A story writing blog

Monday, July 29, 2013

Lets Finish this! - Tom finishes his horror movie, here's how it ends.

Sooooo...I have no idea how long this movie is. As a script it falls way short of what a typical movie script usually comes in at but there's so little dialogue that's it's hard to gauge. This thing is all action, slow moving tense build ups that play out much slower than they read. Anyway, I'd like to move on to something new so I am packing this thing up. I can always revisit this script and add more later but this is a good starting point that I can show to people to try to get this thing off the ground.

Ok, here's my ending.

You can read the whole script here: LURKING


As dawn starts to break Darcy is clinging to a what's left of her boat, it's completely dead in the water. The creature that's now circling her has completely destroyed it and for the first time seems to be aware of her presence on the boat. She can hear the excitement in it's sounds, she can sense it's trepidation as it takes it's time to inspect the stalled wreck. Darcy knows she's doomed, there's no more doubt in her mind. Even if the creature were to turn around and leave her, she's still stuck in the middle of the ocean on a boat that's barely held together. The monster's clicking call is frenzied, she freezes. She can hear it scraping against the boat, she can't hide so she stays still. She can hear the splash of something pulling itself out of the water onto the boat, it's dark and she can just make something out from where she's laying. She sees something slump it's way onto the boat, it has dark scaly skin, sharp spines all over it's fins and a large tooth filled mouth. It doesn't walk, it just slumps forward, making its way around the boat. Darcy sits in complete fear. She's defenseless, she lost her flare gun in the chaos from before.

She tries to press her body as firmly against the side of the boat as she can, terrified to make any movements. The creature slumps around the boat, until it comes fully into view. She can see it's eyes, they're black and staring in her direction. The creature isn't sure what it sees, it approaches cautiously, Darcy tries to remain perfectly still in hopes that she won't peak it's interest. The creature slumps closer and closer, it gets very close. The water and slime of the creature drips onto Darcy's skin. The creature looks her up and down, it seems almost as nervous as she is. Curious; it goes in closer, Darcy closes her eyes in fear. The creature takes an exploratory bite into Darcy's shoulder; causing her to jump up screaming. Startled; the monster throws her across the boat. She lands hard, several feet away. Her shoulder is bleeding badly, she's slow to get up and the creature is coming towards her. She gets to her feet just in time to be pulled right back down by the monster who's grabbed a hold of her leg. It pulls her towards it's mouth. Darcy fights with everything she has to free herself but she's no match, her foot inches closer and closer to the creatures giant teeth. Darcy screams out as the creature takes a bite of her foot, she finally pulls it free, losing a large chunk of it in the creature's teeth.

In absolute agony now; Darcy crawls away though the small boat doesn't offer much room to escape to. Darcy leaves a pool of blood behind her with every step forward that she takes, the monster behind her has a taste for blood. Darcy crawls over-top of the sail lying prone on the deck, the monster is steps behind her. She gets a hold of some broken rigging and swing it around, hitting the creature. It's hide is meant to withstand the pressures of the deep sea, it's thick and dense, the blow has no effect. Unfazed; the creature pulls her towards it once again. Darcy claws at the sail, pulling at it in a desperate attempt to escape. She pulls and pulls until she reveals her flare gun hidden underneath. The monster pulls her in close and goes to bite her again, once it's teeth sink into her leg she screams out in pain. This time she fights back; clawing at the creature's eyes and causing it to drop her. Darcy crawls as fast as she can to the flare gun with the hungry monster following behind her, she can barely lift the gun with her torn up shoulder. The creature bears down on her once more, she manages to press the gun to it's neck and pulls the trigger. The flare tears through the monster's neck, burning a cavity deeper and deeper into the monster's throat. It falls to the ground and violently convulses. Flopping it's way back into the water.

Darcy is left alone, completely alone. She's on a broken, slowly sinking boat in the middle of the ocean and she's bleeding out badly. This is it, these moment are her last. The boat slowly drifts on the slow moving water, Darcy starts to lose consciousness. She sees Cade at the wheel of the boat, he looks at her reassuringly. A tear trickles down her cheek, she smiles. She closes her eyes and loses consciousness. Darcy stay unconscious for days while her boat drifts deeper into the ocean.

