Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Keanu Reeves Movie Location AND To Write, Right.

(Sarah and Caleb. Photo by Carl Timpone)

Keanu Reeves Movie Seeks a Modern Courtroom

Keanu Reeves is directing/producing his first movie, Henry's Crime. It's not a big budget film as he's doing it all out of pocket. They are looking for a modern (no paneling) courtroom for a brief scene. They'd like it preferably near East Meadow, but they may look elsewhere if necessary.

If you have something you think might work for them, please e-mail me at

To Write, Right

One of the things I love about Facebook and all the other social networking sites and blogs, is learning different point of views and sometimes getting valid advice.

I read a blog by an author who stated that you should always write for traditional publication. He stated that if you didn’t, you were most likely delusional.

I read the other writer’s comments and some were delusional, some were pompous and some were middle of the road. I’d like to believe I’m in the latter category.

Yes, of course; writers write to be read. I get thrilled when someone e-mails me and tells me how one of my books has touched them. I don’t write the happily-ever-after gooey kind of romances that seem to be so popular – but certainly romances they are. Romances with a lot of gut-wrenching I can’t believe that happened kind of moments...and plenty of sex. From the feedback I get, they’re well written. Even agents have told me that – but either the stories are not happy enough, too graphic, not graphic enough, or all that’s selling right now are vampires stories and regency romances.

So I started reading every vampire book I could get my hands on to see if this is something I might write in my own style. I came up with a supernatural love story – but not in the vampire vein (pardon the pun). But then I started getting crankier and more irritable. What was wrong? I wondered.

I read the blogs of writers who have several books published, and they still need to submit proposals for approval before they can write a story. Other successful writers have been made to change and rewrite what they done – only to have it still rejected by the agent/publisher.

So why do I write, and how do my stories come about? They just do. I don’t know why. I’ve known since I wrote my first book when I was six years old that I was supposed to write. I’ve written two novels which I published (Naked in the Rain, Sarah and Caleb), a third which I’m sending to agents (Karmic Wind), I’ve written two novellas and now have started my fourth novel.

I have notes for another half a dozen books at my disposal. But when I tried to write what I was told I “should” write – I seem to lose all inspiration. Now that doesn’t mean I can’t take an idea someone gives me and write for profit (example ghostwriting). That I can do easily. And if feedback makes sense, I have no problem changing something to make a better story. But my stories come from my heart. They’re deep and dark, and exhilarating and painful. And I feel that my characters deserve to come to life.

I want to create something wonderful. I’ve read decent books, good books, better books and then there are those that take you on a roller coaster. The page turners that transport you to another place; one where you actually feel you’re there. You think about those characters even when you’re not reading, and for several days after. Sometimes they stay with you – and you remember them intimately. THOSE are the kinds of characters and stories I want to write. Maybe they don’t fit the standard. I don’t want to criticize someone else’s “art.” It’s not my place to do so. I will read best-sellers from time to time to see what’s out there. Sometimes it seems that they are writing from a formula.

Anita Shreve, Alice Hoffman and Lisa Alther have written books that enthrall me. Nelson DeMille’s books will keep me glued to the pages, and there are various books that I’ve read along the way that remind me why I love reading so much.

I have to believe that if you write what is in your heart – the rest will follow. I want to write books that people can “feel.” We’re all connected – this is my way of reaching out, teaching, commiserating, touching another’s soul.

Should writing only be for the mainstream? Should writing what spirit moves you too make you delusional?

What do you think?

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Location Needed AND My "Secret" to Finding A Man

Needed: A dark, velvety candlelit restaurant; the type where a violin player serenades you for a Geico commercial. Should be in Nassau County for a one-day shoot in November. If you have any suggestions, please e-mail me at

Okay, that takes care of business for the moment. Now back to me.

Five days ago, John and I celebrated four years of having come into each other’s lives. Nope, we don’t have that slip of paper – but we couldn’t be more committed to each other. I had just come off of a really awful divorce; not that I think too many are un-awful, but this was really bad.

