Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Day #85: Sending Out a New Picture Book

Very soon, my agent will be sending a new picture book out into the world. Right now, the manuscript is waiting to be read by one publishing company which has a thirty day exclusive. In about twenty days, if we don't get an offer, Abi and I will send our literary child to a dozen other houses.

Wish I could tell you more about it, but like a lot of things in this business, I must keep all the good stuff secret!

Monday, March 30, 2015

Day #84: Little Tiny Royalty Checks

Hopefully I'm not the only writer who had this misconception. When I was young, I assumed that most writers were incredibly wealthy. That's not why I became a writer. I write books and plays because I must. It's both a desire and a compulsion. However, I did this I was going to be cashing some pretty big checks now and then.

When I signed the contract for my first play (this was all the way back in 1998) I envisioned getting a four-digit sized check every six months. Instead, I received about $140 in one year. (Cue the sad wah-wah music.)

So, today it wasn't a surprise when I received a big envelope from Random/Penguin that had a rather tiny sized amount written on the check. During this sixth month period, 55 copies of "Why Do I Have to Make My Bed?" have been sold. After the taxes, that translates into 36 bucks.

But I'm not mentioning this to generate pity. "Why Do I Have to Make My Bed?" has had a good run for a small press book (it was originally created by Tricycle Press). It has sold an accumulation of 9,530 copies -- and that's a number to be proud of. (I'm hoping that it will someday pass the 10,000 mark.)

I'm pointing out that many authors, myself included, rely on a whole bunch of these little, tiny royalty checks from a multitude of sources: books, plays, stories, articles -- anything we can sell. Some of us breakthrough with a best seller that will secure our finances for the rest of our days, but most of us stay hungry -- a condition that ironically often feeds the muse.

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Day #83: The World of Wrestlemania

The family and I went over to Joel's house. (He's one of my best friends.) He has been obsessed with Professional Wrestling ever since he was a child. I used to think it was a very silly form of entertainment, but Joel's passion for the -- dare I say -- "art form" gradually became infectious. I certainly wouldn't consider myself a fan, but I do enjoy the two or three times a year when I drop by Joel's house to watch a pay-per-view event.

I find the world-building aspect of wrestling fascinating.  There's a complex history, both fictional and non-fictional, and oftentimes the lines between story and truth become very blurred. As I writer, I must admit I am envious of this industry's soap-opera-styled twists and turns.

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Day #82: Three Musketeers - World Debut!

We had a small but very appreciative crowd for our debut performance of "The Three Musketeers." The audience really enjoyed the humor and the action -- and several actors stole the show back and forth from one another.

Fun was had by all!

Here's a glimpse of the rehearsal process. This is a rough version of a choreographed fight involving loaves of bread.

Friday, March 27, 2015

Day #81: Let's Do Lunch

Abigail (my agent) is visiting southern California this weekend, so I was able to meet up with her at a cool Spanish cafe in Montrose.

For the second time in my life, I had Tapas. And it was really good -- I guess I should have Spanish food more often.

Anyway, we talked shop for about three hours. Abigail is a visual and literary genius, so I love listening to her thoughts on the publishing world. I shared my latest picture book with her -- which I had just finished writing about an hour before our lunch date. She laughed -- so that's a good sign.

We also talked about what projects I should work on in the future... and I believe I've zeroed in on my next big manuscript. I'm not going to give too much away here... but I will say that for the next couple months I'm going to be researching newspapers of the 1800s.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Day #80: Spring Break!!!!!

After teaching a pair of Eng 1A classes, I packed up my books and essays, hopped in the car and began my spring break.

I do have about 80 papers to grade this week. But it's still going to be a nice vacation. My show opens this weekend, and I plan on finishing the final draft of Camp Omigosh.

Best of all, spring break really means that summer vacation is just around the corner!

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Day #79: School Visits

I had such a blast with the students of Plum Canyon Elementary, that I've decided to embrace public speaking and take on more school visits.

