Book of Matches Media is a small collective of independent authors, filmmakers, photographers, artists, and musicians dedicated to producing quality work in a variety of genres and mediums.

The Tumblr is run by founder G.Y. Haney and will contain mostly cool things meant to geek you out and wasted your time. Enjoy!

[via What Culture] 7 Up-And-Coming Directors Attached To Huge Hollywood Movies

My newest (and first!) article is up over at What Culture, one of the UKs most visited entertainment websites. Here’s a taste of the article for you all. Hit the link to check out the rest of the piece! Thank you!

High expectations can make or break an artist, and no higher expectations exist for a creator than to helm a Hollywood blockbuster. While some artists thrive on ballooning budgets, busted deadlines and the boundaries of their sanity (ask Francis Ford Coppola), others crumble beneath the weight of all that mounting pressure. And do I mean pressure.

One need look no further than the journalistic lambasting that surrounded nearly every aspect of 2013′s The Lone Ranger (which wasn’t nearly as bad as everyone wanted you to think it was). In my opinion, director Gore Verbinski and producer Jerry Bruckheimer never even stood a chance, and they’re seasoned Hollywood vets.

So what about the newcomers? …


Read more at http://whatculture.com/film/7-coming-directors-attached-huge-hollywood-movies.php#LxwYSDw85wgfi5bq.99

[via io9]: Why Does Every Story Have To Be an Earth-shattering Epic?

Its a good question, no?

Lately, it seems like every story has to be massive, or nobody cares. Every Doctor Who story is about saving the entire universe. The latest Hobbit movie seemed to be trying to be a Lord of the Rings-style saga. Every action movie needs global stakes. Can we talk about our epic epidemic?

Yes we can. In fact, after reading this wonderful article from our friends at io9Matt and I did talk about it at length. It truly is pervasive, our popular stories having grown to be so “epic.” But is it really growth, or are we devolving? Have we always been big, or have we taken what was once big and watered it down with lazy storytelling, sequel after threequel after reboot after remake, and the race-to-the-bottom pursuit of “spectacle”?

I mean, once a team of superheroes saves the earth from an alien invasion, can we really get any bigger?



Honestly, how many times can we (with a straight face) put the entire planet on the chopping block, use it as stakes in our fictional little games, and expect the audience to take us seriously?

Epic is a buzzword, one that has lost all meaning; at the very least, it’s meaning has shifted.

ep·ic [ep-ik]

adjective Also, ep·i·cal.

  1. noting or pertaining to a long poetic composition, usually centered upon a hero, in which a series of great achievements or events is narrated in elevated style: Homer’s Illiad is an epic poem.
  2. resembling or suggesting such poetry: an epic novel on the founding of the country.
  3. heroic; majestic; impressively great: the epic events of the war.
  4. of unusually great size or extent: a crime wave of epic proportions.
  5. Slang. spectacular; very impressive; awesome: Their burgers and fries are epic!

Take a look at #3. That’s some strong language. Magestic? A powerful world. And the sentence example - the epic events of the war - has weight. Its a strong sentence, not just because a word like war at once pulls so many emotions and memories to the surface, but because those feelings happen to, in fact, be epic; they are impressively great.

Now look at #5.

Their burger and fries are epic???

This is where epic has come. It is slang to the general public, its power rendered useless. But this isn’t a post about “kids these days” and their overuse of words they don’t understand. Seriously, use epic however you want in your every day conversations.

What we are talking about here is storytelling, and when we evoke “epic” into our storytelling, we must remember #4: of unusually great size or extent. The key words there are unusually great. That implies a certain… rareness. See, not everything can be epic. If everything is epic, it ceases being epic. It ceases being rare. Follow me?

What we’re really searching for in all this epicness, I believe, are stakes. What is at stake? And stakes are built on character. So what Hollywood has forgotten (if it ever really knew) is that stakes are in the eye of the beholder, and usually that eye should be your protagonist’s. Its not (only) about set pieces and action sequences and CGI; If you write a strong character the audience can relate to, the stakes can be personal, too.

