Monday, April 5, 2010

Here comes the pitch...

Thursday night I was invited to pitch a story to Pronto Comics, a collective of independent comic writers and artists.  They are planning to put out a pair of anthologies for the summer convention season, one of which is a war anthology.  Being a WWII buff, I jumped at the chance to write a small 5 page story.  I just heard about this group and the anthologies last week so I was under the gun.  I was able to finish a second draft in time for the meeting.

I was a bit nervous.  Their website didn't impress me and was barely functional.  However at the time of the meeting, my fears were dashed away.  These guys were organized and motivated.  I was thoroughly impressed with how self aware they were.  One of the first things they mentioned was that the website was being completely redesigned.  They mentioned their plans for the upcoming convention season.

Then came the point in the meeting when anyone can use two minutes to pitch their story and if an artist who was on hand was interested, he would approach you. A few of the Pronto "veterans" made some very cool pitches.  They were prepared and their focus showed.  To be honest, I wasn't 100% confident in my story and I think that doomed my pitch.  I fumbled my words and wasn't clear nor concise. It was very daunting to talk about my work in front of 30 or so strangers.  Needless to say, no one approached me when the pitch period was finished.  I was disappointed but used the time to reflect on what I did wrong.

Later in the meeting the artists and writers broke off into workshop groups.  I started a conversation with two other writers who pitched stories and discussed my script.  I had some hard copies on hand, let them read it , and they gave me very constructive feedback.  Then Dominic, the editor of the war anthology, approached me and said the current war anthology is locked up but he would like to use my story in the next one.  I exhaled a sigh of relief.  Not only can I give this script the polish it deserves, but I don't have a crushing deadline.

Again, I am really moved by the drive these creators have.  Check out their site.  I don't think the redesign has been implemented, but give these guys a chance.

I've been published...and I did a Q & A.

My fellow Comics Experience alum Justin Heggs just posted a Q & A on his blog Tiny Electric.  Check it out here.

Friday, April 2, 2010

I've been published...

Self published actually...

My comrades from the online intro to writing comics class from Comics Experience have released an anthology of our stories and it's available here.

Get your copy now!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

The Death of Common Decency

On Saturday, a group of us went to dinner and a movie.  We ate at Famous Dave's, a BBQ favorite of ours and caught an early evening showing of The Crazies.  We had lofty expectations for the film after seeing the trailer but my enthusiasm was quickly dashed after 15 minutes of uninspired direction.  The movie wasn't bad, I just expected more.

One thing that did not enhance our moviegoing experience was the rampant use of cell phones in the theater.  If it wasn't one person five rows in front of us texting for 90 straight minutes, it was the woman who got TWO calls in the last 5 minutes of the movie!!

My girlfriend took a poll of her 7th grade class on Monday and asked her students if they answered their phone in the middle of a movie.

All of the 25 or so kids raised their hands. 

She then asked if their parents answered their phones in the middle of a movie.

All of the 25 or so kids raised their hands again. 


As much of a curmudgeon as I might sound, I just don't get it.  I can understand if you get an important call.  By all means, answer it.  Just get up and leave.  At least put your fucking phone on "vibrate".  Shit, I do it.  I have received phone calls during movies, just never one important enough for me to pick up.

Cell phones in theaters are just part of the tip of a large iceberg.  People just don't give a shit about each other anymore. 

Last month, my girlfriend and I were coming back from the red-eye flight from Las Vegas.  We were waiting at baggage claim when this woman was trying to get her heavy bag off the moving platform.  Her bag was so heavy that she fell on the floor.  Mind you, I was a good 25 feet away but I ran over, got her bag off the platform and helped her off the floor.  There were at least 5 or 6 people closer to her who didn't even blink.  It was surreal.

I know I am not alone in this sentiment.  My girlfriend feels exactly how I feel and that is one of the many reasons we are perfect for each other.  We can't be the only ones...right?  Right?

Friday, March 5, 2010

Reply Hazy

As I sit at my desk I work, I feel the seconds picking away at my soul like carnivorous gnats.  The gravity of my cube prevents my dreams from taking flight.  Buzz words like "value-added" and "metrics" enter one ear and out the other like a large caliber bullet.  I asked the magic 8-ball on my desk for advice.  It responds with "Reply Hazy".  Of course.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Humble Pie

First off, I have to admit when I am wrong.  A few weeks ago, my girlfriend started a blog about her journey from a NYC public school teacher to a makeup artist.  You should all read it.  She's a much better writer than I am.  Anyway, she suggested that I start one and I dismissed it with about as much snark as Simon Cowell. 

Over the past few weeks I have looked to writing as not just a possible vocation, but as my salvation.  I took a fantastic comic book writing class at the Comics Experience that I highly recommend and the fire was lit.  Another byproduct of this class was the formation of a near fraternal bond with my classmates.  It that through this bond that we were inspired to self publish an anthology of the stories we worked on during the 6 week period.
Since the end of the class, my writing output has blossomed.  I have finished another script for a concept that I want to play with.  After another draft, I will post it for my former classmates to critique.  Their criticism has always been honest and never patronizing.  We all want each other to improve and to succeed.

I'm not 100% sure what the format of this blog will be.  I might write about music or movies, but I'm not going to post any mp3's (lawsuitphobia).  For now, I will wing it and eat my humble pie.

Cat, you were right!