by R.J. Huneke
J.J. Abrams has brought true genius in the form of his second film in the Star Trek
saga, and Star Trek: Into Darkness
leaves the audience reeling with an entertaining and powerfully emotional experience.
The original Star Trek
movie series had to follow in the steps of an innovative and boundary pushing 1960’s TV show that had become a cult classic and legend, and when that first flick hit theaters there was a lot of disappointment from a fan base that expected more than a reintroduction and reestablishing of the characters and what has been dubbed a cool looking and fun “sightseeing tour” of a movie. It was a success but did not offer much of the groundbreaking that went on time and again in the Star Trek
Then came Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan
, and the obscure and wonderfully ruthless, strong, and cruel Khan was the perfect foil for Captain Kirk and company. The gritty movie showed suspense, terror, and a maniac as an edgy villain that propelled its box office breakthroughs into the stratosphere. The characters had flaws, depth, and growth, and they were tested repeatedly in an all too dangerous bout.READ THE REST OF THE ARTICLE ON RUNE WORKS HERE
I am swimming in words . . . and I am not going to lie I am a little overwhelmed.
I had scribed about 50000 words of a fantasy work that I tossed (it had to be done) a little over a year ago. More recently, I wrote 70000+ words of an epic novel, then I sat revising, I started its screenplay/graphic novel ms based off of the novel, I wrote another 20000+ words of a sequel to said novel, revising again, and then I halted pitching it when I took up a brand new story that has me more invigorated than I've ever been.
But there's a problem:
The last revisit of the completed novel's opening brought me to a crossroads, and a couple of my close proofreader friends (two wonderful, patient, and saintly people for putting up with me and not murdering me with my keyboard) convinced me, and 100% rightly, to alter my protagonist's back-story and family history, which accounts for much of her character. I started to scrap the very unnecessary and overly dramatic portions of her past/present life that had swallowed and watered down who she actually was. This drastically alters her very makeup and in a good and frightening way for me. The first couple of chapters I rewrote make for a completely different story, and it both thrills me, makes me happy because of the improvement, but also pains me deeply becasue of the time and sweat (sorry about the hygiene, folks) that I put in to craft the book that I love as a child.
By changing the whole protagonist, the entire story needs to be ripped down and renovated from the ground up, and the truth is, that's a bitch (to coin a phrase). I love my story as it is now but cannot bring myself to pursue publishing it as a novel before I redo it, and it might make for a great graphic novel and/or movie (or so a few people have said and I have dreamed), but these too would need a drastic reset, and I have not gotten there yet. I debate and on some days I feel that I want this as a book first and foremost and I'll find the time for the revision that will really be a rewrite, and on other days, today for instance, I think this thing was meant to be a visual noir-esque thriller of a 2020's America that we may be headed for and I can probably find my character's rhythm and life essence easier and quicker in a film and comic ms format...
If anyone wants to help me out here and lend an opinion based on my hints and meanderings, I'd be grateful.
What I can say for my fans looking forward to a new published novel of mine in the near future is that my newest work is nearly at the 20,000 word mark in a few short and busy weeks and this is going to be oh so HUGE when it hits. All I will admit to now is that it is straight up futuristic storytelling like there has never been and this will be my first attempt at going beyond the realistic and the fantastical of speculative literature and delving (loosely) into the thriller science-fiction genre.
I hope it will be worth the wait, my friends. Nothing is stopping me from fulfilling this tale, because I know that is the case. I am compelled with a feeling similar to the compulsion to write feverishly whenever I can, so I know that this will come to fruition . . . and soon. I am going to go write some more of it and enjoy the ride, but I am thinking of you my friends, and I cannot wait to share this thrill with you as well.
A kidnapper calls for Trevor Lawson by name, and the undead detective cannot resist the opportunity to seek out his maker amidst Louisiana quagmires in nineteenth-century America. Robert McCammon’s newest novella I Travel by Night
is shrouded in smoke and mystery, much like its vampire adventurer protagonist who is perpetually hidden beneath a top hat and the smoke of a cheroot.
McCammon has meticulously invoked historic America in the south and marvelously constructs the damp atmosphere and the gas lamp-lit Victorian era region surrounding New Orleans.
More than the vintage accuracy of his world, however, is the author’s ability to make every moment suspenseful and eerie in visceral imminence: the reader knows that something is going to happen, someone is following you, something is hiding in the fog with deviously malicious intentions, at all times.Read the rest of the book review on Fantasy-Matters HERE
Though the blockbuster Iron Man 3
has higher expectations than possibly any other Marvel super hero flick, Shane Black’s comic book adaptation thrills and brings new depth to the characters and world.