Think for a minute about the film Taken. A simple premise: guy rescues daughter. Personal. The outer world doesn’t blink while this guy has the most harrowing struggle of his life to save someone he loves. That’s stakes. But of course, in all honesty, Taken was never supposed to make a lot of money. It was shot for a measly 25 million but wound up taking in over 226 million worldwide! See, epic comes with a price tag, and when you spend “only” 25 million on a picture, you can get more personal. As that price begins to climb, however, you better make with the epic fast.

What was cool about Tolkien’s Hobbit is that it is about Bilbo Baggins (could be why he called it The Hobbit and not The Wizard or The Elf). Certainly there may be epic importance going on around him, “off camera”, when Gandalf is away and such, but Bilbo’s main “stake” is to simply make it home. He ends up in a battle, (because that’s how adventures like this tend to go), but the focus is not the battle - the lessons learned and the fate of Bilbo aren’t determined by the battle.

They’re actually determined by a game of riddles in a dark cave.

This “small” standoff is epic because its epic to Bilbo: its the discovery of a magic ring and a battle of wits for his very life. Epic is a mindset, a mentality, not a formula to slap on to any story that hopes to manufacture grandeur. This is sort of why the Narnia films don’t work super well. They’re fun enough, but the “epic” in most of those tales is not the loud battle (which is usually relegated to a couple of pages in the actual books); its in the quiet character moments.

Hollywood has no time for quiet.

But if you want to be truly epic, best make sure that you do.


Until next time, farewell and adieu.

GYH

5 Touchstones of Solid Storytelling

GREETINGS PEOPLE OF THE INTERNET,

Its always interesting to start a new site and throw yet another piece of yourself into the unknown ether of cyberspace. There’s that voice in the back of your head that whispers “nobody cares” over and over again until you’re completely convinced that’s its right. I’m going to try to drown it out by speaking first and foremost on story, something I hope we all care at least a little about. It’s why we are here, after all. Book of Matches Media was creating by storytellers in an effort to seek eyes and ears ripe for the amusing - readers and fellow creators alike. And in today’s digital age, let’s be honest… we’re all a little of both.

So as an introduction to my take on the matter - my understanding of the traits that keep me writing and reading and watching and dreaming - I present you with a question:

WHAT DO WE GET OUT OF STORY?

In my mind, there are a handful of responses I hope to elicit with my work. These are things I also look for in the stories I consume. A well-crafted story should be:

  • Engaging
  • Emotionally Resonant
  • Entertaining
  • Well-paced
  • Complete

Let’s look briefly at each bullet-point and I can speak to their importance.

  • Engaging – To be engaged with something, in part, means to be occupied by it; to have one’s attention on it; to engage in conflict or conversation means to become involved with it. It implies a certain willingness to accept the challenge. I believe a story can be entertaining without being engaging* and can be engaging without being entertaining.** But the best stories do both, because being engaged with something means taking an active part in thinking on it, dissecting it. This isn’t a matter of writing complex material, just a matter of making themes resonate. It gives the reader something to chew on after they close the book.
  • Emotionally Resonant – The readers must invest emotionally in the journey of our characters in order for the work to have any weight. The stakes must be understood and expressed; the tension must be palpable. Conflict, especially in conversation, needs to feel real. This will put our readers in the shoes of the characters, and imprint their emotions on the outcome of the tale.
  • Entertaining – This goes without saying. A work of fiction should be enjoyable, a page-turning. Entertainment is not a matter of pacing, though the two often go hand in hand. Entertainment, to me, is the lighter side of engagement. Its the feeling we get when we enjoy something, and its often hard to grasp exactly where that feeling comes from or how it was provoked. If engagement is head, than entertainment is all heart.
  • Well-paced – Pacing is so important, though it often remains an elusive term. What defines pacing is often external, specifically the expectations of your audience, age group, and the genre your book falls into. For me, pacing boils down to progress. The story keeps moving, keeps developing. This doesn’t mean action every scene; just because something is breezy to read or seems to click along does not mean its paced well, especially if such terse storytelling doesn’t allow for reflections or for the characters to even take a breath. However, how much “breathing” you can get away with, again, depends on expectations. A reader of literary fiction is looking for the more cerebral experience – the dialog-heavy indie film, if you will. Fans of genre fiction are probably looking for a more visceral read, something that punches – the summer blockbuster. Whether you plan on writing pulpy sci-fi or high-brow literary fiction, knowing the expectations of your audience will help a lot with pacing.
  • Complete – For me this is important because it’s a pet-peeve of mine. I hate plot holes. Every aspect of the story, from the setting and world-building to character motivation, should hold up under scrutiny. Of course its impossible to catch ever lapse in cohesion, but I long to make a severe effort at it. I want my tales to get better with each reading because the details feel complete or the time lines makes sense, not get less satisfying as the smoke and mirrors used to hide the holes begin to diminish under the light of day.

