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Browsing Archive: April, 2011

My fictional family history

Posted by Jeff Markowitz on Wednesday, April 27, 2011,
“I’m going home,” I said, surprised to realize after so many years, that I still thought of Jalapeno Flats as home.  Not quite a town, Jalapeno Flats was nevertheless a pleasantly stagnant cluster of homes built along a dried-up lake at the edge of the desert.
            My grandfather, Emmanuel Silver, was one of Jalapeno Flats’ founding fathers.  Born on New Years Day in the year 1900, the first member of the family to be born in the USA, Manny was the son of a Russian draft dodger....
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"If you want to be an author...

Posted by Jeff Markowitz on Monday, April 25, 2011,
...and eat two or three times every day, there's only one way to do it - marry money."

Two minutes of cautionary advice to aspiring authors, courtesy of The Waltons, from the episode The Prophecy, which first aired in 1975.  The scene starts at 1:27 and continues until 3:24.




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Breaking News

Posted by Jeff Markowitz on Friday, April 15, 2011,
The Chinese government has banned time travel as a plot device in movies and TV shows.  (And here I've been working on a television treatment for Chinese TV about the 9th Century hermit poet, Han Shan, who steps out of his cave one day and is sucked into a vortex that deposits him in an apartment building in modern Beijing, where he is beset by a host of wacky neighbors and a landlord who never knocks before entering the apartment.  I've even had preliminary discussions with his people, abo...

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He carried his other eye - his bad eye - on his keychain

Posted by Jeff Markowitz on Wednesday, April 13, 2011,
On Saturday, when I was presenting my workshop at AuthorFest about developing characters that readers will care about (before I was detained by the Air Marshals at O'Hare on suspicion of murder) I found myself spending quite a bit of time talking about writing the minor characters.  If you want your main characters to be three-dimensional, you can't have them interacting with cardboard cut-outs.  So it's just as important to flesh out your minor characters as it is to develop your prot...
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Why writers shouldn't drink

Posted by Jeff Markowitz on Sunday, April 10, 2011,
"Are you killing time?" she asked.
"Yes," I said, "and I've got the bar tab to prove it."
"Would you like some company?"  She sat down on the stool to my right without waiting for an answer.
She was not what you would call a pretty woman, but sitting in the bar at O'Hare, two hours to kill until boarding, she was pretty enough.   "What are you drinking?' I asked.
"Vodka martini."
I don't normally drink martinis, but what the hell, I figured, how often does a middle-aged man, balding and sligh...
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