I had two scenes to write today. I worked out the first one in my head as I was driving in to work this morning and was able to write it up in no time. I was on fire! I immediately moved on to the second scene, confident I would have the scripts wrapped up in no time. And…nothing. I spent two hours sitting in front of my laptop, wondering what kind of Thai dishes the production office had ordered for lunch and whether the spread would include chicken with yellow curry which I’m partial to but don’t love as much as that pork with eggplant and jalapenos that I used to get every time I visited that restaurant in Yaletown and that Paul would always get when he was ordering in and what was I going to have for dinner tonight and, hey, I should really catch up on my emails because it’s been almost a week since various friends and acquaintances contacted me but first let’s go online and see what’s making news and, if not making news, then at the very least amusing the general net pop and, well, you get the idea. I was getting nowhere fast. This was in marked contrast to my creative charge only hours earlier. What happened? Well, simply put, I got out of my car. Yep, for some reason, I do some my best writing while I’m at the wheel. So, rather than sit there and wait for inspiration to strike, I hopped into my car and went for a ride. By the time I rolled back into my office some forty-five minutes later, I had my scene.

I went over both scripts and made some tweaks. Tomorrow, I’ll review them one last time and then, finally, put them out – if not for me, then for Carl who seems especially eager to read them, his eyes lighting up whenever I stroll by his office. “Script?!”he’ll call out in anticipation. “No,”I have to tell him. “Not yet.” His obvious disappointment breaks my heart. It’s like telling a kid Santa Claus forgot to bring him presents. But not as funny.

Hey, since there’s been a lot of talk on the forums about the upcoming SGU “webisodes” and the kino in particular, I thought I’d leave you with some kino-related material. For those of you who don’t know, the kino is essentially a high-tech “hover MALP” capable of investigating and recording events on ship and off. Some of these kino sequences will find their way into episodes. Other clips will be made available online, often tying in with certain episodes. To those asking, the kino footage appearing online will not be crucial to your understanding of a particular episode. However, these clips do shed light on our characters and Destiny itself so watching them will offer a fuller understanding of certain in-show elements.

Early kino design
Early kino design

Kino director Ivon Bartok discusses a scene with actress Julia Anderson –

Today’s entry is dedicated to Pol as she heads in for wrist surgery. Good luck! You’ll be waving in no time.

Mailbag:

Thornyrose writes: “I notice that the Fuel website doesn’t show the crispy duck for two on it. I take it that it can be requested off menu? Any other interesting entrees you might recommend?”

Answer: It is on the menu and you should have no trouble ordering it if you drop by. As for other interesting entrees – I’m always partial to the pork dishes, but their salmon is excellent as well.

Thornyrose writes: “Anothre question of idle curiosity. Was the change of font communicated, or were you expected to pick up on the changes telepathically?”

Answer: No it wasn’t a secret. I simply forgot.

Narelle from Aus writes: “When you’re pitching something like your Horror movie (any further news on that by the way?) do you just pitch the concept or do you need to include some of the peripheral details such as your target market/demographic, marketing ideas etc or is that something that the network works out for themselves?”

Answer: It depends on the project and how much detail you want to provide. In the case of the horror movie, we also pitched the marketing angle because it was unique.

Luis writes: “Joe I have never had Duck talk to a friend she said to go to a Chinese Rest. they make good Orange Duck…ever hear of Orange Duck???”

Answer: My father used to make something similar called Duck a l’Orange when we were kids.

PG15 writes: “Speaking of SGU (well, you spoke of it, I didn’t), a poster at Gateworld, Colonel Sharp came up with a pretty cool origin for the name “kino”, he says:

As we know, the Ancient language is ’supposed’ to be a form of Latin

Kino…well cyno (The abl/dat form of cynon), refers to a type of eye-ointment, and from what it seems like, this thing is basically an eye floating around looking at everyone.”

Answer: Interesting, but no. Kino stands for Kinetic Interactive Navigational Orb.

Actually, no it doesn’t. But it should.

Shiningwit writes: “Just letting you know that Sassie passed away at 11.57, she went the way she would have wanted, growling at the vet.”

Answer: Sorry to hear it. Did she suddenly take sick? Do you have any pics of Sassie you’d be willing to share?

Imadaman writes: “So I was wondering if the SGC will be moved to Atlantis, have they disabled the Atlantis’ gate or have McKay, Carter and Zelenka written a program that prevents incoming wormholes to connect the Atlantis’ gate?”

Answer: This is covered in the movie script.