So there’s a little look inside my head. Over the next couple weeks I will post in more detail on each of this touchstones and site solid examples of work that satisfies my story expectations. This discussion will also serve as an introduction into Arc Theory. I hesitate to call it a “philosophy” since its merely some observations and organizations I use in my writing… but I do believe strongly in it, so what the hell. Arc Theory is my writing philosophy, and the 5 Touchstones are simply the beginning.

So what about you? What keys make up the satisfying fiction you enjoy? What “rules” do you adhere to in crafting your own tales?Join the conversation and thanks again for stopping by the new Book of Matches Media website. Follow us on Twitter and tell a friend or two!

Hackers, one of my favorite lame movies… just try not to think too much

** Colson Whitehead’s Zone One - spectacularly written prose that are lovely to read but really seem to take us nowhere… I haven’t managed to finish it yet.

[via io9]: Why Does Every Story Have To Be an Earth-shattering Epic?

Its a good question, no?

Lately, it seems like every story has to be massive, or nobody cares. Every Doctor Who story is about saving the entire universe. The latest Hobbit movie seemed to be trying to be a Lord of the Rings-style saga. Every action movie needs global stakes. Can we talk about our epic epidemic?

Yes we can. In fact, after reading this wonderful article from our friends at io9Matt and I did talk about it at length. It truly is pervasive, our popular stories having grown to be so “epic.” But is it really growth, or are we devolving? Have we always been big, or have we taken what was once big and watered it down with lazy storytelling, sequel after threequel after reboot after remake, and the race-to-the-bottom pursuit of “spectacle”?

I mean, once a team of superheroes saves the earth from an alien invasion, can we really get any bigger?



Honestly, how many times can we (with a straight face) put the entire planet on the chopping block, use it as stakes in our fictional little games, and expect the audience to take us seriously?

Epic is a buzzword, one that has lost all meaning; at the very least, it’s meaning has shifted.

ep·ic [ep-ik]

adjective Also, ep·i·cal.

  1. noting or pertaining to a long poetic composition, usually centered upon a hero, in which a series of great achievements or events is narrated in elevated style: Homer’s Illiad is an epic poem.
  2. resembling or suggesting such poetry: an epic novel on the founding of the country.
  3. heroic; majestic; impressively great: the epic events of the war.
  4. of unusually great size or extent: a crime wave of epic proportions.
  5. Slang. spectacular; very impressive; awesome: Their burgers and fries are epic!

Take a look at #3. That’s some strong language. Magestic? A powerful world. And the sentence example - the epic events of the war - has weight. Its a strong sentence, not just because a word like war at once pulls so many emotions and memories to the surface, but because those feelings happen to, in fact, be epic; they are impressively great.

Now look at #5.

Their burger and fries are epic???

