it below, either on Kindle (on the left) or in paperback (on the right). In either case, I get a small commission. Thanks.

I will share more as I get farther along in my reading, but this one has already made an impact on my outlook for a career in writing. If you have considered that before, it is worth a look.

So, now, I will get back to my work on Malicious Machinations, and since deadlines seem to work for me, my goal is to have it published and available for purchase by April of 2021. I will also be working on an audiobook edition of my Terminal Tendencies novel and hope to release it around that same time. Speaking of my first novel, if you haven’t already gotten it, you can find links below for the kindle and paperback version, respectively.