If you know any teachers / administrators / school groups who might be interested, please let them know that they can get a great deal if they order through our Camp Omigosh Indiegogo Site.

Here's the menu:

$100: A Skype Visit with Wade

If you've got the technology, I'll virtually visit with your students for up to an hour. (Or until the kids get sick of me and turn off the computer.)

$200: School Visit (Southern California)

If you'd like me to talk about my novels, plays, and picture books I'd be happy to travel to anywhere within Los Angeles, Ventura, and Orange County. Heck, I'll even go down to San Diego or Riverside!

$200 - $800 (?) : Wade Across the World

And, if you are out of state, or out of the country... I would still love to visit your school and community. The travel expenses might be a bit more. You can send me an email with details about the location. (Write to: profwade@Hotmail.com )

The current special that's happening at the Omigosh Page is called "The Ultimate Camper." For six hundred dollars, I'll travel to anywhere in the U.S. or Canada, bringing along five copies of Camp Omigosh along with some other goodies. There are only five of these spots available, and the offer ends April 19th.

(This is me and the readers at the Channel Islands Reading event last year.)  

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Day #78: Camp Omigosh Campaign Passes 75%

Things are looking up for my middle grade novel, Camp Omigosh. We've got 9 backers, which have resulted in over $450 in contributions. That's within about ten days since we posted the Indigogo platform.

Hopefully we will soon pass our $600 mark. Spring Break is just around the corner for me, and I plan to spend much of that time finishing the revision and formatting the novel so that Laurisa's Sky Rocket Press can publish it!

Monday, March 23, 2015

Day #77: Good News from Lulu

The good news regarding the recent downslide in my challenge total is that I recently received a Royalty Payment for "Tomorrow's Wish" and "Curse of the Pharaoh's Kiss." This month, those plays earned: $64.19.

So, that bumps up my score a little bit. Here's the news result:


I'm still chasing after nickels and dimes, though. I'm approaching the 100 day mark, and other than writing more children's books, I haven't generated any viable battle plans to generate wealth.

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Day #76: Oops, I Spent Money...

If you've been reading this blog and you've been wondering why I number each day, it's because I have given myself a challenge.

I am attempting to generate $20,000 of extra income within 365 days. So far, I've been having fun trying, but I haven't made very much progress.

Today, I realized I've back-tracked! Last month, I won the Oscar betting pool, earning an extra $210. That's goo, right?  The thing is, I procrastinated about taking that money to the bank and I gradually spent a little of it here and there, gave some to the wife and kids, bought some popsicles, that sort of thing. When I finally made a deposit into my savings account, the $210 had turned into a single hundred dollar bill.

That means my new challenge total is currently: $317.01.

Cue the wah-wah-wahhhh fail music.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Day #75: Five Paragraph Essays Suck

Here's an essay I wrote back in 2006... I rescued it from an old floppy disk, and now I present it to the internet for your reading pleasure. Please spread the word...

