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Archive for June, 2013

This is exactly why, even with the National Examiner creds behind my name, I will NEVER get into Comic Con…..I’m editing my interview with Debbie Rochon from Dead Winter Convention, and I get a screen shot of the beginning, I’m asking Brian (the cameraman) “Are we rolling?” and lovely Debbie is cheesing for the camera. Well, something got into me and I made a thing.

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I will stop fangirling the day I stop breathing.

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Last night I was fortunate enough to attend the premiere of Big Biting Pig’s “Lucid” along with writer/director Pj Woodside.  If you’ve never been to one, premieres are fun, with  a lot of energy.  It’s a bit less formal (If you can believe that ) than regular movie showings, and if you’re lucky, you attend one with the actors and directors.  During the movie the energy was fantastic! Cheers went up to favorite actors and scenes, the audience laughed, gasped and screamed together. Everything you’d want in a horror movie, jumps shocks, twists and yes, gore.  Pj Woodside has a blog here on wordpress (http://thisoldbitchmakeshorrorflicks.wordpress.com) where she talks about her experiences writing and directing her films.

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Pj Woodside and Brittney Saylor greet fans after the movie

I was fortunate enough to get a few questions in while she and castmembers greeted fans after the movie screened.

[warning…interview may contain spoilers, if you don’t want to be spoiled, why are you here? I’m the spoiler queen....]

Aunt Mimi : How long did it take you to write the script and what inspired you?

Pj: My own crazy dreams and night terrors. Turning it into a movie plot took a little longer…..[about ] four months to write from beginning to end, couple of really strong writing spells in there.

Aunt Mimi: Were there any scenes that were really hard to write? You touch on a lot of taboo and sensitive subjects

Pj: Not so much that they were hard to write, just making everything make sense, and make everything essential [to the story].  Steve actually suggested some of the plot points , but then you have to go back and go, okay, how [do we] make this integrated with everything.  The first few drafts were a lot tamer, and that draft I was working on, I thought, ‘Ok, I’m gonna make this so fast paced, so hard edged that I’m going to scare myself’

Aunt Mimi: And did you?

Pj: Yeah! Kinda! (laughs)

Aunt Mimi: You also star in it as the therapist [Faith] which brings something new to the dream/horror genre, where there any scenes that were hard to get through, [acting-wise] because no offense, she’s kind of mean…Pj: No. I found that perfectly normal, (laughs) Actually I was worried that it would be too easy for this character to be a caricature, so I did work really hard on what was my motivation, not that I was being mean, but that I was trying to make her [ Monica the lead character] do things, do things that were important to me.  I really enjoyed playing [Faith], and Steve when he was directing me, he would say “Ok, go less.” and that all usually worked better.

Aunt Mimi: Do you have more fun being the bad guy?

Pj : Oh yeah! You don’t get to do that in real life, you know? I like going there emotionally and I did find it very difficult to be mean, and that’s a little scary (laughs)

Bill Johnson, Leatherface from “Texas Chainsaw Massacre II” was on hand to greet  fans with free signings, and ‘backstage’ meet and greet.Image

Pj Woodside, Steve Hudgins and Bill Johnson

In my opinion, “Lucid” is Big Biting Pig’s darkest film yet, with elements of “Nightmare on Elm Street” and “Paranormal Activity”.  The performances are briliant and the story itself is fast paced, inventive and just downright creepy.  The ending was one of the most “HOLY SHIT WTF” endings I’ve seen in a very long time.  And I want a sequel, Pj. Just saying.

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The other day, I got my first reprimand from The Examiner.  Not going into detail, but as I sat staring at the email, cheeks burning with embarrassment and self righteous anger, several thoughts went through my head.  I had my mentor texting me encouragment and a friend who is a nearly 20-year journalism veteran call me from her home in Canada to offer reassurance.  I’m pretty pretty fortunate having the friends I have.

So, moving on, licking my wounds, I decided, “What would Hunter S. Thompson do in this situation?” My answer to myself was he’d lay out a litany of obscenities to the screen, have a drink and go “Fuck it.” and move on. 

So I did.

Poured myself a vodka, did a google search on Hunter S. Thompson to look for some of his “Rolling Stone” articles, and an amazing thing happened.  Inspiration for a new article about Johnny Depp.  And it would be newsworthy. Right in my Hunter Thompson search.

So I wrote it up, submitted it, and started afresh, with a renewed sense of purpose.

Thank you Dr. Thompson. When a doctor of journalism sends you a message from beyond you fucking listen.

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Everyone reposts information. EVERYONE.

From the Huffington Post, to CNN news, to Fox News (Fox news even once linked back to examiner.com!!)  Only we don’t call it reposting. We call it “linking and crediting the source”.  That sounds more professional and I like it too.

Someone called Examiner a content mill. Meaning, they pay small amounts for writers (like me) to write articles for them, share content so they can get higher views and more money for advertising spots.  This was said in the same manner someone would point out a sweatshop. And while yeah, it does take a lot of effort to put together some slideshows, or lists, I don’t care. I don’t mind.

The point is, I got hired. I had to apply and audition for this spot with my own talent. Not everybody gets to do this.
And some places don’t even pay their writers, they write just to be able to get passes into events and such.  Oh please. Really?! You’re working for free, dude! In the words of the Joker, “if you’re good at something, never do it for free.”  But some well-known sources (*coughhuffpostcough*) have been caught not paying a dime to their independant bloggers, while keeping tight control and over editing all that they published. Not right, guys, not right.

So, I’ll proudly wear my examiner badges, and keep writing.  I’ll link-link-link to all my fellow examiners, and while yes, more money would be nice, I’ll be happy getting my few bucks a month, knowing I earned it writing.

Not to mention, now I have a platform to promote a lot of my horror friends and convention family.  I only get a few hits on this blog.  My examiner articles garner two more thousand hits a month. THOUSAND.  Yeah, and I don’t even have a readership yet.  This means a lot to me to be able to do this. 

Read my latest, about Bill Johnson attending the “Lucid” premiere.

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Using this pic because Pj said I could.

Haha, I do what I want. And get paid doing it.

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