Bugguy writes: “I’m back. Making a job change and things have been quite hectic.”

Answer: It’s been over a year! I had you declared officially dead and already collected the insurance money.

Mishmee writes: “What’s up for the next BOTM?”

Answer: September’s Book of the Month Club pick is Heroes Die by Matthew Woodring Stover. Details in the right sidebar.

Paloosa writes: “It’s so frustrating with so many formats to view and create shows these days, as in; network, cable, direct to DVD, webisodes, YouTube, podcasts and God only knows what else in the future, it seems that technology is separating us more than bringing us together. I remember when there were only three US networks and we, as in the entire country, all talked about the same “big event”. Not so much nowadays. As an older person, it’s also expensive to keep up, and I think kind of sad as well.

How do you feel about this, and what do you see for the future?”

Answer: I’m holding out for the brain microchip that will allow me to do it all – make phone calls, take pictures, watch film and television, and learn how to darn a sock.

Silver_comet writes: “You’ve never asked questions yourself for any author’s Q&A, have you? Why not?”

Answer: Because, of course, you all come up with such terrific questions.

DP writes: “1. What is the relationship between the kino and the long-range communication device?

2. What are the main components of a kino?

3. How many kino are there?

4. Does the kino have any artificial intelligence?

5. What has the kino been doing all these millions of years?

6. Does the kino have any quirky traits?

7. Does the kino go off the ship?

8. Does the kino facilitate communication with aliens who don’t communicate in conventional ways?

9. Does the kino facilitate contact with aliens who live in environments inhospitable to humans?

10. Does the kino facilitate communication when the communicators are experiencing relativistic effects?

11. Is the kino nosey?

12. Does the kino have any pets? If so, what is its understanding of selective breeding?”

Answers: 1. There is none.

2. Not sure. I’ve never taken one apart. This is a question for Eli.

3. Again, I haven’t counted. Somewhere between several and not enough.

4. No.

5. Catching up on a backlog of t.v. shows. It’s partial to Lost.

6. You mean like an affinity for opera capes? No.

7. Yep. Appropriately enough, someone in the Art Department coined it the “hover MALP”.

8. It could.

9. It could.

10. What communicators?

11. It isn’t sentient – so no.

12. It had a 40 000 year old Chihuahua named Mordecai but, since a recent falling out, they don’t talk much.

Tawny writes: “Do you think we’ll be seeing another sort of transitional show, like “From Stargate to Atlantis, a SciFi Lowdown”?”

Answer: I haven’t heard but I wouldn’t be surprised if we do.

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ytimynona
ytimynona

I’m holding out for the brain microchip that will allow me to do it all – make phone calls, take pictures, watch film and television, and learn how to darn a sock.
Sort of like the BrainPals in Scalzi’s Old Man’s War?

Speaking of Scalzi, he mentioned that he is tackling a new script right now. Which one? At what point in the process does he get to review it?

Thanks for the video smile Ivon seems like a pretty good director! I can’t wait to see what he’s done for SGU’s webisodes!

Sparrow_hawk

@Shiningwit: I’m so sorry about Sassie. I gave my pup an extra snuggle in memorium.

I’m keeping a good thought for Anne Teldy and Pol – get well soon, both of you!

das, you make my head spin. And I agree with Narelle about the Mallatok – sounds suspiciously flammable.

Nice mailbag, Joe! And a great explanation of the KINO. But everytime I hear Kino I think German cinema. Just can’t help it.

I’m off to 4 days of geekdom at GenCon in Indianapolis. Wish me luck keeping my sanity. Or perhaps it is best just to surrender it now…

dasNdanger
dasNdanger

For some reason, the info on kino should have made me understand what it is better…but it doesn’t. What’s the purpose of it? Is it just to fill up time in the script? “Oooo! Lookie! Pretty pictures…and WHOA! Nekkid dude in the shower!” Are they just to give us inside glimpses into characters, or will these shots actually help advance the story?

Thankies.

das

dasNdanger
dasNdanger

@ Sparrowhawk – I make your head spin? Are you talking about what happened over at Miscellany, with my username…or the whole whips and leather boots thing?