Five-Paragraph Essays Suck

By Wade Bradford

            Since the dawn of man, the opening lines of high school essays have reeked with cliché phrases such as “since the dawn of man.”  Why would a student begin her expository writing in such a dull, mind-numbing manner?  Perhaps it is because the student assumes that an essay, by its very definition, is meant to be formal, cold, lifeless and boring.  Or perhaps the student has yet to realize that “since the beginning of mankind” openers have been used 3,982,861,452 times.  Or perhaps, it is merely because teachers at the high school level have been force-feeding students a repressive structure that limits one’s academic and creative skills.  This format, of course, is the five-paragraph essay, or as I like to call it: the cookie-cutter essay.  Now to be fair, wonderful content can be found in many five-paragraph essays; in fact, a master essayist can flourish within the constraints of the five-paragraph form, the way great poets thrive despite the confines of the sonnet.  However, most instructors do not select the format to challenge their pupils; rather many instructors enforce the five-paragraph structure for all the wrong reasons.  Notice how I am nearly at the end of the introductory paragraph?  That means it’s almost time for my thesis statement.  Are you ready?  Many instructors request that the thesis be underlined or emboldened or even italicized.  So to be safe, I am going to do all three.  Still ready?  Here we go.  Five-Paragraph Essays suck because they have become a crutch for lazy English teachers, they burden the writer (and the weary reader) with an overly formalistic style, and finally, they do not allow a student to discuss more than three main points.
            Somewhere, right this instant, there sits a lazy English teacher.  He or she sits at a desk, perhaps staring at his Shakespeare-quote-of-the-day calendar, perhaps thumbing through the first and only twenty pages of an unpublished novel that was started three years ago.  In front of this English teacher is a stack of essays.  Blah. Talk about an afternoon killer!  This person doesn’t want to sift through half-hearted, poorly constructed argument essays.  All this person really wants to do is curl up on the couch, pet multiple cats, drink wine, and spend a sob-filled evening thumbing through the pages of Pride and Prejudice whilst conversing with the ghost of Jane Austen. So, to save time, many English teachers from the eighth grade all the way up to high school (and sometimes beyond) force students to write in the five-paragraph essay format.  This means that students have a thesis statement clearly marked (as I have done mine).  The thesis must be placed in the last sentences of the introduction.  It should also map out the three main points that the essay will discuss.  For example, a student might say, “Apples are different from oranges due to their color, shape, and taste.”  That later part of the thesis is known as an essay map; it prevents hapless readers from getting lost along the way because – God forbid – we don’t want to be surprised by what we find in the third paragraph.  After the essay has been crafted and all of the rules have been followed, a teacher can quickly scan through a student’s introduction, ignoring much of the content, and head straight to the thesis.  From there, the lazy teacher will peruse the body paragraphs, noting grammatical errors or placing enigmatic checkmarks to signify satisfaction; it all depends on how ambitious our pedagogical friend is feeling.  For the most part, the lazy instructor does not make many comments about the ideas expressed, but is more interested in how many sentences per paragraph the student has created.  If there are less than thirteen sentences, the teacher will take out his trusty red pen and mark: “Underdeveloped.”  A fellow student from my high school days once showed me a paragraph he wrote about holding his grandfather’s hand while the poor old man passed away, finally giving into the ravages of Alzheimer’s.  The paper was spotted with the author’s dried tears, and my fellow student had crafted nine eloquent, emotionally profound sentences.  However, the instructor’s comments simply read: “Needs at least twelve sentences.”  If the Gettysburg Address had been composed in today’s classroom, a lazy teacher would have counted the number of sentences and, finding only ten, would have given Abe Lincoln a C-minus.  In short, these lazy instructors of which I speak demand the five-paragraph format so they can evaluate not the student’s writing or critically thinking skills; instead, the teacher can determine whether or not the student has followed the rules.  Are there five paragraphs?  Are there between thirteen and eighteen sentences?  Is the thesis statement repeated in the conclusion?  If so, the lazy English teacher can glance over the words, offer no other commentary than a B-plus at the top of the page, and at long last return to sipping a bittersweet cabernet whilst getting misty over Mansfield Park.