I did the younger man thing, the bodybuilder thing, and I was looking forward to meeting a really nice guy that I could spend time with who wasn’t going to give me agitta.

Figuring that I’d try that “Secret” stuff out, I made my list of what I wanted in a mate. First I listed the obvious things –





Would love me

Would love my daughter

Had a good job – making more than me

He would accept and adore me exactly as I am

He would enjoy theatre, film, reading etc

He would be supportive and help me be the best person I could be

And on and on…

I took off the line “He knows how to ballroom dance,” because I figured that was pushing my luck.

And I also left off tall, blond haired, blue eyed, muscular, hot etc, because really, if everything else is there, how important is that?

So I was doing the internet dating thing, and culled down about 200 responses to 6 people who I spoke to. Four I actually met (and dated). They all had most of the qualities; really good jobs, attractive, funny, etc. One of them even played with The Cars for a while.

The problem was that dating was becoming a full time job, and I already had a full time job (Film Commissioner), and a part time job (freelance writing), and a daughter, a house and a dog. So, I canceled my membership to, and they nicely gave me some money back. And I closed down my accounts at the other sites I was on as well.

Then something strange happened. I got an e-mail from one of the sites I closed. And I checked the profile of this intelligent, adventurous, somewhat snarky gentleman who said he had blond hair, blue eyes and was six foot tall with an athletic build. And he lived one town over. Until my venture into the last round of guys, I was also specializing in men that lived out of state. It just seemed easier that way. Anyway, we chatted on-line for a couple of weeks before we decided to meet. We spoke once on the phone, and I was a little surprised at his voice. It had a certain quality to it that I could not place, but it was pleasant enough. We decided to meet at Starbucks on Hempstead Turnpike in East Meadow (which is now a Cheaper Peepers store). When I walked in, this gentleman looked terrified. He had on a long, leather duster coat and a leather wide-brimmed drovers’ hat under which he had him some long blond hair. I said his name, and he turned to me and smiled.

We spoke for three hours with hardly a pause. He held his coffee cup in one hand, but never drank from it. I found out later that he didn’t even like Starbucks coffee. So there we were, talking about everything you’re not supposed to talk about when you’re getting to know someone. And we discussed how neither of us really wanted to get serious anytime soon because we were just so damned busy. By the end of our coffee date, we were making plans to meet again.

Now I had a conundrum. My plan of not being monogamous for a year or getting serious before three years was starting to wear on me. I really liked this guy. How was I going to date others when I really liked this one? It took me two weeks before I finally told the other gentlemen that I found someone I wanted to get to know a bit better, which meant seeing no one else. It took another couple of weeks before I found out that John not only knew how to ballroom dance, but that he’d won several awards back in the day.

Neither of us have ever looked back. Is marriage in the cards? I don’t know. I don’t really care right now. I’ve been blessed to meet this really amazing person who is just so much fun! We get to be incredibly silly together. We can tell each other everything, and there’s no judging. He is my best friend, partner and all the rest of that good stuff. So to celebrate our four year anniversary, we went to work, took the dog for a walk, got a cup of 7-11 coffee and went to see the movie Julie and Julia. True, it’s not a weekend at The Plaza, but it’s us, and it seems that sharing the smallest of things makes us really happy.

Monday, October 12, 2009

And away we go....

As many of you know, I'm one of those insane, anal creatures who must do a gazillion things and try to do them all well. Unfortunately, when one is Nassau County Film Commissioner, Director of the Long Island International Film Expo (LIIFE), writing their fourth novel, trying to promote their second novel, trying to get an agent for their third novel, and thinking about developing a website to help promote indie artists of every ilk, something's gotta give.

Oh, and did I mention I'm in an amazing relationship with an unbelievable man for the past four years, have an adopted dog (two months now) and a 17 year-old-daughter who just got her license and is in college AND I practice yoga, lift weights and am desperately trying to capture my pre-divorce weight? No wonder I'm tired.

But anyway, here I am, taking on a new venture - this blog, which will coincide with my even newer venture, my website (, and I guess I'm going to take you on my journey with me.

Glad to meet you, and away we go.