Showing posts from July, 2015


The best- the only- advice a writers needs. Keep writing. All other ideas, advice, changes, breakthroughs, innovations, edits- the whole enchilada, if you will- only happen when you take that first bit of advice.

Read others people's stuff. Write in a journal. Cut the first two lines and the last two lines of each scene. Make sure the character has a flaw. Keep the pace moving.


Just keep writing. Nothing else really matters.

Even when you don't want to.

Especially when you don't want to.

After you have gone through all your excuses, your other things that must be done- walking the dog, watering the plants, calling that friend you haven't spoken to in years, checking the scores, rearranging the refrigerator.

Keep writing.

After you have read what you've got so far at least fifty times. After you've stared at the screen and gone into a sort of coma and snap out of it not sure where in the story you are, or if it is worth anything to anyone, ever in the h…


I'm working on a new script- a pilot for a tv series that for the moment I am calling Boogie Man. It's a  character driven paranormal show that examines America through our many myths and legends. Let's face it- we love horror. There is a reason that thrillers are the most greenlit movies out there. They make money! Hand over fist, day after day, year after year, we fork over our hard earned, meager wages to watch ghosts and ghouls and creepy dolls terrorize what we pretend are average Americans. It is what we do, for the most part.

Don't like scary movies- that's cool, but I hope you realize you are in the minority. And kind of un-American.

One of the things I like about being scared is the rush- the adrenaline ka-pow! feeling when the clown attacks from under the bed, or the decapitated head pops out of the boat. That immediate, in-the-moment realization that for a least this second, I am alive and fear for my life. And then I get the added bonus of realizing tha…


That's a quote from Richard Brautigan, who was this writer. My mom loved that particular quote. The whole line, which she said often, was "Finding is losing something else. I think about, perhaps even mourn, what I lost to gain this." I don't know if that is the actual quote. That's just how Mom said it. She also would often say "From the Mud Grows the Lotus." I think that might be the title of my autobiography. Of course, that implies that I have achieved lotushood, which is not really up to me to say. I, like Popeye, am what I am.

For those keeping score, you have no doubt noticed that I am writing on this blog a lot more. There are several reasons for this. First, I feel better when I write- in my journal, with my scripts, on this blog. It purifies my soul somehow. I often think of all these thoughts in my head as living beings, that if I don't get out of my head and onto the page/screen will die inside of me and poison my system. So I do it to s…


So this morning, at the sort of early Eight-thirty call time, my young cast of Honk! at Reel Kids was looking bleary eyed, half-asleep, and in need of some energy. Usually, we start rehearsals with a quick physical and vocal warm up, followed with some improv. That way all three of our basic tools- voice, body, and mind- are ready to work. (Part of my training at San Jose State University, which we all had drilled into our brains, was that an actor's job is to "create a believable character in a given situation using their voice, body, and mind)

But this morning, it was clear something different was called for- something new and fun and that would knock us all out of ourselves. Too often in this life, I think we all sort of sleep walk our way through the day, barely aware of all the wonders that surround us. Yes, I know, there are plenty of mundane things out there, so try and keep your eye rolling to a minimum. There is magic in this world, numinous experiences patiently wai…


So I am busy a lot. I direct shows all over, write as often as I can, teach in many places, and am actively pursuing selling my screenplays.

Right now, I am directing the musical Honk! at Reel Kids, and next week I start a production of Avenue Q there as well. (slots are still open, if you are a teen ager and want to do a show with dirty jokes, puppets, and awesome songs) I am also in pre-production for Lend Me a Tenor with Inspire/Creative in Parker. This is a show with adults, and my first full production down there and I am very excited. I am also gearing up for a production of the Drowsy Chaperone at the Wolf Theatre at the Denver JCC which starts in September.  I am also getting ready to create a brand new show with a group of young artists at the Logan School, where I will be teaching this coming year. And I will also be doing a Glee inspired show up at StageDoor in Conifer to round out my fall/winter session.

Writing wise, I am working on a new pilot called Boogie Man, a paranorm…

Poem I Wrote for Jack

Sometimes, I think my brain is like that scene in Poltergeist when Craig T. Nelson takes the paranormal investigators to the kids room- the one where one of the investigators tells him that he once, on a time lapse video, got a sponge moving several inches- to which Nelson looks extremely unimpressed. Nelson then opens the door to the kids room, the room where Carol Ann disappeared, and the investigators see all sorts of debris flying around the room- books flapping like birds, a kids vinyl LP that connects with a writing compass and impossibly begins to play, a light bulb that flies into the socket of a lamp and turns itself on, and a Hulk doll riding a toy horse like he's a little Teddy Roosevelt on San Juan Hill.

That's my brain. All these disparate items, flying in a funky, magic, sort of malevolent vortex, creating crazy-logic that is both amusing and creepy.


So Halpin me a poem the other da…