GAME WRITER HUSTLE: The Writing Test
Competition is fierce. Top videogame studios know there's a TON of talent out there vying for that dream game writer gig. (or, in these troubled times, ANY decent work) The solution? A little bit of controversial 'free labour' known as...the WRITING TEST. Now, I've been a game writer and interactive narrative guy since 1997. That's 23 YEARS. Let that sink in for a minute. And even with that slew of storytelling experience, heaps of professional accolades, high-level game writer recommendations, and some acclaimed self-created indie projects? I still get asked, more often than not these days, to 'audition'. Seriously. ..
CONDE NAST: Coronavirus Quarantine in a Hotel (Travel)
I haven't posted here in a while. Internet issues? Travel snafus? Panicked personal distractions? Something huge happening on the global stage? My friends, it ain't easy being a 'digital nomad' on the best of days. And now COVID-19 has loudly proclaimed 'Hold my beer...' Maybe the latest travel story from CONDE NAST — featuring yours truly — can shed some light on the latest from my quiet corner of the globe...
BIG TROUBLE IN LITTLE CHINA — The Musical! (Project Reveal w/soundtrack)
This special episode of my podcast takes the first real look at something big that's been brewing the past few years; I'm talking nearly HALF a soundtrack for a no-bullshit bucket list dream — an epic rock opera meets 80's live concert meets kung fu daredevil show on wires!!! So, let's get right to it! And if, like us, you're already a fan of the 1985 action, comedy, supernatural, kung-fu, Carpenter/Russell B-movie masterpiece..?
TOP 10 TV SHOWS 2019: The Golden Age Has Arrived
I've done this annual feature list a few times before, focusing on the year's best films. But after slogging through 2019's cinematic contenders, only one really floored me. But on the small screen? The 'golden age of television' was in full goddamn swing, son. I can honestly say that the lion's share of my procrastination this year falls squarely on TV's considerable shoulders...
CRISIS ON INFINITE EARTHS: How a Comic Book Epic Was a Master Class in Storytelling
When I look back at the stories that had a lasting effect during my youth — those that shaped me, and inspired me, and frankly blew the roof off my poor little mind — I'd have to say that one of the defining tales was this 12-issue DC comics epic. For a hick kid with a second-rate movie theatre, a laughably small local library, and six channels on cable? My storytelling could pretty much be summed up as BC and AC: Before Crisis on Infinite Earths...and AFTER it.
SHADOWLAND: A Sequel in Progress (Book Update)
VOLUME 2 in The Shadowland Saga. The sequel to my acclaimed, award-winning debut novel: The Cat's Maw. Whispers from beyond the veil have been a long time coming...and you're just gonna have to wait a little longer. Is it out of fear? Procrastination? Laziness? Writer's block? Perfectionism? Typical 'life' distractions gumming up the gears? All of the above, I reckon. But there's an unexpected reason it's taken so long to muster the confidence to dive back into this epic story.
PODCAST TIME: How an Epic Hike Across Spain Changed the Course of My Career
30 years ago, I first heard of the legendary 900km pilgrimage across Spain — the Camino De Santiago. 10 years ago, after reading The Pilgrimage and The Alchemist by acclaimed author Paulo CoeIho, I made the decision to walk it myself. And in the summer of 2008 -- with a huge career opportunity in the dust and nothing but a 20kg backpack as my companion, I took the first steps on this life-changing journey...
INTERVIEW: A Creative Career Retrospective w/ EPN (Games, TV, Travel, and MUCH More!)
With just a few days left in my Vancouver visit, I got to sit down for a LIVE interview at Vancouver Film School. And the icing on the cake? It was with old chum and the creator/producer/host (+ damn fine fella, to be sure) of The Electric Playground — VICTOR LUCAS. Gaming! Storytelling! Dirty Words! Travel TV! And SO much more!!!
GAME WRITING: A Short Exercise In Suspense ('Homecoming')
A potential client recently offered an intriguing challenge — write a short story in five parts with the following limitations: three sections of prose under 200 words in 2nd person narrative style, and two sections of TEXT MESSAGE dialogue with 8 lines or less in each. Use a female protagonist, and craft the tale from one of the following genres: Romance, Urban Fantasy, Comedy, Horror, or Suspense.
COVENTRY: A World-Building and Branching Narrative Exercise (GAMES)
Building a world affords a certain creative freedom. You aren't forced to work within established boundaries or strict IP limitations. You can let the imagination run a little wild. You have a chance to throw stuff against the wall and see what sticks. And, quite often, you can incorporate factual research into the world building of a fictional space. Which means you might even learn a thing or two in the process.