Posts Tagged ‘Creative Writing’

I just finished up another class in my Creative Writing degree plan that was called Scriptwriting Techniques.  When I first started the class I was pretty upset because I had never even thought about writing a script, which of course is what I had to do in order to pass the class.  The largest portion of your final grade came from a 3-5 page script.  My first draft was full of action but lacked a lot of story and character development so I made sure to do my best to fix all those issues.  I’m posting my instructor’s feedback below, and will upload the script to my writing blog as soon as I get it copyrighted.

Layout & Format

No issues.

Story Notes

Jonathan, I really like how this is developing. It’s solid. However, don’t forget the human perspective in the end.

What is the apparent feeling of Davis and the men after all has transpired? How did this event change them forever? Get that in there and it will certainly be ready for production.

Demonstrated Strengths

Dialog is your strong suit. Your dialog is sharp and to the point.

Your description/action lines are consistently clear and efficient throughout your script. It is easy to visualize what is transpiring from moment to moment within the tale.

The pace of the story is solid, and your transitions from moment to moment are efficient and tightly structured.

Your script shows signs of screenwriting promise. I strongly encourage you to continue sharpening your skill sets and keep at this scriptwriting game.

It’s been a pleasure working with you this month. I wish you abundant success in all your future endeavors.

Remember that each class is an opportunity to convey the story of you in terms of where you fit into this nebulous world of media production. To make the most of every opportunity is all you ever need do.

In closing, my hope is that you live a troubled, conflicted life… But live to tell us exciting stories about it – stories that change our lives FOREVER. Hah! Make us realize we are not alone in the great struggle and celebration of life.

Be well, make good movies, and keep in touch,

Dustin

So it looks like I have the potential to write decent scripts as well as stories and poetry.  I’m hoping to continue improving my writing and have something published within a couple of years.  Let me know what you think in the comments below.  Thanks as always for reading and until next time.

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Moving

Posted: August 8, 2016 in Creative Writing
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Like I said in my update post, we got approved for our house.  While that’s great news, it also makes a whole new set of problems for me.  Since all my stuff is in Kentucky, and I have a 7-month pregnant wife, that leaves me with figuring out how to get all our household stuff up here to Illinois.

I have a plan in that regards and it’s going to make for an incredibly rough weekend.  When I get off work on Friday, I will be driving down to Kentucky, loading a moving truck on Saturday, and driving said truck to Illinois as soon as it’s loaded.  I’ll then sleep Saturday night, wake up Sunday and empty the truck so I can return it and be ready for work on Monday.  So in less than a 24 hour period I’ll drive to Kentucky and back again.

So while overall the news on the house is great, I’m really dreading this weekend.  Also since I’ll be gone this weekend that means I have to get all my weekly stuff done before I leave, so my homework, laundry, and that sort of thing.  Here’s to hoping that everybody has a good week and weekend.  Thanks again for reading, and until next time.

Update

Posted: August 8, 2016 in Creative Writing
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So as usual life has been pretty hectic for me.  Thursday we had a storm which knocked out the power, so I wasn’t able to get a post out there.  Friday was my birthday, so I was out doing things with friends and family.  Friday was a pretty big day for me not just because of my birthday, but also because we found out that we were approved for our house.  I went and made the deposit, and we get to move in this weekend (Sunday).

Other than that and work not too much has been going on with me.  This week is my last week of training, and then I get to start working my shifts (YAY!!!).  I feel that training has been going pretty well for me, I’ve learned a lot about the plant and where/what all of our systems do.

The only other thing I wanted to talk about was the direction of my blog.  I’ve been debating starting up another blog that would cover all the life events for me, while this blog would go back to what I had originally intended it for which was solely nerd and fitness related posts.  So what do you think about that thought?  Let me know in the comments below.

Well, I think that just about wraps up my update.  Sorry, I missed so many days in a row, I’ll try to keep the posts coming, but like I said sometimes life just keeps throwing snags.  As always thanks for reading, and until next time.

I have played Magic the Gathering off and on for many years.  Throughout those years I never tried to collect any full sets of cards, but instead just built the decks that I wanted.  Well, I recently got back into Magic and decided to change things up a little bit.  I haven’t decided whether I’m going to play Magic this type or just collect the sets, but I started collecting the Eldritch Moon set which just launched the other week.

