#Comikaze Fallout

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Hey everybody, Flobo here!

But the time you’re reading this, the 2014 edition of Stan Lee’s Comikaze would be in the books! One of the greatest perks about being a working professional is that you usually get discounted tickets to such events, but this year’s Comikaze held a special place in my heart for me:

POW!

POW!

I moderated the “Weekend Warriors: Achieving Your Dreams On Your Own Time” panel.

The “Weekend Warriors” panel was a discussion about being able to work their creative passions while having to deal with “real life” such as paying the bills or raising children. While I’ve considered myself a “warrior” for years, this was really the first time I attempted articulating the struggles any creative person goes through.

Moderating was a trip. It combined all the things I love to do (comedy, share experiences, teach others, and “working the mic”) into a nice package. The turnout exceeded my expectations and the people who did stop by seemed genuinely interested in what the panelists had to say.

If given the chance, I would love the opportunity to moderate future panels (no matter the subject matter). Maybe it’s that pipe dream I have of doing my own talk show that rattles in my brain, but being the valve that mixes information with entertainment with the crowd is nothing short of a rush.

Well after that, how did I celebrate? Well, I followed my lady to one of her favorite pizza joints, Two Boots!

It's not Brooklyn, but having pizza by the slice in Downtown Los Angeles at night felt like at times. Maybe it's a movie set?

It’s not Brooklyn, but having pizza by the slice in Downtown Los Angeles at night felt like at times. Maybe it’s a movie set?

I actually tried a slice of Vegan Pizza (Called the “V for Vegan”), and I was more surprised it didn’t suck!

Who knows? Maybe I’ll bring the “Yakking then Pizza Snacking” panel to the next convention.

 

-F

Hittin’ The Comedy Store

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Hello!

My “fall tour” recently came to a close. It was a fun ride for sure. Check out this vid from my performance at The Comedy Store on 10/5. NSFW and all that. It was my third time on that stage and my sixth show overall. Enjoy and let me know what you think.

 

 

Switchin’ It Up

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Hey everyone, Flobo here!

If you’ve been following my blog (almost three years here at WordPress, 12 years if you count my now defunct LiveJournal) you’d know that I’m a writer. Am I famous? No. Do I have legions of fans? I’m not sure, but if I do I haven’t been made aware of them. Although, that would be a cool conceit to a short story: Writer thinking no one is reading his stuff but has a massive fan club unbeknownst to him.

Anyway, today I want to talk about Switchin’ It Up (aka the title of today’s blog)

When I was an avid fan of the competition show “American Idol,” I would watch week to week as singing hopefuls would try their chance at stardom. Randy Jackson, one of the judges at the time, said something that really sticks with me: “If you’re a great singer, you can sing (dramatic pause) anything.” It was so simple, but it’s a phrase I took to heart.

Being able to write anything is a something that I strive to do. Now obviously, there is going to be varying degrees of success. Me writing a romance novel would seem as out of place as Garth Brooks covering N.W.A., but the idea of doing something so far out of your comfort zone shouldn’t be automatically intimidating.

Sure my ever-gestating novel is still in the works, but on the side I’m realizing my dream of writing a comic book (an adaptation of the short story, “The Indelible Silverstreek“). I say it’s a dream because I realized I wrote it on not one, but two of my “Bucket Lists.” Comics are a different medium altogether from prose (obviously) and it brings some quirks that I’m tackling head on. In fact, it has a lot more in common with screenwriting. There is an emphasis on “showing” rather than “telling” and there’s even less room for dialog to be stilted. Why do you ask? Well my theory is, seeing a real person on the page (or screen) automatically puts our brain on high alert for dialog that doesn’t “ring true.” For example, I’ve read lines of dialog in novels that explicitly says how a character is feeling:

“Johnny, I’m scared. Don’t go.”

But if a line like that is uttered on screen or seen on a visual page, I find myself going:

“Who the hell talks like that?”

It’s a quirk. Also, as our former disparate forms of entertainment begin to converge, it’s a quirk I see less and less often these days. When I was a kid, they called it being a part of the “MTV Generation.” Now, I guess Google is to blame.

In any event, I urge all of you who create to try something else. Tackle another genre if you tend to only write in a few. If you only write radio plays, take a stab a poetry. If you’re a poet, why not try your hand at non-fiction? Learning about the mechanics of each genre or medium can only strengthen your skills and sharpen your instincts. Give it a whirl.

As for me, I’m so excited that I’m potentially able to cross something off of my list!

 

–F

Halloween Short Story 2014! #amwriting

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Hey everyone!

It’s that time of the year! Halloween! You know, the best candy…the best costumes…the best sales the day after! I mean, how could you NOT like it? Of course, if trick or treats aren’t your thing, you can have pumpkin everything. But what’s All Hallow’s Eve without a little bit of fun? Check out a little flash fiction/short story bit I did to celebrate the holiday for 2014.

