Thursday, May 27, 2004

Apple pr0n

Apple computers are fucking sexy. The new Powerbook is a thing of beauty, seamlessly connected to the wireless router, and a joy to use. Things are where you expect. Things work the way you expect. Things do what you tell them. And it's just so... fucking sexy. The Windows machine, on the other hand - and it's barely a year old - is a pain in the arse. The Shared Documents folder vanished the other day, replaced by a Documents folder that we couldn't access. It's full of all our digital camera photos, hundreds and hundreds of them. Irreplaceable. Some weird registry/sharing thing had gone wrong, which involved much fiddling with the registry, and scouring of newsgroups. It's mostly fixed now, but there are still some files and folders we can't get to. Our pictures are safe though. Why the FUCK does Windows just suddenly decide to do this sort of shit? On its own? It is nothing we did. Oh, sorry, you can't see or access that folder ever again, because, er, no fucking reason whatsoever, so just deal with it. Bollocks.

The Powerbook has been a breath of fresh air. In a year or so, I hope to be entirely free of Windows machines, forever. Once we replace the Dell with an iMac or a sexy new G5, I just won't ever have a PC in the house again. And I'm not blaming Dell, they make lovely black beasts of PCs. It's that fucking Windows shit. It's not good enough. And Internet Explorer sucks donkey dicks. I've been using Firefox for ages now, would never touch IE again, with its shoddy standards and poor support for pretty much everything. Bill Gates - you are holding back the internet. GET - THE FUCK - OUT! And take your shitty, bloated, fuckstupid "software" with you. I've had it with your shit, this random fucking weird behaviour that makes NO FUCKING SENSE, your Windows fucking sucks, so shove it right up your fucking ass. And get some decent fucking glasses man, for christ's sake, you're a multi billionaire, stop looking like some fucking accountant who's never had sex.

Sorry. This has been a rant. Please go about your business.

Tuesday, May 25, 2004

Is it safe?

Had a root canal 2 years ago, which wasn't the most fun in the world. A huge filling had fallen out of the tooth, but because I waited a year to get it fixed, they had to drill away loads of decay, which didn't leave much actual tooth behind. It's now filled with root canal cement or whatever it is. Anyway, last week, quarter of the tooth just came off while I ate a Galaxy Swirl. It was worth it. I was dreading the dentist visit today, I thought they'd take it out, which always sucks, you can't eat properly for weeks afterwards, and it's just unpleasant all round. But no, I went in, they drilled a bit (no anaesthetic, cause it had been root canalled, which deadens the tooth, so I didn't feel a thing), filled the new gaping chasm, scaled and polished all the others (not sure, but it's cold and pepperminty), and I was done, in less than half an hour. Fantastic. No injection, and a pleasant minty taste in my mouth after - the best dentist visit ever. All for 26 quid. Bargain. I have to be careful with it today, and reasonably careful with the tooth in future - apparently it is now "80% filling". But if it breaks again, they'll just crown it, rather than pulling it out. I'm so relieved. My butcher dentist back when I lived in a small town in Cork was always taking teeth out, and he was shit at it, having to get his foot up on the chair to yank the back ones out. One time I was left with bruises all over the side of my face, purely from the muscle damage at trying to stop my jaw getting ripped off. I'll stop talking about this now, because it's horrific...

Rewrite going smoothly and quickly, still, and trying to find time to work on some other outlines, but failing. Also trying not to poke the new filling with my tongue, and failing that too.

Friday, May 21, 2004

Working Stiff

Not much to report - still doing the P45 rewrite, still meeting people. I think I've now met everyone with anything to do with film and telly in the whole country. So when I actually have something to send out again, they'll know who I am. I make sure of that by pissing on their desk before I leave every meeting, just so they remember me. I'm sure they find it charming.

Rewrite's going great. Also started compressed hours at my dayjob - 5 days work over 4 days, leaving Mondays free to write or do other stuff. It's a bit mental, but the 3 day weekends can't be argued with.

Also, yesterday, received my first proper, real payment for P45. I am officially a professional writer. And it feels fucking great.

Wednesday, May 12, 2004

The Big News

Okay. I've known about this since late February, and it's been KILLING me keeping it quiet. I didn't want to say anything until the contract was actually signed, because when I tell people about possible stuff, it always jinxes it. Well, 50% of the time. Okay, I'm just paranoid. Anyway. The Big News is:

P45, the script formerly known as The Craw Lodge, has been sold.