Darcy's feels the boat bump something, softly at first but then the boat comes to a sudden violent stop. Darcy lifts her head up, gets to her feet and wobbles to the front of the boat, she can't believe her eyes. She's hit land. A tiny island no bigger than a football field hidden away in the middle of all this ocean, the boat is finally finished and taking on water. Darcy hops off the boat and makes her way onto the island. It's barren, almost void of vegetation. Darcy starts to explore, it's rocky and littered with bones. Darcy walks the island, she see's all manner of carcass littered across the rocky landscape. Darcy freezes in her tracks, her face twists into a horrified expression. She breaks down. In front of her is Cade's partially devoured corpse. Behind her she can hear the sounds of the creature, then the sound of others, coming from several different directions. She's on her knees, she doesn't even turn around,she's given up. A few of the creatures lurch onto the island out of the water and slump towards her. She doesn't turn to look, she has no more fight in her, she's resigned to her fate. She plays with her wedding ring as they get closer. The camera closes on a shot of her wedding ring moments before she's killed for sure.


Saturday, July 20, 2013

Tom Destroys The SECRET: The Laws of Attraction

Remember this book? I am sure you do because people still reference it all the time.

Well back in 2007 I had just moved from Ajax to Toronto after recently finishing school for broadcasting. I moved to Toronto with the promise of finding work in the industry but this was during a time when businesses were already starting to feel a recession coming and no one was hiring, I spent about 6 months stubbornly searching for work in television and the hopes I had coming out of school had already been dashed. I'd say doors were closed in my face but a better analogy would be that doors were never really open, it was like in a video game when you run up to a door thinking you might be able to open it only to find that it's not really a 'door' at all. It's just part of the background.

That's how it felt, I was crushed. That's when the book 'The Secret: The Laws of Attraction' was starting to get mainstream press, Oprah ever had the author and the books strongest advocators on her show. She dedicated a serious hour to the message the book was selling.

My first and second questions for
this man would be about his hair

So here I was, broke, grumpy and hopeless and out came this phenomenon that was giving everyone hope. I must have had this book recommended to me a hundred times before I finally decided to sit down and watch the Secret's video that was taking the nation by storm. It outlined the book's teaching and introduced you to the philosophy that the whole universe was a giant catalog and you can have anything you want if you wish hard enough. I watched this video feeling desperate for something positive to believe in, and even though I was at the end of my rope and all the things they were saying should have uplifted me...they didn't. Frankly, I thought it was stupid. I couldn't get past the bad science and faulty logic. The whole thing actually made me really mad, I mean REALLY mad. It insulted my intelligence and even more frustrating to me was that everyone else was buying into it.

Well angry 2007 Thomas Holler felt the need to s**t all over everyone's parade. What follows is the rant I posted as a Facebook note (remember those) immediately after the movie finished.

Angry, out of work 2007 Tom, I'll let you take it from here. 

"I got this"

Right from the opening scene this movie looses all sense of credibility. Some depressed lady finds a book with a note on it which reads "here mama this will help you". This books sets her on a life's mission to discover the ways of the universe and wish fulfillment. So this lady with presumably no real experience in extensive research hits the internet...and various old books with a magnifying glass...and we are treated to shots of Egyptians and English nobleman burying scrolls and protecting the secret from enemies.

Which enemies?

I don't know, it's never touched on.

We do know that the secret is powerful because we hear someone whisper "they can never know", once the film gets rolling it is implied that all of Earth is governed by strict universal laws. Which is true, there are a lot of laws which shape our universe; the law of universal gravitation, laws of motion, laws of thermodynamics etc. The Law of Attraction, which BTW is the big "secret" that no one wanted you to know about (despite it being common knowledge) ISN'T one of them.

If this review sounds choppy it is because the movie presents it that way, don't ask me to explain the science behind this law because it was never explained to me at any point in the...film? documentary? infomercial? but we are told by one of the talking heads (with impressive sounding titles to their names) that we wouldn't understand it anyway. The way it is presented is that if you think good thoughts than good things happen, which is a fine concept when you think of it as an abstract notion but this is where this movie goes wrong; it presents this notion as SCIENCE which it is NOT.

It tells us that our thoughts have distinct patterns and frequencies, and the positive frequencies attract positive things. If we really really want a new bike; those thoughts will go out there and find a path to us getting a new bike. As I typed that it occurred to me that wanting a bike or a new car doesn't qualify as a positive thought; actually this entire movie equates greed with positivity. Never at any point is it made clear HOW that thought frequency generates your new bike but take their word for it...it DOES.

