Good News!

After a few days of unexplained anxiety, I got some news today that really lifted my spirits. The US Copyright Office called me today with news regarding my order for a replacement copyright certificate and manuscript for a story that I had had copyrighted back in 1990. Of course, what would be good news without the bad, and they informed me that I would have to pay an additional fee because the manuscript length exceeded their basic guidelines.

Now that the fees have been paid in full (everybody’s making money off my work but me), they assured me that I should get my materials sometime next week and profusely (literally every other phrase was “We’re sorry for the delay”) apologizing for the length of time. I didn’t even think to be snarky about the whole thing; I was relieved that my long wait was about to be over.

In total, I paid out somewhere in the neighborhood of $300.00 for a story that hadn’t seen a publisher or editor since at least 1990. I will most likely take it, edit and rewrite the crap out of it, and then publish it in hopes of recouping some of that expense. Still waiting for that call from Hollywood… 😉

Let this be a Life Lesson for you all: keep backups of all your work because some mistakes can cost you big time.

Movie Review: DEADPOOL (2016)

Yes, I am a Deadpool fan…hehe.

Festival Reviews

Deadlines to Submit your Screenplay, Novel, Story, or Poem to the festival: http://www.wildsound.ca

deadpoolDEADPOOL (USA 2016) ***
Directed by Tim Miller

Starrting: Ryan Reynolds, Morena Baccarin, T.J. Miller

Review by Gilbert Seah

DEADPOOL the latest Marvel comic book ‘hero’ movie arrives with great anticipation and fanfare of comic book fans. Fans know their comic book hero and expect to see a foul-mouthed, angry, sexy and ugly fighter in an R-rated movie.

First of all, some background on DEADPOOL. Those familiar with the marvel character, best described as an uncensored personality would best skip this paragraph. DEAD POOL is the name of the lead character previously known as Wade Wilson (Ryan Reynolds). The character is less a hero than an antihero. He describes himself in the film as a bad guy paid to take out other bad guys. At first a normal human being, then voluntarily subjected to experiments in order…

View original post 478 more words

Character Development: The Anti-Hero/Heroine

Everyone knows about the Hero/Heroine archetype. They’re strong, virtuous, honorable, helping old ladies across the street and rescuing kittens from trees. That kind of stuff. They never do anything underhanded…blah blah blah…

This isn’t that kind of discussion…

The upcoming premiere of the Deadpool Movie has gotten me thinking about the Anti-Hero/Heroine. SO looking forward to seeing it…

But anyway…

When most people think of the Anti-Hero/Heroine, they generally think of characters that behave the opposite of the Hero/Heroine archetype. For the Record, I don’t like having to qualify my opinion using a “this/that” notation. It’s redundant and implies that my readers can’t read implied intent.

These type of characters, in my opinion, are the flipside of the traditional heroic archetype. They may curse, drink, get violent, whatever, but they are meant to walk the line between acceptability and offensive. Of course, I would never create a character that offends…wink wink nudge nudge…

Nobody follows the rules all the time. We’re human and are subject to fits of pique, mood swings, temper tantrums, and the occasional ritual of the throwing of punches and kicks. Strip away all the intellectual, social, and technological progress that we’ve made over the millennia and we’re just as nasty as any other predator.

Don’t confuse the Anti-Hero/Heroine with The Villain. If I could represent these moral alignments on a number line, The Hero/Heroine would be on the far left (it’s just a number line), the Anti-Hero/Heroine in the middle, and The Villain on the far right. I place these in their locations because while the Hero/Heroine has a specific set of rules that they don’t deviate from, and The Villain has no rules whatsoever, the Anti-Hero/Heroine has either a mix of the left rules and the right chaos or they internalize just enough of the right chaos to be somewhat bad, but they don’t quite cross the line in full-on Badliness.

