Day Fifty – Powering Through

19 02 2010

Writer’s block is an interesting concept. It’s an excuse for an excuse to not write. It’s true that sometimes I have a hard time coming up with something to write, but that’s because I’m thinking of something less hard to do. Still, writer’s block is basically not wanting to write. There’s only one solution:


Write whatever is in your head. Just start writing, get all the junk out of the way and eventually you’ll find what you wanted to write about. Today is Day 50 of 365. I could have claimed I had writer’s block on at least 30 of those, but I just powered on through. 

This was my ideal writing space for a while, until policy changed and my time in here was limited.

By forcing myself to write every day, I’ve found writer’s block to become less and less of a problem. Using this blog as a way to get my finger tapping the keys, I get my mind working. The brain is like a muscle, and until lately, it hasn’t been getting much exercise. Much like the rest of my body.

Up until a little while ago, I lost my willingness to make that push to get something down on the blank page. I had a million excuses. I was too busy. I should be looking for a different door to get my foot in. I was waiting for the inspiration to hit my like a dodgeball in gym class.

My most productive time was when I was working projection at an old movie theatre. There were only six screens, so once the shows were started, I had about an hour to myself. I would have only the light reflecting of the walls from the projectors to light my pen and paper. I would have tons of ideas for screenplays, TV shows, novels, comics.

I actually managed to get a couple of specs done, too. I sent them out to Hollywood with such hope and the rejections were sent right back. That was a first excuse of many to wait for something better to appear.

Management changed at the theatre and that productive writing hour was now taken up with running up and down the stairs doing two jobs. I never wrote as much as I did then.

The good news is the intention of this blog is starting to take effect. That constant drive to have something down has spilled over to Final Draft. I haven’t been this excited to write since I was in film school. I’m starting to write more and more. I have 25 pages down on my latest screenplay, with more to come real soon.

Thanks to the 5 of you who manage to visit the site every day or so. I started this blog to exercise my writing and didn’t expect anyone to check it out more than once. Thanks for sticking around. Makes it even more worthwhile to drive towards that arbitrary goal I set for myself.

Hopefully by 100 posts, the screenplay will be done and these habits I’m developing will stick.


Day Thirty-One – One Month Later…

31 01 2010

I’ve made it thirty-one days so far, keeping my promise of posting new content every day. Out of it, I’ve had a few talking points. For many of which, there have been a few developments.

Here’s a handful:

Day Seven – Why Does Everyone Love “Avatar”?

After watching Avatar the week it came out, I wasn’t much of a fan. I knew it was going to make money, that was without question, but I didn’t think it had the legs to push as far as it has. Not only has it surpassed Cameron’s other record-setting blockbuster, Titanic, in the world-wide grosses, but it’s making a run for the domestic title.

It begs the question, who is still watching Avatar. I know a bunch of people who haven’t seen it and don’t intend to, yet they were there to partake the mammoth run of Titanic. Still, it manages to top the box office every single weekend. This one included, with a $30 million that a first-run movie would be happy to take home. There’s going to be a push to give Avatar the Oscar for Best Picture. I’m hoping they don’t give into the pressure after passing on The Dark Knight last year.

Day Nine – It’s About Time, But It Still Won’t Work

It took until the day of posting this for the Toronto Maple Leafs to make a move to bring them out of the rut they have put themselves in. Dion Phaneuf and J. S. Giguere will definitely bring some people back to the TV broadcasts and maybe keep the ticket holders in their seats, but it’s just one step in an eventual run to the Cup. They are still far from it, but at least there’s progress. Shocking progress, at that.

Day Eleven – 3D is a Gimmick!

I’m not the only one who thinks so. A bunch of people turned on 3D after the buzz at CES died off. Roger Ebert has always been against it and G4’s Adam Sessler joined the chorus when they threatened to gimmick-up his beloved games.

Day Twelve – Can’t Go Home Again

Jay did the clichéd thing that everyone does when they have a nice guy image to restore: he went on Oprah.

