Sunday, August 24, 2014

INTERVIEW WITH AN ACTRESS

It's always something. Some things can add up, overflowing your plate, delaying your blog postings. Before you know it, these postings become irregular, few and far between, not good for your followers whom you love and adore.

One of these somethings keeping me away from my blogging is my involvement  in making my psy thriller OF GOOD AND EVIL into a movie, its Producer Alexandria Altman, to whom I refer to as Alex.

Then it dawned on me. Instead of having the movie keeping me away from my blogging, why not bring my blogging into the movie process? And what better way to begin than by having an interview with an actor who will be playing the role of one of my novel's leading characters.

From my observations and conversations with those associated with the movie, and from other related feedback, I've put together a dialogue with an actress. Let's call her Sue. She will be playing the part of Amber Ash, the heroine of OF GOOD AND EVIL. That dialogue begins as follows:

Sue, full of vim and vigor, cheerfully enters the room as I said,  "Ah, thanks for making yourself available, Sue. My blog followers are going to love our chat.!"

"Delighted, Gerald," Sue smiled, her voice soft and sultry. She was dressed in a fashionable caftan as she seated herself across from me, her long raven hair tumbling neatly down just over her shoulders. "You've come to my rescue when I needed it. Heaven knows."

"With heaven's help, let's make this a good interview."

"With you, I'm sure it will be," she laughed, her brown eyes sparkling.

"Good. Just sit back and relax. This interview won't be that structured. I'll simply begin with a question, you answer it, and we'll let the discussion evolve from there. Okay?"

Sue grinned. "You're starting off as the psychologist with me, I see."

"The writer will come along soon enough."

"Probably just in time. What's the first question?"

"Did you read my book before you became involved with the movie?"

Sue paused a moment, then, "Your first question would have to be an embarrassing one. No, I didn't read your book, sorry to say, and I like thrillers. The first time I heard about it was when I read the working script Alex gave to me. Then I read your book," she added enthusiastically, "and was really surprised! Compared to the working script, your book was even more incredible...more complete...more of a fantastic story, and your writing style is just awesome!

"Oops!" Sue brought her hand to her mouth, "Am I allowed to say that? Alex told me beforehand  that this interview was to focus on me, not you."

"Don't worry about it. This is all on tape, and if Alex objects to any of your remarks, they'll be deleted from the interview. But for now, feel free to say what comes to your mind."

"I know she'll kill this, but the heck with it!" Sue proclaimed with a sudden fiery spirit. "I'll love you forever for preparing me the way you did for that...that whatever you call it --- a screen test? Was that a casting call?"

"Let's just say a special audition."

"It was special, all right. The pain you took presenting to me the very soul of Amber Ash." She shook her head in amazement. "That's what delivered the role. The love of your characters...getting me to absorb and act out the effects of that love."

"Once I found you, I helped you because you were the best actress for the role. Your audition proved it...powerful! Now that you have it, what do you think of the role of Amber?"

Sue's eyes became aglow. "It's...it's so hard to put into words...almost spiritual, but I think it's one of the best roles I've come across for a woman. Challenging...unusual...magnificent. And what a love story! It gives me goosebumps just thinking about it. And the psychic thing. Wow. It will require everything I can give to interpret the right nuances for the role. How do you come up with such phenomenal characters?"

"I give all the credit to my creative process. But what's important now is how you bring Amber Ash fully to life on the screen."

"Don't worry, Gerald. After giving me the opportunity for the role, I don't dare let you down." Sue paused a moment, reflecting, then asked, "But what about Ron? He's so crucial to all of this. Who will play his role?"

"Casting is still searching. Like yours, Ron's role is not easy to fill.  Is whoever is chosen to play Ron of concern to you?"

"Damn right!" Sue exclaimed wide-eyed, lifting her brows. "I don't want the Casting Directer playing with my brain by saddling me with some flake! Someone who can't pull off Ron's strong, uncanny character and your masterful story. Someone who just doesn't have that special spark that mesmerizes.. Whomever the actor is who's chosen, our chemistry together has to be right. It has to click and come across on the screen. With the right Ron, this movie could become a blockbuster!"

"Let's hope Casting digs up the right actor."

"I bet you'll have a hand in the digging, like with me. But..." Sue now appeared a little drawn.

"What is it?"

"It's just...just...It's just that I want this to be the best in film making. Your story deserves it. I just don't want to see it screwed up."

"Alex wouldn't let that happen."

Sue gazed at me in question.

"Maybe this is a good place to end the interview," I said.

"Suits me. I could use a drink!"

"What say we do lunch?"


OF GOOD AND EVIL can be purchased by clicking the "Buy the Latest Book!" box at the top of this blog's home page. Or, in the U.S.,  it can be ordered by clicking, http://www.amazon.com/dp/160976014X ; in the UK by clicking, http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/160976014X



Friday, January 10, 2014

ONSLAUGHT

Being a night person, 8 o'clock in the morning was much too early for me to rise, new blog posting or not. My head felt like a Santa hangover on New Year's Day, and my movements, at best, were a poor imitation of sleepwalking.

I bumped around in the bathroom like a zombie in training, then awkwardly threw on a shirt and slipped into a pair of slacks, loosing my balance several times in doing so. Then I moseyed uneasily through the private doorway into my home office, feeling like some squalid animal walking on its hind legs. None too steadily, I plopped myself down into the swivel chair at my desk and stared at the small clock perched on its rear corner. The clock was a blur, and its hands seemed to gaily dance and multiply.

Suddenly I wasn't alone. My personal secretary, Ginger --- a  petite brunet, no more than 5 foot 2, short hair, mid 50s, efficient and diligent, dressed smartly in a dark pants suit, had just entered the room through its main entrance, closing the door behind her.