I walked into the hobby shop and bought one pre-release pack, one fat pack, and one booster box just to see how much of the set I could get.  After opening up all the packs, I found I am only missing 17 of the 205 cards, so I’m doing really well.  I have all the most expensive cards in the set, so I think instead of buying more packs I’m just going to order all the individual cards that I need.

The 17 cards that I’m missing are:

#2- Decimator of the Provinces
#6- Emrakul, the Promised End
#17- Collective Effort
#20-Deploy the Gatewatch
#39- Sanctifier of Souls
#42- Sigardian Priest
#64- Indentity Thief
#65- Imprisoned in the Moon
#70- Mind’s Dilation
#99- Oath of Liliana
#130- Hanweir, the Writhing Township
#136- Mirrowing Dragon
#156- Emrakul’s Evangel
#176- Ulvenwald Observer
#197- Lupine Prototype
#200- Stitcher’s Graft
#204- Hanweir Battlements

Well, those are the cards that I still need to complete my set.  If you know, anyone who has copies of those cards let me know.  After I finish this set, I may work back and get some of the other sets that I missed.  I will start collecting each set from now on, though, so even if I don’t play, I’ll at least have a good collection of cards.

As always thanks for reading.  If you play any Trading Card Games let me know which one in the comments below.  Do you prefer to get just the cards you need to play or do you like to collect entire sets?  Thanks again for reading, comments/likes/shares/follows are greatly appreciated and will help me to continuously improve as a writer.  Until next time.

 

 

 

 

 

 

New problems

Posted: August 2, 2016 in Creative Writing
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Now that we think we have found a house another problem has arisen.  All of our stuff is Kentucky and with me being on probation at work, it is going to be very difficult to get our household stuff up here.  We have looked at several options and are trying to decide which is our best option.

Option one is to get a pod.  For those that don’t know what a pod is, it’s basically a mobile storage unit that gets dropped where you want it, and then they ship it to your new location.  Obviously, this is a tempting option since I’m in Illinois and April is pregnant, but it has one very big shortcoming.  That option will cost us $1900!!  That’s a lot of money and money that I can’t be spending to do that.

Our second option is better in regards to money, but it’s shortcomings are time and energy.  The second option is to get a Uhaul.  I would have to drive down to Kentucky on my weekend off, load up all our stuff, and drive back in time to be at work on Monday.  Obviously, it’s not very appealing to me, but it’s also $1400 cheaper so it’s probably the option I’ll go with.

This was a short post, but just thought I would let you know that I have been faced with new problems.  No real big issue, just a giant pain in the butt.  Thanks for reading and let me know if you’ve ever had issues like this.  As usual, all likes/comments/shares/follows are greatly appreciated and will help me to improve.  Until next time…

The sun beat down angrily, on a lonely sandy trail in the foothills surrounding a bustling military base.  Trudging wearily through the sand was a lone figure wearing combat fatigues, load bearing equipment, and a large rucksack that looked ready to topple the Soldier if he grew careless.  He was a short, stocky man, with wild black hair that sprouted from his patrol cap, which he was trying to use without success to mitigate some of the sun’s harsh glare.

With each step he dug his feet deeply into the sand, trying to gain enough purchase to push off again.  Every time he took a step his ripple soled jungle boots left a slowly fading trail in the sand showing his progress.  The muscles in his legs were working endlessly between the walking, and carrying the large pack on his back.

Pausing for a moment, he wearily looked down at the watch strapped to his wrist, while at the same time sucked water voraciously from the camelback straw that was looped over his right shoulder leading to his rucksack.  He had already been walking for eight hours and the strain from the pack on his back was already starting to wear on him.  His trek was only one third of the way over and already the seed of doubt was starting to spread in his mind.  “Will I be able to complete this task?”

As he was getting ready to start moving again, he heard the unmistakable sound of an ATV churning up the sand behind him.  Over a short hill behind him rode a figure dressed similarly to him on a large green ATV with a rack on the back.  In the rack were several five-gallon water cans with water sloshing through them.

