Okay…I only have a few precious moments to move the story further, as David will be here in about an hour to take Debi and I up to Catskill.

Ikes! We’re doin’ it! We’re heading up there! In about four hours, we’ll be settling into our room, then heading over to the production office, and meeting the rest of the cast and crew, and…and..!

Just keep breathing. Just…keep…breathing…

Anyway…now we fast forward to:


We had arrived home in Bloomington at around 8:00 p.m. We were all drained. I felt it especially because I had just driven about 300 miles pretty much non-stop. That, and I was fighting against a foul mood all day.

Not just my mind, but also my entire body kept telling me the vacation wasn’t long enough. I needed more time.

Driving out of Grand Marais, I turned to Lynn.

“You know, our cabin is open for the next week, too.”

At first she laughed. Then she looked at me. Immediately, the chuckled ceased.

“Uh…I…No… We can’t. We have our dogs, Sydney has cheerleading… We…”

“I know,” I replied, driving along and trying to keep tears at bay.

Thus, the start of my battle with the serious grumpies.

I didn’t give a crap about how tired I was, though. Al had promised a draft of Tim’s version of the script in my e-mail Monday, and I hopped in the Internet to retrieve it.

But it wasn’t there. Fine, I said. I was too tired to read it, anyway. And I was no good to anyone, either. The only remedy was to go to bed, which was the best decision I’d made all day.

OKAY…I will try to write more after my shower, etc. If not, I will try to do more tonight.

Oh yeah…do you realize that a mere 4-5 miles away from where I sit in this placid uptown apartment writing about my little movie that literally tens or perhaps hundreds of thousands of people are gathering to protest George Bush and the Republican National Convention? And are the Olympics still on? I tend to forget these small events lately. I TRUE-ly live in a bubble right now.

SNAP!SNAP!SNAP! just went Debi’s fingers.

“You still gotta pack your stuff up.”

Yeah…I better get going, or I am going to be in some serious trouble, my friends.



Good Lord! Talk about a major case of Tempus Fugit!

I sit here, back in Al’s pad in Manhattan. Debi and I are tapping away on his and her laptops. Yes, she is FINALLY here, finally ready to dive in, and tomorrow we will head up to Catskill. Aaron and Robin and the rest of the cast, and Al and David and all the crew are pretty much all up there. Just add Minnesotans.

But…before all that, I promised a story. Didn’t I?

For that, I must set the “Way Back Machine” for about two-and-a-half weeks ago. You may not have noticed, but we lived in a much different world then. At least, I did.

If you remember, around that time, I had just gotten back from Grand Marais. While I was there, I spent not an insignificant amount of time trying to wrap up a pretty extensive re-write of the RUNAWAY BOYS script, from notes I had received from my July trip to NYC (which now seems like a hundred years ago). About four days later than I wanted, and about 24 hours later than Tim and Bob (our line producer) needed it, I e-mailed the completed draft to the RUNAWAY BOYS posse.

…And I didn’t need to wait too long for a response.

Now, for the sake of keeping days straight, I will break everything down day by day.


I was exhausted from the excruciating and frustrating work of getting the re-write done. Yesterday, when after I sent it off, Lynn asked me how I felt about the changes I had made.

“I think they’re corny and trite,” I replied, quite honestly. “I also think that I gave them what they asked for.”

Which is true. Without giving specific plot points away, the biggest concern Al and company had about the script was that they felt Michael’s (the main character) back story needed to be fleshed out more—wait…that’s not the right word…DEFINED. They wanted it more defined.

In the script as it originally stood, I had kept whatever drove Michael to do what ever he did (how’s that for vague) rather…well…vague. I wanted to leave it a little to the audience’s imagination. The prevailing East Coast wisdom, however, was that people wouldn’t accept that and that they would want some sort of explanation regarding the character’s intentions. They thought it would make the character more sympathetic. And…they had a specific suggestion regarding how to accomplish that.

The problem was, of course, that the suggested back-story was itself a pretty big and complicated animal. Yeah, while I was in NYC, everyone kept on saying, “We’re not looking for any major re-write. Just take a look at the current back story scenes and work it in there.” I nodded my head, but I knew that this was much easier said than done.