Still no telling if it’ll work, but he’ll have until at least September before Conan comes back.

Day Thirteen – Why Isn’t MMA Legal Here Yet?

I got some insight into why MMA is having such a hard time coming into the city, by way of The John Downs Show on AM 640. (January 25th)

Basically, people think violence is bad, even in the form of sport. They insist that the UFC is vile and the martial arts teach you respect. That just goes to show the lack of education in the subject people have.

My problem isn’t that people don’t like it. It’s not for everyone, but to prevent me from watching it because you think it’s disgusting is just sad.

Day Seventeen – Movie Theatre Etiquette

Sadly, nothing has changed on this front. I went to the theatre the following week and one of the employees walked in and toyed with his phone in the front row, holding it up so he, and I, could see better. How will movie-goers learn the etiquette if the employees don’t follow it themselves?

Day Twenty-One – I Hate the Evening News

This video says it all, and much better than I ever could:

Day Twenty-Three – I Miss the Drive-In

I still really miss the drive-in.

Day Twenty-Five – Movies I’ve Seen Recently and Why Criticker Makes Them Fun

This was my most popular post of all-time, thanks to a link-back from Criticker’s twitter. Thanks again.

Day Twenty-Eight – Over-Hype

Everyone seems to think they’re completely original when they mention that the iPad sounds like a maxi-pad.

It’s not.

I’m looking forward to next month. Hopefully I can still find something to write about.

Day Eight – Body Scanners and Why I’m Not Worried

8 01 2010

The big news item of the past couple days has been that the government of Canada has imposed body scanners be put in major airports across the country. Everyone travelling south of the border by plane will be subjected to them until further notice. This, on the heels of a recent terrorist threat on a flight to Detroit. Some people find this to be a gross invasion of privacy; I, however, do not.

Though the, apparently authorless, article at The Ubyssey would have you believe these images are just another step under the ever judging eye of Big Brother, I think this isn’t any different than what we’ve already been subjected to, yet a little safer.

Only technophobes would find this techonology anything other than cool.

I’ve been pat down walking through the metal detectors at airports multiple times and the guards there aren’t shy about feeling around. I don’t understand how someone in a different room, staring at a faceless image of my body could be any more embarrassing. There are worries that you can see fake breast and fat deposits through these machines, but a naked eye could easily spot the same thing. Sorry, but a hoodie isn’t fooling anybody.

As it goes for seeing your genitals, the alternative is always a pat down. I would much rather have the faceless image be sent to someone standing in the general vicinity than someone cupping me while looking me in the eye. Sure, they don’t know what they’re holding to the detail that the person looking at the image would, but they’ll definitely read the uncomfortable look on my face as they continue to pat me down.

Not to mention that after about one shift behind the machine, that security officer won’t care what you’re packing. After two shifts, they would have seen everything there is to see. No one is special enough to be worried that someone is laughing at them in some room around the corner. By the end of the day, the only thing that will catch their attention is something completely out of the ordinary. That’s the point, isn’t it?

It does feel like sometimes we’re giving up our privacy in order to be safe. Some say that it doesn’t really stop anything, but that’s the reason we don’t hear about it. The reason we’ve heard about the near disaster over Detroit is because it was just that. If it were someone who was thwarted at the gate, we would have gone on our day without knowing that yet another person was pulled aside for a secondary screening.

I chalk this up to another case of technophobia. The metal detector is a pretty old piece of technology and it’s about time we upgrade. If this can speed things up a little bit, even allow us to drop the metal detector all together, that could only be a good thing for air travel. Some people seem to agree.

At the end of the day, no one will be forced to go to the US. Especially by plane. If you’re that uncomfortable with someone seeing your faceless, naked body, just stay home. Or take a bus to the border. But you should probably make it a point never to get sick or have a physical, because the doctor just looking at you naked is the least of your worries when you’re there.

They have cold hands.