Tagmusings

Delivering on Story Promises

When you write something creative – anything creative – you have a contract with your audience. In the crucial first pages you’re setting the stage for everything to come. You need to deliver on the promises you made in the opening as the work goes on, with a fair amount of met expectations and surprises. […]

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Against the Best

Everyone feels insecure when up against the best. – Kurt Belcher, zombies, props and backgrounds, THE TRIP – THE ANIMATED MOTION PICTURE. We just recorded a session for my first feature, THE TRIP – THE ANIMATED MOTION PICTURE. I cast one of the actors because his voice fit the role, and he knew about one […]

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The Value of the Crazy-Ass Plans

I saw a post over on Quora that resonated with me. This person was talking about a girl they had a crush on and how they could get over this. I posted my advice to this person over there, but it got me thinking about it from a writing context. Let’s dive in. A Risk […]

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The Power of Music

Back when I was in college, we’d occasionally have a professor come in and play classical music while we were studying. They would tell us this helped us concentrate. These little interludes never lasted long, they made made most of us think “is this person for real?” I think there’s something to it – though […]

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The Value of Community

I’m heading for a writing conference this weekend, and I’m really excited about it. If you’ve never been to a conference or a writing group, let’s explore the topic in this post. I’m Not Ready The first time I went to a writing conference, I was terrified. I was a 20-something who went back to […]

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That Which Is Not Explained

Watch enough movies and read enough books, and you’re bound to run into some ambiguous themes – where something is important to the story, quickly touched upon, and then that’s it. Audiences will go along with it if you get this right – but if you get it wrong – which is easy to do […]

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The Secret Adaptation Formula

Every so often I meet other writers who hear I write novels, comics and screenplays. They’re interested in taking their work from one format and adapting it to another. This is a great exercise and you can learn so much about writing when you do this. I saw one poster in a Facebook group I […]

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The Open Minds

It’s almost Oscar time as I’m working on this post, and a recent episode of The Creative Penn got me thinking about my journey into animation. I think the lessons would benefit some of you out there in readerland. Over the last few episodes Joanna’s guests have mentioned the fear new writers feel about their […]

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The Energy Bucket

This post started as yet another rant about how you need to work to achieve artistic success. I thought about the other version of this post most of the day and decided I’m going to rework that one. In this post I’m going to talk about something else people who write bring up with near […]

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How Much Description?

I don’t see people talk often about how much you need to describe your characters, to this time around let’s talk about it. The rules are different across screenplays and prose – if you don’t work in both, or you’re moving from one to the other, it’s important to understand the differences. When you’re working […]

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