Oh, the Horror!

I’ve been pursuing a next project, even though I haven’t even started filming Treasure Hunt, let alone had any sort of success with it (I’m just that sort of guy; can’t help myself).  It’s a period biopic about the Civil War era Jessie Rupert, the Angel of the Shenandoah.  If half of what’s said about her is true, it seems criminal that no dramatization has been made about her life.  She doesn’t even have a Wiki page!

I set out to contact people into the Civil War in the area (New Market, Virginia), but so far haven’t been developing any momentum.  I did get in contact with someone who’s very interested in my Treasure Hunt movie, so much that they’re willing to consider making music for it and to travel all the way from Florida for a bit part.  But no one in a position to move the project forward financially.  Once I know about my level of success with Treasure Hunt, I may invest in creating some posters and perhaps a trailer to see if I can use that to move things forward, but that’s months away, at least.  I have found an actress interested in the part; hopefully I can use her willingness to leverage more interest going forward.

With the lull in momentum with the Jessie biopic, I’m exploring a new genre: Horror.  One of the actresses I auditioned for Treasure Hunt has, to me, an angelic appearance that, with minor makeup and changes in body language and expression, can transform to demonic.  That got me interested in the idea of a horror movie for two reasons: one, I started thinking about an idea that wouldn’t let go, which tells me completing the script won’t be a problem, but two, horror is the rare genre where there’s a compelling track record of low-budget indie movies getting distribution and turning a profit.  I think this is because, since ‘everyone’ dies in the movie, viewers don’t get attached to the specific actors.

I wrote a synopsis for the script idea, but am trying hard to not put more effort into it, since I need to focus on Treasure Hunt right now and am still trying to get momentum going for Jessie.  I’m asking for other people’s input, though, since I’m the opposite of a fan of horror.  I find horror movies either stupid or scary, and I don’t care for either.  I’ve never let ignorance keep me from following a course of action, though, so did some research on the tropes of horror, picked a few to violate and others to honor, then wrote my outline.

I’ve been making some progress with Treasure Hunt.  I’ve finally got the chemistry tests scheduled (next Wednesday) and because that was such a struggle, we agreed to do the table read on the same day.  I have confidence that the chemistry will work out, but I do want to leave time in case things don’t (I’ll be recording the chemistry tests and asking friends and family for their thoughts and opinions as well).  I’m trying to hammer out a shooting schedule now so I can start getting people to commit to dates, not to mention locking in locations, but having never done this before, I’m not terribly efficient at it.  Then I need to start my crowdfunding campaign, which I had hoped to do this week, but beins as how it’s Friday, ain’t lookin like it gunna happen.

I’m still having a blast, though, even when I start to get a headache doing the schedule.  I wish I had a producer to do all this, but at least I have confidence in myself that I can get all this done.  One decision I have made is if I do another movie in the future, I’m going to do it all at once, not spread over weekends.  That way I can get all the actor’s focused time and they won’t be distracted with other jobs/projects.  Which, naturally, means bigger budgets, but I think I can leverage those up, perhaps first with my horror idea, then with the Jessie biopic.  And if I can make them profitable, maybe I can package my murder mysteries and be off to the races.

Independent Validation

I’ve been looking at posts on Reddit’s r/Screenwriting area for a while and seeing so many fellow writers trying to understand why their brilliant scripts (who knows if that’s true, but I expect at least a number are) fail to get any interest while crappy scripts (which is certainly true, though, as always, poor directing, acting and/or editing can screw up a brilliant script (though the reverse is highly unlikely to be the case)).  Having studied show business for a while, with the intent of getting into it (why I’m making a movie in a month), I understand why they’re confused.

Scripts are only one small part of what makes a movie happen.  Granted, it’s an important part, many would argue vital, but ultimately what gets a movie made is money, pure and simple.  To get the money, the script needs to be part of a package. The package includes the director, a dedicated producer willing to get money, often (almost always) a ‘name’ actor and money.  While the producer has a lot of unsung tasks that are critical to the success of the process, their primary job is to find the money and then budget it to ensure the process gets complete (filming is just the start, then there’s editing, but equally, if not actually more, importantly, promotion and distribution).  When producers are considering new projects, the more complete the package, the more interested they’re going to be in it.  Just a script might mean that they’re just 10% of the way to having a package, with the hardest part remaining: getting the money.

