Sunday, May 29, 2011

Awesome Novel Trailer!

Two posts, you ask? Oh, yes.

Following the last post's obvious fail, K., M., and I have come to a mutual decision that I should never attempt to write a script, ever again. Then again, it's partly my fault- there is no guitar-solo in Act Five (it's actually in Act Four, but M. wasn't having any of it and is now being quite uncooperative). Fortunately, this trailer:

did not require me to manage any annoying characters, or deal with M.'s endless fits of emo. It did, however, require a great deal of patience- editing the clips, timing everything just right, and countless crashes almost put my poor Task Manager out of business! But it's done, so watch & enjoy!

With love/s laskou,

Life In This Corner, [Un]Scripted.


Fade in-

Closeup of a pretty outdoor cafe on Bank Street. K. and M. are standing outside, drinking coffee and chatting about whose life sucks more.

She scares me, you know. That part, 
where that thing happens? Not fair!
What has gotten into that author of
ours, M.? She used to be so nice!

I don't know. Last I heard, she was
planning to send this thing off to an
agent, or something- how could she
leave us alone? I might break a nail!

Just then, THE AUTHOR appears. She is in her mid-20s and not bad-looking; she is carrying a brown bag and a binder, and takes a sip of her diet Coke as she approaches them.

Hey, you guys.

What do you want now?

Let me guess... They hate us. 
Everyone does. It must be because
I'm so hardcore. No one gets me.

Whoa, you guys... What's up
with all the negativity? I was
just going to tell you what an
awesome time I had at the NB
Film Co-Op's screenwriting class.

That's awesome! I've always 
wanted to be in a movie!

Just what your big head needs, K.
You're nuts, and so is Ms. Author-
Lady. Nothing good ever happens 
to us... Why is that? Because you

(points to The Author)

are a sadist, and clearly hell-bent
on exploiting us for fun and profit!

Wait a sec. Look, Author Lady...
I'm glad you had fun. Even though
I whine about most of your plot
and really don't like sharing the
stage with a spotlight-hog like M.,
we've had some good times. I'll 
definitely be in your script... 
if you'll have me, that is.

Of course, K. You're pretty cool,
and I'd love to have you... and
M., too, if he changes his mind.
He'll probably warm up to the idea
when he finds out that there's a 
guitar-solo for him in Act Five.

Really? I think I'm in love,
Author Lady... Sign me up!

I knew you'd both see things
my way. I must be going now,
but I'll be back to check in
later. Peace out, you two!


Now, where did I put that pencil-


Friday, May 27, 2011

Epic Adventures of Aspiring Writerdom: The Movie.

Well, not exactly.

The title of this post, however, is half-true- I'll be attending the Trimedia Atlantic screenwriting workshop, with Chris Fulton, tomorrow at 11 a.m. This will surely come in handy when I decide to bring K. and M.'s story to life, in a way that doesn't involve Windows Movie Maker and/or The Sims; after last night's/this morning's adventure, I'm not sure I want to look at either one, ever again (I probably will, anyway).

Write on,

K. and M.'s Youtube Dance-Party!


Yes, it is after 6:00 A.M. I have been awake all night, working on this lovely, little video- since I've already spent the last 6 months talking about my characters (and how awesome they are, of course), I may as well put faces to names, right?

Making this video was equal parts amusing and annoying- one scary power-failure, 3 Windows Movie Maker-initiated crashes, and tons of lost data later, I hereby present you with the end-result:

K. and M.'s Happy Dance!

Naturally, I am completely and utterly sick of hearing that song now. ;)

Dancing along,

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

To Write Love On Her Arms: Do The "Write" Thing.

As a writer, it's important to be passionate about things- and people. With our words, we can make a difference in many lives, and we don't need some fancy degree that, in all likelihood, will sit around and collect dust for years on end, in order to do so.