“Candidate 205, do you need water?” Asked the figure, referring to the number sewn on the man’s uniform and rucksack.

“Negative SSG Towne,” he said, while grabbing the straps on his pack and giving each a sharp tug in order to tighten them and pull the pack higher on his back.

“How about a nice cool shower, and a hot meal?”  asked SSG Towne with a grin.  “All you have to do is say the magic words, I QUIT.”

“Negative SSG Town,” he repeated, slowly turning and continuing his journey through the sand.

“Ok, well maybe next time 205,” said SSG Towne, as he turned his ATV back on and roared down the trail in the direction that candidate 205 was headed.

“My how I would love a nice shower, and some real food, but a nice warm bed sounds so much better,” said 205 putting his head down, leaning forward slightly and digging into the sand with his feet again.

Glancing at his watch again, he felt his heart drop, realizing that only another hour had gone by.  It felt like he had been walking for an eternity, yet he had only walked for a total of nine hours, leaving fifteen to go.  His mind instantly started cycling through everywhere he would rather be instead of rucking through a continuous sand trail, causing countless blisters and the sorest shoulders he had ever had.

As soon as the thoughts entered his mind it started a vicious chain reaction within him, and all he wanted to do was quit and go home.  He missed his wife, and his young son who was just starting to walk.  Closing his eyes, he could picture them both vividly.  His wife’s long black hair that flowed down to her lower back.  Her elegant brown eyes, small nose, and her tan that never seemed to fade.  His son who is a short, and chubby and is always stumbling into walls and falling down.

With all the thoughts flooding through his mind, he couldn’t even concentrate enough to keep walking.  Reaching to his chest, he unclipped his top buckle that kept his ruck close to his chest.  His waist strap was the next to be undone and with that, he let the heavy bag fall into the sand with a dull thud, that was swallowed up by the light sand.  Looking around he slumped down onto the bag with an exasperated sigh, and laid his head in his hands to process his thoughts.

“That’s it,” he said to himself.  “I’ll quit as soon as SSG Town comes back around to harass me.”  With that he decided to lean back against his ruck and take a quick power nap while he waited for cadre to come around so he could VW or voluntarily withdrawal.  Leaning back, he pulled his patrol cap down to cover his eyes from the glaring sunlight.  Closing his eyes, he was about to fall asleep, but instead went back to his thoughts.

How could he quit and then look at his family the same way?  Would they think less of him knowing that he had made it this far only to give up and quit when it started to get difficult?  All he knew for sure is that he didn’t want to set that kind of example for his little boy.

Planting both hands in the soft sand he forced himself to stand with a groan.  Standing at the front of his ruck he reached down with both hands, grabbed both straps, bent his knees and while flexing his back, flung the bag over his head and onto his back.  Grabbing both straps again he pulled hard and made sure his bag was sitting high on his back.  With that he reoriented himself towards the direction he was supposed to be headed, and once again started his seemingly endless trek.

Standing in the distance inside a swathe of trees was SSG Towne, who’d watched the entire ordeal play itself out.  With a slight crooked smile on his face, he moved over to his ATV parked into the shade, mounted it, turned it on and headed towards 205.  “Candidate 205, do you need water?” He asked.

As I’m sure you all know I have been living at my grandparent’s house since moving to Illinois.  This has been great while I try to get back on me feet, but at the same time, the internet situation here is appalling.  I do almost everything online and with 6MB internet, theres not a whole lot that I can do.

Probably the first thing I’m going to do when I get confirmed for a house is order the best internet that I can.  From the looks of it, Xfinity is my best bet.  They offer 150MB and also 2GB download speeds.  The 2GB is probably more than I need and is also a little out of my price range so I think I will settle for the 150mb speeds.

Regardless, with 150MB download and upload speeds I can do everything that I want to do.  I’ll be able to play my games, watch Youtube, Twitch, and my family will be able to watch all their internet programs as well.  I haven’t been able to upload to Youtube or stream on twitch in so long because the internet I’ve had just isn’t up to par and it’s starting to aggravate me.

So as soon as I get my house and internet be sure to look for me on both Youtube and Twitch, as I plan to do a whole lot of gaming in addition to my writing.

