Since last I wrote,  I finished the last touches on the “final” script for my novel’s book trailer,, discovered a great costuming shop, signed on with several more crew members, and did some tests shots of my acting (whoa!).

So to elaborate a bit:

The script is running at 5 pages and 13 scenes for what we hope will end up being a 3-minute final cut. This may be adjusted slightly due to budget, location, or crew availability. But such is the way of filmmaking. But often, when trouble seems to arise on a film shoot, that’s when the creativity kicks in and you sometimes end up with a better shot(s) because of it.  The script represents both the dialogue for the various scenes, but it also reveals a bit of the action/gestures/meaning so that the actors can get a better sense of what is going on.

I hashed out the script with Will in two very intense, very creative nights. He’s brilliant at listening to a scene rundown and then boiling it down to its essence, all the while running through the visual possibilities in the back of his mind. Such a fantastic skill to have. I bet he’d be kick butt at novel pitches too!

Book trailers work best when they speak to the heart of a novel. When someone asks you, “What’s your book about?”, this is what you’d put in your book trailer. My story has two major conflicts: paganism vs. Catholicism and a love triangle. Both are intertwined throughout the novel, though, so each element needed to be visually represented in the trailer. It’s a balancing act, but Will was an expert and removing the chaff from the wheat, so we could get down to the beating heart of what makes this novel live on the page.

Helen’s Pacific Costumers will fit the ticket for our costuming needs, I think. I browsed shops all over the city, but she had the best selection, prices, and availability. Now I’ve got to get the actors’ clothing sizes so I can reserve the costumes and get alterations done if needed. Lyndsey Shaw, who will be my makeup artist, helped me with my own costumes this weekend. She also filmed some test shots of me for the two scenes in which I appear. That was a lot of fun, though unfortunately the sound was crap, because I didn’t know my zoom mic wasn’t turned on. *sigh* I suppose I ought to read the instructions once in awhile…

Actor Jesten Mariconda will play Diogo (the antagonist) and Mary Nelson will play Eva/Arethusa (the main character) for sure. Beth Furumasu has joined up as still photographer (she’ll take photos before and during the production). Lyndsey Shaw will be makeup artist–she’s quite good at latex and fake blood (’nuff said). Will has two main crew members of his own, Brian and Josie. And this past weekend, we had a few other filmmakers express interest in the project–so they’ll most likely join the crew.

Will is planning out the shooting script this week I believe, and we hope to take a road trip to the coast to scout out locations for the beach scenes, etc. If you’ve never heard the term before, a shooting script essentially deconstructs the script’s scenes down shot-by-shot. Ours will probably be a cross between a storyboard (the shots in visual pictures) and a shooting script. We have a particularly difficult shot to scout for: in one scene a character from the book hangs from a 100-foot cliff edge. We have to figure out a way to film the illusion of such an inherently dangerous scene while keeping all the actors and crew safe. Whew!

I better wrap up, but here are some links if you are looking for more information on this project:

We’ll show the final cut of the book trailer for Artemis Rising at Wordstock on Oct. 9-11. Feel free to pop by our booth and watch it on the big screen.

You can check out an excerpt of the book itself at