Monday, November 30, 2009

The Novel - Part 5

I may not know much but I know when to quit. Nanowrimo has defeated me this year even more than it defeated me last year. Unlike last year's dismal failure, I actually have pretty reasonable excuses as to why I only got to 22,000 (and no, I am not going to write 28k words between now and midnight) but truth is, I threw in the towel Friday night. I had all weekend to rock it but chose comic books and horror movies instead. Boo hoo!

But all is not lost. I am very happy to report that what I did manage to get down on digital paper this year is some pretty wild stuff and I'm pretty happy with it. So it's not like I'm frothing at the mouth and deleting everything letter by letter. No, instead I will be spending the next few weeks editing last year's frenzied mess and this year's frenzied mess into a cohesive whole which I casually refer to as the first third of my novel. Then I can start working on the book again. And if I let it sit until next Nanowrimo... So be it. I'm on the write path! Get it?

Okay, so what about Doomed Moviethon? Well kids, I have to tell ya: things are lookin' good. I've got a mess of new content all lined up for December. So keep checking in on me. There will be lots of good stuff as 2009 comes to a close. See you very soon, yo.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

The Novel - Part 4

Yours truly with Walgreens cola.

The worst thing about writing fiction is that once one character poops then you start thinking 'Well, I guess now everyone has to poop'. So you go back and start adding in every single time that every single one of your characters uses the toilet. It's great for the word count but think what it does to your soul, duder! Okay, so I'm only at 17,000+ words. I kind of had a migraine for about 4 days and could barely look at a computer. But, the pain is gone and I'm back in the game. Will I get to the 50k? No. Will I be glad that I made the dream of finishing this dang book a little bit more real? Yes. Should I just shut the hell up? Yes, YES, YESSS!

Right now the book sounds like this:

But I want it to sound like this:

Monday, November 23, 2009

Mill of the Stone Women

From Giorgio Ferroni, the guy who directed Night of the Devils, comes Mill of the Stone Women. This is a pretty great Italian/French co-production with a very morbid and bleak atmosphere. There is some padding by way of a couple of redundant scenes and cornball "we-must-explain-crap-we-don't-need-to-explain" dialogue but otherwise a great film. Cinematography by Pier Ludovico Pavoni is bright, colorful and razor sharp. Performances by leads Pierre Brice and Scilla Gabel are fantastic. Mill of the Stone Women would make a great double feature with any of Barbara Steele's Italian gothics of the time.

Monday, November 16, 2009

The Novel - Part 3

File Photo

I think we have a porblem! It is November 16th and I only have 8,000 words. So I have 14 days to come up with 42,000 words. That is seriously screwed up, yo. I'm going to be running silent for the next two weeks on the blog here. Crap, I haven't even got to the part of the story where everything goes freakin' bonkers and people's faces start getting ripped off. Okay, I did have a part where someone's lips got chewed off but that was like boring compared to what happens later. Anyway, here are some clues to what inspired this whole book I'm doing:

Here's a picture of my dad (circa. 1989):

Now here's a picture of me (circa. 2007):

God is my co-pilot:

Our cat Sparkles (circa. 2008):

The soundtrack:

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Beyond the Valley of the Dolls

For years, I've been under the delusion that I had already seen Beyond the Valley of the Dolls. Truth is until last night, I'd seen most of Valley of the Dolls (which I need to revisit soon) and about two minutes of Beyond and my mind had melded them together with a false memory of seeing the film. For reasons I only now understand, I recorded the flick on the DVR when IFC played it a few days ago and just started watching it after dinner last night. Well, it only took me about two seconds before I realized: "HOLY SHIT! I have never seen THIS before!"

If you haven't seen this movie yet and you have even a passing interest in trashy nonsense, then do yourself a favor and experience Beyond the Valley of the Dolls. The editing is like a lightning-powered blender stuck on purée. Many instances of dialogue are trimmed so tight that they almost don't make any sense. The script and the plot are so contrived, convoluted and campy that my brain exploded. There's sleaze to spare and a surprising amount of violence wrapped in a comically dated late 60s package that is still offensive after all these years. I consider this a life-changing experience that I cannot recommend highly enough.