This is where epic has come. It is slang to the general public, its power rendered useless. But this isn’t a post about “kids these days” and their overuse of words they don’t understand. Seriously, use epic however you want in your every day conversations.

What we are talking about here is storytelling, and when we evoke “epic” into our storytelling, we must remember #4: of unusually great size or extent. The key words there are unusually great. That implies a certain… rareness. See, not everything can be epic. If everything is epic, it ceases being epic. It ceases being rare. Follow me?

What we’re really searching for in all this epicness, I believe, are stakes. What is at stake? And stakes are built on character. So what Hollywood has forgotten (if it ever really knew) is that stakes are in the eye of the beholder, and usually that eye should be your protagonist’s. Its not (only) about set pieces and action sequences and CGI; If you write a strong character the audience can relate to, the stakes can be personal, too.

Think for a minute about the film Taken. A simple premise: guy rescues daughter. Personal. The outer world doesn’t blink while this guy has the most harrowing struggle of his life to save someone he loves. That’s stakes. But of course, in all honesty, Taken was never supposed to make a lot of money. It was shot for a measly 25 million but wound up taking in over 226 million worldwide! See, epic comes with a price tag, and when you spend “only” 25 million on a picture, you can get more personal. As that price begins to climb, however, you better make with the epic fast.

What was cool about Tolkien’s Hobbit is that it is about Bilbo Baggins (could be why he called it The Hobbit and not The Wizard or The Elf). Certainly there may be epic importance going on around him, “off camera”, when Gandalf is away and such, but Bilbo’s main “stake” is to simply make it home. He ends up in a battle, (because that’s how adventures like this tend to go), but the focus is not the battle - the lessons learned and the fate of Bilbo aren’t determined by the battle.

They’re actually determined by a game of riddles in a dark cave.

This “small” standoff is epic because its epic to Bilbo: its the discovery of a magic ring and a battle of wits for his very life. Epic is a mindset, a mentality, not a formula to slap on to any story that hopes to manufacture grandeur. This is sort of why the Narnia films don’t work super well. They’re fun enough, but the “epic” in most of those tales is not the loud battle (which is usually relegated to a couple of pages in the actual books); its in the quiet character moments.

Hollywood has no time for quiet.

But if you want to be truly epic, best make sure that you do.


Until next time, farewell and adieu.

GYH

[via What Culture!] 7 Up-And-Coming Directors Attached To Huge Hollywood Movies

My newest (and first!) article is up over at What Culture!, one of the UKs most visited entertainment websites. Here’s a taste of the article for you all. Hit the link to check out the rest of the piece! Thank you!

High expectations can make or break an artist, and no higher expectations exist for a creator than to helm a Hollywood blockbuster. While some artists thrive on ballooning budgets, busted deadlines and the boundaries of their sanity (ask Francis Ford Coppola), others crumble beneath the weight of all that mounting pressure. And do I mean pressure.

One need look no further than the journalistic lambasting that surrounded nearly every aspect of 2013′s The Lone Ranger (which wasn’t nearly as bad as everyone wanted you to think it was). In my opinion, director Gore Verbinski and producer Jerry Bruckheimer never even stood a chance, and they’re seasoned Hollywood vets.

So what about the newcomers? …


Read more at http://whatculture.com/film/7-coming-directors-attached-huge-hollywood-movies.php#LxwYSDw85wgfi5bq.99

FIREBOWL REVUE - How To Write A Novel by Nathan Bransford

How to Write a Novel: 47 Rules for Writing a Stupendously Awesome Novel That You Will Love ForeverHow to Write a Novel: 47 Rules for Writing a Stupendously Awesome Novel That You Will Love Forever by Nathan Bransford
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I’ve read many books on writing, as I’m sure many of us have. From McKee’s Story and King’s On Writing to Bradbury’s Zen in The Art of Writing and Truby’s The Anatomy of Story. I also enjoy those books that talk about creativity in general - Pressfield’s The War of Art, comedian/podcast king Chris Hardwick’s The Nerdist Way, etc.