Because of the tremendous success of the brilliant previous Iron Man films that were directed by Jon Favreau, The Amazing Spider-man
and Joss Whedon’s The Avengers,
many are mistakenly trying to compare this newest Iron Man installment to the past projects and not look at it in its own light.
Though Marvel and former Iron Man director Favreau had a dispute that ended his controlling the third movie, Shane Black who co-wrote the Iron Man 3
script stepped in to add more action and more darkness to the story arc. To read the rest of this Impulsive Review please check it out on Rune Works HERE
I have to write every day, but that is sometimes extremely difficult to do when sleep drives my head to the top of my desk.
For this writer, writing is often on the mind, and it becomes a suppressed primal force, like the need for sex or food, that does battle hour after hour to win out over all other activity that has been vying for the single most valuable entity in the known universe (that I know of, anyway) . . . time.
I do not expect that every writer or even the majority of writers feel the same compulsion that I do to write every single day, no matter the circumstance. Though I think the practice does help to improve and hone the writing.
That said each day I exercise my chops with reading, writing, and editing. The editing can be very minimal at times, but I am OCD and every new thing I write plus every past written word that my eye happens to stray over even while just finding a place to take up in a manuscript has to be edited there and then or . . . or . . . my head will explode? Maybe. More likely I would not let the potential for an improved line out of my skull and at some point would drop all else - the current writing, various cooking functions of which I am very fond - to go and play around with the line and/or words in question. I love to play with words.
Work and a commute involve writing at times, but nearly every weekday I am faced with sitting to write sometime after a delicious dinner and before I pass out for the night.
I like structured chaos and improvisation and do things when I feel them, so sometimes the first thing I do after munching on an oh so rare steak is write and other nights it is not until the midnight dreary (and a terrific rain storm if I am lucky) that I sit down, at last, to play with those tricky words. I work hard and enjoy that, and as a result my energy can wane as the day’s end draws nigh and as much as my heart and soul want and need to write I can find myself having drunk a cup of dark coffee and putting my head down on the desk to get things straight.
What is the essence of the passionate scene that you’re writing about? What dark and grim view of the world are you trying to depict vividly on paper?
Thinking of what drives you, what drives your writing, does wonders for scaring off the gnomes that incessantly try to feed you their sleeping powder.
Personally, a trick I am happy to share is to GET ANGRY! Find something that your character feels strongly about, or find some travesty that the world is feeding instead of healing and get pissed off about it! Your blood runs quicker when you’re pissed off.
Do whatever it takes . . .
Get mad & write.
by R.J. Huneke
At the forefront of Ian Fleming’s spy novels is, of course, the world-famous character of James Bond, but the grit and realism of Mr. Bond in the novel Live and Let Die
is matched by an amazing array of world building, unexpected plot twists, a fearsome villain, and a gorgeous female named Solitaire.
There is plenty of the hard-hitting Bond here, including a fantastic train scene where Solitaire somewhat falls for her rescuer and then teases him, knowing that the suave British agent 007 must painfully resist because of a near-broken wrist and hand.
The man of action and few words is depicted as being at odds with everyone and everything, except his mission.
But the true art of Fleming is in his tight prose, his cunning flurry of “edge of your seat” moments, and the detailed description of vastly contrasting and often exotic environments. . .Read the rest of the Impulsive Review at Fantasy-Matters
I am revisiting Joseph Campbell’s The Power of Myth and the role of the hero has been carefully reconstructed in my mind. Serving no one, no rules or parameters but your own and your craft is heroism. That is the force that can change the world for the better. Create art your way.
I know it has been a while, readers, but I am back! And what is more, I am going to keep my promise to speak more often to you all, here, on my personal soapbox, because many exciting things are in the works and 2013 is going to be a revolutionary year!
For starters, I have this fancy new domain name - RJHuneke.com - so as to shorten the typing load of, well, everyone, and my production company Rune Works has its own brand spankin' new web site - at RuneWorks.net
.My finished manuscript is currently being shopped around to agents
- it's a whopper of a dystopian thriller with one of my all time tenacious female protagonists - and a graphic novel version, as well as a screenplay of it has already been undertaken by yours truly. While that might not be new news, I can tell you that the polished ms and the art will be seen in 2013 in the not too distant future and these pieces will be impactful!As head of Rune Works, I can tell you that the production company's second published novel will be released in 2013, and we are proud to announce that it will be a first-of-its-kind Poetry Journey Through Graphic Comic Art - Cassandra DeMario
's finely tuned words will meet R.J. Huneke's intriguing artwork in a way that takes the reader on a visual journey through a story that is told by poetry and visual art.
