October 31, 2012

Episode VII

George Lucas and Kathleen Kennedy on the Future of Star Wars

My earliest memory from inside a movie theater is watching Princess Leia dissing Luke Skywalker for being too short to convincingly impersonate a stormtrooper.  I always remember the scene differently from how it was actually shot: some how, my 3 year old brain knitted together the stark black and whites from the hallways of the Death Star with this scene, so I always remember what is actually an all-black room as a high contrast black & white.

Weird, I know.  Maybe it was just a bit of information overload for my developing cranium.

Point being, while I'm a much more rabid Trekkie than Star Wars fan, I basically know the dialogue from Episode IV by heart.

I remember when the Star Wars movies were good.  Sadly, there's the kernel of a good story in the most recent trilogy, but the difference, as always, is in the storytelling details - the everyday choices made by a director on dialogue, on performance, on camera position, on edits.  SOMEONE could have made "The Phantom Menace", "Attack of the Clones", and "Revenge of the Sith" into good movies.

There was a time that the film snob in me completely dismissed the idea of someone else making Star Wars movies because they're really George Lucas' magnum opus, but clearly George Lucas doesn't agree with me, and he's probably right.

So, my thoughts?

  1. Hire JJ Abrams and Damon Lindelof.  Unlike me, they really do froth at the mouth about Star Wars.   And my namesake has gone on record on more than one occasion about why this whole Mitichlorians garbage completely defeats the entire point about The Force.  A great starting place.
  2. Do as many things practically and in camera as you can. The CGI is killing the dramatic tension of the action and it's distracting from the drama.
  3. Two words: Mark Hammill.
Let's DO THIS.

October 23, 2012

Why Reviews Matter On Amazon

Admittedly, between work & weddings, I haven't had nearly the time to devote to Macroscope that I used to, and many of my missives have been creeping into Facebook and Twitter more frequently.  But this blog has been my creative, opinionated home for over 10 years now, so it will always occupy a place of reverence for me.

It's also the best way for me to reach people who I know dig my work directly.  So, if you're reading this blog, I'm assuming you're a fan of my writing.  For that, I am eternally grateful.

You also probably know that I've been redirecting my writing energy towards pure fiction over the last year, in the form of my ebook shorts, all of which I'm selling exclusively on Amazon.com for the Kindle, iPhone, iPad, web browsers, etc, including:

I'm sure many of you aren't surprised to hear that, far and away, my best selling short story is "33 Ways To Kill My Husband" - even though it's still, clearly, in a similar vein to my other work, it has a much broader appeal, is not really scary, and, honestly, is probably quite funny (at least, I think it is).

But what I've noticed is that, when we do these free promotions on Amazon, "33 Ways" vastly outsells the other books, and my theory on it is that a big part of it is the reviews.  I have easily 10x the number of reviews for "33 Ways" as for the other books, and I suspect that Amazon's internal recommendations algorithm chooses to suggest it to more viewers because more people have taken the time to write a review (the vast majority of which are positive).

So, again, my theory is that the other books could reach a larger audience if they had more reviews.

With that in mind, I have a request:

I've you've had the chance to read my other books, and you enjoyed them, I would really appreciate it if you took a second to give them reviews.  It could be as simple as "I loved it!" or "It scared the crap out of me!"  One or two sentences is probably enough.  But it could be a huge way to help me reach an even larger audience.

You can find them all online at this link.

Thank you all for sticking with me for the last decade.  And who knows what the next ten years may have in store...

October 22, 2012

American Made Music to Haunt By

You all know this is my favorite time of the year.  You also know that storytelling and film is my true passion.  But one of the things I always loved to do when writing a screenplay was adding music cues to help tell the story.  As I think I've mentioned before, the band Godsmack played a big role in my Boogieman screenplay, "Nite-Lite", and my love for '90's R&B is everywhere in my original AFI screenplay, "My Own Lily".

And even though, these days, all of my creative energy is going into by ebooks (for now), I can still hear the guitars playing in my head.  So, this time, I thought I'd share it.

As you know, this week, in anticipation of Halloween, I'm offering my horror short, "The Trick-or-Treaters", for free, exclusively on Amazon.com.  But, for a little extra something to take your reading experience to the next level, here's my semi-unofficial Trick-or-Treaters soundtrack, featuring the likes of Rob Zombie, Type O Negative, Outkast, Korn, DMX, and Diana Ross.

Yes, Diana Ross.

Kick back, relax, and let it scare the Hell out of you.

Trick or treat. Or else.

They're back.  And, this time, they're free.  Check out "The Trick-or-Treaters" for free all week long, exclusively at Amazon.com.