Category Archives: Screenwriting

Stepford Wife Street

Just watched “Altman.” A surprisingly good documentary about Robert Altman on Hulu, where I spend most of my life watching late night talk shows to pass my 50s.

And I realized, when it was over and had affected me like a good film will, that I live on a Stepford Wife Street, in a Tornado Alley (and not just metaphorically), in a life I don’t remember heading toward, and I don’t remember who I am. But it made me want to be reminded.



An adventure – MFA program/T minus 8 weeks

I have the good fortune of having a weird, sometimes wonderful, workplace at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center. There are semi-secret caves, and the staff got a subterranean tour last week.

I have always hated close space, been very claustrophobic and never had a desire to go spelunking. So, of course I did.

2015.11 spelunking at WFC

And crawling around on my belly through mud and through tiny gaps in rock that make you certain they will be dropping the jaws of life down to pry you back out made me realize, there’s not much adventure in my life anymore.

As a kid, there was adventure all the time. We’d go out in the woods and create scary real and fictitious adventures. There’d be real human and kid drama. There’d be real and imagined personal danger. But this tiny cave exploration is as close I have gotten to being terrified in a long long time.

And I realized, all the sensations of adventure, of real life fear and new tactile and human interactions of closeness, of the dark and silence of absolute cave interior shared with a group. These are the kinds of things I need to have a WHOLE LOT MORE OF if I want to write about adventures.

If I want my writing out of its rut, I need to get my life out of its rut. spelunking

Any suggestions? What do you consider a good adventure?

Where’s it all coming from – MFA program/T minus 9 weeks

Saw a movie this week at the Austin Film Festival, “The Night Is Young.” Funny guys wrote a funny film, marginally about the hell that is living in Los Angeles as an actor. Reminded me why I left. And that I shouldn’t go back without people to keep me sane.

Driving home I could feel these parts of me that don’t get much face time, deeper parts that have feelings and meaning. The parts you need to write fiction. Fiction that has any traction, that has any weight, any legs. I made a mental note about needing them. But I should have made a note where I found them. I can only remember that they are in there somewhere. No idea how to get back.

Somewhere in side Susannah Raulino there is something real. As symbolized by this letter that told the waitress where to find me to give me my sandwich. Hope there’s a similar marker inside me, for where I go looking for the real me.


Do you find sources of inspiration that feel important or real? Or notice them in others’ work? Love to hear about it. Please leave a comment.