Let me know how fast your internet is and do you think 150MB is good enough for my needs.  If you have any questions, be sure to let me know.  Also, any ideas for new posts could be fun, so send them to me.  As always thank you all for reading, any comments/likes/shares/follows are greatly appreciated.  Until next time….

After weeks of searching, I think my wife and I may have found our new home.  I went and saw it today, and though smaller than most the houses we have looked at felt like a good fit for our needs.  There are two things about it that I like.

The first is the giant unfinished basement.  I’ve always been a huge fan of basements, and with the size of this one we should have plenty of room for both a small office for me as well as a play area for the girls.  Since it’s unfinished, I’ll need to get some carpeting for it, so the girls aren’t playing on concrete, but once that’s done, I think it will be great.

Probably the best thing about this condo is that it’s right across the street from the plant that I work at.  Since it’s so close, I won’t have to do a lot of driving, but instead will get a little exercise by riding my bike to and from.  I won’t have to get up as early, and it won’t take me much time at all to get home after work.

The plan is to live at this house for a year while we save up some money and finished repairing my credit.  After that, the search will begin anew, but hopefully next time it will be to own a home.  Well, I’ll let you know as soon as I do whether we for sure got this place or not.

Thanks again for reading everyone, remember all comments/likes/shares/follows are greatly appreciated and will greatly help me in becoming a better writer.  If there is anything, you would like to see me write about be sure to let me know.  Until next time everyone…

When I first started my blog devoted to nerdy activities, I said that I wanted to get into tabletop games, but couldn’t decide on which game to start with.  Well, my wonderful wife solved that issue for me when she got a box full of Warhammer and Warhammer 40k miniatures from a yard sale site for a whopping $80.  The box she got contained well over $1k worth of stuff, so needless to say I was ecstatic.

There were figures from all the main armies, but I decided to start with Chaos initially.  I chose Chaos mainly because their troops look bad ass.  You take a regular space marine and slap a bunch of skulls on his armor and he looks 100% cooler.  The great thing is that my brother and Army buddy both decided to get into it as well, so now I have two Space Marine players to beat up on with my superior troops.

We have decided on a 500 point battle in October to get our feet wet.  It’s not a very large unit size, but it lets us each bring several models while still getting to use a lot of the game mechanics.  I’m really excited to start up this hobby, even though it’s rather expensive to get fully into.  Lucky for me, my brother and I live really close to a couple good hobby shops that are excited to help us get started.

I have to say the best part for me, is that I enjoy building the models, and am looking forward to painting them all.  I like to collect stuff, so I have my eyes set on some of the larger models, even if they aren’t in the armies that I am interested in playing with.

If you’re into tabletop games let me know which games you play in the comments below.  Also if you play, what armies do you use?  As always I want to thank you for reading.  Any comments/likes/shares/follows are greatly appreciated and can help me grow as a writer.

I’m only writing this post because of course, I had to go out and get another Steven Seagal movie.  This one is called Sniper: Special Ops, and it also happens to feature Rob Van Dam who is a WWE wrestler.  Now besides one or two WWE and UFC stars (The Rock), I feel that they are all horrible actors.

Rob Van Dam like most of these actors is horrible when it comes to dialogue.  When they talk, they seem to be completely devoid of emotion.  Generally when it comes to fighting scenes they can do pretty well, because that’s what they do for a living, but talking just doesn’t to be their strong point.

Another big name that I just can’t stand to watch in movies is Rhonda Rousey.  I have only seen her in two movies; Expendables 3 and Fast 7, and in both, I was extremely disappointed in her performance.  As I said before her fight scenes are pretty fun to watch, but the minute you go back to dialogue, I just want to stop watching.

Since I’m on the topic of these actors I have to give props to Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson.  The first movie I watched with him was the Scorpion King, and since then I like to watch his movies.  He has had a few movies I didn’t like, but for the most part it wasn’t due to his acting, but rather the plot of the movie.  One movie of his that I didn’t like was Doom, but I felt that was just a horrible movie.

How do you feel about actors that started out or who are currently WWE or UFC stars?  Let me know in the comments below.  As always any likes/comments/shares/follows will be greatly appreciated as it helps me progress as a writer.  Until next time…