More works from other writers are in the works too!And we have not forgotten about the dream either...full feature-length film will be coming to Rune Works!As you can see, the behind-the-scenes aspects of numerous projects have been worked on furiously over the past year, and they will see fruition very soon, folks!Stay Tuned!~RJ
Impulsive Review of The Hobbit
*Spoiler By R.J. Huneke
Understand that the scrutiny with which the live-action film The Hobbit
is described here comes from more than just a fan but a Tolkien-ologist that has coveted and studied the book for over twenty years with love.
Suffice to say, the Peter Jackson movie adaptation was extremely entertaining and funny, but utterly devoid of the spirit, realisticness, and meticulous attention to written Tolkien details that made The Lord of the Rings
film trilogy such a masterful blend of on-screen magic and incredible story-telling as professor Tolkien might have wanted it viewed.
Peter Jackson and company’s loosely based version of The Hobbit
was fun as a return to Middle Earth but continually disappointing as the novel’s story was repeatedly ignored or trumped by blatant disregard for reality or seriousness and replaced by overtly cartoony CGI and terrible Hollywood writing throughout the entire three-plus hours of film.
This movie was made to be visual eye-candy and comedic relief, utterly dumbing down, chopping up, and replacing the background, the history, and the legendary story with a mishmash of disjointed Hollywood ideas used purposefully to stretch one story that would have filled one three-hour-plus movie beautifully to three greedy shells of the written Tolkien material that they are supposed to be based off of.
What comes to mind, and causes great pain, is that this new Hobbit edition trilogy reminds one of the Star Wars
prequel saga in both its harsh lines, complete disregard for the original films’ non-green screen special effects where actual physical sets and locations made the wonder real to the eye. Now the Episodes I, II, III from George Lucas are enjoyable and entertaining and give hungry Star Wars
fans more time to spend in the amazing mythic universe that they long for; but the original trilogy is pure art and myth done to near perfection, and the newer versions overly relied on new technology as an easier way to film expensively (without all the brick and mortar building and carpenters) and the eye-candy, marketing to really young kids with cartoon-like characters and laughs dumb down the entire series.
So it is now with The Hobbit
trilogy. What was once a cornerstone of Jackson’s career – his amazing makeup and effects team – gave way to a cheaper and easier method of CGI as is seen most clearly in the cartoon character of the White Orc Azog, who Tolkien wrote died in the battle that Azog now miraculously survives from so that we, the moviegoers, have the visual 3-D stimulation of seeing a sled pulled by rabbits and the poorest imagination of Radagast the Brown ever (let’s make him an idiot that lives with bird crap on his face) running in circles to have Azog’s mindless minions follow them around and forget the dwarves they are hunting (all of which never happens in a Tolkien book).
The book’s story was stripped and overwritten with Tolkien allusions so that three movies could be made to gain more profit by the studio than one film. The screenwriting that Fran Walsh and Peter Jackson so arduously went through to use Tolkien lines in almost every instance of dialogue in The Lord of the Rings
is totally forgotten; Guillermo del Toro (who I love, as Pan’s Labyrinth
is not just great but amazing) and Jackson and the other writers here went for the quickest and easiest way to achieve the goal of bastardizing the great story for three lesser ones to appease the powers that make money in the film company.
The lines are often so awful that the whole scene seems to stop and become ruined by them, like when the Great Goblin (that also looks awful in its carton CGI) gets cut by Bilbo and says, “That did it” as he falls to his death.
Lastly, Bilbo’s great character arc from the book is trampled, quite like Peter Parker’s in Spiderman 3
, as he is Thorin’s doormat only until he earns the dwarf’s respect when he saves his life . . . yet this never happens in the book! Bilbo instead slowly finds more of courage and gets the dwarves out of more jams (with the barrels I assume will be ignored in the next film) and his growth and reception are natural progressions that eventually pit his wit and fear against the wicked and cunning dragon Smaug.
