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Fun Joel's Screenwriting Blog


-- On Screenwriting and Related Topics

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Location: Los Angeles, CA

I moved from NYC to LA in October, 2003. And though I still think NYC is the greatest city in the world, I'm truly loving life here in the City of Angels. I'm a writer, reader, and occasional picture-taker.

Monday, August 15, 2005

Who You Be?

Taking a page from Warren's book, I thought it might be nice to get to know more of you. My hits and unique visitors have been steadily growing since I started writing this thing back in May (thank you all for that).

So, lacking anything else to post about in brief (I have a lot of writing to do today), I figured I'd open it to all y'all. Drop a comment with your name (or pseudonym if you're feeling secretive), some of your writing background if you have it, where you live, and anything else that seems pertinent. Fave films or genres? Birthday (don't expect presents)? Favorite cut of beef? I don't know, this is your post!

So fill me in!

Tags: ,


Blogger Warren said...

Well, I'll kick it off! Early 30's, quit the day job about four months ago to blog, I mean, write, full time. I'm just finishing the rewrite of my second feature right now. Used to draft reverse triangular corporate acquisition docs all day. That was fun. Need to start making some dough at screenwriting soon or my lovely attorney wife will leave me for some guy who lives to draft reverse triangular corporate acquisition docs all day.

10:18 PM  
Blogger rabbi neil fleischmann said...

Neil Fleischmann. Remember me? Used to hang out in your apartment when you roomed with Sam and Mo.

I love Ordinary People and A Tree Grows In Brooklyn. The most recent movie to join my list of favorites is million dollar baby.

I write poetry often and fiction too. My poetry is at my blog and on Mimaamakim. My fiction is on an anonymous blog that's so anonymous no-one reads it.

11:25 PM  
Blogger American Knight said...

Erik here, I’m 27 and newly moved to the Los Feliz area of L.A. and getting ot know the neighborhood. I’m a struggling screenwriter who’s managed to option a few treatments/screenplays but nothing quite “big” yet. I write action driven scripts, mainly features but have also written specs for Alias and Smallville, with a new found love for television. I've written (or co-written) about 12 features, 3 of which are actually worth showing to anyone.

11:58 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

JR Scott:

San Diego, California (displaced Jersey boy). Mid 20's, no attorney wife (or wife of any sort for that matter) so I can't quite quit the day job (IT professional/Technical Writer).

Degree in Professional English (that's what they call it at UNC when you're too lazy to finish the teacher's certification) and I've written poetry, short stories, and even a novella (all realistic fiction of some sort).

A screenplay was previously uncharted territory for me and the challenge has been nothing short of thrilling and everything short of easy. To tell a story predominantly through visuals was a HUGE change to make. (What!? No half a page of prose giving insight to my main characters feelings/thought process?? WTF?!)

I'm learning though, and loving it. 1 completed feature (which I'm thoroughly certain sucks) and halfway through the second one (which I feel exponentially better about).

Also, I love parentheses...

12:13 AM  
Blogger The Awful Writer said...

I stopped reading your blog ages ago so there's no point in describing myself.


12:27 AM  
Anonymous Norm said...

26, aspiring screenwriter. Been in the LA area two years come Sept., and I spent the first year living off of savings and interning or PAing or anything else someone would have me do for free.

Now that the money's dried up, I slave away at a Video Store. Married and living comfortably in Northridge.

I've been writing for three years, and have two screenplays worthy of being shown, and one more almost there.

I love Royal Tenebaums, Big Lebowski, The Emporer's New Grove and a good center cut filet whenever I get the chance.

2:35 AM  
Blogger Fun Joel said...

Thanks folks! So, so far there seems to be some homogeneity regarding experience, etc, more or less. Good to know, thuogh I'll still wait to hopefully hear from others as well.

Warren -- I'm proud to say I have absolutely no idea what reverse triangular corporate acquisitions are, and would have no clue how to draft the docs for one!

R. Neil -- good to see you chiming in! Hope all is great with you.

Awful -- The others still might want to hear about you!

