Things that go BUMP in the night!

It’s no secret that I love mythical creatures (cough, cough, hornless unicorns) and things that can’t be readily explained (cough, cough, ghosts)…but there is one that is my all time favorite…Bigfoot!

Florida has it’s own version of Bigfoot – the Skunk Ape and here at Dragonfly Acres we took it a step further and named her Swampy. Anyone who is familiar with the cryptozoology series or the short for WORLDS AWAY already knows all about Swampy.

When I was trying to think of a ‘creature’ for my next screenplay, I was researching all sorts of creepy mythical creatures and brainstorming with my favorite muse – Les. He kept coming back around to Bigfoot or Swampy. But I wanted SCARY – and Swampy is not scary…just misunderstood.

After going back and forth a couple of times, I conceded to use Bigfoot. I refuse to give away any more spoilers than that!

Again, with the visual assistance of The Internet Hippie to bring my vision into poster form – I present to you…MONSTERS

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Another project finished!

I know that 2020 is a year for the books – but thankfully it has been a creative year as well. I just finished a project that has been rattling around for years now gone through many, MANY changes from novel to feature to now limited series – and title changes from Rebel Yell to Wild West Experience to…

UNBROKEN!

Hopefully great things will be coming from this little story soon and a VERY SPECIAL thanks to Jennifer Musselman @theinternethippie for always giving my words a picture!

Anyone recognize that beautiful horse?!

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Motivations

Hi all! It’s been awhile and it’s been a crazy year since we last chatted. I know that you probably all are feeling the same pain.

Which leads me to my thought of the day – motivation and what motivates you…

As a writer, a new thought, idea or story is probably my #1 motivator, but sometimes it can be loved ones (here’s looking at you Les), beautiful weather (it was 69 degrees this morning), or just a good cup of coffee.

I’m currently trying to wrap up scripts on my two brilliant ideas from a few months ago – when the next brilliant idea for a script struck – I will tell you that a day inside my head is entertaining to say the least…

But I’m dying to know – what’s your motivation?

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Hard Work and Validation

I know, I know – it’s been awhile…I’d like to blame the pandemic for the craziness and my lack of attention, but who am I kidding…most people know that I lived in a socially distanced, self imposed quarantine long before March.

I am, after all, a writer!

No, what has drawn my attention from all else is the writing, and rewriting, and editing for the sake of editing – not to mention the two new stories that are rattling around in my head at the moment …there’s not a moment of peace in there!

But – there is a pay-off – almost a light at the end of a very long tunnel…the latest feature script THE STORM has been noticed and optioned!

OK – what does that mean? More hard work…more notes, more editing, more bleeding on the page. It also means that I have a decent (and dare I say ‘good’) story at the heart of it all. It means that the voice in my head at 2 am that tells me I’ll never write anything ‘good’ is wrong.

It means – I am a writer!

So, my takeaway here isn’t to brag (although it does feel amazing to share), but rather to say DON’T GIVE UP…not when it’s hard, not when the muse is quiet, and especially not at 2 am when you can’t quiet the critic.

Someone, some where will find that diamond in the rough that’s within us all. They will validate all the work you’ve put in to whatever it is you are passionate about…but until then…

DON’T GIVE UP!

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The Storm

The latest and greatest – THE STORM! Think about all the fun you had playing the game of Clue….and toss in a hurricane – Florida Style!

I always say that my favorite is the last one I’ve written – so THE STORM is currently my favorite (Thank you to The Internet Hippie for the amazing visual to go accompany it!) To me this story is fun and zany (like Clue) but answers the question of what would happen when a group of stranger comes to evacuate – true lives and personalities come out!

While I’m putting the final touches on this one and making a few tweaks here and there – I’m also dusting off Murder of Crows. So to those of you who have always believed the story would make a great movie – thank you from the bottom of my heart. You see what others can’t (including a very rude executive that left me in tears several months ag0). Well, it’s onward and upward for that little story!

I’ll keep you posted!

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New Year – New Stories!

Happy 2020!

I can’t say that I was sorry to see 2019 go. While it was filled with so many joyful events, wonderful explorations with Les across the great state of Florida, and lots and lots of writing opportunities – it also had some lessons for me – mostly that I need to slow down and take care of myself in order to reduce my stress and anxiety.

Baby steps!

Out with the old year and in with new year and all the possibilities for change, growth, and creativity!

I wrapped up last year by branching out from writing family-friendly stories and diving into the darker side of human nature by writing thrillers. RETRIBUTION has come along nicely and is in a very solid place now – I’ve even started the year by entering it in a few writing contests.

