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Patrick
  • I am not laid off but I am taking a pay cut & possible one-week furlough in the second half of the year. I spent most of last week successfully arguing in favor of a union vote to accept the pay cuts in lieu of additional layoffs (that is, on top of the ones announced today). I'm off on my normal weekend today, plus a day for my birthday Tuesday, but I've been checking Facebook & getting emails on the layoffs. (I was notified by phone earlier today that I was in the clear). Apparently the company-wide layoffs made the national news; my aunt from Arizona called this evening to check on me.


  • Bought some new clothes today, perhaps not the most rational reaction to a pay cut but my wardrobe's getting pretty shabby. Also, I always feel better going to work in new clothes, and I think that's going to be helpful.


  • Going to see Watchmen Tuesday, plus I am rewatching the Lord of the Rings extended editions. Tonight, The Two Towers.


  • My cat has developed several annoying new habits, including constant meowing to go in the garage and walking on my pillow, stepping on my hair, while I am trying to sleep.


  • Thinking about gaming again. Something simple, though, as I need to devote most of my free time to screenwriting. My group prefers point-build games, as do I, but they take so long to prepare to run, since you have to point-build everything. Considering D&D3e.

Current Mood: calm calm

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Current Location: home
Current Mood: amused amused

Looks like my family & I are going to Disneyland for spring break in April. Pinning down last details over the weekend. I haven't been since I was something like 8 years old.

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Current Mood: cheerful cheerful

5. The Graveyard Book, by Neil Gaiman
The story of Nobody Owens, orphaned as a toddler by the murder of his family, who is adopted by a graveyard of ghosts in England. He has various misadventures with vampires, ghouls, werewolves, and tomb guardians, plus encounters with the living, from the assassins who still search for him to a schoolyard bully. Technically considered a children's book, apparently, but lots of fun for any age.

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Current Mood: cheerful cheerful

Inevitably, on the heels of deciding to finish the incomplete feature version of Ghost Train next, I break the logjam on my other ghost story screenplay idea. Although I still have some issues to figure out with that one, and I'll be writing it from scratch as opposed to salvaging most of the current Ghost Train draft ... sigh.

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Current Location: home
Current Mood: confused confused

3. The Name of the Rose, by Umberto Eco
One of my favorite books that I dig out & re-read from time to time. Two monks investigate a series of deaths at an Italian monastery famed for its labyrinthian library.

4. Miracle at Midway, by Gordon Prange
Non-fiction history of the Battle of Midway in 1942, by the author of At Dawn We Slept, on the attack on Pearl Harbor. Not too much I didn't already know from reading other books on World War II in the Pacific, but interesting nonetheless.

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Current Location: home
Current Mood: cheerful cheerful

On a whim, I bought a book on home organizing at B&N from the bargain table on the way to checkout. One tip - keeping your email inbox clean of everything but stuff pending reply. Archive or delete everything else. And it suggests that if you have thousands of backlogged emails in your inbox, as I do, just archiving the entire thing & starting fresh. Implemented.

Also, I fixed my broken toilet & took care of some game-biz stuff. Now bills, new shoes, a letter, and some overdue phone calls.

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Current Location: home
Current Mood: productive
Current Music: The Dark Knight

  • I finished edits on my first feature screenplay, Chasing Shadows, co-written with mlvwrites and chadu, on Thursday & sent it over to the studio that had expressed interest. It will most likely be some time before we hear anything. In the meantime, I've been pondering my next screenwriting project - toying with about three ideas right now.


  • I had a five-day weekend scheduled for DunDraCon, but ultimately decided not to go down - hadn't really made any preparations as I did not know whether I'd still be finishing the screenplay or not, and felt like a weekend relaxing at home was more in order once I did complete it. Also, wasn't looking forward to driving in the rain. As it turns out, I got called in to work Friday to cover for a colleague with a death in the family. Right as I was looking up times for a matinee after sleeping in, too. Then the day got worse - heading out to the pizza buffet at the nearest Round Table, I spotted a van unloading disabled people from a group home. Which is great that they are getting a day out, but it can be noisy & distracting with all the hooting, shouting, and attendants trying to corral people roaming around the restaurant. Which is to say, I by no means begrudge them going out for pizza or think they don't have every right to be there; just that I did not feel up to dealing with it that day. So I headed to another Round Table, where their idea of a pizza buffet seemed to be to cook one pizza every 20 minutes or so for a restaurant full of people. Then I tried to pay my mortgage online, got foiled by the utterly stupid sign-on procedure, couldn't restore my password because Chase requires your ATM card number, which I don't have since I have only a mortgage through them, and ended up paying a fee to pay via phone. Work went all right, although as a result I missed Battlestar Galactica, Dollhouse, and Sarah Connor Chronicles, all of which I'd been looking forward to seeing since I normally work Friday nights.


  • I did catch up on Battlestar Galactica this morning via SciFi.com. I hadn't been watching regularly for the past couple of years, but the buildup to the series finale is really good and, by necessity, escapes the snails-pace plotting & what-the-hell-is-going-on factor that turned me off in the first place.


  • Told myself I was taking the weekend off, so I also watched Godfather II & Agony and the Ecstasy on TV, Richard III w/Ian McKellan on DVD, caught up most of the last Sober House, and spent a couple of hours at Thunder Valley Casino in Rocklin. Also took a couple of naps. I was going to hit a movie or two, but didn't feel like seeing anything serious and was dissuaded from the more frivolous offerings by terrible reviews.


  • On Monday, I'll start catching up on errands I put off while writing feverishly - paying other bills, fixing a broken toilet, writing a letter to my aunt in Arizona, replacing a headlight in the car, and figuring 2008 sales tax for Firefly Games. I also have a contract to sign & return.

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Current Location: home
Current Mood: cheerful cheerful
Current Music: Speed Racer

Draft of Chasing Shadows complete. 102 pages. Technically, I still have to input a few Act III revisions from mlvwrites and apply some polish before we send it off to the studio later this week. But it's pretty much all there.

Fairly worn out. Barring a swift request for a rewrite or some other project, both unlikely given turnaround time if nothing else, I think I'm going to take a couple of weeks off from writing before starting prep work on something else.

If you're interested in looking at the draft after reading months of my flailing around on it, let me know. I'll need any feedback, if you're inclined to provide it, by Thursday to be useful, as that's the target date to send it on.

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Current Location: home
Current Mood: cheerful cheerful
Current Music: The Phantom of the Opera

  • My entry in the first week of the CoWrite screenwriting contest didn't win, but I received an email this week saying it was one of the top-rated entries & encouraging me to submit again. It's not clear how many entrants got the emails, but they apparently did not go out to everyone. In the CoWrite contest, writers submit 10 pages at a time in an ongoing feature screenplay. Every two weeks, a winning entry is selected, and the next round's 10 pages are basedon the evolving story so far.

  • Nearly finished with the Chasing Shadows feature screenplay. Just about 10 pages of new material to go as we wrap up Act III. Going to do some more writing this morning.

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Current Location: home
Current Mood: cheerful cheerful
Current Music: Requiem for a Dream