I am under the impression that the fellas there think I am something MUCH more exciting than I really am. razz

das

dasNdanger
dasNdanger

PS @ Sparrowhawk – Hey – did you get that pic I sent you from The Return to Melnibone’ ?? Your silence has me a bit worried… wink

das

Thornyrose
Thornyrose

@shingwit. My condolensces, though I have to admit to a small smile that Sassy went out the way I would like to; defiant and grumpy. For all of our domestication of animals, it’s a shame we’ve not managed to breed longevity into them, so that we do not have to suffer losses so frequently.
Mr. M. Thanks for the tip. I hit the road tomorrow afternoon, and have already made my reservation for the Fuel experience. I was leaning to the chef’s choice, but given your input I am now leaning to ala carte, so that I can try out the duck, corn soup, and if the protesters are there, the foie gras.
As for the creativity while driving, perhaps you can get the studio to spring for a “gator” or golf cart, rather than having to use your own fuel and put milage on your own ride? There would be the added bonus of cementing your reputation for eccentricity. Meantime, thanks for the daily posting, and please don’t leave poor Carl hanging out too long; he’s too young to have his image of you as a hero figure crushed.

Sparrow_hawk

@das: I got the picture! Actually they have the same one posted elsewhere on the site so I had seen it before. I like the style.

Actually it was the Bartok Variations that had my head spinning, not the ones on MMs blog (those have just been fun to watch! wink

Margaret Clayton

I have images of an irritated someone trying to smack a kino with a bat or some such thing and a deep sarcastic voice saying “use the force.” Cliche, yeah, but there you go, my mind is operating on the lowest pop culture levels lately.

Or, alternatively:

08 12 23 46 75 99
I’ve spent too much time in Vegas.

And:

On the Bad Art front, I found a new thrift shop piece for my art adoption gallery. Unicorn ponies in 80s pastels pointillism. Worst Art Ever. Some wacko will love it.

AV eddy

Hi Joe!

Thanks for the kino explanation. I really like your acronymization of KINO. smile

@Shiningwit – my deepest condolences at the loss of Sassy. sorry if I’ve misspelled the name- on my phone, eh? Anyway, warm thoughts your way!

I’m going to my family reunion in the country, but hope I will have some reception to read this blog & the “Castle” Twitter Mystery currently in progress. when I’m not spending valuable time w/ tons of relatives. wink

Take care all!

eddy

Dave
Dave

Will SGU in any way tell us something about the ongoings of the Atlantis expedition?

dasNdanger
dasNdanger

@ Sparrowhawk – Well, if you like the style, I’m sure John can get a copy of that book off to you. It wasn’t cheap, however…but less than MZtA. For an art book (and a rare one, at that), it is beautiful – very ornate. Mr. Das REALLY liked it… roll

Ah…the ship combos! Mallotok reminds you of something flammable, while it reminds me of a guy with a giant head and cheshire cat grin, sitting in a hover chair waving his disproportionately small limbs about like a madman…

das

Narelle from Aus

Hey Joe,

Sounds as though you do your best thinking when distracted.

I know how you feel. I can be asked a random question, such as by my Dad the other day over lunch which was, “What was the name of the crazy lady on Jon Stewart a few weeks ago?” (really, so many possibilities) and I knew I knew the answer so said, “Leave that with me”. Continue on with the conversation as normal, meanwhile the mice are running around on their wheel starting up the long term memory with lots of bangs and fizz noises as it gets going until I blurted out, “Orly Taitz”. I’m like watching a boiling pot. I get there eventually, it can just take a little longer.

Thanks for answering my question re the sales pitch. The business side of show biz interests me.

For Thai, you can’t go past Guay Teow Gai.

Shiningwit – You know where we are if you need any of us.

paloosa
paloosa

Oh, oh, oh…SGU Season 2, the Zontor 3000 chip, right? Who gets the transplant? smile

It’ll be nice to have something to look forward to when SGU starts up in October. I can’t get into any of the new shows Syfy’s been airing this summer. And I miss my Friday night SCI-FI fix.

@Shiningwit – I’m so sorry about your pup. My thoughts are with you and your family.

otros ojos
otros ojos

That was an interesting and amusing and vague enough to be tantalizing Q/A with DP about the kino. Too bad it’s not AI, but I think really I’m just missing K-9 from Dr. Who. And to keep from thinking about it all, plus opera capes and spicy spring rolls and who knows what else during tomorrow’s commute, I’ll have to focus on outgunning anyone who pulls up to the line with me at a traffic light and revs their engine. I win some, I lose some, but it keeps my mind from drifting off, and I have no idea how you can spin scripts while you drive. I guess it’s a writer thing, and I’m glad it works for you.

