In Development

Yesterday I chatted with a director/producer. He’d read some of my work and was (is, I suppose I should say) particularly interested in one of my plays. He’d like to turn it into a feature film.

So now I’m finishing up The K-Pro and then I’ll be turning my energy and attention to scripting this movie.

It’s good for me to have priorities. Otherwise, I’m liable to drift from project to project like a bee goes from flower to flower. I do eventually get things done, but it’s faster if I have motivation and/or a deadline.

If all goes well I’ll have a preliminary script done by late March or early April. (I expect K-Pro to publish sometime this month, and since I’m scripting from an existing play, I think—hope—the first draft of the film version will be relatively quick and, dare I say, painless?)

After the script, I’ll go back to St. Peter at the Gate. That about does up the first half of my year. Break in London in July and attack whatever comes after, well, after.

Another Chance to Read “St. Peter in Chains” Free

So my short screenplay St. Peter in Chains is set to have a table read at the Sundance Film Festival next Friday, the 25th. At the Waldorf Astoria (if you happen to be there and interested in attending). But if you can’t be at Sundance to hear the script read, you can at least read the novella the script was adapted from. It’s free for Amazon Kindle today through Wednesday (the 23rd). Go pick it up here. That way you’ll be all set for “St. Peter at the Gate,” which I hope to finish and publish this spring.

The Next Big Thing

1. What’s the working title of your book?

The K-Pro.

2. Where did the idea come from for your book?

I’m not entirely sure. Some of it is from personal experience, and the rest . . . ::shrug::

3. What genre does your book fall under?

I thought it was going to be a paranormal romance, but there’s really not enough of the romance part to qualify. So I think it’s more of a contemporary fantasy with romantic elements.

4. What actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?

When I first started writing, I had Benedict Cumberbatch in mind for David, though I’m not sure now that I’d cast him in the role. No idea about Andra, either. Alfred would be a Nathan Lane or Alfred Molina type maybe? Mac and Craig and Liz? I can picture them all perfectly in my mind, just not sure which actors would fit the bill.

5. What is the one sentence synopsis for the book?

Andra Martineau has the power to make people’s dreams come true, but what can she do for the man who already seems to have everything?

6. Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?

I’ll probably go ahead and self-publish it. I’m too impatient to wait for agents and publishers. And I’ve had some decent success with the self-pub route.

7. How long did it take to write the first draft of your manuscript?

About a year. I’m rewriting now.

8. What other books would you compare this story to in your genre?

I have no idea. It’s a whole new genre for me.

9. What else about the book might pique the reader’s interest?

Fun on a movie set? With Greek gods?

Thanks to Christine Rains for this; go check out her latest e-story “The Alpha,” which is the second installment in her The 13th Floor series.

Sherlock’s Daughter

If I ever write an autobiography, I think that’s what I’ll call it. My dad is brilliant (in a literal, high-IQ kind of way), but then again he’s worked for the government and he’s not all that ambitious so maybe he’s more of a Mycroft. But my dad is also the one who instilled a love of Holmes in me from a young age, so I associate him more with Sherlock Holmes than anything else. And I’m a daddy’s girl, an only child, but he only wanted one, and he wanted a daughter. It’s nice to grow up knowing you’re wanted.

Really, though, I had originally considered using Sherlock’s Daughter for the title of my next novel, then discarded the idea because it’s not a Sherlock Holmes story (sorry to fans of my Holmes works, there will be more of that to come, I promise) and I didn’t want to mislead readers. So the novel in question then briefly had the title of The Handler, but that was too generic. I might call it Pretend You Love Me.

But first I must finish these edits to The K-Pro; I’ll be holed up all weekend working on it. Not tonight, though, because I’m off to see Eddie Izzard perform some new material.

And completely unrelated, but: Stage 32 did a little write-up about Table Read My Screenplay. St. Peter in Chains gets its read at Sundance on the 25th, at the Waldorf Astoria.

Goals

Just like last year, I thought I’d set some [writing] goals for myself this year and see what I can accomplish over the next twelve months. So here, in no particular order:

  • Edit & publish The K-Pro
  • Finish writing & publish “St. Peter at the Gate”
  • Draft at least one new novel (either Pretend You Love Me or An Astral Affair)
  • Finish my Henry II play
  • Write at least two more Sherlock Holmes stories
  • Finish my zombie television pilot spec script

It’s a pretty ambitious list, I realize. And there are still other projects in the wings not listed here. I don’t know if I’ll be able to do it all, but I’m going to try!

12,000

I passed the 12k mark in sales and downloads on Christmas Eve. Quite the gift from my readers, and just a couple days shy of being exactly six months from my first publication. If I do the math correctly—and I can’t promise anyone I can or will—that’s an average of 2000 a month. I really appreciate that people are reading (or at least buying and downloading) my work. I’m trying to get more written, too. I mostly get asked for more Sherlock Holmes stories, but I also get a lot of requests for more of Peter Stoller, and that’s what I’m working on now. I’m also making major revisions to The K-Pro. And yes, there’s an idea for a new Holmes story percolating in the back of my brain as well. 2013 promises to be a very busy year . . .