To sum up, not only does the look, feel, and writing fall far short of anything pertaining to Jackson’s first trilogy, but the protagonist is ruined as well, so that the stellar acting – and it was stellar with Martin Freeman and Sir Ian Mckellan and the rest – becomes wasted amidst this flurry of outside story plots, twisted Tolkien ideas, and an overall 2-D, IMAX, 3-D, 3-D 480FPS film experience made specifically for five-year-olds and extremely stoned human beings that will sit with short attention spans and soak up the computerized eye candy and way too overt and unnatural jokes that Jackson made out of all of Middle Earth in The Hobbit
Impulsive Review Grade: B-
Impulsive Review of the A.F.P. 11/17/12 Show By R.J. Huneke
Recall the ballots, because Amanda Palmer and The Grand Theft Orchestra are storming the US of A, and need to be written in for the Presidency ASAP.
In her hometown of Boston, Amanda Palmer’s final show of the 2012 “Theater is Evil
” tour shook the doors off of the sold out Paradise Lounge and left a floored audience wondering if they would ever see such raw artistry and awe-inspiring musicianship again.
The eclectic punk-influenced rock goddess had nearly canceled concerts earlier in the week as she battled illness and laryngitis, but Palmer stood strong and energetic as she introduced the first of three opening acts, The Grand Theft Orchestra’s bassist extraordinaire Jherek Bischoff and an army of stringed instruments that proceeded to intricately weave a string slapping rock-orchestra meld of finely woven melody and pulsing rhythms.
The GTO guitarist, Chad Raines, brought out his band and screaming axe to rile up the teeming crowd, and his wife and child danced alongside Amanda Palmer as the funky mix warranted vigorous movement.
And when Amanda Palmer finally took the stage with her bandmates, her primed piano, her wild leaps into the crowd, and her soulful, at times blaring, and scintillating singing the Paradise shook with swaying fans.
Hell hath no fury like the uber-talents of drummer Michael Mcquilken, bassist Jherek Bischoff, and guitarist Chad Raines whose backup vocals, leaping, and slamming his axe’s strings ferociously commanded attention with both the edgy guitar lines and his sheer stage presence.
Amanda Palmer’s support of local musicians continued – as it had all tour – as many local and talented horn and stringed players received moments to shine in the opening acts and then again on stage with Palmer and The Grand Theft Orchestra.
A deep vibrancy resonated through “Bottomfeeder” and “Do it with a Rockstar” but the late night cover of “Careless Whisper (I’m never gonna dance again)” with saxophone 80’s duo Ronald Reagan filled the auditorium with a sound that has never been heard before. This was the third show in three nights and everyone was prepared to leave it all out on the floor. The listeners were moved, brought to laughs, tears, and cheers, and all-around rocking.
But Amanda Palmer is and always will be the gracious and humble star and appeared HUGE on this evening. She may love the limelight, but rarely does one get to see such an uncovered and unguarded look into a person’s talents without ego getting in the way.
Despite Palmer’s voice being all but gone when she spoke between songs (during the tunes her belting out of notes, screams, and long held words were fantastic), the talented singer and songwriter could not stop thanking her fans for their love and support that helped make “Theater is Evil” crack the Billboard Album Chart Top 10 upon its release.
The new record was Kickstarter
funded without any commercial backing, as the media and corrupt commercial music industry were bypassed by the genius of the Grand Theft Orchestra and their many friends. With it, Amanda Palmer has made her finest album to date, captured the sound that she dreamed and foresaw, and claimed the motto for her and her fellow music connoisseurs: “We Are the Media.”
Before playing the sombre and powerful “Bed Song," Palmer addressed the crowd and explained that her and husband Neil Gaiman had just bought a bed for their new home together and the marriage-estranged ballad was the opposite of their own fairy-tale relationship – filled with emotion, she broke down talking to the group before her as though they were her closest friends.
After numerous finales of variously fun instances of raucousness, Amanda Palmer took the stage alone and spoke to a camera in the crowd: she had one more song for all of her fans and for one in particular, who was too sick from cancer treatment to make the Boston show on Thursday night and would receive the song via video.
The final song of the night was “Hallelujah” and Amanda Palmer’s slow, resonant, and heartfelt singing brought a sense of rebirth to an age-old tune that has never been touched upon in such an innovative and beautiful way. Near the end as the chorus sailed over myriad ears, her voice began to crack on the fringe of the word H-A-L-L-E-L-U-A-H, but she willed the long-held notes to continue graciously onward overpowering her body's objections. It was clear that this performer, artist, songwriter, singer, and fellow human being was giving absolutely everything she had to extend the shared climax of this meaningful artistic experience. She finished as she started, strong, and it was utterly inspirational.
On November 17, 2012, I witnessed the most meaningful and amazing show of my life, and I do not know how anyone – save A.F.P. herself – could top this night’s performance.