"I see you're up and about, ready to go," she chirped. Her clear and dutiful voice had a ring of cheer.

"That's debatable," I challenged quietly, blinking my eyes, not facing her, still staring at the clock and asking myself, "How do the hands do that?" Then, oddly, came a striking thought. "A premonition?"

"You want breakfast?" Ginger asked, snapping me out of my strange reverie.

 I slowly swiveled around, facing her, my eyes still blinking in disorientation."What?"

"Breakfast?" she nodded.

"Uh, no...not now," I blinked. "But I desperately do need some coffee!" Amazingly, I managed to press one of the many colored buttons on my console, the special one signaling for coffee. Then struggling to appear more cognizant, I asked Ginger, "How's the Inbox?"

Ginger sighed. "The usual smorgasbord, but nothing earthshaking."

"Well, just delete the obvious garbage. I'll try and take a look at the remainder later."

"Oh, a Mr. George Knox phoned. He wants you to call him back as soon as possible."

Frowning, my blinking ceased. "Damn...as though I need that! Look, not to be unkind, "I sighed, "but if he calls again, for God's sake, don't put him through. I hate to have you do this, but tell him I'm out of town...in Europe somewhere."

"I gather you won't be calling him back."

"If you knew George, you wouldn't call him back either. That guy's impossible! He can talk nonstop...on and on and on. Continual triviality...anything that pops into his head...constantly changing the subject without ever taking a breath in between. I have too much to do today --- especially putting together a blog posting, without it being disrupted and delayed by his infernal yakking. My followers expect a timely posting...deserve it." I sighed again, the talking seemingly bringing my thoughts into focus.

"As far as that goes," I continued, "don't put any calls through to me today --- unless it's my film Producer!"

We were interrupted by a knock at the door. "Come in" I acknowledged.

The door opened. Standing there, looking quite dignified in his butler garb, was Bollero. "Your coffee, sir," he stated with stoical aplomb. In the presence of others, Bollero always addressed me as "sir." But when we were alone together, he relaxed and addressed me by my first name. Our casual pact.

As Bollero brought me my coffee in a huge cup on a silver tray, Ginger nodded and left the room. Once Bollero left, I began sipping my coffee and gazed back at the clock on my desk. It's hands had finally steadied. A good sign. Then, taking a deep breath, I got down to writing the first rough draft of my next blog posting on a legal sized pad of yellow paper. Not long into this, my console buzzed, a signal from Ginger. I pressed a console button putting Ginger on the speaker. "Yes?"

"Alexandria Altman, your movie Producer, is holding on line 2," Ginger singsonged,  a certain reedy timbre to her voice.

I pressed another console button and put Alexandria on the speaker as my coffee sipping advanced to lighting a cigarette. "Alex, delighted to hear from you. What's happening?"

"Things are moving, Griff. Your movie's pre-production is about finished, then we'll be ready for full film development. We should have you here soon." Her voice was energetic and ebullient, that Hollywood "marvelous" sound.

"About time things were moving."

 "Moving so well as to leave me in awe and speechless!"

"I can't imagine you ever speechless."

She laughed, an invigorating laugh. "I'm not speechless about  you! Being the human being you are...the finest, kindest man I know, that alone sells me. But in addition, I have your book...one of a kind...and your wonderful, perfect script, all allowing me to lift your movie up."

For a moment I was breathless, an exciting numbness.

"Must run, Griff," Alex continued. "Get on with this.But I just had to tell you. I'll be back with you soon. When this gets out, you'll be bombarded. An onslaught!"

"Onslaught! What kind of onslaught?" I was suddenly fully awake.

"People are going to be after you. Among other things, just for starters, you're going to see a mass of them come to you and ask you where they can get a copy of your book and ask for a part in your movie. And that's only the beginning."

For some reason, George Knox came to mind.

Ten minutes after Alex was off the phone, Ginger unexpectedly rushed back into the office. "Gerald," she exclaimed excitedly, "you've got to see this! An email from one of the writers, Cynthia Westland, in that Crime Fiction group.

Still grappling with what Alex had just told me, while at the same time finding it futile to focus back on my blog's rough draft, I pivoted around in my chair and shot Ginger a quizzical look. "What's so pressing about it?"

"Her review of Of Good And Evil. Just posted on Amazon. Take a look."

I pivoted back around in my chair, booted up my wireless PC, clicked Internet, then clicked Cynthia's email on the Inbox page, and intently read her review:

"Gerald G. Griffin has mastered the art of intelligent and suspenseful writing in this book. With each page, the reader is informed, challenged captivated and finally obsessed with this story of love, honor, evil and political tumult.

"Exquisitely crafted, Griffin weaves a gripping tale of Captain Ron Sheffield's quest for redemption and purpose, while battling his personal demons. The love story of the beautiful and mysterious Amber Ash and Captain Sheffield is poignant, sensual, strong, and is an integral part of the novel, making the book equally appealing to both men and women.

"The fast pace and suspense of the novel kept me engaged from beginning to end. One of the best reads of the year, Of Good And Evil has all the elements of a best seller, and more. A true masterpiece!"

"Wow!" I enthused, my eyes dancing and multiplying as the clock hands had done earlier. "Succinct but powerful...and to the point!"

"That should keep the 'Buy the Latest Book!' box at the top of  your blog page busy," Ginger smiled cheerfully.

"Yes," I agreed quietly. "Let the onslaught begin."

OF GOOD AND EVIL can be ordered by clicking http://www.amazon.com/dp/160976014X . Put this link on your browser.