Saturday, July 26, 2014

Those Who Remember done, Giant Robot Short, WWII novel, Storm Kids Book, and website update

Yes, it's been a very busy week.

First, I completed the first draft of my new short story, "Those Who Remember."  It came in at 20 pages and 5,512 words.  I'll put it away for about a week, re-read it, and go over my re-write notes and begin on the next draft.  Overall I think it works, but it's been a long time since I read any short fiction, so I'm going to try and make some time this week to read a few stories.

Second, I went over my short film, "Giant Robot."  Another draft is done.  There were some tweaks and minor changes at this point, and I think it's still a funny read.  I'll be giving it out to the rest of the One-Eyed Pictures crew and get their thoughts on it.  I wrote it so it would be relatively easy to film and I hope we might be able to actually get this new short film done this year.  Fingers crossed.

Third, I'm getting geared up to ask for some readers for feedback on my "WWII Novel."  I worked on getting my initial pitch ready.  I had my wife go over it since she's been through all this before on her first novel, "Moonfall."  (Working Title)  It's about ready to go.

Fourth, I worked some more on my, "Storm Kids Book" while waiting to re-write my new short story.

Fifth, I've been working with Lannie on creating a new website that focuses on his art.  As I've been helping, I've come across a few things I didn't know you could do before, so I'm making some changes to my website.  It won't be anything too drastic, just some better visibility using page tabs to direct to external websites and adding some more information about us.

That wraps up this full writing week, what will the next week bring?

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Tri-Fold Brochure for Deby's Gluten Free Completed

On Sunday, I handed over my finished copy of their brochure.  They chose the color they wanted for the background and they had some minor changes.  But they changed the main focus of it.  They started with focusing on the Saturday fresh fare items exclusively.  Then they decided to think past the gluten free food fair and wanted less a focus on Saturday, and put more of their other products in.

I took a lot of copy off about Saturday and made room for their entree info on the left inside panel.  I made the bagel basket picture smaller on the center panel to make room for restaurant info.  Then I took everything off of the right panel and put on information about their breads and flour mixes.

I sent it back and they decided on a few more changes.  Today I handed over the final copy.  You can see how it turned out on my portfolio page.  It was a great learning experience and a big challenge, but I think it looks good.  The client is happy and that's the best news of all.

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Update on Those Who Remember and Brochure writing

I'm on page 18 now with my short story.  I think I'm pretty close to the end, but it will definitely need another draft.  I've been taking down notes for places the story could be improved, I didn't want to go back too much and do some big changes until I have the first draft done.  It will need some more conflict and tenser moments, but the good part is I know what and where I'm going to add them in.

Work continues to progress nicely on the brochure.  I mentioned before how I read that printers suggest using the CMYK color option in Photoshop since it more accurately represents what they can print out.  I've been working on several options for two different colors.  I researched food and colors and found out that red and yellow are the most appetizing colors (hence why McDonald's uses them).  Also, green has a more organic vibe to it.  I used variations of yellow for one and green for another.  I think the yellow one looks better, but I always like to give options.  I spoke to a couple of printers and got some feedback on what they would need to print it out.  I think it's about done and I'll be e-mailing them the options and see what they think.

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Continued Those Who Remember story and Brochure work

The story is coming along nicely now and I have 11 pages written.  One scene that I thought would be a few sentences ended up being a couple of pages.  It's funny sometimes when your writing takes off in a way you hadn't expected.

While I was waiting to see what design idea they liked for the business card sized ad, I worked a little more on the brochure.  I tweaked one of the images more, added some new copy, and began working a little on some background color ideas.

They chose the style they liked and picked out what information they wanted to have on it from the five different copy designs.  They wanted a cursive font to make it stand out more.  I thought cursive made it harder to read, but I gave them several options, including a couple that had a 'cursive feel' to it, but was more legible like block text.  They decided on the one that had a 'cursive feel' to it, modified the copy a little more, and I finished it yesterday.  You can find the final designs on my portfolio page.

Saturday, July 05, 2014

New short story 'Those Who Remember' and Brochure work

I did a little work on my storm kid's book idea until I decided on what I was going to work on next.

The 'next' is a short story which I had the idea for many years ago.  I did a lot of work on the plot last year so I worked on the story structure, characters, and now I've begun writing it.  It's been a long time since I wrote a short story, and this is a special one to me since I thought it was a great idea from so long ago.  The first page was brutal, and took a couple of days to write, but I'm getting about a page a day now.

The brochure has been put on hold, they get to have a business card sized ad in a flyer, and it's due sooner.  I came up with five different variations focusing on different products and pictures.  I'm just waiting to hear back from them to see what design they liked and which products to focus on.  This will be added to my portfolio as well.

Saturday, June 28, 2014

Animated Halloween Script done (again) and Brochure update

The latest draft is now completed.  This might be it for a while.  I've incorporated all that I've learned since the last draft (which is actually quite a bit), so there is a better flow to it.  The biggest difference was taking out a huge scene.  I've read that scripts need to be between 90 to 120 pages with the sweet spot at 110.  Anything over is an automatic strike against it.  It was a little over 120 (but when we read it out loud it moved very quickly), so I took out a big scene.  My wife was a little apprehensive at first, but when I explained it didn't really move the plot forward or add anything to the characters, she realized it needed to go too.  Now it just squeaks by.

I made a few minor changes on my Pyramid Horror screenplay based off of some feedback, so I think that one is ready to go now too.

I'm making some good headway on the brochure.  I added some shadowing to some of the images which really make them stand out more, I got a better copy of their logo added, I got a QR code for them and added on, and worked a little on changing the colors to a CMYK format.  I read when using Photoshop that it's best to use CMYK for colors because it will more accurately represent what a printer can print, unlike RGB, which are brighter and best suited for a computer screen.

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Globe Trotting Action Film done, more work on Animated Halloween Movie, and Brochure update

Yes, another draft of my action movie is done.  It's amazing to see how much has changed from the initial idea to the first draft to this latest draft.  It keeps getting better (I think) and I keep getting stronger as a writer (I think).  It's nice to put into practice all that I've been learning the last several years and especially the last year or two.  I'll do another read-through at some point in the future, but it's time to move on to something else.

And that something else is more work on my Animated Halloween screenplay.  Since this is one of my stronger pieces and I think it has great potential with a solid theme that a lot of people can identify with, I decided to go back and do more work on it.

One issue I've noticed is that I had scene headings that were way too long.  I never changed it because I knew how much time it was going to take to fix it (it ended up taking four days).  But I'm glad I took the time to fix it because it looks a lot better now, and it's all about making this look the best it can.  I made some notes on some changes I noticed that needed to be done as well.

I've started on another draft of this one.  I tweaked the opening a bit to be a little more attention grabbing.  There is such an emphasis on capturing your reader's attention in the first ten pages, first five pages, first page, first line, that it becomes a little annoying watching other great movies and seeing the very first scene not a whiz bang opening.  Everything can't be started with an action scene or a 'grab-you-by-the-collar-and-shake-you-silly.'  It's a rough business and art form trying to find that balance.

The majority of the work on the tri-fold brochure has been getting the images Photoshoped.  I found a great template from the Staples website that had all the dimensions and safe area for a tri-fold brochure. I'm trying to get as many of them on as possible so showcase what they have without over crowding it.  The worst part of this is that the images of all their doughnuts and pastries are so delicious looking, it's making me hungry.

I've also done the bulk of the copy writing done.  They wanted to focus on their Saturday morning fresh fare, so I've been pumping up those products.  It's starting to take shape and it looks like a brochure now.