What I found in the pages of Nathan Bransford’s How to Write a Novel is nothing new for someone in my shoes. But this is not a criticism of the work - its actually one of its strengths. What Bransford touches on throughout are time-honored traditions that will feel familiar, but they’re presented in his easy-to-digest, subtly brilliant sort of way. His work as a long-time blogger gives his writing that personal touch, as if you’re sitting across from him chatting about writing rather than reading a book about it, and his years as a literary agent and industry commentator give weight to his insights.

This is a solid little book that I’ll keep readily at hand, because its a quick-reference dream. Broken down into the “47 Rules”, its very easy to navigate and revisit. Its the perfect little compendium to the books I’ve mentioned above, and I recommend it especially to those who may not have read a lot of “how to write” books. Its an accessible entry into the craft of the craft.

View all my reviews

102 Favorite Films of All Time Pt. 1: Films 1 thru 8

On March 22 I begin the 3-day production of The Last Supper, my first short film as writer and director and a fitting culmination of a year-and-a-half’s work at film school. I am beyond excited. To commemorate this step in my life, I’ve decided to share with you a daily selection of my top 102 Favorite Films list over at Letterboxd.com (one of my favorite sites.) It’s really just a chance for me to talk about my influences, even if some of them (re: many of them) are ridiculous! Hopefully some of these are your favorites, too.

Today I share #1-8.



MEMENTO

Written & Directed by Christopher Nolan

WHY I LOVE THIS FILM: When I started playing guitar almost 15 years ago, I picked it up to write songs. I never wanted to be the most impressive guitar player so I never really learned how to “shred” or do all that fancy stuff; my voice was my true instrument and power chords were sufficient. I often feel the same way about film. I make films because I want to write stories. If I could draw I might do comics, but I can’t, so film is how I visualize story. I hesitated to even think of myself as a “director” because everything I write is so dialogue-heavy and character driven. I didn’t know if my writing and thinking would actually WORK as film.

Memento changed all that for me. I saw that interesting writing could drive a film and that the visuals - the work of the director - could provide effective and proper accompaniment, like a guitar with a voice. Nolan uses his camera like a magician uses slight-of-hand and misdirection (a trait his excellent film The Prestige explores more literally) and all his choices serve the script. I just love the writing in this piece, the odd-ball structure, the two correlating plot lines and the Oscar-nominated editing (delivered by the fantastic Dody Dorn, whose worked with other such greats as James Cameron and Ridley Scott.)

While some may argue that the film is overall too depressing or intrinsically nihilistic, I find it fascinating and engrossing; I believe it to be a modern masterpiece.



PULP FICTION

Written and Directed by Quentin Tarantino

WHY I LOVE THIS FILM: Again it comes back to writing and character. Like many others, my initial reaction to my first viewing of Pulp Fiction was “wow, people in movies don’t talk like this.” It’s a bit of a quandary really. We like to say Jules and Vern talk “like real people.” But they don’t. They’re far more clever and catchy than we’ll ever be. And chances are we’ve never been contract killers or crime-boss wives or shady professional boxers. Yet we relate. We connect to it because they talk about the similar, mundane crap we would talk about. Their words do little expository work, which is rare in film; talk of a Royale with Cheese doesn’t move the plot forward, but it sure does entertain us.

Pulp Fiction is a revelation in dialogue. And it doesn’t hurt that it features some of the best performances of its illustrious casts’ respective careers. Sammy L. is still playing variations of Jules Winfield, Travolta has never been as good since, and Willis’ Butch Coolidge is only bested, in my opinion, by Willis’ John McClane. Often imitated, never duplicated, Pulp Fiction is a bonafide game-changer and a film for the ages. 