            Secondly, five-paragraph essays burden the writer (and the weary reader) with an overbearing, formalistic style.  For example, the previous sentence has already been stated in the introduction, yet many proponents of the five-paragraph prison insist upon topic sentences that repeat components from the thesis and its essay map, as if the reader might forget the underlined, italicized, bronzed and emboldened thesis statement.  In addition, the overly formalistic style of the five-paragraph essay is repetitive.  In addition, the overly formalistic style of the five-paragraph essay is repetitive.  Moreover, you may have noticed that every sentence within this paragraph begins with a transitional word or phrase.  Consequently, five-paragraph sycophants insist that every idea would be lost if it not be guided by big, pompous words that are usually originated from several smaller words all squished together.  Nevertheless, they are idiots.  Furthermore, excessive transitional phrases should be reserved for those who wish to sound intellectual, to shame those with limited lexicons, and to score at the philosophy department’s Christmas-Doesn’t-Exist party.  Subsequently, transitions can become tedious and meaningless.  Indeedibly, I just made that word up to see if you were still paying attention. In conclusion, all cookie-cutter paragraphs end by restating the same idea expressed in the topic sentence, and in this case I am required to inform you that five-paragraph essays burden the writer with… yawn… oh, you get the idea…
            Now, it is my sacred duty to announce, once again, that the five-paragraph essay format limits students’ self-expression.  And it really, truly does.  See that previous sentence?  It began with the word “AND,” which is a no-no among the inner circle of the wretched five-paragraph essay worshippers.  They would contend that “AND” should never be used to begin a sentence.  However, if you were to peruse the Holy Bible, you would find hundreds of sentences starting with our friendly little conjunction.  Just look on the first page, you’ll find: “And God said, ‘Let there be light’” (Gen. 3-1). Look on the last page of Revelation (the creepy part of the Bible) and you’ll see: “And let him who hears say, ‘Come’” (Rev. 17-2).  Clearly, these five-paragraph promoters must be Satanists.  And it’s not just “AND.”  There are many other little restrictions within this highly structured style.  Suppose a student wants to write in fragments.  Suppose a student wants to write in fragments.  To create a dramatic effect.  To provide a pause amid the onslaught of prose.  To reflect.  To simply breathe.  Sigh.  Such fragments as these are forbidden in this dungeon known as the five-paragraph essay.  Sorry.  And another thing that bugs me… These English instructors don’t want writers to begin sentences with the word “because.”  Why?  Because they said so.  And because they wish to promote technical obedience, laying to the wayside a student’s ability to freely express herself.  Such petty grievances issued forth from our lazy, demonic English teachers cause young writers to lose faith in their creative ability.  Students believe they will never find their writer’s voice, and very likely they won’t if they are forced to follow the rules, which urge the soulless cookie-cutter structure.  Public schools perform literary abortions each day, preventing the births of future Emersons, Coleridges, Shaws and Shakespeares.  These men were brilliant writers who would have been strangled by a five-paragraph essay and its contraptions.  Heck, those giants of literature didn’t even spell things correctly!  Writing is self-expression.  It is the solidification of thought.  It is an art-form, and thereby should be equated with freedom.  We writers, be we students, amateurs, or professionals, should defy rules.  We should pay little attention to the demands of the prescribed five-paragraph essay format, nor should we fixate ourselves with grammar, nor should we worry so much about spellling. 
            In conclusion, the conclusion of this essay will repeat what has been said in the thesis.  Most lazy, Bible-hating, alcoholic, cat-obsessed English teachers will probably make students repeat the thesis word for word, thus making the essay all the more redundant, boring, and redundant.  Yet, to be fair to my opponents, I should concede that… Oh wait…. I just rechecked my thesis statement.  I was supposed to write about how this form does not “allow a student to discuss more than three points.”  However, since I am now in my concluding paragraph and having used up my mandatory three body paragraphs, I don’t have enough room to make my last brilliant point!  There!  See how these five-paragraph essays suck?