In the end, I was unsuccessful. I didn’t have a great feel for the new story, and I didn’t have a lot of pages (five, maybe six) to develop it. In the end, the draft I wrote definitely got the point across, but it sounded stilted and forced and ham-fisted.

All this added up to a very frustrated me. I was already tired, and my one yearly opportunity to recharge my batteries—the annual Grand Marais trip—was already half over before I was ready to actually begin vacationing. While the rest of the family was off taking a boat tour around Lake Superior, I was running around this day trying to get a last minute copyright registration rushed through because the production couldn’t become a SAG signatory or whatnot without it.

Oh…one positive note about the rewrite. I DID think that overall the story flowed better. I didn’t just surgically redo scenes and then cut and paste. This approach wouldn’t have worked, anyway, because the old back-story (and thus, the new one) had tendrils that pervaded the majority of scenes in the script. That, and I knew from recent reads that there were sections of the script that clunked along, scenes that needed re-sequencing, etc. Bearing this in mind, I took the opportunity to do a little house cleaning.

The result was a cleaner and better-arranged screen story that hummed along like something akin to a quartz clock. This was some comfort that the work I had done was not entirely in vain.

My family came home from the boat ride, and I greeted them with a lighter heart. The trip, which had begun very rocky for me, was about to get a lot smoother. The churning sea that was my mind grew quiet, and I was now prepared to allow it to be so.


After a very refreshing day of backbreaking labor—I volunteered to help Lynn’s brother clear some dead birch out of a two-acre plot they bought about 20 minutes south of Grand Marais—I felt on top of the world. It was a sunny day, and my muscles’ bitching was mostly just for show. They loved the attention, and the pain brought on by hoisting logs for five hours was glorious in comparison to the torture of ever-tightening tendons and muscles in atrophy—the hallmark of my (at least physically) sedentary life of sitting in front of a computer screen day in and day out.

Lynn swung by the property and picked me up. Then we headed back to our cabin, where I took a long and glorious shower and prepared to head into town for a few drinks at our waterhole of choice, The Gunflint Tavern.

But first, I knew I needed to call and talk to the Filbert boys.

So…I did, and the conversation was quite diplomatic. What I mean by that is that Al was going out of his way to get the point across to me that, although people had concerns with the back story scenes I had written (which I already knew would be the case, being that I had problems with them), everyone realized that this was all the result of my trying to manifest the notes that they had given me in New York—that I was simply trying to write the script they asked for, and when they read it they realized it wasn’t what they wanted, after all.

It was all very Minnesotan sounding, and I believe that I told Al at least once in the conversation that he was sounding more and more like me with the passing of each new day.

Fast forward to an hour later. We all agreed on two points. First, Al and David came to the conclusion that what they were really looking for was some sort of conglomeration between the version I had just written and the original version of the script that they had bought (and everyone involved in the production, by the way, had signed on as a result of reading). That was just fine in my book.

And the…a clearing of the throat from Al.

“And…we were talking about it here in the office, and we were…ah…thinking that- Tim was saying that maybe it’s time… He would, you know-“

“Quit talking like a goddamned Minnesotan.”

Nervous laughter.

“He would like to take a stab at doing a director’s polish of the script this weekend. You know, do what we said—marry the two drafts. We’re wondering what you think of that.”

I think I surprised them.

“I fell great about that.”


“Ah…wow. Cool.”

Then Al asked: “Is it that you’re burnt out on it?”

“No,” I replied, quite TRUE-thfully. “In fact, I’ve really been digging on the story again, which is something that I never thought I would be able to say again in my life. Thanks for giving me a reason to get re-acquainted with it again. I’ve really enjoyed doing that.”

Then I went on to explain what was the most important thing: if Tim was going to own it, I needed to give it up. It was my script, but it IS his movie. Every freaking script ever written—whether movie or live theatre—goes through a whole other stage of evolution when people start visualizing the thing and actors start vocalizing the lines. I knew this time was coming.

Not to say that it wasn’t difficult. Yes, it was sure as hell cutting my heart out with a butter knife. I personally felt like shit. This thing was my baby…my baby for (going back to the time when I wrote the original short story) going on six years. Six!

But my baby was all grown up. Graduation was over. Everything was said and done, and the only thing left was picking up all the paper plates and half-full punch cups after the open house. My baby was all packed up and moving out. No…it had already moved out. This was the call that said it was all tucked into its college dorm room and glad to be starting classes. …And it was doing just fine without me.