Norm -- please click on the link in the sidebar entitled "What Makes You Fun, Joel" for one of my most heartfelt statements: There's no such thing as an aspiring writer.

Looking forward to hearing from more of you soon! :-) And do I have any regular female readers? I know there are screenwriters who aren't guys! Chime in ladies!

4:49 AM  
Blogger writergurl said...

You talking ta me?

I currently live in Atlanta, have completed one screenplay and am in the throes of researching the 2nd one. I remodel houses so that dog and I can continue to live in the style to which we've become quite enamoured. I'm looking at moving to LA in the next 6 months or so.

I ain't telling you my age. I don't got too. I'm a gurl! ;)

5:08 AM  
Blogger Fun Joel said...

Hey Gurl! Thx for checking in. I wasn't SOLELY referring to you. There are a few more female readers out there who haven't checked in yet!

Remodelling houses for a living, eh? Sounds cool. And are you a brit by birth? Canadian? (I'm referring to the "enamoured.")

8:29 AM  
Blogger TN_Dreamer said...

Hey, FunJoel.

28 (29 on Sept 27). working on my first screenplay right now. living in Nashville, TN & making the move sometime between Feb & June of 2006. write short fiction & poetry as well. am a coding idiot, so have yet to put much of it on my blog. working in accounting right now to pay off the CC before I go. love fantasy, horror, mystery. hate chick-flicks (unless they're really well-written like Beautiful Girls, but that's more of a guy chick-flick). unusual info: got stuck upside-down on my first ever rollercoaster, cried/screamed until I was hoarse, got off, immediately asked to get back on, & love them ever since.

4:08 PM  
Blogger TN_Dreamer said...

oops, & am female. but wasn't that obvious?

4:10 PM  
Blogger The Awful Writer said...

>Awful -- The others still might
>want to hear about you!

Ok. I had assumed incorrectly that you had pretty much the say readership as Screenwriting Life but I do see some new names, so here it is:

Just turned 43. Currently live in the midwest, will be moving to LA in a couple of months. Been working as a software engineer for the last 20 years. Wrote software for military radar systems, steel mill inventory control, TV studio device automation, and (currently) security software for government agencies and large companies. Earlier this year I decided to take up screenwriting on the side. I have a lot to learn.

BONUS INFO just for readers of Fun Joel:

So far in my life I've only written one piece of fiction. It was a sci-fi short story I wrote for a Philosophy of Technology class I had in college about 21-22 years ago. It was about a society that developed on a planet where one side always faced the sun and the other side always faced the night.

5:56 PM  
Blogger Shawna said...

Shawna. 30. Female. L.A. 2 years. I like tea.

8:08 PM  
Blogger TN_Dreamer said...

Shawna. Concise.


10:12 PM  
Blogger Gary Watson said...

OK, my turn I guess. I'm the co-founder and CTO of a computer data storage HW company, age 43, married to a professor of German and ESL (speaks five languages fluently while I have trouble with one). Three cats, no kids. Live in Calabasas CA.

I'm the host of Screenwriters Podcast (www.screenwriterspodcast.com) which is a weekly show meant to be mostly tutorial in nature. Have about 2000 subscribers.

I got into screenwriting a couple of years ago because I've been trying to write an action/adventure spy thriller novel for the last 20 years, and got the bright idea that the way to fix my plot problems was to try to write it as a screenplay cuz how hard could that possibly be...

I'm going to go to the meetup on sunday, hopefully with the broad, so we can meet y'all F2F. I'll bring a couple of mics and a recorder if anybody wants to do a quick interview for the podcast.

11:09 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just turned 25. I've completed three scripts, working on my forth -- and this one is killin' me. Never attempt a sci-fy/fantasy/epic -- 136pgs completed and still there is no end in sight! I'm currently suffering through a crippling depression which I suspect is caused by my inability to finish this monster. If I am not done by September, I am burning it and each and every one of the 700+ pages of the damn book it's based on!

God, can you imagine re-writing a 160+ script? I’ll be dead before I have a decent draft.