Friday, March 20, 2015

Day #74: Another Art Contest Entry!!!

We've got another cool drawing of the coolest summer camp in the universe.

Good work, Harrison! I love the sun's expression. Great job with all of the details!

If you'd like a chance to win a free copy of the book, create a drawing (or a map) of what you think Camp Omigosh might look like.

You can email to profwade@hotmail.com  or you can simply post it on Instagram or Twitter with the hashtag: #campomigosh

We will choose three winners on June 1st!

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Day #73: Camp Omigosh Reaches 25% Mark

Things are going more smoothly with our new Camp Omigosh campaign. So far, we have already reached 25% of our goal.

Some people might be wondering: Why are we doing a crowdfunding campaign? Why not just publish the book and see what happens?

The book's publisher, Skyrocket Press is brand spanking new. It's run by an amazingly talented and dedicated woman (Laurisa White Reyes) who is hand selected a few projects each year, in hopes that Skyrocket Press will become a strong ally for literature that might not get the attention it deserves from mainstream publishers.

Much of the money we receive from Indiegogo goes straight into the production/distrubition/sale of the books.  Here's our goals:

  • Finalize the art work. ($250)
  • Complete the editing process. ($250)
  • Professionally format the text. (+100)
If we go beyond the $600 goal, then we'll be able to do a more professional job with formatting, and we can also devote some of the funds to marketing/advertising. 

Going into this, I know there's a very, very slim chance that Camp Omigosh will become a best seller. In fact, it might not even sell a hundred copies. But I am so passionate about this story because I know that if we can get it into the hands of young readers, many of those kids are going to LOVE the mystery, the adventure, and the humor of this book. 

Thanks for your help and continued support, dear reader. If you;d like to spread the word about the Camp Omigosh Campaign, here's the link to the Indiegogo Page.  

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Day #72: CSI - Wonderland... Coming to Granada Hills

I have seen productions of my play CSI: Neverland on two separate occasions. But I have yet to see the my sequel, CSI: Wonderland.

That will hopefully be changing very soon, because I just learned that JFK High School of Granada Hills has chosen it for their spring show! The school is just thirty minutes from my house. I can't wait to see what they do with my incredibly silly script. Yay!


Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Day #71: Challenge Total update - March Edition

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

I received another royalty check for "Tomorrow's Wish." A whopping $64.19... (I'm not being sarcastic, that's a pretty good number for my little self-published play.)

That brings the current total of "extra income" to: $427.01

Monday, March 16, 2015

Day #70: And So It Begins... Again

We've launched the new crowdfunding webpage at Indiegogo...

Follow this link to order your e-book and print editions of Camp Omigosh!

Day #69: Achievement Unlocked - Chapters 1 - 4

The most important part of this novel is definitely the beginning. This is where I set up the plot, characters, and mood. That's why I've been spending so much time working on it to get it just right.

Now that the first four chapters are locked in, I am hoping the final twenty-six chapters will be a breeze. Ha, ha. Famous last words.

Have you seen these little promos I made a long time ago? They were inspired by the podcast "Welcome to Night Vale."

I'll post one each day, and perhaps when I get to the end of the week, I'll be done with my revision.

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Day #68: Revising the Novel

Well, I guess since Laurisa and I are definitely committed to bringing Camp Omigosh to life, I better get to work and finish the revision process!

Author / editor Dorine White has been helping me trim the fat... especially in the first two chapters. I'm happy to say chapters one and two went from 26 to 22 pages.

It's slow but important work. Fortunately, spring break is around the corner. That's when I will concentrate all of my creative energies in order to bring the best version of Camp Omigosh to life.

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Day #67: Getting to Know Indiegogo

I've been spending several hours getting to know the new crowdfunding website: Indiegogo.com.

I should say, it's new to me... not new to the rest of the Internet-savvy world. We'll be moving the Camp Omigosh campaign over to them very soon. Alas, the Kickstarter project isn't going to meet its goals. But at Indiegogo, you receive funds even if you don't meet your goal. (And, this time around, I've lowered our expectations... I'm aiming for $600. If we get more than that, terrific!)

By the way, we still  have an art contest happening, people! Create a map or an illustration of the most awesome summer camp in the universe... post it online with #campomigosh as the hashtag, and you are automatically entered to win an autographed copy of the book!

Friday, March 13, 2015

Day #66: Last Night...

I had a dream that I won 10 Million Dollars on a slot machine in Las Vegas.

Now I am awake, grading a stack of essays... marking them with a lot of red ink, and a little bit of tears.

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Day #65: Getting Ready for Indigogo

Speaking of Camp Omigosh, the Kickstarter Campaign isn't Kickstarting the way it's supposed to... I've already talked about why in a previous blog, so i won't spend anymore time explaining whhat went wrong.