So why don't we always get everything we want? Because that is their logic, you want something bad enough; you get it. Well you didn't REALLY want it. That is their convenient excuse to explain away that gaping hole in their theory. At one point it is implied that cancer can be cured with this amazing secret; positive thinking. Assholes. People with cancer didn't GET that cancer by thinking negative thoughts and all the positive thoughts in the world won't cure it alone. It is actually dangerous and irresponsible to imply otherwise.

 "Since you manifested this tumor yourself
your insurance won't cover it"

The people in the film that we are supposed to trust as experts are, honestly; douchebags. I almost never use that term because it's kind of a "jock" thing to say, but as I was watching these people douchebag was the description that seems most appropriate. A bunch of smiling, new age "intellectuals" who throw away the need for science and proof of their claims. At one point one of them is quoted as saying "it has been scientifically proven that positive thoughts are more powerful than negative thoughts". Not only does he not qualify this statement with research but he doesn't even explain in which sense of the word "powerful" he means. Powerful as it pertains to the end result of the thought (as in good thoughts become a reality more than bad ones) or powerful in the sense of frequency readings? and what does that even matter?

Most aggravating is the lack of explanation towards how positive thinking yields results. Think about their example of the new car, if you focus on your desire for the car than that thought will find positivity in the universe and work to bring you that car. So how? will it get me a raise or find me a new job? will it convince them to give me a car for free? NO, you still need to go and work to get the car yourself but the thought will get all the credit.

This movie also dances around the fact that it is blaming victims of tragic disasters of bringing it on themselves. All those poor people in New Orleans who lost everything in a massive flood? Just a bunch of negative thinkers; serves them right.

Positive thinking DOES work, but its not a scientific law or some big secret. The longer you work toward a goal the more your odds of achieving that goal increase, people who are optimistic tend to stick with the goal longer than pessimists. That's it, that is the best reason to think positively; because negative thinking leads to quitting. Its not a science and it's not a secret.

Why would anyone listen to this guy?

- Thomas Holler -

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Building Towards an Ending - Darcy's About To Meet A Seamonster. Guys I just really want to get this horror script done.

I am still considering what my monster is going to look like.
Why not Zoidberg!

I wrote most of this while being actively engaged in a conversation with someone WHO WAS IN THE SAME ROOM AS ME and with the tv was blaring. In that respect this is the most impressive post I've ever written while at the same time marking one of the rudest things I've ever done. BTW this site has an annoying habit of causing font size problems, sorry.

Here's the story up until now: Lurking

cont'd -

Darcy and her boat are hit hard by something under the water, she can't believe it. She thought she left this horror behind. She's slammed again. Darcy gets back to her feet. She's hurt, she reaches into her waistband and makes sure she still has her flare gun. Darcy runs to the wheel trying to steer away, it’s an act of desperation; she has no idea where the creature is. She's slammed again and knocked to the ground. From the ground she sees her sail come loose, it splashes down; half of it falling into the water. The ropes from the sail fly everywhere, some splashing down into the water. 

Darcy rushes to fix it, it’s incredibly dark and she struggles to repair the sail. Darcy finds her flashlight and shines it on the tangled rigging. Suddenly the rigging starts unwinding into the water, something has grabbed a hold of the ropes and is pulling downward on them, deep into the sea. Darcy knows that when those ropes loose all their slack her boat is going to take a hell of a jolt. She runs to the stern, tripping over and getting caught up in the rapidly unraveling ropes on her way there, she clings to the side and braces for the worst.

With a violent jolt the boat snaps downwards, the bow of the ship yanked downwards towards the water. The Stern of the boat actually lifts into the air, higher and higher. For a second Darcy actually thinks her whole boat might be pulled into the sea. The ropes finally snap and send the boat crashing back to the water, the damage to the boat is enormous. The entire mast has snapped in half and the boat is dead in the water. Darcy can’t stand up, she’s been badly battered by the fall.

Looking out to the water Darcy can see something streaking towards her boat. There's nothing she can do now, she can't get away. She's going to come face to face with this monster very soon.


Thursday, July 11, 2013

I am going to finish this damn horror script - LURKING Continued

I am still jamming on this horror script, I am nowhere near meeting a feature length requirement but I am probably just going to wrap this up in a few more pages. There's so little dialogue that it's hard to really say how long this script would play on screen and I can always add more. This will be a sample size script.