One such cause is the post-title. Having created M, a character who, like many people that I know and love in the real world, openly struggles with SI and suicidal thoughts has really opened my eyes to the issues faced by both people like him and their loved ones. As someone on Allpoetry once told me, in response to a poem I wrote: "You have an understanding of [self-injury] that I didn't know someone who's never cut herself could have".

In all honesty, my experience with SI came when Sarah*, a good friend of mine at the time, called me one night and said, "I need you to come over, right now". I was both awed and repulsed by both the physical (blood, the deep cuts on her arms) and the metaphysical (her motives and emotions) aspects of that whole night and, at first, I really didn't understand why anyone would want to do such a thing. Now, I feel as though I "get it", even if only a little.

It's an issue that I feel strongly about, hence my decision to join the TWLOHA street-team; signing up is free, and it's in support of a cause that is very close to my heart. To answer the call, click here.

Remember, there is ALWAYS hope. If you (or someone you love) ever feel like hurting yourself, it's important to realize that it's NOT your fault- everyone makes mistakes, and feeling this way does NOT make you a bad person. If this post stops even one boy or girl from going down that path, then my job here is already done.

Stay safe,

*names have been changed.



S.A.F.E. (Self-Abuse Finally Ends)
What Not To Say To Teens With Depression.
What Is Cutting?
How Do I Help A Friend Who Cuts?
How Can I Stop Cutting?
My Friend Is Talking About Suicide- How To Help.
Youth Suicide Prevention.
Light For Life/Yellow Ribbon Project.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Dead Author Shirt Has Arrived!

Yes, it has- I ordered it a few weeks ago, after meeting Margaret Atwood (it's one of her designs) and it turned up in my post last night around 3 p.m. Here it is:

See? Without us, those agents (editors, booksellers, etc.) would not have jobs!

To all of the aspiring writers out there, who are going through some form of this process with me, I wish you the very best. Keep following your dreams!

Gelato calls!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

More Epic Adventures of Aspiring Writerdom.

As anticipated, Donna's workshop was a total blast! All of us (14 women and one man) had one helluva time learning how to combine fiction and truth- to make our characters so real and flawed that they are, in the readers' eyes, like old friends. The exercises opened our minds and helped us to see that even our antagonists are human, somehow- take M, for instance. He's as whiny and annoying as they come, but there's a part of him that's real (and lovable), too- the awesome Lynn Casey and I talked about this over lunch, and the ensuing conversation was more amazing than even our cheeseburger-meals!

I love meeting other writers- hearing their stories, getting to know them and the passion they feel for their own projects. Assuming that we all become literary phenomena (sooner, rather than later), I will buy a copy of everyone's published work- including some 60 copies of my own, which I will display proudly whilst admiring my own artistic genius. Gotta have a sense of humour!

The most-important thing I learned today, though (besides that writers are awesome- d'uh), was rediscovering my voice. When we shared some of our work (exercises we'd done in class), I read a poetic prose-piece that I'd written about Ron/my bro-in-law, and Donna said:

"That's your voice right there. I hope that your entire novel is written like that because, if it isn't, you're going to have to rewrite every, single line!"

Did I mention that I love writers?

Off to rewrite every, single, damn line of that manuscript- it's not going to write itself, after all.

Signing off,

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Fiction Is Fun!

Yes- yes, it is.

Anyone who knows me will attest to the fact that I hate mornings, with a fiery passion. But tomorrow is different- at 9 a.m., I'll be going to a 6-hour fiction workshop with Donna Morrissey, the award-winning writer of such books as Kit's Law and Downhill Chance, at the Riverview Library. Having spoken to her a few times by email, I've gathered that I'll be making at least one very-cool acquaintance! Who knew that Moncton was such a great place to be a writer?

Definitely worth getting up early for.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Honey, I'm Home!

Yes, we are back in business!