12 MONKEYS

Directed by Terry Gilliam; Screenplay by David and Janet Peoples

WHY I LOVE THIS FILM: As will become abundantly clear as this list continues, I have a soft spot in my heart for time travel movies, Bruce Willis, and Terry Gilliam. I truly believe Gilliam is one of the most creative and passionate filmmakers working today, and I believe he has the worst luck ever. His productions are always mired in chaos (watch the great doc Lost in La Mancha for just a taste of the disaster); he is notorious for being constantly over schedule and over budget (though it seems to me this is mostly the fault of the half-assed producers he finds himself aligned with); he has never (and probably ) found a large audience for his off-brand humor and aesthetic. Yet despite all this, J.K. Rowling and producer David Heyman wanted him to be the first director to bring the Potterverse to the big screen. So that’s gotta count for something, right?

12 Monkeys is Gilliam at his best, his directorial sensibilities in great concert with a tightly-written script. Bruce Willis delivers one of his most vulnerable and heartfelt performances to date, and Brad Pitt does… well, what Brad Pitt does. Which is play crazy really well.



FIGHT CLUB

Directed by David Fincher; Screenplay by Jim Uhls

WHY I LOVE THIS FILM: Beginning to see a trend? I’m a real big fan of the unreliable narrator, and it doesn’t get much more unreliable than Edward Norton’s unnamed protagonist, “Jack’s inflamed sense of rejection”, our hapless guide through the world of Fight Club. Fincher shines here, bringing his slick grittiness to every scene. And I’m a fan of Chuck Palahniuk in general, but for my money this is one film that is much better than the source material.



PAN’S LABYRINTH

Written and Directed by Guillermo del Toro

WHY I LOVE THIS FILM: I love a dark fairy tale, and given del Toro’s penchant for combining practical effects work with childhood nightmares, Pan’s Labyrinth is the perfect dark fairy tale. It’s sad, it’s scary, it’s magical, it’s beautiful, it’s bleak. Del Toro is a guy I am constantly enamored with; for me, everything he touches turns to gold.

Another added bonus to most del Toro films? You get a healthy dose of Abe Sapien himself, Mr. Doug Jones, who appears here as the titular Pan as well as the king of all bad dreams, the Pale Man. Jones is excellent as always.



28 DAYS LATER

Directed by Danny Boyle; Written by Alex Garland

WHY I LOVE THIS FILM: A really wonderful take on the zombie/outbreak/apocalyptic genre, Danny Boyle delivers a terrifying yet contemplative and poignant film about what happens when all of humanity’s tenuous rules snap around us.

This film is really taut and beautifully shot. It’s also scored very effectively by John Murphy. And it made me fall in love with Cillian before he was a scarecrow, so that’s a plus. Danny Boyle is one of my favorite working directors and this is by far his most accessible and complete movie (in my opinion.)



NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD

Directed by George A. Romero; Written by Romero & John A. Russo

WHY I LOVE THIS FILM: Ah, the one that started it all, not just my obsession with all things undead, but the mainstream public’s as well. Everywhere you look these days you see shades of Romero’s vision, from Robert Kirkman’s The Walking Dead comic series (and subsequent AMC hit show) to silly public service announcements about CPR. This film has certainly had an impact.

My favorite part about the film, though, is that an African-American (Duane Jones) is the lead. And the hero. In a horror film. It’s 2014 and we’re still waiting for this phenomenon to be common place, so much so that it’s a well-known trope (whether it is factually true or not) that in a horror film if you see a minority or a cop, you can pretty much count on them being dead before the final act. (The fact that LL Cool J plays a security guard in Halloween H20 and still manages to stay alive the entire time (hope nobody’s upset about that big old Halloween H20 spoiler…) defies horror logic. But then again, he is LL Cool J. Straight pimp.)

So yea, I think Night of The Living Dead is important in a number of ways. To this day it is still my favorite zombie film and still the reason that every time I sit down to write a new film, I always picture it in black and white first.