Behind the scenes promo:

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

The Novel - Part 2

Well, I'm somewhere around the 5,000 word mark so let's go ahead and quote Rocky and Bullwinkle:

Rocky: I don't think we're gonna win this one, Bullwinkle.
Bullwinkle: We'll be lucky if we lose!

But I will not admit defeat. I still have 19 days and I'd like to think that anything is possible. In case you're wondering, my novel is going to sick, gory, demented, and just a tad surreal. Oh, you're not wondering? Neither am I. Anyway, I got my copy of Footprints starring Florinda Bolkan the other day. Can't wait to fire up that one! Bless the sacred and holy international DVD player for that one. Okay, enough of all this stalling, I need to get back to the book.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Stupid Thought

Why do I bother lending out my horror movies if no one bothers to watch them? I'd rather have the discs come back broken than unwatched.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Die, Monster, Die!

Is that horror or glee on Suzan Farmer's face?

The unpacking continues as does National Novel Writing Month but I still find time for horror movies. While my collection is still in boxes waiting for proper shelving to be purchased and assembled, I did pick up Die, Monster, Die! with badass Boris Karloff for $3 at Big Lots the other day. I assumed that this film was one of Karloff's later cheapie efforts where his ailing health made him less of an asset and more of a setpiece.

Much to my delight, this Lovecraft-inspired film is incredibly atmospheric, is well acted by everyone involved and even has some good scares. Cinematography by Paul Beeson is especially impressive. Karloff is in fine form here as the head of the dying Witley family. Dude has a thing for glowing rocks. Freda Jackson, who is obscured behind black curtains during her entire screen time, is phenomenal as his ailing wife. Her scenes are chilling. Anyway, if you see this one gathering dust at your local Big Lots, grab it!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

The Novel - Part 1

So what the damn hell is my stinky novel about anyway? The short version goes like this: A high school girl finds out her father is a serial killer which may or may not be a bad thing. It occurred to me that no one in the history of popular culture has ever written a horror novel about a serial killer. The killing of serials remains the last great untouched resource of creative ideas for novelists. I must be the first person to try and describe what makes these murderers tick. Hoowee hoowee wow!

So yeah, I am now 849 words into my novel which is tentatively titled "Winter" or "More Winter" or "That's My Triangle Ram Don't Free The Pee". Actually, I got up to 23 grand last year but didn't even come close to what I'm trying to do with this thing. So hopefully, if I get this second part of the novel up to the 50,000 word mark, I'll have something pretty substantial on my hands.

This serial killer idea has been kicking around in my head since Thanksgiving of 2002. You see, I went on this 23 hour roadtrip with my future wife and future in-laws and started to develop the idea on the road. Why do family activities make me think about murder? Seven years later, I'm still trying to get this dang friggin' thing on paper or Word document or whatever. Anyway, wish me luck.

Here's what I want my book to sound like:

Monday, November 2, 2009

Halloween 33: The Aftermath

Boo! I'm going in the dumpster!

Halloween? More like HalloLOSE! The least Halloween-like thing you can do is moving to a new apartment. Between the old apartment, the new apartment, the Salvation Army donation drop-off, and the storage unit, there is just no room for spooky good times. I couldn't even get to the box containing Slumber Party Massacre! I know it has nothing to do with Halloween but for my wife and I, it is a must see on our favorite day of the year.

The one shining light was finally sitting down and watching Once Bitten with my wife and mother-in-law (our new roomie!). I have always had a soft spot for this flick ever since catching it on cable with my folks back in the day. This trashy and campy Jim Carrey loser has earned itself a regular spot in our Halloween lineup permanently. It gets better with every viewing, seriously.

So what else? Oh yeah, it's National Novel Writing Month once again. Last year, I was defeated by both my wife and my mother-in-law who made the 50,000 word goal. Unfortunately, I only managed to get to 23,000. This time, I hope to get to 25,000 if not actually winning the dang thing. So things are going to get pretty quiet around here. But don't worry, I will be popping up with progress reports on the book and occasional musings on movies but I really want to make my goal this year.