Blog the cat, chapter 3 – Characters

The Kelworth Files

Blog the Cat post index.
In Chapter Three of Save the Cat, “It’s about a guy who…” Blake Snyder talks about how important characters are to a movie idea and pitch. I’m starting to like these offbeat chapter titles, by the way.

I’m certainly predisposed to the idea that well developed characters are central to telling a story, and that the characters should fit the plot well. Blake starts by telling how good characters give the audience somebody to identify with, somebody to experience the story for them. He also covers how descriptive adjectives for your characters can make the logline more compelling, which is interesting especially since I’ve been hearing a lot about how important it is to avoid overusing adjectives in prose fiction, but a script logline is certainly a very different kind of writing, so it’s not too surprising that the rules should be different there.


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You Might Be a Writer If…

Kristen Lamb's Blog

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A lot of “stuff” has been going on in my life lately. Hard stuff. Heavy stuff. The kind of stuff that just makes me want to write massacre scenes….except I am so brain dead I had to google how to spell “massacre.”

Masicker? Missucker?

WHAT AM I DOING???? *breaks down sobbing*

I am supposed to be an adult an expert okay, maybe functionally literate. Fine, I give up! I have nothing left to saaaaayyyyyy. I am all out of woooords *builds pillow fort*.

I figured it’s time for a bit of levity. Heck, I need a good laugh. How about you guys?

We writers are different *eye twitches* for sure, but the world would be SO boring without us. Am I the only person who watches Discovery ID and critiques the killers?

You are putting the body THERE? Do you just WANT to go to prison? Why did you STAB…

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Your Purpose


People do it everyday. Wake up maybe put the coffee on, turn on the television or scroll through the phone, never mind reading the newspaper anymore. After that, we’re off to the nine to five grind. Same old people same old traffic and come back home just to get ready to do it over again. It is the same thing day in and day out, but what’s it all for?

Some people might say, well I live for my kids or my family is my sole purpose in life. Reflect on that for a moment. Is it, really? Life is simple and yet complex. Tell me, who created your family? Where did they come from? What was your purpose in life before your wife, husband, or children? Again I ask, what is your purpose in life?

For instance, I too, have a family, wife, children, but they are not my purpose in life. The scripts I write for movies, short films, etc., may be fulfilling but it is not my purpose. There has to be more to life than the up down up down state of being we go through sun up to sun down on a daily basis. And it doesn’t matter if it’s for you or your family. There is something more to life we can’t see, something that compels us to move forward everyday.

Once we find out what that something is, your driving force, this will be your purpose in life. And once you find your purpose, life takes on a whole new perspective.

What is your purpose?


When it comes to technology I have a very short fuse. If I’m working on a project, boy do I expect the platform, device, or website host for that matter to work. Yes, I understand in our world of some timers things tend to break down and crash, but holy cow not when I’m trying to work God forbid.

One minute my video upload is good. The next minute, move a few things around take it down and upload it once again and BOOM, no go. It’s the same video for crying out load only in a different spot. You would think it should work right, wrong. I feel like a new born baby first day breathing air. Frustrated you are (in my Yoda voice). Understatement my little green friend, understatement.

I’m a venting fool right now but I know some of you can relate to my dilemma if there were such a thing. I dig technology like a brand new shovel on a job site, when it works. On the other hand, when it doesn’t work, you might as well have started World War III, cause I’m ’bout to hit the nuke button baby.

Oh well, guess I’ll sleep on it and see what tech support tells me tomorrow since us normal people like to work in the middle of the night (you know, normal hours). If you happen to read this, thanks for taking the time out of your hour to help me release some tension, your thoughtfulness is duly noted. On to the next one.



Logline: After a failed marriage, a selfish Marine Corp veteran turns drug dealer and then is confronted by his angry drug lord who thinks he is trying to take over his territory.

In mid summer 1995, scorching heat brings a Dallas, Texas metropolitan area better known as “Big D” to a crawl. ANTHONY SULLIVAN, 20’s, a veteran after a four-year tour in the Marine Corp is crawling out of bed and feeling on his battered face after getting into a fight with another guy over a girl. His wife just left him and took their two kids’ back to California leaving him asking the silly question why was he fighting over a girl anyway? Anthony had a slight reputation of being a ladies man and the very reason his wife questioned his loyalty. She asked Anthony what was he going to do without a job. He told her not to worry about that. She said she wanted to go back home where her mom was. He didn’t care. Anthony’s wife asks him to come back to California with them, but because he has a different agenda, is wrapped up in his ways, and is fed up with the both of them bickering most of the time; he opts out of the invitation. She leaves in tears.