I didn’t say any of that to Al and David, of course. That was simply what was going through my head. I knew I had to give it up. It was time. It wasn’t going to be easy or “feel good” (is about the best I could muster over the phone), but I knew it had to happen. Further, I demanded it, I told them.

The weight hanging on the phone line dropped off immediately. Everything was suddenly light as a feather, as I am certain that Al and David were utterly relieved that I had taken what was very difficult news and handled it so well. Then again, like I’ve said…what else was I going to do? It wasn’t about me anymore—as if it ever was, anyway. Not to sound cliché, but it was “about the work”. About what was going to make the best movie, not massage my ego or salve my breaking heart. That shit’s for egotists and amateurs—posers whose work is only going to be seen by their grandmothers.

That’s not why I was called to do this.

“You have two minutes left on you calling card,” an automated voice broke in.

This whole conversation had taken place on a pay phone in a Holiday gas station, on total public display. How fitting, huh? I thought it was great. Me yelling in the phone (the phone sucked) like some Thespian in a Greek drama.

Oh, yeah…and then there was two pieces of very interesting news DID salve my achy-breaky heart. Sarah Michelle Gellar was reading the script—freaking Buffy the Vampire Slayer! Her manager, who had been the one who ASKED if she could bring it to her, was recommending that she do the movie. I wasn’t sure exactly whether Buffy/Daphne was the best fit for the material, but as Tim McCann had quite pragmatically observed less than a week earlier, if she was in the movie, it would pretty much guarantee distribution—probably wide distribution…and lots of publicity, and great video sales. It would, quite probably, launch all of our careers.

They other piece of information was that they weren’t waiting for Buffy. Being that the manager brought the idea of Sarah Michelle to the producers, they were still free (and pretty much obligated) to court other actresses. One actress that was very interested, as a matter of fact, was a girl named Bethany Joie Lenz, who stars on the WB’s ONE TREE HILL. We all thought she rocked in BRING IT ON AGAIN, and Tim and Aaron were meeting with her that Saturday when she flew in for the day to do some TV Guide interview. If they liked her, they were considering making her an offer for Carly.

But..! That wasn’t really the news. The REAL news what that Rachael Leigh Cook was somehow also interested in the part. Suddenly, after lamenting that we couldn’t find anyone for the damned part, there were three great possibilities for Carly. All was right, at least in the casting world.

So…I hung up the phone and headed over to The Gunflint Tavern. I beat back a couple of tears as I walked over to the place, but that was about it. And a couple Schell’s Deer Brands later, I was feeling just fine about the whole thing.

“Now you can actually enjoy the rest of your vacation,” Al said through our good-byes. In this, he was absolutely correct. Everything else aside, the weight was off my shoulders. Finally, I could stop worrying about the movie and simply focus on having fun with my family.

I raised a glass to toast. Lynn and Corky and smiled politely. They weren’t sure what they were toasting exactly, but I think they were relieved, too. Relieved that I was finally joining the vacation.


Courtesy of wi-fi in the town of Grand Marais. My vacations will never be the same.

I didn’t sleep well the night before because once the beer (and later martini) buzz wore off, I started worrying. I wanted to make absolutely certain that Al and co. knew I was fine with the whole Tim taking a stab at the re-write thing.

About six in the morning, I drove into town and parked next to the public library (the hub from which all wi-fi mojo emanates). I opened up my iBook and tapped out the following:

From: Bill True
Sent: Thursday, August 05, 2004 10:52 AM
To: Alan Klingenstein
Subject: Hey..
Just have a sec. Wanted you to know that after sleeping on it, I am feeling even BETTER about Tim doing a polish. As I said yesterday, he needs to do it in order to own it. Also…there comes a time when two heads are better than one. And, of course, I trust ya.

Anyway, got kind of cut off yesterday, so I just wanted to reiterate my thanks. Thanks for believing in this script and in me. Thanks for making this movie a reality. And thanks for presenting this “director’s polish” concept with the care, professionalism, and tact that is Al Klingenstein. I really appreciated that.

Talk to you Tues.

