Kittygirl and I are quarter-finalists!

My unpublished short story, Kittygirl Vs. the Fiendish Brain Freezer, made the quarter-finals in ScreenCraft’s Cinematic Short Story 2017 Contest. They wanted a short story, not a script, with special cinematic potential. I guess Kittygirl has that. Yay!

Out of 1400 contestants, I am in the top 350 or so. I submitted my story in December. In February, they will pick the five finalists. The top prize is about $1000 and introductions to agents, publishers, and genies who can grant three wishes.

Will I be one of the finalists? 5 out of 350? I wish. But I got a prize already: by paying a little extra upon submission, I got professional feedback. I love that. Makes me feel like an author.

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A movie story idea for Black Widow

Okay, ideas are a dime a dozen. But I still offer the Marvel movie franchise a story that would be perfect for Black Widow. And the beauty of it is that Marvel already owns the story.

In 1989, Marvel Comics published The Agent. Written by James Hudnall, it is the story of Rick Mason, freelance spy, and his battle against supervillains taking over South American countries. I loved its James Bond dialog, spy action, and a non-super hero who defeats supervillains with his brains, skills, toughness, and wisecracks: I do have a superpower. I’ve got the power to make you wish we never met.

Black Widow was born to be in a spy movie kicking supervillain butt. All The Agent story will take is one little protagonist gender flip. I know screenwriter Jac Schaeffer does not need my help, and I am glad the screenwriter is a woman, but I have wanted to toss this idea out there for years. So now I did. So there.

P.S. Please do not do an Electra-type movie. Nobody likes CGI ninjas. Nobody.

CD or not CD? This is the question.

My question: Do most people have CD/DVD drives with their computers nowadays? Or are they getting to be obsolete?

I am considering getting another printer, or loading up on cartridges for my current printer. My current printer is an HP Photosmart C5550 all-in-one that does something few printers do nowadays: print on a CD. (Which I have never tried. But I digress.) For every copy of my little paperback book that I sell at little conventions, I burn a data CD with ebook files, artwork I have had done at conventions, and my audio readings of my stories (mp3 format). I want to be an author who gives you more stuff with the sale.

Please let me know if it is worth burning CDs or if I should find a better way to hand out my ebook/art/mp3s because I will soon have Costco reward $$$ to use up. Thanks.

P.S. Audio CDs are still a thing at open mics. But an audio CD only holds 45 minutes of music. Skimpy for audio stories. I burned a couple for my barber so he could listen to my audio stories over the holidays while driving to Santa Cruz. He did that without crashing his car. He liked the stories, even though I do not think I imitate his voice very well (he helps Super Holly with her mangled hair in Super Bad Hair Day).

Snoke or Skooki?

I just saw The Last Jedi. I liked it. Give me a good story with good characters (Finn! Finn! Finn!) and I am happy. But I kept thinking that CGI Sith guy’s name of “Snoke” sounded like “Snookie.” Like that Snooki girl in Jersey Shore (a show I saw very little of, thank god). When I was a kid, my brothers and I used “Snookie” as a name for a nice Swedish character. I thought of the line from Star Trek: First Contact where a woman said, “Borg? Sounds Swedish.”

I still love the emperor from Star Wars 2 and 3. An over the top villain played by a fine English actor with great manners. He said the character was a blob of pure evil. Yes, and he was played deliciously. There are times when CGI does not beat flesh and blood. (And makeup at the end. And a little CGI for lightsaber duels. And lots more makeup And a voice whose every syllable drips with poisonous evil.)