Interviews and More Writing

I’m still doing my writing, but I just thought I’d go into a little more detail about what I was talking about in my last post.

If you remember I talked about an interview I did for GEEKPR0N. That interview was actually with Larry Wilson: the co-writer and co-producer of Beetlejuice, The Addams Family, and the writer and director of Tales From the Crypt for six seasons. Our interview centred around his current project the web series Cindy: a twenty-first century retelling of Cinderella with elements of Reality TV parody, dark humour, and just plain weirdness.

To be honest, I never dreamed that I would be talking to one of the people integral in creating a large feature of my childhood. I first got to know Beetlejuice through the cartoons and it goes without saying that while I knew about The Addams Family before the film, I recall spending a recess in the corner of my elementary school reading its novelization. And I’m not even going into the time where I would to sneak up late and watch some Tales From the Crypt on Fox.

And I will tell you right now that if I had the money and even basic screenwriting experience, I would definitely take up Larry’s script consultation reward. I honestly hope that if I can’t, someone else does.

I’ve also written a little something for Clive Barker. Yes: that’s right. You read that correctly. Basically he has put a challenge out there to write a story for an image he painted and posted on Deviantart. I will link to the image and I’ll post what I wrote here: because one requirement was placing the narrative in the Comments section.

ON WHOSE DREAMS

They built cities to keep them out.

People will tell you all manner of more pragmatic reasons for the creation of cities. They will mention the intersection of culture and trade, of the need for propaganda art to cow enemies and citizens alike, of a place to better house the billions of human beings being born every day.

But some will tell you something else. They’ll inform you, secretly where they think no one else can hear, that all of that art and architecture, the arrangement of the paths, streets, and buildings, and even the placement of certain homes and peoples were arranged as a pattern: to ward them off.

Yet ultimately it is the enclosures that are the thing.

They are no new innovation. It’s well known that ancient humans and their predecessors would hide in their caves during the night after saying farewell to their loved ones, their friends, and their enemies. And even now they would like to forget the howling outside, the scraping against the rock walls and their paintings of animal blood, ¬†the hunger deeper than the tunnels in which they hid and the pleading: to be accepted back among their people.

However, all of them are wrong. They remember it all wrong. Cities weren’t made for the living to hide and hoard their food against the seasons and the predators. The lost weren’t put outside to roam around for eternity. No. The tribes often placed their lost in their homes: sealing them up and painstakingly maintaining them. They would bring them food, tools, and the results of trade. Over time they bargained with them, prayed to them … worshipped their memory and what yet remained.

Caves like wombs became camps. Camps became villages. Villages towns and towns cities. The monuments grew higher each day: growing from the foundation of countless generations and those that tended their ground: which they still do to this very day.

So now do you understand? Do you know why sometimes you feel so tired: so drained? Even as the symbols lengthen like shadows into the sky and expand across the land, nothing truly changes. It is amazing how, simultaneously, you are cramped and alone: like you are the one living in the coffin. You are the one that’s trapped here.

No. Cities were not built to keep them out, but to keep them in.

For cities are not built for the living, but for the dead: in which everything within truly belongs.

So to say I’ve been busy would be something of an understatement. I’ve already told you about the fact that I’m going to be covering the Toronto After Dark. I actually tried to do this last year with Mythic Bios and for my efforts I got an invitation to view and write a review of their opening night. This time, however, I’m attending on behalf of GEEKPR0N. Expect to see me there for the Sunday and Thursday showings.

And I am going to be interviewing someone else. Again, I’m not going to go into any details as of yet but I will say that it will be my first in-person interview ever and I’m both cautious and excited over that prospect.

I remember once being the person that never even dreamed of having these opportunities or being this person as immersed in geek culture as I am now: even when people encouraged me to do so. And well … here we are.

Don’t worry. I will take time to peer in here and update all of you. I just thought you’d like to know about this. And please, read my articles and tell me what you think. It means a lot to me. Yet again, take care everyone. ūüôā

Larry Wilson’s CINDY Kickstarter Campaign Needs Some Dust

Larry Wilson is the co-writer and co-producer of Beetlejuice, co-writer of The Addams Family, and writer and director for six seasons of Tales From The Crypt. Many of these shows informed our childhoods as geeks. Certainly, they did mine. Larry is working on a new Kickstarter Project. It is a web series called CINDY: a quirky dark fantasy and comic twenty-first century retelling of Cinderella. Larry has been good enough to take the time to tell us more about his current work and some details about his crowdfunding campaign.

GEEKPR0N:  So Larry, what is it about the story of Cinderella that motivates you to use it as the basis of your show? 

Larry Wilson:¬†Once I had a “body of work” and enough years to look back on it, I realized that almost everything I write has this dysfunctional family at the center of it. (I’ll let you figure out what that means about how I grew up!) ¬†For me that what’s Cinderella is really about.¬† If you watch the CINDY preview you see that Cindy’s first line is “I’m an orphan with no friends.” Family doesn’t get more dysfunctional than that!

GP: What inspired you to include elements from the Reality TV medium in CINDY?

LW: Well, Reality TV is the Zeitgeist, right?¬† And a certain amount of it makes me cringe!¬† So I thought it would be fun to satirize and I think we’ve done a really good job!

GP:¬†Why have you chosen a web series as your show’s medium?

LW: I chose a web series because of the flexibility and creative freedom and also because I am HONESTLY BORED with pitching things in Hollywood the way it’s always been done.¬† Thanks to DIY & the Digital Age the “put your hat in your hand and go beg for money” pitch is slowly becoming archaic.¬† Hurray to that!

GP: To what extent do you think that your previous projects, your work with “the strange and unusual” might influence the spirit of CINDY?¬†

LW:¬† CINDY is full of “the strange and unusual”.¬† It’s the creative world I inhabit.¬† Again, looking back, the couple of times I’ve written “straight” comedy or drama, it’s not been bad, but it’s not been particularly good either.¬† So I’ve typecast myself and embraced my weirdness.¬† Guess what?¬† I like it!

GP: ¬†Let’s talk about a reward on your Kickstarter for CINDY. Is it true that not only will you sign some of posters for your previous films, but Caroline Thompson — writer of Edward Scissorhands and The Nightmare Before Christmas — is going to sign some movie posters of her work as well?¬†

LW:¬†Yes.¬† It’s very true.¬† Caroline is not only my sometimes writing partner but my all the time good friend.¬† She wants to help CINDY succeed, God love her!

GP: Two of CINDY‘s Kickstarter pledge tiers revolve around screenwriting: one a screenplay development consultation and a personal development session with you. Basically you are offering to help donors for those tiers look over their script ideas and drafts. Many of us, including myself, are writers. Can you give us more information on what both of these rewards entail?

LW:¬†I’ve taught screenwriting, in various classes, for over 25 years now.¬† I teach when my writing career is hot, cold and every temperature in between.¬† I’m not a screenwriter who staggered into teaching after an epic screenwriting career fail!¬† I teach because I love it and I think my methods are unique & inspirational.¬† It’s a bit of hype but not much to say I think the CINDY screenwriting consultation premiums are the biggest bargains on our list of goodies.

Fairy Manual

GP: What can fans do to help in funding your Kickstarter and making CINDY possible?

LW: JUST SEND MONEY AND SPREAD THE WORD, PLEASE, PRETTY PLEASE!

GP: These are some very impressive incentives to back CINDY. ¬†You can find more information about CINDY on its Kickstarter Campaign page as well as some actor, staff, and character interview snippets on its Youtube channel the Cindy Series. At the moment this show is still trying to fit into some glass slippers. You still have time to donate more than a pair … along with a little bit of Dust: for fairy motivation.