I managed to get my six-year-old fire-hazard of a laptop running, so I'm not completely stuck. In lieu of the novel, however, I've been working on a series of short stories based on it- the idea is that it will:

1. Produce some potentially-publishable sequences of events that may or may not appear in the sequel's final draft. Some neat characters and subplots have already resulted from this process. :)

2. Ward off writers'-block.

My 'pooter is in the shop as we speak, and should be back any moment, so I'll turn this thing off, lest it torch the apartment.


In alphabetical order,
this is K, L, and M. signing off.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

My Ongoing Bad Romance With Technology.

...And that's the way the cookie crumbles.

After Frye Fest, it was expected that I might return to my writing with a renewed vigor. Sadly, it wasn't to be- my computer died this morning, leaving me with no games, no music, no internet, no novel (sigh), and no blog (double sigh). Fortunately, I was able to sneak onto a library comp for a few minutes, so K, M, and I will let you all know how we are doing, come Monday (hopefully).

Until then,

Monday, May 2, 2011

The Literary Goddess (Not Me... Yet!).

First of all, thank you to Rachel (my wonderful photographer-friend) for allowing me to see how fat I've gotten. I hope that this picture never surfaces until after I'm famous, and the press can airbrush to their hearts' content... Until then, I'm working on it- honest!

Of course, the point of this post is not that I'm getting fat, but to show off the picture! This is me, with Margaret Atwood at the Capitol Theatre in Moncton- she is one amazing gal, a real class act, and I'm so lucky to have met her!

Now that you've seen the literary goddess (well, both of us- haha) in action, I'll go back to doing crunches and muttering some form of encouragement to myself as I attempt to continue reading You Comma Idiot (which is excellent, so far) while doing said crunches... If that isn't dedication, then I don't know what is.

Goodnight, world!

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Frye Fest 2011: My Trip To Writer-Heaven and Beyond!

So, it's official- Moncton is an untapped goldmine of literary awesomeness!

After spending the day at Chapters, I attended the Frye Festival's meet-and-greet, which featured all sorts of Canadian writers, both big names and some newly-published ones. Since I'm painfully-shy in crowds, it took some guts, but I finally got to networking! Here are a few of the awesome people I met today:

Susan Juby

She is an adult- and YA-fiction writer from BC, who moved to Toronto (not far from my own hometown of Mississauga, Ontario) at the age of 20. This trailblazer also taught me a lot about query-writing, as well as possible pros and cons of breaking the rules (including unsolicited excerpts, for example) and that it's all about marketing: "Whether or not your book is any good doesn't matter, as long as you can market it well."

 Helaine Becker

A successful writer of children's books, she also had a lot to say about putting myself out there. When I asked her about "networking for introverts", which was how I'd gotten talking to her and Susan in the first place, she had this to say: "Go to workshops, go to seminars and places like this- take a plane home to Toronto, and go to the literature festival. Get practice."

This is a picture of me with Doug Harris, the bestselling author of You Comma Idiot. We started talking titles by the punch bowl, which ended in him giving me a copy of his winning query-letter and teaching me how to sign my future masterpiece. He said, "when your book gets published, you can scratch out your name on the first page and sign there. But, if you like the person- and I like you- you probably want to sign in a bigger spot." Inside my copy, he also wrote this:

"To Laura- I hope that you enjoy the book, but more than that, I truly hope that you never give up on your writing dreams. All the very best."

I was surprised at how down-to-earth he was! We had a great chat, and having met him in person will make reading his book twice as awesome.

I'll also be posting a picture that my friend Rachel took of me with Margaret Atwood at the Capitol Theatre. Margaret gave a presentation on Northrop Frye and mythology, but also talked about her own life and work- even at 70-odd, she is a very funny and intelligent lady. While she signed my copy of Alias Grace, I asked her if she had any words of wisdom for an aspiring writer; she recommended her book Negotiating With The Dead: A Writer On Writing, saying that "it's not exactly a resource, but I hope that you find some encouragement in it. Just keep at it, and don't ever give up".

The world needs more events like this; more writers, and more Canada.

Off to read my autographed masterpieces, and fill out my volunteer-form for FryeFest 2012!