Progress

Thanks to everyone who supported me by downloading my free e-books over the holiday weekend. I hope you’ll also consider leaving reviews on Amazon (particularly if you liked what you read)!

Last Wednesday night—or really, very early Thursday morning—I finished the first full draft of The K-Pro. It needs a lot of editing. But it’s nice to have one complete draft to work with. Meanwhile, I’m also still planning to finish that sequel to “St. Peter in Chains” too. And possibly (probably) write another Sherlock Holmes story, since those are what I get the most requests for.

And so here, as we near the final month of 2012, is where I stand with my goals:

  • Finish “St. Peter in Chains”
  • Finish The K-Pro
  • Finish the spec script
  • Get at least one more play accepted for production somewhere

I did finish (and publish) “St. Peter in Chains.” I have finished a draft of The K-Pro, which sort of counts as “finishing” it and sort of not. (Admittedly, though, when I made that goal I thought it would be a short story, not a novel.) I finished the spec script some time ago (for all the good it’s done me). And “Warm Bodies” got accepted to a second festival—and also for publication in an anthology—but I’ve had no new plays accepted anywhere, so again I only count that as a semi-realized goal.

What are there, five weeks left in the year? It’s been a pretty good one, but it could rocket to the top of all-time best years if I could just get some good news for Christmas or my birthday.

The State of Things

There’s a lot going on just now. I had to send my first ever copyright takedown notice when I found PDFs of something I’d written had been uploaded to a Web site by someone I don’t even know. Look, I’m all for people enjoying my work, but don’t take that work and post it somewhere without my permission. That irks me. (Only tangentially related: A Game of Hearts by ZMethos is different from the “Game of Hearts” stuff currently on that big fan fiction site. Both Sherlock but totally separate.)

Meanwhile, I’m very close to finishing The K-Pro, which was one of my goals for the year. Ideally we’ll be able to publish it in November. If things stay on track and I don’t get interrupted. Or distracted.

And after that, I hope to go back to finishing the “St. Peter” sequel. I’d been doing pretty well with it, but then lost the thread during my travel. I came back feeling more K-Pro, so . . . That’s the way this writing thing goes sometimes.

As for NaNoWriMo, I’m not sure I’m going to do it this year. I’ve already got so much going on. And I have zero ideas for writing anything long enough. But we’ll see. It’ll be a game time decision.

Of Titles

I am currently writing a sequel to “St. Peter in Chains” and now I’m mulling over possible titles.

“St. Peter in Chains” (as a title) came to me quite unbidden; I knew what I would call the story even before I began writing it. Well, before I physically began writing it, since I wrote a lot of it in my head prior to actually typing anything.

Now, “St. Peter in Chains” is a biblical reference, certainly, and the corresponding event is the one known as “The Liberation of St. Peter,” or sometimes “The Deliverance of St. Peter.” But I’m not sure whether to keep the “St.” as part of this second title, though I’ll certainly use “Peter” in some form or fashion.

I don’t want to get too close to Anne Rice’s erotic title Beauty’s Release, so I’m shying away from anything that sounds remotely like that. I’m a bit fond of “St. Peter Set Free” because it has the same cadence as “St. Peter in Chains.” But I don’t know if that will be my final answer.

In any case, I suppose I should focus on finishing the manuscript. It’s going well, and I’m enjoying writing it. So far at least. So many readers were furious with the less-than-perfectly-happy ending of “St. Peter in Chains,” so I’m aiming to remove the ambiguity in this one. We’ll see how it goes.

Two Weeks to AFF

I’m two weeks away from the Austin Film Festival, looking over the schedule of panels and films and trying to figure out where to be and when. There are a couple panels I signed up for in advance, but other things remain up in the air. Certainly I’d like to learn more about independent filmmaking, since that seems like the most likely and possible route for St. Peter to get made as a short. And anything about breaking in would be good. Funny how after all this time, I’m still “breaking in.” How do you know when you’re finally in? (I guess when they’re calling you instead of you calling them.)

And then there are the “conversation” panels with lots of great speakers. Marti Noxon. Damon Lindelof. Chris Carter. And I have a ticket to the awards luncheon. And I’m hoping to get in on a roundtable, though I’m not sure which one.

On top of all this conference stuff are the films. It is a film festival, after all. I need to look through the list and go read the descriptions and figure out which I have the time to see, and which of those I actually want to see. Because I also have friends in Austin I’m planning to visit. And there’s all that food, too. Gotta make time for that.

By the end of all this, I expect to be an exhausted heap. In a good way. I hope to make a lot of connections and learn a lot while I’m out there. Look out, Austin. M is coming back to play.