Lurking pt. 1-8


Exterior - Evening

Darcy stands up, she's finally motivated by fear to get her boat moving. Cade isn't coming back, he's gone. The high pitched sounds of the creature penetrate the coming dawn, she runs to her sail. Through trial and error she's finally figured out how to hoist her sail and lock down the rigging, she's not a perfect sailor and can't navigate very well but she's only interested in moving, she needs to get out of this spot where she's been stalked every single night by some horrible monster who she believes killed her fiance. Darcy can see movement in the water, something is streaking towards her fast enough to kick up waves. Darcy fumbles with her ropes, she's tired, stressed out and panicking. It's getting darker and she's losing light. The monster's been sizing her boat up for days, each night becoming more comfortable exploring the boat. Darcy knows that if she's stuck here for one more night with this thing she won't see another morning, it will find her and eviscerate her.

She snaps everything into place and almost instantly feels movement for the first time in a weeks, the wind picks up and soon she's quickly heading away from danger. She hears the call of the creature getting further and further away as the sun starts to set on the horizon. The only thing indicating the place in the water where she suffered through her most unimaginable nightmare is a small scattering debris from her boat. That's the closest thing Cade will get to a tombstone marking his grave, he's lost forever out here.

Darcy lets the wind take her as far it can as night falls, Darcy is exhausted. She hasn't slept in days, she's a wreck. She's barely keeping herself together and it's likely that even if she survives to see land again; she'll never be the same. The movement of the boat is equally calming and terrifying. It's the reason she was able to escape a creature that will haunt her nightmares for as long as she lives but on the other hand this wind could be pushing her further and further away from the shore. Darcy's slumps over against the cabin and slides to the floor, she has nothing left. Her head slowly falls to her shoulders, he eyes never quite shut. If she closes them she'll see him, Cade. Standing on the water asking her to come back for him, asking her why she left him. She finally fades, her body relaxes. It's quiet. Darcy rests for the first time.

SLAM! Chaos. Darcy and everything on the boat are violently thrown forward, the boat was hit hard by something under the water.  Darcy is hurt and buried by falling debris. It's here. It followed her boat, it won't leave her alone. Won't let her escape. Darcy's pathetic and well worn voice can only let out a squeak.



Sunday, July 7, 2013

10,000 VIEWS!!!! Technically 10,333. Also here's a great movie idea that you better not steal and some pics of me during an actual riot.


Ryan is a lifelong Torontonian, he's been living in the city for over thirty years and is jaded to all the city's festivals. After a month of city wide celebrations Ryan is ready for some peace and quiet as things settle back down. On this one average day however the city is uncharacteristically packed, people from all over the world have come on this nondescript day; filling the streets. There's something about the crowd that feels hostile, there's a nervous anticipation in the air that seems out of place. The crowd spills out onto the streets as the sun goes down, Ryan navigates the large gathering of people; he feel an unease in the air. There's a unnerving calm as the mass of people seems to be waiting for something, he notices an interconnectedness to the movements of the people. They're all checking their phones as though there's something they're all waiting for. The crowd looks off, these people are all hardened figures, no joy or kindness on any of their faces. Frankly, they all look like convicts, Ryan hurries his pace. There's something wrong about all of this. A sound makes its way across the crowd like a wave, a series of phones going off and alarms being rung. The sound is almost deafening, thousands of people, thousand of alarms going off. What follows is a single moment of quiet and then a blood curling roar of the crowd as they all in unison explode into violence. Thousands of people committing thousands of acts of random violence, tearing the city and it's people to shreds. Ryan is caught in the middle of the single largest act of planned terrorism in human history. All the evil, sick, twisted people in the world have descended upon his city, they found each other online on sites that only the most perverted people can stand to frequent. They're here to create chaos, they're here to murder, thieve and destroy everything in their path. Ryan and the city's citizens are caught in a hurricane of torture and madness, giving witness to the most horrible scenes of human cruelty. To survive, Ryan has to become as heartless as his attackers.

-Thomas Holler-

I was in the middle of a riot once, I walked out of my gym to find absolute chaos in the streets of Toronto. The G20 summit was in town and everyone freaked the hell out. Check this photo op.

That brown stuff is poo. Rioters threw bottles of poo through these windows. It STUNK.