So that means it’s time to work on something else – THE STORM! Anyone who lives in Florida (or even the East Coast) can relate to the fear of an impending hurricane. In THE STORM, Bekka must deal with a category 4 hurricane while also playing hostess to several evacuees – when one is murdered! It’s like the game of Clue meeting a hurricane – it has been so much fun to play with!

More to come soon!

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Contests, and Edits, and New Scripts – Oh My!

As we enter the mid-point of September, writing and everything writing related are still in full-swing here at the newly renamed Dragonfly Acres (formerly the Triple H Ranch).

I just entered Retribution (the latest screenplay) into two contests – fingers crossed that ‘they’ like it as much as my village does.

I’m meeting with an executive tomorrow to help me format and edit Worlds Away to be considered for the viability of a streaming series.

Finally, with all of the hurricane threats we have experienced in the last two weeks (Dorian and Humberto) it got the wheels churning for another script – The Storm…think the old board game Clue meets a hurricane where one of the evacuee’s is murdered and they must solve who did it before someone else gets killed!

Remember to always follow your dreams and never wait until you know what you’re doing before you start – make that leap and build the plane on the way down…that’s what I do!

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Retribution

I apologize for laying low lately…but between writing and editing the new script and school starting – things here have been crazy at the Triple H Ranch (which has been renamed to Dragonfly Acres now!)

But enough for excuses – Retribution!

The idea for this story came to me in the middle of the night years ago – Some kids had broken out of the Hastings Youth Academy and it was all over the news (we only live a few miles away). Helicopters were flying over most of the night too.

Well, about midnight, I woke up with helicopters flying over and seeing their spotlights through the window and was gripped with fear – what if they were in my barn or worse yet, what if they had done something to the horses!

Since that night, this story has haunted me. Yes, it has taken many different twists and turns from the original idea, but here’s what it’s about now!

Five years ago, Sloane was attacked by two thugs who took her gun, her jewelry, and her pinky finger. After helping to put them behind bars, she dreams of a quiet live with her husband Cole – teaching in a small rural school and raising horses.

Until the night her attackers escape from prison and hunt her down – blaming her for them getting locked up in the first place.

While checking on the horses late at night, the men come out the woods and take Sloane and Cole hostage in their home while they search for anything of value as payback, before discovering their locked gun safe.

Now that guns have been outlawed, the crooks motive changes from petty theft and tormenting Sloane to finding the key to unlock the arsenal of weapons using whatever means necessary.

Sloane manages to escape on horseback into the woods where they pursue her in a game of cat and mouse, intent on leaving no witnesses.

She must use the strength and determination she thought they took from her all those years ago to defeat her attackers again, save herself, and deliver a foal – all in one rainy night.

Here’s my inspirational poster – Thanks Internet Hippie!

 

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Kobi – The Wonder Mustang

Anytime it’s been WAY TOO LONG since I was in the saddle I am amazed by how truly magnificent Kobi can be – when he wants to be!

I’m not even going to say how long its been since I’ve ridden – but in my defense between the boys gnat allergies (which are already in full swing) and Kobi’s diagnosis of asthma last month, it’s been a little wonky around here where the horses are involved.

Anyway…I popped up on Kobi with just a halter (it bothers his ears to try and put a bridle on) and just walked/jogged all around. He was responding to me with just a little leg and voice commands. Let me say that again – VOICE COMMANDS!

Yes, this was the horse that when I first got him, I was scared to ride him  without someone walking beside him to get control if need be. This was the horse that taught me the benefits of wearing a helmet and for several years – body armor. This was also the horse that was so smart – and wanted to learn – that he became Reserve Champion in his Dressage tests.

Kobi – The Wonder Mustang – maybe I should write a book about him!

We’ve been through so much in our almost 14 years together, but I would trust that horse with my life now.

Which leads to my next writing project (you knew it was coming, didn’t you?!) A screenplay, currently titled Retribution – about a woman who manages to escape during a home invasion and makes it to the barn…to her trusted horse…and disappears into the woods.

It’s a work in progress and is challenging me on so many levels since it is unlike anything I’ve ever done before – but isn’t that what it’s all about…challenging yourself and enjoying the ride!

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Diving In

There are fewer things in my world more exciting than starting a new story – whether it’s a novel or a screenplay…the possibilities  of the blank page are literally endless…at no other point of a project will this happen.

Guess what? I’m starting another!

Not that a screenplay is ever REALLY done – there are always tweaks and edits to be made. I think that Worlds Away (1-3) and Murder of Crows are in really good (pitchable) places right now…so it’s time to begin something new.

What’s so exciting for me about this project is that it’s NOT based on one of my novels – so it’s something completely new and fresh for me! The idea came about in the middle of the night (one of THOSE ideas) and has haunted me for the past couple of years…just waiting for its turn to be told.

Now is that time! I’ll let you know when I come up for air!

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