A Scary Way to Start Your Day

I woke up at 3:45am this morning with the sensation that someone was tapping on my ankle.  It had been a dream and there was no one there, but I was reminded of this other rude awakening, a frequently-retold but never-committed-to-writing tale of my unquiet solitary sleepitude <---(made-up word)   I came to wakefulness gradually and …

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But wait, there’s a twist …

When the film "The Sixth Sense" took the world by storm, I started to notice within a few years a change in the way that the writer/punter class talked about their in-progress novels and scripts. "It's about this guy who does this thing, and he gets into this situation ... but then there's a twist …

I can’t function in polite society – at least not on Social Media

A friend of mine recently moved from Austin to Boston, leaving behind a vibrant social life.  She just posted this Facebook status:   "I have a hole in my heart the size of Texas."   Awwwwwww ... 120 likes, loves, and sad faces so far.  A stream of comments to the following effect:   "We …

On Moshing

When Woodstock '94 happened, the San Diego Union-Tribute ran a front-page photo of a rain-drenched kid who looked about 12 in a muddy mosh pit.  This little boy seemed to be caught in the act of being hurled like a discus by the meaty arm of a man twice his size. The look on the …

How to Be More Funny: My 15 Favorite Jokes to Drop in Conversation

Good writers borrow from other writers.  Great writers steal from them outright. I stole that line from Aaron Sorkin and one of his "West Wing" scripts, like I pilfer so much of my sense of humor. I always wanted to make people laugh.  So much of whether or not someone laughs at your jokes depends …