Yes, actually sold. To a proper film development company. To be made into a real, live, proper movie.

The contract was being finalised over the past month or so (these things always take time, apparently this was quite quick), but last Wednesday I signed three copies of the final version. They snapped it up in Feb, and I've met them twice now to talk about it. The second meeting was a detailed discussion for the first rewrite - they gave me pages of excellent notes, which will make the script even better. I was worried they'd want to change everything, but they just want to make the scary bits scarier, and flesh other stuff out some more. Bit like a paintjob, putting stuff on top, giving it more layers, sorting out inconsistencies and tweaking stuff to increase tension. I have started the rewrite, and it's going really, really well. As soon as I saw the notes, I was dying to get started on it, and I never ever thought I'd feel that way about it...

So, what happens is, I do this new rewrite, then give it to them. They have a look at it, and give me some more notes for revisions (not enough changes to be a new draft, but enough to tweak and polish and edit). I then go off and do the revisions, and hand the final thing over. Then we take things from there. I'll keep this updated if and when anything else happens, and when I start and finish things. And I've probably left stuff out of this, so I might fill in other stuff as it occurs to me.

In the meantime, lots of meetings still to happen. Met a really nice person from a friendly film company last week, meeting two more this week, (tomorrow and Friday), then one more next week. And then I think that's it, I will have officially met everyone remotely involved in film in this country, and their mums.

Although I sound fairly calm, because I've had a while to get used to the idea, I am really, really, REALLY fucking excited. This is a dream come true for me, and I'm grateful every day for this. Obviously I can't quit the dayjob just yet, but it's one big step closer to being able to do this full time.

Monday, May 10, 2004

Shiny

This is the second time I've logged in to discover that Blogger has given me lots of new toys to play with. I'm very pleasantly surprised, once again. You'll notice the new template, which is exactly the sort of thing I was trying to do by fiddling with the last template, but now I can just use this new blue one without any messing around. Also, Blogger has comments for the first time. It means I can have comments without the extra pageloading time that comes with using an outside, third party comment tool, which rocks. I'm going to try the comments now, see if they work.

Wednesday, May 05, 2004

Google ate my hamster

They didn't, of course. But as I logged into Blogger, they offered me a free trial of the new Google email service, Gmail. Of course I signed up, and will be lording it over all my geeky mates immediately. I, along with everyone else, thought it was a lazy April Fool joke when they announced it, but the joke's on us - it's real, and it's pretty cool, going by my quick, early impressions. Some people are concerned about privacy - a computer scans your emails for keywords and sticks in (very unobtrusive) ads at the side, just like a computer scans your searches to give you Google ads. But if you're that worried, you don't have to sign up for it. I like the look of it so far. More later when I've had a play with it.

Tuesday, May 04, 2004

We like short shorts

No news for ages on Cheap Rate Gravity, then two big items come along at once. After the Dresden successes (no wins! or even special mentions!), there's going to be a showing at the National Museum of Photography, Film and Television's Fantastic Films Weekend, on Sunday 23rd May at 5pm. They're showing my little short, along with lots of other ones that sound much, much cooler. There are 8 shorts in the programme, they're all being shown in the one section, and you can see them all for a fiver, which is pretty good. If you know the NMPFT, the screenings are on at the Pictureville Cinema part, and you can get tickets and more details here. The whole weekend features all 3 Lord of the Rings movies, a Douglas Adams documentary (and episode 1 of the tv Hitch Hiker's show), some classic Hammer Horror, some Asian Extreme movies, some IMAX stuff, and the shorts. Films and the shorts collection are a fiver, double bills are £7.90, IMAX is £5.95, a Lord of the Rings triple bill is £13.50 (bargain!), or you can do the whole weekend for £45. Students, pensioners, unemployed, disabled and kids get in cheaper, too. There's bound to be something there for everyone, and I hope to go to the shorts thing myself.

I love these weekend events, there's always a good atmosphere. I remember going to a science fiction one in Oxford, saw a preview of 28 Days Later, then Mad Max 2, Time Bandits, The Thing, and Invasion of the Body Snatchers (Kaufman version), over the whole night. Staggered out in the morning, got a train home. Fantastic. The NMPFT thing is a day thing, so you won't lose any sleep...