WILLIE WONKA AND THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY

Directed by Mel Stuart; Screenplay by Roald Dahl

WHY I LOVE THIS FILM: Willy Wonka is my idol. He seriously embodies all the things I grew up cherishing. And I’m not talking chocolate and candy. I’m talking about pure imagination, the joy of creation, the sense of wonder and invention, of artistry, of never growing old. He’s Peter Pan all grown up, and not in that Hook sorta way. Wonka’s made it. He lives his life by a code: we are the music makers and we are the dreamers of the dreams. And he stops at nothing to achieve his dream. After all, we can’t forget what happened to the man who suddenly got everything he always wanted. He lived happily ever after.

I can’t even begin to tell you what the magic of this story has done to my life. I can honestly credit it for making me believe that I could be an artist. That I could live happily ever after in a real way. It might seem strange to glean so much from what is essentially a psychedelic kid’s movie, but hey, I’m a strange guy.

Plus, Gene Wilder, man. How can you argue with that?

[via What Culture] 10 Hotly Anticipated SXSW Movies You Need To See In 2014

My newest article is up over at What Culture, one of the UK’s most visited entertainment websites. Here’s a taste of the article for you all. Hit the link to check out the rest of the piece! Thank you!



For over two decades, fans of film, music, technology and gaming have flocked en mass to Austin, Texas for the South by Southwest Film Conference and Festival. Hailed by many as one of the best launching places around for indie film, SXSW has cultivated a reputation for giving emerging filmmakers a much-needed boost in the industry.

Last year’s festival saw the critically-acclaimed drama Short Term 12 win both the Grand Jury Narrative Feature Award and the Narrative Audience Award, and three notable films - Vincenzo Natali’s Haunter, E.L. Katz’s Cheap Thrills, and Joe Swanberg’s Drinking Buddies – received distribution deals.

This year again promises some more excellent finds, as well as the US premiers of some highly anticipated films in a variety of genres. From pet projects by big-name directors to crowd-funded fan-darling revivals, here’s a look at 10 films making a splash at this year’s festival…


Read more at http://whatculture.com/film/10-hotly-anticipated-sxsw-movies-need-see-2014.php#MghqceOV94I3hZjd.99

FIREBOWL REVUE - Write. Publish. Repeat. by Johnny B. Truant & Sean Platt

Write. Publish. Repeat. (The No-Luck-Required Guide to Self-Publishing Success)Write. Publish. Repeat. by Sean Platt
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is a very informative and easy read. Very conversational. Johnny has a great voice. The advise throughout is solid and credible because of the successes of Platt, Truant, and Wright. In the e-book age, its pretty easy to stumble upon any old book on writing or self-publishing or what have you and have no idea what you’re getting into, usually because the author is unproven or unheard of. There’s nothing more frustrating than reading something written by someone who has no clue what they’re talking about.

This book is the complete opposite of that.

My favorite part of the book was the chapter that looked at what traditional publishing gets RIGHT and how to implement and learn from it. As an author, filmmaker, and entrepreneur (who still has a wicked time spelling that word…) I’m very interested in indie publishing, but I’m getting tired of the rhetoric from other indie purveyors (I won’t name names) and their legions/lackeys. There’s a deepening us vs. them divide in publishing, but I prefer to take the tone of this book: if you want to be a professional, outright ignore the legacy professionals at your own peril. It’s asinine to think that in just a handful of years self-publishing in its current form has not only obliterate an industry that’s been around as long as publishing has, but that there’s also nothing left to learn from the “wreckage”. We still study dinosaur bones, right? Indie publishing is a great option, one I fully plan on exploring. But to demonize traditional publishing in an attempt to make your indie foundation more durable/credible/trendy is just annoying. I’m really glad Truant and Co. had the wisdom not to dive into such frivolities.

All in all, a great and topical book that I will return to again and again.