Thanks again…

To which he responded later that day:

Thx Bill. Like I said, a lot of what you did really worked, and pretty much everything that I thought didn’t work was the obvious result of you struggling nobly to work out modifications in response to our notes. I hope and expect that Tim will repay both our trust, but yes, we gotta give him his shot. I really think we’re both gonna be pleased with what we see on

Thx for being the partner that you are. Can’t tell you how much I appreciate you always being part of the solution for us all.

Have a relaxing rest of the wk and feel free to call whenever you want. Talk to you soon, Al
‘Nuff said, right? Besides, it was my pleasure. ‘Cause as the saying goes, “if you’re not part of the solution…” That night, I slept like a baby. The same goes with every night in Grand Marais after that.


Yikes! It’s really happening, ain’t it?!?

You are looking at a snapshot of a copy of a scanned version of a fax of the ACTUAL AND REAL shooting schedule for the RUNAWAY BOYS shoot. It came via e-mail to me (and the rest of the production personnel) about 20 minutes ago. Since then, I’ve just been sitting here (in Dunn Bros…where else?) gawking at the thing.

In spite of everything—going to NYC, living through the past couple of weeks, meeting Aaron, yada yada yada… This…THIS is what really brought it home for me. That on Tuesday of next week cameras are gonna be rolling, Tim’s gonna say “Action!”, and actors are gonna start struttin’ their stuff—I even know which scenes are happening on what day! …And it’s all from a little short story and then a little script that came out of my very little head.

Sometimes I am so boggled by all of this. At other times I am so honored, I tear up. Other times I am all “This is SooOOoOOo cool!”—I feel like a kid in a candy store.

Every once in a while I am scared shitless. Thankfully, this is the case by far the minority of the time nowadays.

I am, in fact, even less scared than I was just yesterday. The kids and I popped up to Cambridge for a short visit with my parents (Lynn is in CA at a qigong retreat till Wednesday). There were about 15 minutes when it was just my mom and I alone in their half-finished house.

We were sitting on the couch together (hell! Just ‘cause your house ain’t done don’t mean you can’t live in it a little, right?), and I was giving Mom my patented “Now the only thing left to worry about it that the movie doesn’t suck” speech. Well, everyone else listens to that speech and is more than willing so commiserate with me—to be a willing party to my little exercise in wallowing in self-doubt.

Not Mom.

She wouldn’t hear anything of the sorts.

“Billy,” she said. “Don’t say that. Your movie is going to be wonderful. It’s going to be terrific. You’ve worked so hard on it. Everyone’s worked hard on it. You just got to have a positive attitude…say ‘It’s going to be great.’ That’s all. …And it will.”

Ahhhh…a mother’s faith.

You’re right, Ma. It’s gonna be great. Plain and simple.

…And it’s going to all happen beginning next Tuesday.

So…speaking of being back in Minnesota… I touched down in the Land of Lakes around 3 a.m. Saturday morning. Inclement weather just to the west of New York caused major delays, and we sat on the tarmac for over two hours waiting for whatever storms were out there to blow over. I was a more than a little worried about this because I only had an hour lay over in Chicago before I had to catch my next flight—the one to Minneapolis. Turns out that flight was late, too. No idea what the reason was for all that…didn’t care, either. Was, quite frankly, thankful.

I arrived home exhausted—both of the mental and physical varieties. Slept in till about 9:30 on Saturday, when I was awakened by a big monster hug from my Zach Attack. Wow! It was the best hug I’d gotten in…man! Weeks. Months! Then he climbed into bed with me, and Syd kid wasn’t far behind him. Neither was Elvis…or Minnie for that matter.

There we were, quite the crew, all giggles and tickles and dog slobber. And though it wasn’t nearly right without Lynn there in the mix, it felt good to be home.

Since then, I’ve gotten two good nights’ sleep. I can, however, still feel the tiredness tugging at me.

NOTE: I really typed all of this yesterday…Monday. I had somehow deluded myself that I was going to finish the whole story yesterday. Then, when I finally settled in after a long day of cleaning and errands and running kids around and catching up with a couple of good friends and what not—when I finally got home and crawled into bed around 11:45 p.m., I suddenly comprehended just how messed up in the head I was on that particular point.

When I awoke today, in fact, tiredness didn’t merely tug at me; it consumed me. Apart from my quick trip to drop Sydney off at cheerleading practice, I slept like a log until after 9:00. I opened my eyes, saw the time, and jumped out of bed in a panic. I rushed through my shower and getting dressed, and I was still ten minutes late to my appointment with my barber (I want to avoid looking utterly and completely shaggy in the event I can’t avoid a camera lens over the next 3-4 weeks).