Thus, when a producer (typically, producers are only ‘paid’ if the movie is a financial success; they’re typically the ones with the most to lose) is presented with a ‘crappy’ script that is, nonetheless, packaged with an effective director, name actor, and, most critically, much, most or all of the necessary funds, the producer is likely to very seriously consider the project.

So, if I always package my own scripts, how will I ever be validated as a good writer? (Assuming I am a good writer.)  Clearly the marketplace will have something to say about it, but the marketplace is deciding on the finished product, which has so many moving parts that the original script is almost an afterthought.  As a writer/director/producer, if my project is profitable for my investors and puts enough money in my pocket that I can continue making movies, then the project is a success.  But is the script any good?  Actors work for money, though the more successful an actor gets the more picky they’ll be about their scripts.  So for an actor to willingly take on a role doesn’t say the script is any good.  Obviously, if I’m directing and producing, the strength of the script isn’t any sort of deciding factor.  Clearly investors will be weighing in with their impressions, but there are plenty of investors at the level I’ll be targeting that aren’t in it just for the financial return, they also get a return by being part of the project itself.

I can try and get validated via contests, but I don’t know that I want to shop around a script I intend to package.  And very few contest winners have their scripts turned into movies, because, as mentioned, scripts are just a small part of the whole project.  What often happens is the writer is invited to write on other projects, ones further along in the package process.

Of course, at this point in my ‘career’ (hard to dignify it with that term at this time), this is much ado about nothing.  But it makes me wonder. If I’m successful, will I ever really know if I’m any good at writing.  Even directing is more about management than anything else; the DP is the one that ensures the imagery is beautiful and the actors bring the characters to life, so with a good cast and crew, ‘all’ the director does is try and keep the ship steered in the chosen direction.  One could argue that it’s a figure head position, except it is where the responsibility lies.  Exactly like the captain of a ship.

Mr. Holmes

I’ve always been a Sherlock Holmes fan.  I’ve read the canon probably a dozen times (at least), and always check out movie/TV adaptations when they come out.  While I liked Sherlock a whole lot (until the final season (I sure hope it’s the last!)) and am very much a fan of Elementary, this post is about the movie Mr. Holmes, which covers Sherlock’s final case and what triggered his retirement.

I was very impressed with Ian McKellen’s ability to be the sharp-minded detective as well as the dimming (but still with flashes of brilliance) old man who can’t take care of himself any longer.  There were actually two mysteries, the one that ended his career (self-imposed, btw), and the one about his bees.

I was no less impressed with the young Milo Parker, who played the inquisitive boy that no doubt had Sherlock recollecting his own childhood.  And Laura Linney really tugged at my heart strings (what does that even mean?) as she struggled as an illiterate single mother of a brilliant child while also caring for a cantankerous old man, who has flashes of brilliance and is, after all, her boss.

It’s a slow story, the kind that I like to write, with no car chases, no explosions, just a lot of brilliant acting and fascinating story lines (well, maybe mine aren’t fascinating).  But slow doesn’t mean boring. I found it riveting and never once felt bored or had my attention wander.  Cerebral, I guess, is a better description.

I love the idea of seeing Sherlock in his declining years.  To see that not all his rough edges got worn off.  That he can still describe your day in detail by looking at you. Yet to be infirm, to no longer trust his mental faculties.  To remember when his brilliance was effortless, but to realize it only happens in increasingly rare brief flashes.  Watson has passed on, as has Mycroft, and Sherlock is in his 90’s.  His life revolves around his bees, as implied in the canon, and is in beautiful Sussex by the sea, so fits well within the stories as I’ve envisioned them.

Interestingly, I found myself less likely to drop into movie maker analytical mode as I watched.  Perhaps because the bulk of the story took place in a small location.  Or perhaps I was so sucked into the story I didn’t have the need.  Or maybe I haven’t been doing it long enough that I can still enjoy movies like I used to.

You don’t need to know anything about the canon or even Sherlock in general to enjoy the movie, so don’t let that put you off.  As a wonderful story brilliantly acted, it’s worth watching no matter what.

Mission Impossible: Fallout

Yesterday we went to watch Fallout at the theater.  My wife’s got some sort of deal that gets us in for $5 a person (of course, we’re also going at 3:30 in the afternoon) as well as some kind of break on the eats and drinks.  Probably still at least $25, which is much more than the cost of the Blu ray, which I’ll most likely purchase anyway, for the extras, but there’s a certain je ne sais quoi about begin in a theater and for that price, it’s worth it.

