Quiet on the Set

I haven't talked much lately about screenwriting on this blog, not because I'm not doing any, but because I'm not allowed to say much about the projects I'm working on (in one case, because I signed a very rigid non-disclosure agreement).

But I can say that good things are happening with GUN MONKEYS, my long-in-the-works feature adaptation of Victor Gischler's terrific novel…and we're both hoping that we're going to be free to share some exciting news with y'all in the very near future. But I can tell you that director Ryuhei Kitamura (Midnight Meat Train, Versus, Azumi) is still attached, as is a world famous movie star with whom I've worked closely on several drafts of the script.

And I've been working on low-budget feature adaptations of four western novels, two each by Bill Crider and Ed Gorman, and financing talks on those  have been ongoing with many entities…including a national retailer. That project, in particular, has been a big learning experience for me. It's the first time I have had to get involved in the nitty-gritty of equity financing, distribution and co-production and it's been a real education (which is to say, slow going and extremely frustrating).

I've also had a few disappointments…TV staff gigs that came close, but fell through, and some freelance scripts that were promised to me but didn't happen, all for a number of reasons beyond my control (positions eliminated to cut costs, a showrunner I was working with getting fired, etc). But that's how the business works and I'm used to it.

I wrote a spec pilot recently that has been working well for me as a fresh sample, getting me several "get-to-know-you" meetings at studios and networks around town, but it hasn't led to a TV or movie gig yet.  It was based on an unfinished novel which I am now finishing…before I have to start work on my next Monk in just a few weeks.

But all of that is on hold for the next couple of days…I am off to Las Vegas with the family, so behave yourselves here while I am gone.


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