Hate Potion Number Nine

 

“I don’t think you heard me,” Marci said as she slammed her fist on the oak counter. “Do what you can to make it happen.”

Marci had taken her lunch break to head downtown on a mission. Entering a small, hole-in-the-wall watch repair shop, she sprinted towards the main counter. On the other side stood a graying, spry man in his fifties wearing a blue baseball cap with yellow stars on it. On the counter between them sat a wooden nameplate that read “Hon. Harvey Tratch, Wizard.”

“I don’t think you understand the kind of establishment I run,” Harvey said, fiddling with his cap. “I specialize in home remedies. Everything else you’ve heard is just that. Hearsay.”

“Don’t waste my time,” Marci said. “I know what goes on in here and before you ask, no I am not a cop. I need one of your potions to get me out of a jam. Am I understanding what you do, now?”

Harvey sighed. There was no used to fighting the bespectacled woman in front of him. He surmised by her dress that she worked in a conservative business field. He determined her forward nature was a product of her personality, mixed with a foolhardy adherence to regimented daily schedule. In short, time was money and he was wasting hers.

“Okay,” Harvey relented. “What do you want?”

“My assistant and I had a…well, you know,” she said. “I need to break it off with him, but he’s completely attached. If I break his heart, he’s one water-cooler conversation away from ousting me at my job. If I play along, someone will find out and I’ll still be in trouble. I need something to erase his memory.”

Harvey shook his head. “Oh, I’m sorry I can’t do that. Memories are something you just cannot alter. Anyone who says that is absolutely lying to you.”

“Well,” Marci said, tapping her heels impatiently. “What can you do for me?”

Harvey stepped away from the counter and opened a cabinet that was on the far side of the shop. The walls were littered with antiques, and he used this to pass off his business as a watch repair shop, but today he once again was dealing in the dark arts. He knew better than to still toil about in his side job, but passion always finds a way of pulling you back in to what you love. He took out a small jar about the size of a saltshaker filled with a blue liquid and returned to the counter.

“This is the best I can do,” he said. “It’s a split up spell. For it to work you have to splash it on both you and your target. I got you the blue one because the split will be amicable. The red one makes the other person hate you.”

“Great,” Marci said. “How much?”

“I’ll give it to you for free if you forget where you got it from,” Harvey said. “I’m not in that business anymore.”

 

Marci drove as fast as she could back to her office. She had about ten minutes to spare until her lunch break was over. She had to act fast. Looking out into the area populated by cubicles, she waved her assistant over. Soon her forbidden lover, tall, lanky, and sporting a gap tooth smile walked through the door.

“I need help with something,” Marci said. “Can you come over here?”

He obliged. When he got close, Marci sprinkled half of the blue potion on his shirt. She then just as quickly doused herself with the rest of the bottle. Marci instantly felt warm, as both she and he fell to their knees, quivering.

Pools of blood instantly formed around them, as patches of their skin, burst open. Their clothes were instantly soaked through, unable to dam the constant blood flow. Marci eyed the dozens of gashes all over her body, each of them getting larger by the second. As her assistant yelled for help, she tried dialing the police from the smart phone that was in her pocket. The screen, now drenched with the deep vermillion of her essence, did not recognize her touch.

“Split up spell,” Marci said, before blacking out.

 

Boooooooooooo! *takes off bed sheet* Happy Halloween everyone!

#Book5 Draft 3 Complete

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A couple of weeks ago, I had the pleasure of finishing the second draft of my book. Why was it a pleasure? Because I realized that I have been toiling away at this volume for about a year. Wow, I’m not sure if I’m a major procrastinator or time really does travel that fast.

It’s funny, because I know that I’m close to making #Book5 available for purchase, but I do know there is a huge mountain ahead of me. Proofreading and rewriting (the mountains in question) are all part of the process sure, but it is stillsomething that I dread. Not because I feel as if my work is perfect, but rather you have to battle both being proud of your work and ashamed of it. Somebody out there please tell me that I’m not alone on this.

Courtesy Aces Weekly on Facebook

Courtesy Aces Weekly on Facebook

 

There’s that thing where you hate what you write, then you love what you write. People would ask to read “advance copies” but you’re so cynical you think that they want to read your novel for free. Or that they are so eager to rip your work apart, you don’t want to pass the manuscript over in the first place.

Being a creator is a scary thing. But you have to press on. Or at least, that’s what I keep telling  myself.

 

Either way, it’s back to the lab. I have deadlines to conquer!

Fall Comedy Tour Rolls On

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With a couple of shows under my belt, I’ve been seeing where the microphone takes me.

falltour4

 

I just had a show a couple of days ago in Burbank as part of the Rusty Pitchfork Comedy Jam. It was an experience to say the least. I’m still not sure if I should make comedy a full time pursuit. Not because I don’t felt as if I’m committed, but rather the adrenaline rush in being on stage can be incredibly addictive. Either way, we’ll know soon enough.

 

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