Anyway…so what I’ve decided is to take a play from the Wilmeister’s playbook. Write it out little by little, day by day, over the next few days. That way, by the time I head up to the set in Catskill, I will hopefully have you all caught up on the story of my recent and amazing trip.

So…keep posted. I think you’ll like it. The whole thing is interesting (in a Project Greenlight kinda way), I guess.

For now, I have spent the most awesome day alone with my beautiful daughter. We watched three-and-a-half movies (yes, there is a story behind that), had lunch at a Mongolian barbeque, sipped coffee coolers, and gabbed gabbed gabbed all day long. Wonderful…so wonderful to get in touch with her again. All that said, I’m bushed, and I’m going to close my eyes now. I will—I promise—catch you on the flip side.

‘Night, all…


The day Robin Tunney saved my life

Which would, in fact, be today.

It’s official. Meet our new (and I believe improved) Carly.

What can I say? I haven’t met her, yet still I love her. There is, in fact, no VERTICAL LIMIT to my love. I can’t help it. I CHERISH her. I love her; I love her IN-LAWS. I don’t care about her past. I don’t care if she’s got any skeletons in her closet. I don’t even care if she’s gotten mixed up in THE SECRET LIVES OF DENTISTS. She is, in my mind, a SUPERNOVA. I will, thus, be hers till my END OF DAYS.

And that’s all I have to say about that.

We have a new produciton start date: August 31. That means I am heading back to MN on Friday, after we read through the script out loud on Thursday night and I make pretty much the final tweaks before rehearsal and production. I’ll come back with Debi NEXT weekend, and then the real fun will begin.

I am VERY happy with the script. This process–and the results–have been, to say the least, amazing.

Speaking of…I gotta get back to work! ‘Night, all!

…And thanks, Robin..!

Catch my breath

Hey…sorry. I really meant to post. Uhh…yeah… Famous last words, huh?

The past…how many days has it been? I have to look at my calendar.

Holy Crap! Like…SIX DAYS. Has I been here that long?!? Wow… I guess the old adage holds water–time TRUE-ly does fly when you’re havin’ fun.

The past week has been, undoubtedly, one of the most intense experiences in either my creative or working lives. It has also, undoubtedly, been the finest. I am walkin’ on cloud nine.

I have an M.F.’in’ DOOSEY of a post for you in the next day or so. You’ll laugh, you’ll cry… I haven’t posted the blow-by-blow account over the past few days because–well, one, I was working working working on the script and/or in meetings about the script pretty much around the clock. That, and things were so fluid and/or sensitive that I couldn’t really mention them on…well…like…the Internet, and all.

Bad movie-making mojo, ya know.

It’s all done now, and I can talk about it. I need a little time to catch my breath–a day. And I need to get some final script stuff done. AND…I need to get ready for a meeting tomorrow with a talent manager, who comes highly recommended by folks here. We’ll see what happens, I guess. She sounds very nice over the phone.

Anyway, the ONE thing I can say is Rachael Leigh Cook is out. Another actress has signed on–probably a better choice in the end. It’s all part of the grand adventure that has been RUNAWAY BOYS: The Pre-production Experience. Will fill you in with all the news that’s fit to print tomorrow.

Until then, a little teaser. This picture was taken last night by Yours TRUE-ly at the NYC production office. We had been slugging, slugging, slugging so long and so hard for so many days. FINALLY, we all felt comfortable with the movie version of the script…like we really had something we could get behind and feel terrific about.

As an FYI–Aaron..? Cool guy. Not at all like what one would expect from a “star” type. And smart…with good writing and storytelling chops. He’s really pitched in right there with the rest of us, and many of his suggestions have worked their way into the script. …And he even puts up with my constant barrage of super-hero/X-MEN jokes. Although he has threatened to have me banned from the set. Hmmmm…

Anyway, Al had one of the PAs run out and get a big ol’ jug-o-whiskey…Maker’s Mark, no less. And we all grabbed whatever we could–paper cups, coffe mugs–and hoisted a…uh…glass to victory.