Thoughts and comments are always appreciated and thanks for your time. 🙂

Character Development: Armed and Dangerous

It’s about 4:30 in the Morning as I type this, probably even later once I finally post it. Why would I be up at such an ungodly hour if I didn’t need to? Simple, my sleep cycle’s been off lately due to night hours at the Day Job and a bug that I seem to have picked up and am heroically fighting off. Seriously, we’re talking swords and shields here. 😉

Anyway…

Today, I want to briefly touch on the subject of how to arm your characters. Now, depending on a variety of factors, that could entail a wide range of selections. In my opinion, weaponry can be grouped into the following categories, but must be considered interchangeable This is not an all-inclusive list so feel free to add. I should note that I am not including the use of Magic in this discussion, but it is valid to note it:

1) Non-Lethal:

Non-Lethal weapons are any weapons that cause pain, discomfort, even unconsciousness without actually killing a person. Examples can include psychological warfare (people in relationships know this one), tazers (shocking, I know), pepper spray (spicy!) and when people “hack” your smart phone and post the naked pictures on the Internet (The Horror!).

2) Lethal:

Lethal weapons kill. Bottom line. Anything that has the potential to take a life can be considered a lethal weapon. There’s more in this category, so let’s take a walk down the List.

Inanimate Objects: These include rocks, trees (if you’re Superman), anything that you can pick up and chuck at the bad guys (or good guys if your alignment is toward the other side…hehe).

Bladed Objects: Anything with a blade that can cut, chop, slice, dice, or slash. You were checking out that butcher block in your kitchen, weren’t you?

Blunt Objects: Anything with a blunt edge that can be used to bludgeon an opponent or otherwise give them a goose egg on their foreheads. Popular selections include Hammers, Maces, Staffs, Morning Stars (Yes, it swings but combats shouldn’t be a dull affair).

Ranged Weapons: Bows and Arrows dominate this particular section and go from your basic longbow to composite to compound bow to crossbow. Even a slingshot falls into this section. When we scale up from that, we start to get into catapults and the Grand Momma of them all, the Trebuchet. After the Trebuchet, we start to include the use of gunpowder and start talking about cannons and eventually field artillery pieces such as howitzers. Rockets and Missiles also fall in here.

Projectile Weapons: For the purposes of this discussion, anything that uses a gunpowder propellant charge to hurl a projectile over a distance. In other words, guns. You have an insane selection to choose from in this case, based on the era your story is set. Handguns, rifles of the semiautomatic and automatic varieties dominate this particular section. The difference, of course, is how the action performs to either throw out one round or many, when you pull the trigger.

Directed Energy Weapons: To Infinity and Beyond! Yep, we’ve talking about the stuff that is semi-fictional. Yes, weapons that utilize light as a destructive catalyst do exist now, but they are First Generation at best. You won’t be picking up a copy of Han Solo’s Blaster at Cabella’s or Dick’s Sporting Goods any time soon.

As you can see, there are a LOT of choices that go into what your fictional people are packing. There’s no right or wrong choice because ultimately, the story will dictate what it needs.

Thanks for your time. 🙂

Rube Goldberg would be Proud

This particular topic would have made a great Writing Dilemma article, but I decided to do it this way instead.

Without giving away too many spoilers, the current scene I am working on in Lights and Shadows involves reviving two individuals in suspended animation pods whose control mechanisms are Rube Goldberg’d to the point of being silly. Editing it later will be fun…hehe.

For those who don’t know (Thanks, Wikipedia – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rube_Goldberg), Reuben Garrett Lucius “Rube” Goldberg (July 4, 1883 – December 7, 1970) was an American cartoonist who was fond of drawing elaborate machines designed to perform simple tasks. The phrase “Rube Goldberg” has become synonymous for taking something simple and making it overly complicated.

I didn’t intend for the scene to turn out the way that it is, but keeping up dramatic tension where there’s not a lot going on is a challenge and I am trying to use the situation as a means to explore the personalities and interactions between Zack Moreau and Marla Finch, two characters that are proving to be a very contentious couple.