I’m going to assume anyone reading this has seen the last one, Rogue Nation.  No spoilers for Fallout, but likely for Rogue Nation.  They got most of the old team back (what happened to Brant? maybe Renner was busy) including Hunley, Ethan’s ‘nemesis’ from the CIA.  Interestingly, the CIA still plays a part in the nemesis action.  Where’s the NSA all this time?  No KGB either, though, I suppose I’m out of date in that regard.

I liked the increased small moments of humor.  There’s a great scene where Luther and Benjie silently ‘argue’ over why Benjie has to put on a mask and risk his life.  There’s a chase scene where Benjie is directing Ethan’s pursuit of a bad guy, except gets his lefts and rights mixed up and has no idea that Ethan is running along the tops of the building instead of on the ground.  Then Ethan has to leap out of a window and I like how he pauses for a few moments as if thinking “I’m too old for this shit.”

That being said, I never felt any tension at all during the flick.  My wife watched a number of the scenes behind her hand (what’s up with that anyway, when you peak around the edge?), but I couldn’t be bothered with elevated heart rate or concern since they always make it out alive and in one piece.  Though rare, there were times in the original TV series where things did go terribly wrong.

Another thing I really liked about the TV series was the ability for them to have smaller stories.  Each MI has to have bigger and better TEOTWAWKI, which gets fatiguing.  Not to mention rather hard to believe, that the MI force only has one team operating capable of TEOTWAWKI missions.  I understand that the ginormous budgets of the MI series demands TEOTWAWKI, so I wish they’d consider smaller budgets that would allow smaller… disasters.  Things not on such an epic scale.  I find redshirts boring as well; why not let us get to know someone, then have them die?  Or be so messed up (physically or psychologically) that they can’t continue.

Or, what I really wanted to see, was an episode where they listen to the mission briefing, then shake their heads and say “fuck this!” and then there is a montage of them having a great time at a beach resort.

More on Auditions

I’m almost done with auditions, and about ready to start the agonizing process of selecting who to cast.  There have been a number of surprises in this process, though.  I was initially contacted by 66 people for one or more roles in the movie.  I asked a number of them for some clarification, feedback or something else and never got any response.  That made it easy to remove them from consideration.  Of the rest, I went through all their head shots, resumes and reel (only a couple lacked any reel).  Because this is my first, I want to be the only ‘virgin’ on the shoot, so, reluctantly in some cases, said ‘thanks, but no thanks’ to those who were just getting started and lacked any experience.  I’ve read the warning, and heard it from people in person, that stage actors can often struggle with the transition to film.  This, it seems, because on the stage the actor must be able to convey their emotion all the way to the furthest seat. If they do that on film, they look like they’re grossly over acting.  So I said no to those people as well.

I was still left with a very long list.  I started to separate the candidates into “yes I want to audition them” and “maybe, but I can’t decide.”  I wound up with, I believe, 22 in my ‘yes’ group, so sent out audition requests.  About half responded, which was rather surprising to me.  I said right up front that I needed a response in 48 hours, or I would assume no interest, and got one guy who responded after 4 days, with no mention of the deadline, let alone an explanation.

While scheduling all the ‘yes’ candidates and beginning the audition process, I went back over my ‘maybe/not sure’ list.  I asked several more out of that group to audition.

Of the total of 31 people I asked to be in the movie (two were for non-principal roles (and one of those volunteered to be crew for free)), I had an, astounding to me, 7 not respond at all.  Two more, after reading my request (I felt they should have the chance to get to know me, so probably flooded them with too much information), said ‘thanks, but no thanks.’  The one mentioned above who waited too long, then another who apparently can’t read, as he kept asking questions that I’d already answered, in some cases also in the initial ad.

Another responded, but never scheduled an audition, while another said he was not sure he wanted to invest the time in an audition, since he’d been stood up before, so wanted to do a video. I said OK, but he never sent the video.  Note that I did get a video audition from someone who was on a gig, and I have scheduled him (late tonight).

That meant I had 16 actors schedule an audition (of which I’ve seen 13 already).  Of those that have auditioned (I haven’t been stood up (yet?), though a few were late (and notified me)) were all professional.  With two minor exceptions.  Except for my first, where I was totally out of control with my babbling, I’ve asked everyone else to sing for me.  There’s some a cappella singing in the script, so I wanted to be sure their voices would work.  Two of the candidates, when I asked them to sing, were ‘What?’  One allowed that she could carry a tune, but wasn’t set to sing for me, while the other said, basically, “Whoops, I’m outta here.”