The guys in the picture are (L to R): Al, David Viola (our other producer), Jim (a PA), Aaron (some actor), Nate (a PA), and Tim McCann (our director).

I will make certain to post tomorrow. Thanks for bearing with me.

If I can make it there

Ill make it ehhh-nee-where!

It’s up to you

Once again into the fray

So here I am again, sitting in an airport food court and wolfing down some [insert conglomeration of meat and salad] wrap and waiting to board the flight that will be my next (and final) leg to the Big Apple. The noise in Midway is, itself, a spectacle. The humanity swirling around me is merely the icing on the cake.

I wasn’t surprised that the call came around noon today. There are some last minute tweaks to the script, and the producer asked if I would be there to help make them happen.

“Uhh…I’m not sure, Al. Lemme check my schedule and get back to you.”

Suddenly, I’m ramming my still dirty vacation laundry through the wash and running a few last minute errands like a madman. Then there’s the little matter of a doctor’s appointment for Zach that both Lynn and I needed to attend.

All that, and I still caught my flight at 6:10.


Thank God for my brother, Action Jackson. Perish the thought of what my life would be without him. He took off work to get me to the airport. He gave me “the talk”. He gave me a hug as I left. He’s shouldered so much for his adopted TRUE family. And all with a smile. It amazes me.

I gotta tell ya, I couldn’t love the guy more if he was my own flesh and blood. Which, by the way, sometimes I wonder, anyway…

My deep regret this trip is that Debi isn’t here with me. I learned so much last trip. It was the epitome of the movie producing experience. And I get the feeling that this time around is going to best it.

I know that next weekend we will pile into her car and be together for the production experience, but I know that she’s feeling left out. I mean, she can’t help but feel that way. She isn’t getting the hands on—the texture, the depth, the quality, the detail—experience that I am getting. I am trying to carry her spirit (and her interests) with me constantly, but it becomes difficult sometimes to remember, to do.

I hope I am doing her justice. I pray I am. I pray for strength to continue to carry the torch for both of us. For I remember, I’m not just a screenwriter. WE’RE producers. Hence, DeBill Pictures. We’re a team.

Okay, I am babbling. But so much is coming into my mind right now. Things like:

• I’m scared.
• But I know I can do this.
• I love my family.
• I can’t say enough how much I appreciate their sacrifice as I simply drop everything and go live my dream.
• Will the movie turn out?
• Will it be good?
• What about money?
• I pray that everything will be okay.
• I pray my family will be safe.
• I thank God for this opportunity.
• But why the hell ain’t the wi-fi working here?

That’s about it.

I brought a real camera this time. If I think of it (no guarantees…you know who you’re dealing with), I wanna document the journey over the coming days (and possibly weeks). Also, I am guessing I will keep everyone apprised of the progress of this little RUNAWAY adventure.

‘Nite, all.

Wassup with that RUNAWAY BOYS movie?

Funny you should ask, TRUE LIFERS.

Here is the latest. We start shooting on the 24th of this month in Catskill, NY. Even as I type, there are legions of RUNAWAY BOYS, LLC production foot soldiers scurrying around the town preparing for the shoot. The city, as I understand it, is pretty much throwing open their doors to us, which is exceedingly cool. They’re giving us access to some great locations, and even, I believe, donating use of an abandoned gymnasium for us to use as our makeshift studio and production HQ.

The director went up there today, and both the line producer and the production coordinator are up there. Sets are being built, etc., etc., etc. Pretty cool.

There will be a week of rehearsal in NYC next week. And who will be our stars, you might ask? Well, I am happy to tell you that I can actually…well…tell you! Finally!

Michael, the male lead, will be played by Aaron Stanford. Those of you who are arthouse movie freaks remember him making googly eyes over Sigourney Weaver–and making out with Bebe Newirth–in the indie hit TADPOLE. Those of you who are comic freaks will remember him as Pyro in X-MEN 2. He’s done a few other movies, as well, and is one of the VERY notable rising stars in H’wood today. We are fortunate to have him.

Carly, our female lead, will be Rachel Leigh Cook. For those of you who have had your heads stuck in the sand over the past five years, two notable films she’s been in are SHE’S ALL THAT and JOSIE AND THE PUSSYCATS. She has, however, been in tons more. Even better? She’s a Minnesota girl! I think that’s cool.