Anthony is in search of a higher calling, of becoming something greater than what he currently is. He had a dream, a big one, a great calling. He just doesn’t know what that calling is, but he knew he didn’t want a woman, even his own wife, keeping it from him. He meets up with his old high school best friend TONY DONAVON, 20’s, when word gets around he is out of the Corp. Tony asks Anthony if he has ever smoked weed before, and when he tells him no, he convinces him to try it. Tony also asks him if he has ever watched the movie Friday before, and once again he says no. Tony then tells him you can’t get high and not watch Friday. After that, he rolls up a joint and puts Friday on the television. Anthony is on cloud nine for the first time in his life. With the movie playing in the background, Anthony laughing uncontrollably, and his eyes half closed, he is sure now and determined he is going to be a kingpin in the game of selling drugs. He is going to be a drug lord.

Anthony knows of only one person who can help him into the drug game. He is a ruthless angry killer who wastes no time in cutting erroneous deals and throats, COUSIN FRANK. Frank is a six foot ten inch light skinned black man, 40’s, with a low tolerance for ignorance, especially when it comes to his money. Frank pretends he is a friendly guy and easy to get along with to entice people into his notorious drug organization by introducing himself and insisting on everyone calling him “Cousin Frank.” However, Anthony is family by blood. It doesn’t take people long though to figure out Frank is far from the warm fuzzy friendly guy he wants everybody so badly to believe he is. He often cuts off a finger or toe of the people who cross him. Even after knowing all this, Anthony asks Frank to put him “in the game.” He doesn’t waste anytime letting his nephew know that family doesn’t receive any special privileges and that if he tries to take him for his money, he will have to kill him. Anthony knew of the people who went missing in the past for trying to get over on Frank, but he wanted in anyway.

Anthony’s agenda is much bigger than what Frank realizes though. Frank is the biggest kingpin in north Texas and possibly the entire state, maybe even region. The FBI, DEA, and CIA, all have their sites on him, but Frank launders well and they can’t build a solid case on him. In the meantime, Frank is calling every transaction that moves in and out of Dallas County right under the Fed’s noses. Subsequently, Anthony is looking to take his place. Meanwhile, DONNA GREEN, 20’s, AKA “Candy Rain” and the only other best friend Anthony has, is trying to keep him on the straight and narrow and out of harms way. Donna also known as Candy Rain or Candy for short is five foot, has light brown skin, hazel eyes, and pretty. She loves talking to Anthony and constantly challenges him to change his ways. She always seems to know when he is heading for trouble and tries to detour him from taking the job from Cousin Frank. Anthony is acting strange and he is trying to hide his involvement with Frank, but he doesn’t know Candy is following him, sees him go into Frank’s building empty handed, and come out with a black duffle bag.

Candy catches up to Anthony and asks him where he is going. Of course, because he respected her so much he didn’t want to lie to her so he dodged the question by asking her if she was hungry hoping she would forget. Deep down he knew that was another lie, Candy forgot nothing. She was a thinker, and she thought about Anthony a lot. In fact, Candy has been hiding a secret crush from Anthony since childhood. She grew up a Christian. Anthony grew up in church as well, but then, he turned to the wild side. Candy didn’t want Anthony or her family to know how she felt in fear they would disown her because of Anthony’s background. She also knew Anthony was a ladies man, and if he knew she wanted to be more than friends it could ruin their friendship. After their meal, Anthony finally shakes Candy off by deliberately starting an argument with her. However, she does not run away from Anthony that easy and continues to watch him from a distance. She is determined to get Anthony to have a relationship with God hoping they will start a family together.

Meanwhile, Anthony delivers the bag to Frank’s associate and reveals to him the plot to take over his operation and asks him if he is in. The associate tells Anthony he is crazy, but a lot of the guys are tired of Frank’s brutality and is willing to join him. They do everything they can to keep their plan from Frank, but he finds out anyway and all hell breaks out. Frank and the remainder of his loyal soldiers go to war on his traitors setting their sights on Anthony as the prime target. Frank wants Anthony dead. At the same time, the south Dallas neighborhood of Oak Cliff is turned upside down as drug dealer’s battle one another at all cost. Anthony’s military training kicks in pushing Frank back, however, Frank brings in dirty cops Anthony never knew about. He is quickly out gunned.