I only had one person schedule to audition for Harry, so asked someone who auditioned for Max, who I thought would work for the role, if he would consider Harry.  He said he was fine with that.  So I have to decide between two guys for Harry.  For Max I’ve had/ am having 5 people (one now dual purpose), while I’ve had/am having 5 for Kayla (two of which are also being considered for Velma).  Velma has got the most love, for some reason, with 7 auditions (two, as mention, also under consideration for Kayla).

No one who has shown up has felt incompatible with the role they were auditioning for.  Which is not to say they all felt the same.  They each had their own distinct take on the characters, some of which I felt really resonated with what was floating around in my mind.  I’m glad that I’ve had so many excellent candidates who have shown up, but that means I have to say ‘no thanks’ to 12 (well, 11, since one took herself out of the running regarding the singing) perfectly good actors.  When I mention this to any of them they all basically say the same thing, that they’re used to being told ‘no.’  I guess I am as well, when it comes to asking investors for money or contacting companies about one invention or another, so I suppose I shouldn’t be so shocked.

I was initially planning on doing auditions at my house in Maryland.  Then I was advised by pretty much everyone that doing so was a really bad idea.  I did a bunch of research on public venues for auditions and couldn’t find anything free.  The cheapest, including local libraries, was $20 an hour.  Since that put a lot of constraints on the times the actors would have to be available, I suggested, in my TMI request for an audition, that they could meet at my house over a much wider period of time.  All but one elected to meet at the house.  I met one at a local Panera Bread; she was OK with the distractions.

I’ve enjoyed meeting all these people.  While I still have issues with my overflowing babble, I have managed to keep a couple close to my original goal of 15 minutes.  My average was actually starting to look pretty good, until yesterday.  One of the actors is studying to be a programmer (what I do for a living) and I couldn’t help myself, I offered tons of unsolicited advice on how not to be a crappy programmer.  Then I met another actor and we talked for 2 hours.  I hold her equally as responsible for the length, but I really enjoyed the conversation and see potential to work together even if things don’t work out for this role on this movie.

Tuesday is when I need to start making decisions.  I still want to do chemistry tests with the leads, which might mean approaching someone I initially said no to, but I’m expecting these professional actors will be able to work together.  I hope to do the chemistry tests very soon, ideally in the next week or so (it’s more complicated now since 5 people need to schedule to be together instead of just two), so I can lock the cast down and start planning rehearsals.

It’s still fun and I’m still enjoying myself, so I’m optimistic I’ll enjoy the actual directing part.  Besides, I’ve read in so many places if I do a good job casting, most of the work is done, as the actors will take ownership of the role and that will be obvious on the screen.  Then the second question left to be resolved: can I direct and edit something that people will enjoy watching enough to tell their friends and watch again.  That’s still open.

My First Audition!

Sunday I had my very first audition. Crystal Day lives in Charlottesville, which is much closer to the Shenandoah house than our Maryland house. We were scheduling an audition for Monday night when I discovered this, so suggested she visit while we were still at the weekend place. Crystal initially applied for Kayla, but I thought she’d make a really good Velma as well, so asked her if she’d consider that role as well.

I’ve been allocating a half hour for each audition, since all my research indicates 10-15 minutes is the norm. I learned that keeping to that schedule will be a challenge for me.

I found Crystal to be very informative and helpful. She’s a pro actress, meaning that’s how she pays the bills (though she does some part-time work in sales to help smooth her earnings out), and we talked shop a while. Of course, I also droned on (and on (and on)) about my hopes/dreams/fantasies, which she dutifully smiled and nodded at (my wife only nods ;-). I wanted to hear her sing, but ran out of time (my wife was giving frantic wrap-it-up gestures as they were already packing to leave) and also totally forgot I wanted to test her directability (basically, ask the candidate to shift their emotional tone/goals for the scene and see if they respond). She did a monologue from Bull Durham, one of my favorites (when Annie talks about the church of baseball), and another from Contact, which I liked, though I’ve never seen the movie. She did two more, which I felt spoke to the characters, but I didn’t recognize the source so they didn’t stick in my memory. I’m glad my first experience was with an experienced actress, but wish I had better control over my babble.