Anyway, I frequent this site in hopes of someday becoming as HAPPY and FUN as our host here...Funjoel, what is the secret? Therapy?, Booze?, Sex?, Drugs?...Please don’t tell me it’s the writing you enjoy. It’s work! And any work that lasts for 6 months plus isn’t all fun.

12:37 AM  
Blogger Bill Cunningham said...

Hi Joel - I'm uh, well what it says above - Bill Cunningham. I am male, 42 and have lived in LA for the past 8 years.

I've been produced twice (Scarecrow and Scarecrow Slayer) and have had two script assignments from companies. I've also authored a short story in Tales of the Shadowmen: The Modern Babylon.

I came to California after breaking up with my girlfriend. I had been working in film and TV while living in SC as a crew person and my career was going nowhere in the south. So, I packed up the truck and moved to...Hollywood.

I've worked in production / distribution for most of my time here in LA, and have only been writing for the past 5 years or so.

I'll be glad to tell you more, and learn about you on Sunday.

2:03 AM  
Blogger writergurl said...

Wow, I must suck as a writer... the "you talking ta me?" was an attempt to be goof on TAXIDRIVER... you know, the one with DeNiro... I've got an ego but it's not nearly large enough to think that I'm the sole GURL screenwriter there is reading this! :)

Nope, not British. Pretty funny coincidence... you're the second person (within the last motnh) on the net to think that I AM British, solely by virtue of my correspondence with them. Odd, that. But, no, I'm American through and through. I just read.. a LOT. I also tend to like (and use) words that just "sound" good to me, thus: "enamoured".

2:04 AM  
Blogger writergurl said...

Evidently I'm also quite fond of " " too.


2:06 AM  
Anonymous Ryan Rasmussen said...

I'm 33, working on my fourth script (third solo), and a technical writer/editor for a software company. In PA now, looking to move to L.A. within the year. First script was a semifinalist at Chesterfield, so that was good encouragement.

For the most recent script, my writing partner and I filmed a short video teaser, with the most interesting result being a private investigator dispatched by Lucasfilm showing up while we were cranking on the fourth draft for Nicholl. But we're nice guys. Really. Hi, George!

P.S. Anyone here going to Austin this year?

3:18 AM  
Blogger Rob Richard said...

I am 21 and have so far finished three screenplays and am working on a fourth. For the time being I am living in Saint John, New Brunswick au Canada. Hopefully a move to LA will come somewhere in the next year and a half...

3:23 AM  
Anonymous Joshua said...

Joshua James - New York City - caucasian male, somewhere above thirty but below forty . . . playwright produced across the country, now dipping my toe into the waters of film and television. Written a few screenplays, probably will write even more, because, well, it's fun - I like tea, too, but iced tea is where it's at.

My website is www.playwrightjoshuajames.com and my blog is the Daily Dojo (on the site) - please visit and say hello . . . there's a funny recording of someone selling Christian long distance there now. Stop by.

I have a scar on the inside of my left forearm - bitten by a domestic rabbit when I was eleven. Yes, that's right, I was attacked by someone's pet bunny.

4:14 AM  
Blogger s.warren said...

Steve Warren - 29 - Nelsonville, Oh. That's right. The middle of nowhere. I've been writing for about 15 years. Most of my time doing this was devoted to short stories and novels. I never really made any serious attempt at being published. I've only sent things out a few times and actually had one story accepted for publication but the rag shut down before I saw print. I didn't even get the lousy ten bucks.

I've always had ideas for movies. After I saw a few of them pop up in actual produced movies I started kicking myself for not even making the effort. So, now I'm trying. I've written eight (!) scripts and am starting my ninth. Out of the ones I've completed, I'm really trying to do something with my most recent. It's a supernatural horror flick with a twist. I've pitched it a few times and been sending out queries via Script P.I.M.P.

So far nothing... but I'm going to keep trying. I'm pretty certain that a move to L.A. will be in my future, but I'm not too excited about that prospect.