I want to talk about what will be happening very soon. In less than a week, the Kickstarter campaign will be over. That's when I'll launch a new platform on an Indiegogo page. If you are wondering why we are bothering to try crowdfunding yet again, the reason is simple: At Indigogo you don't need to reach your total in order to receive the funds. That was the main problem with Kickstarter. If we didn't get to 4,500 then we don't receive a penny.

I'll let you know when the new crowdfunding page is up and running. I am determined to make Camp Omigosh happen... even if only one person buys the book! (Thanks, Mom!)

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Day #64: Challenge Total Update

It has been about 15 days since I posted anything about my $20,000 challenge total. That's probably because it hasn't gone up since I won the Oscar pool.

The total remains: $362.82.

If this trend continues, that means I'll be earning an average of $181.41 towards my goal.

That means by the end of the 365 days I will have made: $2176.92. That's a little over 10% of what I'd like to achieve.

Now, there's one thing I could have done that would have helped me reach at least fifty percent. I could have taught at Moorpark during the summer. I did that last year, and that added about $8000 (before taxes) to our bank account. But I didn't put in a request to work Summer 2015 because I wanted to focus on writing, and we're planning to visit to Washington for at least a month.

I guess it's about time for me to write the Great American Novel.

Oh wait, I wrote Camp Omigosh... Does that count?

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Day #63: "Conflict" and "Genre" Coming to Lancaster

I just discovered that two of my one act plays ("Conflict" and "Genre") will soon be performed at a high school in Lancaster, California. That's about a 25 mile drive from my place.

I'm excited because I've never seen "Genre" performed. I might have to go check out the show.

Here's the synopsis: "Genre begins as a simple and familiar fairy tale told to an obnoxiously spoiled Prince. Then, when the royal majesty becomes bored, the narrator is forced to constantly change the genre of the story. It's all fun and games until the Prince becomes stuck in the story!"

Find out more at www.hitplays.com

Monday, March 9, 2015

Day #62: Kickstarter Lessons

Well, it's less than a week and we've earned a mere 10% of the Kickstarter funds. However, I don't view this as a failure or a negative experience.  I have learned a great deal during the past thirty days. And I plan to learn more when we re-launch the campaign...

But this time we're going to lower our expectations, our economic goals, and choose a different website... We're thinking of Indigogo, perhaps.

So what have I learned???

1) Facebook Is Not Enough. Trying to market myself on Facebook bores my friends and fatigues my fellow authors. I need to find other avenues in which to promote my work.

2) Going Viral Is Not Easy. I suppose I already knew this. My friend and I created a Youtube video series that we thought would take the world by storm. Instead, we received about 300 views, and then nada. However, I wasn't sure what it would be like with Kickstarter. I thought that perhaps once you posted it on their website, lots of random people would find you and there would be a snowball effect.  That didn't happen with Camp Omigosh.

3) I Need to Have Fun. If I'm not having fun promoting my work, people will have no reason to read my work. Interacting with the kids at Plum Canyon Elementary reminded me of how fun writing and creativity can be. I need to present that joy when I market myself.

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Day #61: "Strangers" - New One Act Play by Wade Bradford

Last May, in a flurry of fourty eight hours, I wrote a one-act play called "Strangers." Although I hope that it's highly amusing, the piece is also one of my more serious works, at least it's serious beneath the surface.

Like other plays such as "Conflict" and "Genre," this one is more than a bit odd. It takes place over the course of ninety years and involves two people who interract with one another every five years or so, but they never really meet each other...

I sent it to a few different places, and didn't hear back. I received a couple rejections and then a "maybe," and then finally a YES!

Heuer Plays offered me a contract, and it looks like theater lovers will be able to meet "Strangers" in the very near future.

Friday, March 6, 2015

Day #59: Detecting Time Wasters

I finished watching "House of Cards" Season Three. Now, I can proceed with my life.