On Monday I had three auditions.  ‘Shockingly,’ each ran long; the first two only ‘ended’ when the next candidate arrived.  One yesterday, which also ran long.  This is going to be a real challenge for me on Thursday, as I’m meeting a candidate at the local Panera Bread (so far, the only one not comfortable meeting at my house) and have another one scheduled a half hour later. Can I keep my damn mouth shut and keep the focus on the actor? Don’t change that channel!  Find out after the break…

Damn that babble!

A busy two weeks!

I’ve been a bit overwhelmed the last two weeks, so didn’t get the blog post last week.  But so much has happened, most of it really great, that I need to do an update.

I created an ad that I put on dragonukconnects.com for the principal actors (the ad is behind a login screen, and is destined to be taken down shortly, else I’d provide a link).  I was impressed when I started to get responses right away.  The tapered off very quickly, though, and I probably had 95% of my responses within 48 hours.  I’ve so far had 67 actors respond (I’ve got one or two a day after the first deluge).  I’ve looked at lots of head shots, lots of resumes and lots of reels.  I admit that people started to blur together, but I kept notes.

Of the total respondents, I choose to request an audition from 24.  Quite surprisingly to me, I’ve only had responses from 1516.  I gave them a 48 hour deadline to respond, so I guess they’re too busy to check their email.  Of the 1516 that have responded, after I sent them very detailed (perhaps overly) information about me and my plans for the table read, rehearsals and principal photography, one said no thanks, she was too busy (which seems strange; I supplied the same basic information in the original ad, but I’m learning that not everyone actually reads the thing).  I’ve scheduled 7 so far and am hoping at least a few more will follow through.  Of course, they have yet to show up for the audition, let alone impress me.  The next week should be interesting.

One of the respondents, when I reiterated about the requirements for the role (e.g., bikini shots and jogging in shorts and sports bra), felt my asking that was ‘creepy’ and didn’t want to be involved any longer.  I asked her, by way of response, why did she bother to apply in the first place; just more evidence that at least some of the actors aren’t bothering to read before applying.

My very first response was from a woman who has a career doing weather on TV.  She’s perfect for the role of Kayla, with the only caveat that my immediate impression was she didn’t look 20 or 21.  I asked her a couple of questions, but have never heard back from her.  I’ve read in so many places that actors, as a group, are flaky, but now it’s being driven home.  I hope I can find some (at least four!) that are serious and committed, otherwise this will be an expensive experiment in failure.  Well, I guess if I never film, it will just be a waste of time.

Two things were driven home by watching all the reel: I’ve read so many places that when you think you’ve got enough light, add more.  I saw that clearly as so many scenes were often unwatchable because they were dark and muddy.  Second: get a competent sound guy (I believe I have one), as crappy sound destroys the experience.  One I watched was in a room with cinder block walls and all the dialog had a rather painful ringing sound.

I desired two scenes in public locations: the county land office and a library.  With some trepidation, I contacted the head of the county admin offices and was happily surprised when she readily acquiesced to my request.  I managed to connect with the director of the county library system and he was also fine with me filming there.

Today I met with my sound guy, John, and my DP, Nate, for some location scouting.  We were able to get into the county offices (they’re normally closed on the weekend) and John was able to satisfy himself with the sound and Nate got a chance to see what he was in for lighting.  Then we went to the library, which is open on Saturdays until 3, and were looking around.  They have a history section, but the look I was envisioning was that of a university library, and it was just… too colorful.  I was chatting with the ladies that work there, learning about the ‘card catalog’ system (a computer) while John lamented that there were no actual cards any longer. I noticed, out of the corner of my eye, a separate room that had the exact look I was going for.  Even more interesting, that’s where they keep their material on the Civil War!  Checking out that area was very gratifying, as it was exactly what I wanted, long rows of the same monochromatic books, exactly like I remember from my oh-so-many hours doing research back in school.

It was interesting, as we did sound tests in the library, that John kept picking up my steps on the carpet.  Even when I took off my shoes.  He didn’t hear his as much, nor Nate’s, so I guess I have a very heavy, scuffy walk or something.

We swung by two of the other locations, private houses, but couldn’t go in because the people that live there were out for the day.  We can try and look in quickly later, when we start shooting, so John and Nate can get an idea of what they’re in for.