Oh yeah... and I've never been attacked by anyone's pet bunny.

6:48 AM  
Blogger Da Weave said...

Howdy- I'm Hal Weaver and I've written one feature-length SP called "Gyro" that's posted on TriggerStreet. It's the fourth draft and needs a fifth (probably a sixth, seventh, eighth.....), but I am blocked on how to get it to that next level. In the meantime I blog and hike and work on short films (recent finished a short animated film called "Zank"). Recently my wife and I returned to Virginia after living for two years in Ireland (She got her MFA, I got to hike a lot, drink a couple of pints and do odd jobs; I recommend it). In what I call "the old life" I was a computer graphics guy doing Flash and 3-D animation and stuff for computer based training. Hey, it's really great to be here. OK HW

2:36 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Todd, early 40s (and I mean early as in one day now)...screenwriting wannabee, blogbot, comment stalker, time waster extraordinaire...and I do this weird thing with my right hand

4:17 PM  
Blogger Fun Joel said...

Okay! That's what I'm talking about! Thanks to all of you for chiming in (and I hope many more continue to do so.

I'm glad to see so many of you non-LAers are planning to make the move. There really is no substitute if you're serious about your writing. We also seem to have a decent age range, and at least a few women not avoiding speaking up, so that's nice too. Also a few with some Pro experience, which I'm glad to see. I don't really think that my comments are exclusively useful to neophytes, but it's nice to see the confirmation!

In the personal spirit I like to think of all things Fun Joel, my next comment will address individual commenters! :-) (And I apparently like exclamation points!)

5:00 PM  
Blogger Fun Joel said...

Relatively in sequence since my last comment prior to others...

Dreamer -- Happy early birthday! :-)

Awful -- you say the short story is the only piece of fiction you've written so far. Have you begun your first screenplay yet? I hope so! Don't put it off. Just do it.

Shawna -- Dreamer beat me to it. Nice and concise. ;-)

Gary -- 2000 subscribers?! Wow! That's really good. Just shows how podcasting is a strong and budding medium. Looking forward to meeting you Sunday.

Anon w/the Sci-Fi epic -- just get the script out. Once you're done, and take a short break from it, you'll be able to chop out a ton of pages. Just remember to be emotionally detached and focused. Also, did you outline first, or are you just diving in to the writing and going with it? And my secret to fun and happiness? For that I'll quote a fave line from Say Anything: "Why can't you be in a good mood? How hard is it to decide to be in a good mood and be in a good mood once in a while?" I just decide to be happy, and I am!

Bill C. -- we have much to talk about, you and I. Looking forward to meeting you on Sun as well!

Gurl -- it wasn't the word (or "wourd") you chose that made you look English, but rather the way you spelled "enamoured."

Ryan -- Sounds like that Jedi flick brought you some real excitement, huh? I'll have to read the specifics. Good luck with the contests as well.

Rob -- You're getting quite the head start on many of us out here, getting the experience early. That can only help you! So just keep it up, brother.

Joshua -- bitten by a rabbit?! Sounds like you might have been hanging on the set of Monty Python and the Holy Grail!

Steve -- Best of luck with the queries! Keep us posted.

Da Weave -- A big part of writing is knowing when to accept something and move on to the next project. It sounds to me like you might have reached that point, and you shuld definitely think that over. What I mean is, while you very well may be able to improve Gyro with further rewrites, you might be able to advance your writing even more with a new script. Something to think about.

And finally, Quill -- a very happy birthday, young man! (Nice for me to start AND end these comments with bday wishes!)

5:14 PM  
Blogger writergurl said...

Gurl -- it wasn't the word (or "wourd") you chose that made you look English, but rather the way you spelled "enamoured."

You can blame Agatha Christie, Jane Austen, Emily Dickens, Martin Amis and John LeCarre, amoungst others for THAT. ;)

Yes, I know it's amongst.. just funning wid ya...

5:39 PM  
Blogger John Donald Carlucci said...


I love horror,scifi, action, romcoms. I've started a new comicstrip called Grovers Mills andam planning to move back to LA soon.