View all my reviews

FIREBOWL REVUE - Write. Publish. Repeat. by Johnny B. Truant & Sean Platt

Write. Publish. Repeat. (The No-Luck-Required Guide to Self-Publishing Success)Write. Publish. Repeat. by Sean Platt
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is a very informative and easy read. Very conversational. Johnny has a great voice. The advise throughout is solid and credible because of the successes of Platt, Truant, and Wright. In the e-book age, its pretty easy to stumble upon any old book on writing or self-publishing or what have you and have no idea what you’re getting into, usually because the author is unproven or unheard of. There’s nothing more frustrating than reading something written by someone who has no clue what they’re talking about.

This book is the complete opposite of that.

My favorite part of the book was the chapter that looked at what traditional publishing gets RIGHT and how to implement and learn from it. As an author, filmmaker, and entrepreneur (who still has a wicked time spelling that word…) I’m very interested in indie publishing, but I’m getting tired of the rhetoric from other indie purveyors (I won’t name names) and their legions/lackeys. There’s a deepening us vs. them divide in publishing, but I prefer to take the tone of this book: if you want to be a professional, outright ignore the legacy professionals at your own peril. It’s asinine to think that in just a handful of years self-publishing in its current form has not only obliterate an industry that’s been around as long as publishing has, but that there’s also nothing left to learn from the “wreckage”. We still study dinosaur bones, right? Indie publishing is a great option, one I fully plan on exploring. But to demonize traditional publishing in an attempt to make your indie foundation more durable/credible/trendy is just annoying. I’m really glad Truant and Co. had the wisdom not to dive into such frivolities.

All in all, a great and topical book that I will return to again and again.

View all my reviews

[via What Culture] 10 Hotly Anticipated SXSW Movies You Need To See In 2014

For over two decades, fans of film, music, technology and gaming have flocked en mass to Austin, Texas for the South by Southwest Film Conference and Festival. Hailed by many as one of the best launching places around for indie film, SXSW has cultivated a reputation for giving emerging filmmakers a much-needed boost in the industry.
Last year’s festival saw the critically-acclaimed drama Short Term 12 win both the Grand Jury Narrative Feature Award and the Narrative Audience Award, and three notable films - Vincenzo Natali’s Haunter, E.L. Katz’s Cheap Thrills, and Joe Swanberg’s Drinking Buddies – received distribution deals.
This year again promises some more excellent finds, as well as the US premiers of some highly anticipated films in a variety of genres. From pet projects by big-name directors to crowd-funded fan-darling revivals, here’s a look at 10 films making a splash at this year’s festival…

getoutoftherecat:

get out of there cat. you are not a book filled with endless childhood wonder.

Or are you? …

getoutoftherecat:

get out of there cat. you are not a book filled with endless childhood wonder.

Or are you? …

(via leatherboundgeek)

archiemcphee:

English artist Craig Davison creates series of paintings that beautifully illustrate the awesome power of childhood imagination and our limitless ability to play pretend as our favorite movie characters. He draws from a wide variety of movies, but the pieces seen here all revolve around Star Wars.

Kids play their hearts in the foreground while their shadows loom larger than life in the background as the fictional characters they’re pretending to be. Tree branches have become light sabers, cardboard tubes and a hair dryer work equally well as blasters, a garbage can and a colander are all you need to be R2-D2 and C3PO, and a pair of headphones serve as Princess Leia’s cinnamon bun hairdo.

Visit Craig Davison’s website to check out more of his delightful and nostalgic artwork. Then go grab a tree branch and meet us at the park for a light saber duel.

[via Nerd Approved]

Oh my lord these are wonderful. So reminds me of my boys; gives me goosebumps. I totally need these lol!

(via leatherboundgeek)

mega-ashra:

We miss you, Egon. :_(  RIP Harold Ramis.

Well this is horribly sad…

mega-ashra:

We miss you, Egon. :_(  RIP Harold Ramis.

Well this is horribly sad…

(via leatherboundgeek)


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