Writing Process Interrupted: By Zombies, Channing Tatum and the Heat.
June 18, 2014
This was originally posted on my old website on July 13th, 2013.
It wasn't until I sat down to write my own book that I began to wonder about the writing process of others. I mean, I often hear/read about authors discussing their new books and how much "fun it was to write it."
Then what the hell am I doing wrong then?
For me it's sleepless nights, tossing and turning, worrying over point of view, scenes, characters, sweating, mind in constant state of turmoil, non-stop thought-processing - and most especially procrastinating. If that is not enough, I think I am also cursed to boot. Cursed because whenever I get those epiphinal moments - the rare moments when I can write and write, creativeness just spewing forth like...like...like something spewing forth...a lot - that is the exact moment that something happens to thwart my progress.
Like for example, the air conditioning breaking down (again!), the week of the 4th of July, when we are having a record-breaking heatwave in Nevada - with temperatures going up to just under 120 degrees. This little obstacle hurled at me so rudely made writing in the house impossible. It made just about everything in the house impossible - including sleep. Poor Bams and Persephone were over-heated wrecks - and their sleep-deprived mother was not feeling much better.
As expected, the AC guys told me it would take a week to get a part ordered, which of course would take that long because of the holiday. Long story short, I was living in 100 + degree temps for 9 days.
On day 2, I realized writing was going to be out of the question. I had even gone to the local library to keep cool, notepad in hand and ready to continue on with the scene I had been working on prior to the great AC debacle. Even in a comfy and air-conditioned library, if you have had no sleep, it is impossible to concentrate on writing as you fight to keep your eyes open. I gave up and decided to hit the movies instead.
So trying not to look Bama or Persey directly in the eye as they lay panting on the warm floor of the breeze-less hallway, I played heartless deserter and left them for cooler climates.
My goal for the day: head to the nearest casino with a movie theater and spend the day in some serious AC.
I arrived at the Suncoast Hotel and Casino at 10 am. I was an hour early, but who cares as long as they continued to aggressively pump in that cold air along with the oxygen they use to keep the gamblers awake. I was in heaven as I sat on a bench outside TGI Fridays waiting for the ticket vendor to start work. I even got inspired to write a few paragraphs in my notebook about Lucas and Pierce in a shack (this will actually make sense when/if you read the next book).
At 10.45 am I purchased my first ticket of the day to World War Z. There may or may not have been a large popcorn involved.
World War Z is definitely a Brad Pitt vehicle. This is his movie and he is not bad in it at all. I love Mireille Enos (The Killing is a must see) and would have liked to have seen more of her, but was happy to settle for the Israeli soldier who I thought was a bit of a show-stealer.
(Daniella Kertesz is mesmerizing as the Israeli soldier, Segen).
I also cannot overlook the fact that my sitting in wonderful AC for 2 hours may have heightened my enjoyment of the film - but regardless I was entertained so intention fulfilled. I did, however, wonder why the zombies were attacking everyone though. I didn't see any of them actually eating people - just biting, infecting, then moving on. Their eyes were yellow and bloodshot and their teeth seemed to undergo some sort of weird transformation - but other than that they appeared remarkably, well, intact - for zombies that is.
Next on the agenda for the day was White House Down. I had taken an oath never to see a Channing Tatum movie on the big screen, but desperate times...
Don't get me wrong, there is nothing wrong with Channing Tatum. I find him quite acceptable and entertaining television fare, but lets face it peoples over the age of 40, Channing is the Keanu Reeves of the younger generation. Like Keanu before him, he does not have a successful career due to any outstanding acting skills.
So, White House Down. It is everything you would expect from a movie called White House Down. I do love me some Gyllenhall though - Jake or Mags, either will do. This is a popcorn movie through and through. Entertaining, action-packed, slick, ludicrous and far-fetched in plot, humor in all the right places. Again, it might have been the AC again swaying my vote, but the bottom line is I was happily entertained.
Of course, taking your daughter on a job interview at the White House, maybe not such a great idea. Also, I am not entirely sure I understood exactly what the agenda was of the terrorists. But to be honest, AC + popcorn = I didn't really care.
The last few scenes were a little frustrating though. Why couldn't Mags, who had been doing a top notch job all through the film, be the one to confront/reveal the bad guy? Oh, right, Channing was an executive producer. Also, apparently you can invite anyone you want to board the president's chopper - even after a terrorist attack. Yeah, the last few minutes were pretty dumb (and damn that is dumb when you take into consideration the rest of the film and its ridiculous subject matter).
My day ended with a relocation to the Red Rock Resort and Casino. Here, for no other reason than it was starting at the same time that I arrived at their movie theater, my final film of the day was The Heat. I found the title very apropos.
This was probably intended to be a Sandra Bullock vehicle, but is anyone else a little tired of seeing her play Miss Congeniality over and over again? Didn't she win or get nominated for an Oscar for The Blind Side? Isn't she just a tad too long in the tooth to be playing this type of character still? Regardless, Melissa Mcarthy stole the entire film anyway. Melissa made me laugh - a lot. Mission accomplished. AC enjoyed. There might have even been a suspicion of Raisinettes in the vicinity too.
All in all, I did kind of enjoy my day at the movies. I definitely didn't see anything of too high quality - but I was very much entertained and damn, that AC was freakin awesome.
OK, I have procrastinated enough for the day - back to Pinked!