52 Week Shootout

Last night my wife and I are on our nightly walk through neighborhoods with houses we could never afford. They are the mansions where we would throw fancy pants Christmas parties with family who, like us, know nothing about fancy pants. All of us in bad sweaters drinking boxed wine amid crepe paper decorations, listening to Leon Redbone. It is a fantasy walk we take. A walk of future plans, intentions, and goals. It is our dream stroll through possibilities.

"I would love to read more of your writing," she says as we pass the Haunted Mansion.

"I'm writing," I defend. "I've got 30 pages down on Jobs."

Jobs is the not so super secret screenplay I broke ground on earlier this summer. It is a highly referential, semi autobiographical journey through our occupational struggles since getting married. CLARK, a painter in his mid 20s who loses his job the day after he gets back from his honeymoon with his writer wife, MARIE, must go on a journey through many jobs until finding... Needless to say, I am excited about the new script...

"I know and I love what you've got so far," she says.


"No but."


"Yeah," she says. "I was reading your blog today and I really like you're non-script writing too. I would love to read more of it. In fact, I said aloud why isn't he writing more?"

"Did the cat's answer your question?"

"Not this time."

"What would you like to read more of?"

"Everything," she says. "Short stories, film criticism, allegorical discussions, sports blogs."

"I'm not writing enough."

"And you could be, so easily," she says.

"What should I do?"

"How about a writing assignment?"

I do like having an assignment. Back in May, at my behest, Audrey gave me parameters for writing a short story. Ten pages or less, must occur in one day, nothing magical. I loved it. In fact, the resulting story was the kindling for Jobs.

"Sounds awesome," I say.

"What if you had to blog once a week for 52 weeks," she says as we pass The Golden Girls house. "By August 27th, 2011 you would have 52 blogs."

I agree.


I'm angry.

Movies suck.

I haven't felt anything in the theater since 2009's Star Trek. I had hope for Iron Man 2, Inception, Half Blood Prince. All were fine movies, but none of them filled the hole.

I've given up on Robert Rodriguez. He's become a hack. Too obsessed with making movies in his backyard that appeal to fanboys of bad 70s movies to see that he once had something special.

Don't even get me started on Tarantino.

Abrams could be good as long keeps letting Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman write his scripts. No more Cuse and Lindelof. They need 5 years in the penalty box for the last 5 years of Lost.

Jon Favreau is genius when he doesn't go on the Couples Retreat.

Guy Ritchie... gimmicks. Christopher Nolan... gimmicks. Tim Burton... bastard.

No one can fill the hole. The lack of creative inspiration. That spark that makes me want to dream, write, direct.

And then I realize. None of those writers can fill it. None of those directors can fill it. None of those films can fill it.

I have to fill it. I'll be angry at every writer and director until I write and direct.

Welcome to the 52 Week Shootout in the Mild Midwest. I'm shooting my reluctance to write, my fear of failure, my anger at those who are doing it when I'm not, my laziness as a writer, and maybe a little video here and there. I'm writing at least once a week to get my ideas out of my head, to keep my creativity fresh, and I'm writing because I need to. Because when I don't, I become bottled up, confused, and a general malcontent.


  1. You youngin' - you know there are movies that came out BEFORE 2009? Yeah, a whole mess of 'em! And some of them aren't half bad! Ha ha, I love ya man. Settle down and watch Ronin again...

  2. I'm really excited to see what you have 52 weeks from now. Who knows? A bunch of new ideas, some published works, new ideas about writing, new writers you didn't know existed but will now love? No matter what, a year from now, I guarantee you will have gotten something cool out of this.