I've noticed that during my busy semesters that I become addicted to distractions. With all of the papers I have to grade, and the responsibilities of work (not to mention directing 3 Musketeers), it's very tempting to let my brain go into vegetation mode and sit in front of the computer or the TV.

Because of this, I don't get very much creative writing accomplished. It seems the only time I truly devote myself to writing is during summer breaks. That's not going to suffice if I want to become a working author.

So, here are the Time Wasters I need to cut back on...

Binge Watching Netflix
Constantly Checking My Emails

The other thing that I do with my free time is listen to talk radio during my drive to and from work.  If I gave up that simple pleasure and spent my time recording ideas while I drive, I might be even more productive.

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Day #58: Our First Art Contest Entries

The kids at Plum Canyon Elementary have gotten a jump on the Camp Omigosh Art Contest.  Here's the first entry created by a sixth grader named Trinity.

 The second entry is equally awesome... it's created by Trevor (from the same 6th grade class).

Good work, Omigoshers!

If you would like to enter the contest, just create a drawing (or a map) of your version of the most awesome summer camp in the universe.

You can send it to us via email (profwade@hotmail.com) or simply post the image on Twitter or Tumblr with the hashtag #campomigosh

And don't forget, the book comes out this summer. Visit our Kickstarter page to find out more! 

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Day #57: World Premiere: The Three Musketeers

In just three weeks, my play the Three Musketeers will make it's world debut. It opens March 28th, 2015 at the Canyon Theatre Guild.

This has been a very fun play to develop. The writing process wasn't exactly easy. I wrote the first act in a short amount of time during the summer. But once fall semester began I paused and didn't pick up again until winter break. 

The directing process has been surprisingly painless (knock on wood). Thanks to a terrific cast and crew, the show has been coming to life on its own. I'm very excited to see how the fencing scenes develop between now and opening night. 

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Day #56: I'm Losing at Kickstarter

But that's okay. i'm learning and I'm having fun.

So far, we have earned 10% of our $4,500 goal. This means that Skyrocket Press won't be receiving any funds, unless by some miracle we reach our goal.

I'll admit, this is embarrassing for me. It's a reminder that I have a long way to go before becoming an effective marketer/self-promoter. Not to mention, I'm a long, long way off from being an established author with an actual audience.

The truth is: I'm very obscure.

I'm okay with that, to some degree. I am not interested in a James Patterson level of fame. (Don't get me started about James Patterson and how I DO NOT WANT to be anything like him.) But I would like to someday have enough interest in my work so that I can make a living doing what I love.

Monday, March 2, 2015

Day #55: March is Feisty Month

What is Feisty Month?

What is Feisty Month???!!!

If you have to ask, then you don't deserve to know.

But I will tell you anyway. Feisty Month was invented by me and my best friend, Joshua Eklund. When we were roommates we often complain about our dead-end jobs and our pathetic lives. Then, just as spring was about to arrive, we started feeling differently. We became more confident, more positive, and even dare I say arrogant. We were feisty.

And so, we jokingly decided to make the entire month of March Feisty Month. It's been a ling time since Josh and I were roommates, and sometimes a year passes by when we forget that this is the month where we're supposed to take on the world with moxie. Now that we're settled with wives, kids, and day to day routines.

But I'm bringing Feisty Month back.

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Day #54: Visiting Plum Canyon Elementary

Wow! What a fun day!

My friend Flo Loring, school teacher extraordinaire, invited me to visit the sixth graders of Plum Canyon Elementary.

I love talking to people in this age group. They have so much creativity and enthusiasm -- it's contagious.

We talked about my picture books, my plays, and Camp Omigosh. I read the prologue to the novel, and they gave me all the laughter I had hoped for. Flo and I read the Jellyfish Knock Knock joke from "The Little Mermaid." And we performed some improv, based upon the premise of my one-act play, Genre.

I like to think that I encourage children to explore their artistic sides... But really, they are the ones who provide encouragement. Their admiration for my work is a gift, and I am grateful to have met every one of them.