I've spent the last six months recharging and refocusing on writing (after leaving LA).


6:26 PM  
Blogger The Awful Writer said...

>Awful:..Have you begun your first
>screenplay yet?

I haven't typed FADE IN yet but I've been doing research, taking notes, and outlining. I'll get to the actual screenplay one of these days. :-)

8:12 PM  
Blogger Fun Joel said...

JDC -- welcome back, in advance!

Awful -- Sounds good. I'm a huge fan of the research process, so I'd never tell anyone to avoid it. However, I'd suggest setting a deadline for yourself, picking a date by which you'd like to begin the actual writing. I find research walks a fine line between being beneficial and becoming a procrastinatory tool!

8:17 PM  
Blogger John Donald Carlucci said...

" I find research walks a fine line between being beneficial and becoming a procrastinatory tool!"

Man, I can't second that statement enough. Research is a vice for me - as much as City of Heroes.


8:45 PM  
Blogger Da Weave said...

Fun Joel - or can I call you by your Kyrpton name "Fun-Jo"? Thank's for the advice. Actually have two more ideas building notes on and one might be ready for the brutal first draft ritual. I'll let you know how it shakes out. In the meantime, keep smiling. OK HW

11:45 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi - just found your site so please excuse me for writing 4 days after your post.

I do not consider myself a writer but I am a lover of books. I have my own blog site and I try to write interesting things, however after reading many other sites, I realize that I really don't!

Don't really want to move to LA, we visit about 3 times a year to see family and that is good for me.

Let's see: 34, married, 2 kids (one a teenage boy - yes, it is becoming a nightmare), EMT certified and work as an assistant to a cardiothoracic surgeon.
That is about it - thanks for asking about us

10:12 PM  
Blogger Make the logo bigger said...

Hey Joel -

bg here in Northern Jersey. Been away from the writing side for a little bit. For the rest, I'm in the 'skews-older' category of 42. Finished my first draft on my first script this past June and had Joel do coverage on it. It helped me a lot as I am now in the rewrite phase as we speak. So here's a shameless plug for Joel:

For those that aren't aware, Joel offers coverage services on scripts. Anyone writing at some point needs professional coverage, just as most people say you need to move to LA to get serious about your career. I'm not there in LA yet, but short of that, I decided to spend some money and get feedback besides what my family and friends thought about the script, as we all do.

Fav movies: Jacob's Ladder, Quick Change, Fifth Element, Glengarry GlenRoss.

10:35 PM  
Blogger Fun Joel said...

Aww, thanks BG for the kind plug. I enjoy helping, and hope your next draft is progressign nicely. Looking forward to reading it when it is done!

7:12 AM  
Blogger Fun Joel said...

And Jewels, didn't mean to ignore you. ;-)

Welcome to the site! Don't be so hard on yourself. And all are welcome -- writers and non-writers alike.

6:41 PM  
Blogger Trish said...

Hi Joel. I'm a musician and dog walker in LA.

Found you while blog-jogging. Great group. Nice to see a community of folks who rally for each other without sniping out newbies like me. Thanks for making me feel welcome.

3:07 AM  
Blogger Fun Joel said...

My pleasure Trish! If it weren't for you newbies, we wouldn't have fresh eyes to read our stuff! Keep reading. And let me know if you're playing anytime soon -- I'm a big music fan.

7:44 AM  
Blogger torontopearl said...

Don't know if you'll see this so many weeks later (cusp of Sept. 11 as I write this):

I'm a born-and-bred Torontonian. I work in the publishing industry as a copy editor,and get published every now and again -- mainly with my poetry. I have had a blog since Dec. 2004...and pretty much have given up watching TV since I began reading/writing blogs. I haven't attempted to write a screenplay, but am pretty good friends with a well-known, Emmy-winning Hollywood screenwriter, whom I met via blogging -- does that count!?

And now that I found your blog (via your L.A. Jewish journal article) I intend to keep reading it!

7:00 AM  

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