One wrinkle I discovered on our location scouting expedition: the Civil War era mill I was intending to film is almost completely blocked from street view by trees that have grown up around it.  Clearly my memory has colored my thinking, we drive past that mill several times each weekend, yet this was the first time I noticed.  Unless the managers of the mill choose to cut the trees back, I’m going to have to come up with some other solution.  That solution could be cheaper, though, as the insurance for the tiny amount of driving for that scene costs me $250, over 3% of my budget.  If the mill can’t be seen from the car, neither can the guys walking toward it, making filming the scene as written entirely pointless.

Things really seem like they’re coming together.  My biggest worry was no one would be interested in the job.  That’s behind me, my new worry is I can’t get enough of them to actually audition for the job.  Which leads me to the next worry: will they actually make it through the whole period of principal photography, as there’s no practical way to change once we’ve started filming.

There are still plenty of things that have to go right for this to be a success, but a surprising number have done so far.

Please keep your fingers crossed for me!

Why so quiet?

I think it’s been nearly a month since I posted here (notwithstanding the flurry I just made).  We had a 3 week vacation to the Philippines, for my ‘rents-in-law’s 60th wedding anniversary and my father-in-law’s 85th birthday.  It was a long, arduous trip, 36.5 hours door-to-door on the way out, 45 (!) hours on the way back, though 7 of those were in a hotel.  I blogged about my thoughts here, if you’re curious (read from the bottom to the top):

https://sol-biotech.com/wordpress/category/phildiary2018/

I got some work done on Treasure Hunt, though not as much as I’d have liked.  I wanted to get a schedule put in place, but eventually decided I wanted to extend my program that split each scene into a web page to also calculate page lengths, which wasn’t something I could do on my Chromebook.  I’ve been so f-ed up with jet lag up to this point that I haven’t been able to focus when I get home from work (as an apropos example, yesterday afternoon I lay down for a brief nap, then woke up at 1:30 AM this morning and am typing this at 3 AM as I’m wide awake now).

I completed the first draft on the sequel to RedDom, which I titled “The Dominatrix Was Blue.”  I’m very happy with it, except for it’s length.  I seem to have a perennial problem with things being too short, though when I mentioned this to a screenplay editor she said not to worry, things almost always fill out during the refining process.

I found myself a DP.  I already have a sound guy (buried in this post) and am now preparing to start casting (the four principal roles, if you’re curious).  First I have to be able to go the afternoons without passing out.  I thought I achieved some mastery over naps last weekend, as I was nap-free on Saturday and Sunday, but yesterday proved that to be an illusion.  Sigh, maybe tomorrow…

Got me a DP

Last Thursday I met with young Nathan Airey, to see if we clicked in person like we’d been clicking via email.  We’d been swapping emails ever since I posted to Reddit asking for places to look for Directors of Photography (DP) for Treasure Hunt.  We talked for three hours, so I guess that means we clicked.

Here’s Nate’s Staff Me Up page.  He looked slightly older when we met, but I guess I’m an old fart now as I think of ‘young whippersnapper’ (whatever the hell that even means) when I see him.  He very competently and informatively answered all my questions and gave me every confidence that he can help prevent me from making a bunch of mistakes.

He sent me a Vimeo link for his reel.  I particularly liked the lens flare at the end and he said that was a happy accident when they were doing the setup.  In order to keep it, though, he had to remove the dolly tracks in post production.  This gave me confidence that he’s ready to take on serendipitous events as they happen.

Things are starting to come together!

Dr. Bella

This is a little premature, but I’m excited on her behalf, so want to blog about it.  Many moons ago I beta read Dr. Bella Ellwood-Clayton’s romance novel “Camera Ready.”  She’s since decided to go with “Lights, Camera…Kiss Me!” which is also quite cute.  Anyway, Dr. Bella is a sexual anthropologist, which is very interesting, but even more, she did some of her initial field work in the Philippines (in case you don’t know, I’m married to a smart and sexy Filipina).  She’s written about her experiences and I’m in the midst of beta reading that as well and hope to eventually see it on the bookshelf.

Anyway, Dr. Bella has found an agent to represent her. While she doesn’t actually have a book deal at this time, I have every confidence she will, very shortly.  She’s published before, non-fiction, but publishing is publishing. She’s a very engaging story teller and her romance is very enjoyable to read, so it’s just a matter of giving her agent some time.

I expect to be able to update this soon with her book deal and wish her all the best luck I possibly can.