For Mo.

I just ran into a friend on the lot, a woman I worked with on this lot last year on the Oxygen show. (Wow. Only last year? Feels like five.)

“Mo!”

We hugged, chatted about what we’ve been up to. “You’re almost done here,” she said to my friend and me.

“Yes. End of the month.” Read more

Me, Me, Me, Blah, Blah, Blah

Sometimes the week gets away from me, in terms of this website. When that happens, when a huge week goes by and I haven’t been writing about it, the thought of trying to catch up can seem quite daunting. I’m having one of those weeks when I wonder why we have this relationship, you and I, where I talk about what’s going on and you sometimes write back to tell me you agree or don’t agree or hate me or think I’m funny, or that one guy who constantly asks me to send him pictures of my calves. Read more

How Not To Buy A Couch

Last night’s pitch went well, and then I got lost leaving the lot. It gets dark at five now, a pitch black darkness that was even stranger yesterday due to the clouds overhead. I somehow turned the wrong direction and was driving through empty, dark sets. I’d be driving through some town square, then some kind of Brooklyn street, then a Mission, and then some kind of frontier town. It’s very difficult to figure out where you are going if your location keeps changing time periods. Read more

I told you: good jobs

Esquire columnist, Oprah magazine contributor, and Daily Show correspondent Stacey Grenrock-Woods I, CALIFORNIA, a memoir of being born and raised on the left coast which tackles, among others, the titillating power of Peter Frampton’s bare chest, how posing for Playboy makes you hungry, and the shame you feel when a loved one unearths your old Sting tee-shirt, to Rob Weisbach at Simon & Schuster, at auction, by dan Greenberg at Levine Greenberg Literary Agency (world).

Go, Stacey.

zzzz.

I am so tired.

I should be working on the book. It’s open. I read a few pages here and there, and decide it’s the worst thing I’ve ever written, as it’s about that time during the first draft that one decides these things. It’s hard to focus. We finished shooting the pilot today, spending many hours in the hot sun. It’s embarrassing to say how exhausted the sun can make you. There were people on the set in charge of lugging heavy boxes and equipment. They were covered in sweat, burning under the sun. And I’m shielding my eyes, trying to rewrite a line for the ending, complaining about how my feet hurt. Not the same thing at all. Read more

Oh, wireless internet. How beautiful

Oh, wireless internet. How beautiful you are.

I’m actually on a shoot, right now. I’m sitting on the floor next to a monitor. The director is blocking out the next scene. The producers are discussing how they think it should look. I’m finished making script changes. Everyone is now teasing me for working on my blog, so here:

I wrote something for Friends of the Heroes that posted today.

The good, the bad and the unknown.

Working on this television show is teaching me how to add more specifics to my writing. When I write here, or a recap, or even a script Liz and I will eventually perform, there’s a tendency to write in shorthand, to deliver enough information that someone “gets it,” and then move on. Here I’m learning what happens if you leave things up to interpretation, the confusion that can happen when a script goes through ten different hands before it’s heard out loud again. There’s no room for imagination. Everything will actually exist and there are a thousand decisions to make. If the writer doesn’t specify, there will be notes, questions, and the possibility of something getting cut because it’ll take too long to interpret.

[scripty]
Liz is in the kitchen. She stands by a table, eating food.

LIZ
Chinese food is so messy.
[/scripty]

Is the kitchen in a house, apartment or office? What kind of table? Can it be a counter? Is the food in a bowl, on a plate, in a container? Is she eating Chinese food, or just talking about it because she can’t eat it because it’s too messy? Read more

pre-production

We have spent the past week in pre-production at the Oxygen show.

Pre-production means the producers are planning out the shooting schedule, while we rewrite the script over and over again until it satisfies the network, the budget and the cast (in that order). This is when it gets more intense, and a bit frustrating. This is when you have to, as the comedy saying goes, “eat your babies.” Gone is your hilarious joke about chick lit — too “smart.” Gone is your clever dig at tearjerkers — they don’t “get it.” Another segment gets changed entirely, as the location was impossible to rent affordably. Jokes are rewritten, made “broader” and softer, and less “political.” You are told to lose the subtlety. Sometimes we marvel at what does get in. Jokes we thought were too raunchy or silly, sketches that we threw out there because someone needed to say something at that moment — some of this stuff was in Plan D. Now we’re writing the script backwards, trying to fit the same joke or the same social commentary around a budgetary restriction, and it can be very difficult. It can be extremely frustrating. You know how to make the joke work one way, the best way, but you can’t do that, so you’ve got to sneak it in or illustrate it in another fashion. Read more

We found a copy of

We found a copy of Wai Lana’s Yoga Sound CD here at the Oxygen office today. Stacey and I freaked out Johanna with our vast knowledge of this unique little woman. View half an hour of addictively creepy right here.

Move over, Wendy. There’s a new recipe card queen in town. Do you think apple sauce tofu balls are Core?

Turning House to Home

Still no DSL. I’m waiting for the dial-up to finish downloading email. With 367 pieces of spam and growing, I may be waiting for some time.

We painted the living room/dining room. We moved in the plants. We unpacked some of the books and all of the CDs. It is now starting to look like our home. Somewhere just after the painting, after we ordered the couch, right around when we put the table back where it belonged, that’s when I realized how much I love our home.

The sunsets are beautiful, and if you stand in the middle of the living room, it’s a panoramic view of the setting sky. A breeze kicks in through the house in the middle of the day that I love. Read more