The battle turns in Frank’s favor as Anthony is shot in the shoulder and leg. Deep down Candy knows Anthony is in trouble and goes to him. She watches him get shot and calls 911. He is rushed to the hospital while Candy is diligently praying for him to survive. The bullets miss major organs and arteries and doctors manage to save him. Candy waits in the hospital for Anthony to wake up and then tells him that Frank is dead. Killed by one of the bullets he fired. Realizing how serious “the game” is, he sheds a few tears as he looks at Candy and she talks to him about quitting. She convinces him to say the sinner’s prayer. Out of options and at the end of his rope and after hurting so many people, he reconciles with God and becomes a Christian.

Anthony is over come with peace in that very moment and quickly recovers in the hospital, it astonishes the doctors. He is released in days and not weeks the doctors initially believed. Candy tells Anthony of her secret crush. Anthony acts surprised, but he tells her he knew it. They get married and start a family.

Life’s Twists and Turns

Not All Paths are Straight
Not All Paths Are Straight


I posted on Facebook yesterday about how life is full of twist and turns and no matter how jacked up the path we are on is keep moving forward. Okay, that’s not exactly how the post went but I really do need to elaborate on the nub of a post that it was. Bottom line, people are hurting. If you think that I’m lying, all you need to do is watch the news for one night or listen to your neighbor whose relationship with God is lacking (sadly, a lot of people who do have a relationship with Christ are hurting as well but walk as if they don’t and look down on others). I also call this *Faking* Why? Because the life we live is portrayed quite differently than what God sees. This happens when we refuse to deal with the real issues in life and cover them up with the lifestyle we live or pretend to live.

When are we going to get real with ourselves? More importantly, when are we going to get real with God? It is true, life’s path is filled with twists and turns and pot holes and detour signs. But it is not about those twist and turns that is important. What is important is how we react to those twists and bumps in the road that matters. We can not go for long faking people out like we have it all together when issues on the inside of us has us three seconds away from a nervous breakdown or some violent tendency. In fact, the very bumps in the road are designed to shake us up for that very reason, to acknowledge we have a problem in a particular area. Oh, if we are living a “perfect” life with no apparent problems we do so without Christ.

I beg to differ, I’m a sinner with real problems and issues and Jesus Christ came for people just like me. However, His hands are tied based on how much I am willing to give of myself. See, God knows exactly what’s wrong with me but the problem is not what God knows, it’s about what I know (or don’t). Point blank, the sooner I accept that I have a problem the sooner the problem can be dealt with. I know a whole lot of you know exactly what I’m talking about because this is one of the first things they talk about in AA or drug programs. It’s no different with God. Only with God, he goes much deeper all the way to the tip of the root and not just the root.

Calvin has dealt with some major mountains in his life. Don’t worry I am not writing another book through this blog post on what God has brought me through. But I will say it has been very painful dealing with some of the generational curses in my life dating who knows how far back in my family line. Sex addiction, my attitude on life, anger, and bitterness  are some of the majors. Compassion for people, the way I think about myself, and selfishness are some of the minors (actually selfishness might be one of the majors). Anyway, all of these things are all wrapped up in one word: Fear.

Fear is the one four letter word that destroys people faster than Superman can catch bullets. Once again you do not have to believe me on this but I guarantee a gang member or drug dealer is not going to come out and tell you he is afraid of you the reason why he shot you over something trivial such as a fight or the money he lost over a bad drug deal. Think about that for a second, yes, it is out of fear that we do anything negative.

We lie because we are afraid of getting in trouble. We cheat on our spouse because we are afraid of losing something we thought we had like “game” (stupid, but this is a generational curse). We kill because we are afraid of what the other person might take from us. I could go on, but the bottom line is fear drives us to hate which is completely opposite of love. This is what the twists and turns in the road of life is for to come clean of all of that negative crap that’s ruining people’s lives including our own. The problem is we can’t do it without Jesus. And for all you people who don’t believe Jesus is the only way, keep watching the news. You are the very reason they air such garbage because you refuse to believe. And once again, you don’t have to believe me…we will see.

Don’t let the twist and turns of life slow you down. Instead embrace them flow with them and let them make you stronger without feeling defeated. Turn your situation into Christ and let Him be over everything. Find Jesus Christ in the picture above and keep moving forward. You might have to search and examine your life for the true meaning of the twist and turns but at the end of the day, keep moving forward. Keep Christ in the picture.