My Cancer Story Ch. 100 “Love Off-Key”

Chapter 100: “Love Off-Key”

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Winter break was upon us, and from Scriptwriting 101, I got an ‘A’ and better yet, a feature-length first draft. Instead of delving back into this script for revisions, I decided to push on and get more of my ideas out there. I mean, I can always go back and edit them later, right? Plus, my focus had now been diverted to another project: a short film, and I had a plan.

 

My goal was to write the script during winter break, rewrite as much as needed, and secure a location & the props, all before shooting it during the Spring Break in March. It was foolproof. But what to write?

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My Cancer Story Ch. 98 “Gardening 101”

Chapter 98: “Gardening 101”

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“The Mayan Prophecy” was a mere handful of months away, and wouldn’t you know it? I was only now diving into my goal of making movies. If the past eight or nine years weren’t enough time to achieve said objective, then the only movies I would “make” would be the ones I wrote to appease the mutant monsters that would overrun the post-apocalyptic landscape. Timing was never my thing.

 

Speaking of timing, a revelation had only now struck me while visiting my Dad up North; we were terrible kids. We gave our parents such grief and even cost them hundreds of dollars because we were idiots, especially when Travis and I were living with just my Dad. We spent so much of our time fighting and the rest sitting in front of our respective televisions, “rotting our brains” on CRT screens rather than spending time with Dad, learning the ins and outs of cars, or simple gardening.

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My Cancer Story Ch. 97 “Promises of Pardon”

Chapter 97: “Promises of Pardon”

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Just when I thought that my creative juices had evaporated, I discovered yet another outlet. I was evolving into an allegorical electrician, and at the same time, a fundamental change in my health insurance threatened the fragile layer surrounding my internal wiring.

 

Eastern Maine Medical Center changed their insurance providers so they wouldn’t have to pay as much of the frontloaded costs. The new company offered a $1,000 “Choice Fund” at the start of each year ($2,000 for families). This ostensibly optimistic offering paid one hundred percent of any bills up front, and after, it was exhausted, then the policyholder would pay one hundred percent until their deductible was met. Then, and only if the person spent past their deductible, the insurance company would pay the expected eighty percent.

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My Cancer Story Ch. 96 “Civilities of Union and of War”

Chapter 96: “Civilities of Union and of War”

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Traditionalism had never been my forte, whether via my recent marriage or the content we produced in The Guttersnipes. Our comedy troupe had been releasing some solid work and some mediocre work. I could tell that something was missing from these ideas, and I was adamant that it was the lack of a proper script framework. Ideally, to me, I thought if we had better prepared for the shoot, then maybe the quality would have been better.

 

Others in the group loved the improvisational approach to our comedic voice, and instead, questioned my edits or my contribution to shooting the videos. The improvisation wasn’t the issue for me, I just wanted a stronger framework around it to enable a more efficient workflow with the little time we had. Both arguments wanted the same thing: a better product. We were like the Hatfield and the McCoy’s facing off against one another without actually sitting down to listen to one another. The majority of the members stayed out of the tussle or never voiced their concerns (to me) directly.

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My Cancer Story Ch. 94 “The Guttersnipes”

Chapter 94: “The Guttersnipes”

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Maine was going to be my basecamp for filmmaking success. At least, that’s what I decided. I mean it’s not as though I could move Deirdre and Kaitlyn to LA…

 

I toiled away on the Fort Thomas, but the scripts were slowing to a trickle, and I felt that Travis’ work should have been done by now. I was waiting on his finished artwork in order to create the animatic, so I didn’t want to rework the scripts so much that the animatic would be irrelevant.

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The Tale of the Three Brothers!

In the fall of 2012, Brandon, Jim, and I were working on a Guttersnipes comedy video: Department Store Santa. This insane video – depicting me as a homeless man desperately trying to secure a job as a department store Santa for the holiday season – was one of my favorites from our catalog.

During the shoot of this sketch, our teacher came to us in Room 219/306 and said that the school had secured the rights to make a short film based off of the short story, The Tale of the Three Brothers by J.K. Rowling. I had little knowledge of the world of Harry Potter then, but I was game to be a part of any film production, as it is the time wherein I feel most alive.Read More »