The other roles are either cast or being finalized, but I’m not in a position to spill the beans about all that yet.

My past couple of weeks, as you know, has been doing a re-write based on notes I got while I was in NYC. That is done and got mixed reviews by the others involved in the production. We’re going for one more revision push this weekend, where hopefully we will land on a version that pleases everyone–or at least everyone can be reasonably happy with. Unfirtunately, there is a little matter of differing tastes in our little crew, so I am not certain we are going to please all of the people all of the time. In the end, I hope we can simply land somewhere that will help make us a kick ass movie.

Okay…so that’s it for now. I will keep you posted as I know more. I am, like, two hours late on getting some notes over to the producer in NYC. Gotta buzz.

Paul Revere and the TRUE LIFE confessional

I’ve noticed something. Yeah, yeah…I know. Goody for me.

I’m not the brightest bulb on the tree, mind you, so the fact that this has just dawned on my now comes as no surprise to me. It does, however, resonate. A little, but distinct “click!” that echoes through my mind, like the hoof…uh…falls of Paul Revere’s horse on cobblestone. “He’s finally got it! He’s finally got it!”

This morning I realized that-aside from the rigors of everyday life—the main reason why I don’t post here on a regular basis lately is that I am trying too hard to be clever.

Ever since I got back on Monday, I have had news and such to report here. Every time I sit in front of this keyboard, however, I clam up. I tell myself that I need some cool hook, some interesting angle, something that’s gonna knock your socks off. Of course, what ends up happening is my eyes go kinda burry, and my brain starts to feel fuzzy. A minute later, the only thing I’m good for is a nice, long nap.

Or…I just surf the Internet. Damn you, wi-fi technology.

Now, I don’t say this to beat myself up, so don’t worry. I am merely telling you this as a matter of course—to recognize the 800-pound gorilla in the middle of the proverbial room. Now that we’ve acknowledged the fellow, now I can tell you the next thing I said to myself this morning.

“Self,” I said, I did. “This ain’t some namby-pamby frou-frou weblog! No sirree! Clever banter! We don’t need no stinkin’ clever banter! This here is TRUE LIFE!”

Uff da. You betcha.

Okay, seriously, I looked back at the little bio page I set up all these months ago. When I read through it, I remembered that I never said anything about being clever or cool or whatever. I only said this little TRUE LIFE thing was a tool to help define “who I am”. Well, I realize that I am not a clever or cool little ditty.

At least that’s TRUE some of the time. Sometimes, I am goofy and funny and whatnot. Other times, I am downright businesslike and/or boring. There are times when I am utterly uninspired. There are times when a shopping list is the most challenging thing I can commit to paper.

And sometimes, I got it going.

So…now you’re sitting there and going “Uh…huh…?”

All I’m trying to say (and why say it in 25 words or less, when you can say it in 250 words or more?) is that I get today that TRUE life, real and TRUE life, is like that. If you live with someone else, as I have had the pleasure of doing for the past glorious 18 years, you realize that it ain’t all wine and roses. As John Cusack’s character in HIGH FIDELITY pointed out, it’s not the pretty, sexy, satiny lingerie. It’s the faded, stretched out of shape, cotton panties hanging over the tub.

…And that’s what makes it great. ‘Cause, as Cusack’s character further acknowledged, the satiny, sexy stuff is the fantasy. It’s the cute problems, like you each bought one another the same Christmas gift.

And, like Cusack’s character, I get tired of the fantasy.

I am not the world’s best writer. Hell, in my book, I’m not even that good. I’m just some guy that’s been getting a couple of good breaks and has been a little lucky. I mean, yeah…I’m okay. But not stellar…not consistently so, that is.


I do believe I will be someday—consistently stellar at this writing thing. But I am not there yet. That, my friend, is going to take practice. Lots of it.

And that is why TRUE LIFE is here in the first place. I dreamed of a place where I could put it out there—not just the satiny stuff, but the cotton undies, too—and just let it be. Get it out of my head and into the ether, so I could release it.

That’s what I am doing today. That, I realize, is what I want to do every day.

Gudda-gump! Gudda-gump! Gudda-gump! Gudda-gump!

“He’s finally getting it! He’s finally getting it…!”

Stay tuned for some RUNAWAY BOYS updates. Not pretty, but pretty informative.