Bad Blogging

Just your average mediocre blog posts. Tends to not be particularly story-licious and will probably frequently diverge into the massively off topic.

Getting Back To It

So there’s a pretty significant gap between this post and my last, and for a handful of reasons that are mostly good, with the down side being my near abandonment of Damn Short Stories. But you might notice, if you’ve kept occasionally popping in, that there is, today, a “content dump”. That’s because I’ve made a choice: Ugly Baby Studios will no longer serve as my outlet for blogs and other writings. I’m coming home, instead, to Damn Short Stories, because the truth of the matter is this: I need to be story focused, and when I write for this site, it forces me to think in stories.

Not that UBS is going away–on the contrary, it’s simply being repurposed. I’ve been working for some months now on building a small studio, suitable for filming independent videos of various sorts, and I’ll be using UBS as the branding for that effort. As such, that website’s content needed a new home, and since most of it was writing by me in one capacity or another, here we are. I’ll cull the chaff as soon as possible, but for now, here it is.

So what’s next for Damn Short Stories? First and foremost: a redesign will come soon, and then I’ll begin sharing short stories in a variety of ways, including some written as short screenplays. Should be fun.

See you soon!

Neglected Story Blog: My Sin

Obviously, I haven’t put in as much time and effort the past several months as DSS–to say nothing of my passion for stories–deserves. The reason is simple: last year (Fall 2009) I started back to college, and in classic form I’ve made it a point to inundate myself with coursework. Last semester (Spring 2010) was especially foolish, yet enrichening: I handled 17 units and 3 major English classes (2 of them literature.) The bright side of that experience was, I have lots of new ideas for stories. The down side was, I had no time to write any.

That’s all changed now that the semester is over, however, and I’ve had time to think a bit more, so I’ll be adding some new stories very soon. In the meantime, thanks for stopping by to check out what’s here already, and I hope you’ll come back again! You can occasionally find me posting briefly over at All That Nerdy Stuff, where I often will post fun and nerdy stuff I find, or at Poetic Hell, where I’ve begun posting both new and old poetry.

I hope to see you around!

Joss Whedon’s top 10 Writing tips

In my new life as College Student Extraordinaire (CSE for short), one of my courses is Intro to Screenwriting. I’ve been interested in taking such a course for many years, so I was very happy to get into the class without a problem. I was disappointed in the class until recently, for various reasons, but I’m now very pleased and suddenly quite motivated. Consequently, I’ve been perusing various sites and forums online looking for advice on how to write well for the screen. Suffice to say, I’ve found a lot of good advice, but none I’ve taken to heart so readily as this nugget of platinum from one of my favorite screenwriters, Joss WhedonΒ (gold is too cheap and commonplace for Mr. Whedon’s level of talent, imho).

The article was orginally presented in 4Talent magazine but was reprinted with permission at the source linked above. Since I don’t have such permission, I’ll just post the summary here and let you visit the source article yourself for the meat. While his advice is somewhat specific to screenwriting, I believe his advice can, by and large, apply equally well to all forms of fiction writing. So, from the top, here we are:

Joss Whedon’s 10 Tips for Writers

1. Finish it!
2. Structure
3. Have something to say!
4. Everybody has a reason to live
5. Cut what you love
6. Listen
7. Track the audience mood
8. Write like a movie
9. Don’t listen
10. Don’t sell out!

Yeah, that’s a list alright. Head to the link for the meat!

Welcome to the new face of the Damned (short story)


Thanks for dropping in! I’m pleased as punch (don’t ask how pleased Punch is, though, I’m afraid to ask because I don’t want to get…biffed) to present the brand new face of Damn Short Stories. If you’ve been checking up on DSS throughout the year you’ll know that I haven’t put in nearly the time that I was earlier on, but that’s all going to change now. Some big changes have happened in my life, and so I’m very happy to say that I’ve got a lot more motivation and idea generating energy right now.

Among these changes are that I’ve finally decided to go back to school and pursue my degree and dream of working professionally as a writer. I’m thinking that I’ll probably aim at screenwriting, since it’s an area I’m very interested in (gosh, what an idea!) I’m especially interested in doing serialized television work in the vein of guys like Joss Whedon, Brian Fuller, and of course the always good JJ Abrams.

But before I go getting ahead of myself, I’d just like to make a commitment: From this week onward, I expect to deliver at least one new short story every week. This will probably be posted on a Saturday, but hey, who knows? Something fresh and exciting just might pop up earlier, who knows?

On those other days, if you really must check in on what I’m up to (and hey, I’m doing a little bit of “other” writing, too) please feel free to visit my other happy fun time place, Poetic Hell.

Introducing: The Damn Short Series

It’s been a busy couple of months for me as I’ve been working like crazy on some other sites and projects, as well as helping out some of my colleagues on projects of their own. During this time I can tell you this much: I’ve been writing. Not as frequently stuff that should be posted here, but interesting stories even so. In that vein, I’ve recently come to the conclusion that I need to tie in work that keeps me away from Damn Short Stories with work that can safely be published here.

Consequently, I’ve developed a new concept: The Damn Short Series. What these stories will be, to start out with at any rate, is a series of short stories involving characters I’m using in other projects. These will help me out in that they’ll allow me to flesh out these characters a little better in my own brain, thus improving the quality of these larger projects, but it will also allow me to more regularly update DSS with a new story that fits the mold we’ve established here already.

The common theme on any given Damn Short Series will be that each of the stories in the series is related in some way to the other stories. In some cases this will entail characters whose lives intersect, in others it will entail events that serve as a catalyst to more than one life. Don’t worry, they’ll each be pretty much standalone, but at the same time they’ll be connected to the others, and reading the whole series will provide a richer experience overall.

The first of these stories will be coming in today and will focus on a character I’m developing for an unannounced project. This character is very interesting to me and should ultimately provide for a good deal of fun.