Speaking of Carl, I was reading online last night about a really major prank – it was a long time ago – that some UCLA dudes were trying to play on USC, but it backfired, resulting in the pranksters sitting in a helicopter while covered in manure that had been intended for “Tommy Trojan.” Surreal, yes, but true.

for the love of Beckett

Joe wrote:
Yep, for some reason, I do some my best writing while I’m at the wheel. So, rather than sit there and wait for inspiration to strike, I hopped into my car and went for a ride.

Driven by a deadline. And it worked! Our BlogFather is “back in black” (wearing the signature look, as opposed to sweats, at home) because he’s back at the office. But wait—he went for a drive in his “super secret office.” Would this “inspirational ride” that you drove be the new one you bought last fall? Was it an Aston Martin? Ah, cars…they magically put babies to sleep, and grease the wheels of creativity. Can we take a peek at the inside of it? Let us know how Carl’s “Christmas” went when he gets to read your scripts. Good job, papa Mallozzi. wink

Sparrow_hawk wrote:
I’m off to 4 days of geekdom at GenCon in Indianapolis.

Hey, you’re coming to Indy? That’s home base for me. Wanna say howdy? Let me know where I can reach you and I’ll send the contact info. It would be fun to meet another of Mallozzi’s Army. (What do we still call ourselves these days?)

Arctic Goddess

Hello, Joe:

Well, I’ve been hacked. I’ve been spied upon, invaded, and every other unpleasant term that goes along with some nasty troll with nothing better to do than to attempt to scam me and steal my identity. So, besides canceling the credit card I normally use to buy stuff on line, I’ve had to change my password for all of my on-line memberships, accounts and various sundry groups I may have belonged to. A daunting task. I had no idea how many sites I frequent.

Anyway, Lee Goldberg, the writer of the Monk series of books and television show, as well as screen writer extraordinaire, has mentioned on his blog about an online site dedicated to exposing scammers who would like to take advantage of writers. The site is here: http://leegoldberg.typepad.com/a_writers_life/2009/08/mwa-teams-with-writer-beware.html#comments
I think this is an incredibly worthy endeavor and a downright good idea, so I thought I would share it with you.

All the best,

Patricia

grapesofwraith

@ytimynona sometimes I think I’d love to have a BrainPal. It would certainly make school (and taking tests!) alot easier to cope with. Though the idea of having my emotions shared with everyone else scares me.

Congrats on the script Joe. Kind of like you and the car, my mind works best in the shower. Seems kinda cliche though – it’s not a big step to go from singing in the shower to thinking in the shower….

Anyways, it’s good to see Ivon doing the kino scenes. Is he doing those in addition to the behind the scene features, or is there a new person taking over for those?

otros ojos
otros ojos

Maggiemayday: How to get free foie gras… go undercover as a vegan protester, then accept the offer of a tasty dish from Mr. Joe. Consume with relish to the horrified stares of the other protesters. Hmm, I smell performance art in the making.

Hugs and warm thoughts for shiningwit and all others who need some happy in their day.

Now that scheme is truly ingenious as well as incredibly funny. If you know someone from Burning Man who lives in Vancouver . . .

I would love to take one of those virtual hugs and a warm thought, and will offer the same in return, keeping in mind some of the things you’ve posted about.

The excesses of the 80s . . . Yeah, I think a friend from back then would love to stage a reunion party of “Rainbow Brite”-type unicorns.

Narelle from Aus

Sometimes I wonder how connected our dogs are to us. I’ve been suffering from a case of the dizzies and am working from home. By mid-morning my usually stealthy Kelpie had walked into one wall, a door frame and a door.

Gilder
Gilder

@shiningwit–My sympathies for the loss of your beloved pet.

So, Joe–the KINO is a benign version of the giant beach ball in “The Prisoner” or the USAF Predator?

pastrygirl
pastrygirl

Thanks for the kino explanation, I think the whole concept sounds cool. Can’t wait for the webisodes….

Sorry to hear about the writing block this morning, but I must say you made up for it — the description in your first blog paragraph is positively Faulkner-esque!

Working on Heroes Die, in addition to a bridal shower cake due tomorrow. Must go play with fondant, now….

Beth

Will the webisodes be available to those of us outside the USA? Please tell us the will be? It’s so hard on those of us from places like Australia when we can’t access cool stuff sad

Elf
Elf

C’était une bonne idée de créer des webizodes, on va en savoir plus sur la vie de l’équipage du Destiny.

Petite question pour le Mailbag:

1-Le générique de la série sera-t-il de la même longueur que pour Atlantis et SG1 ?

2-Auront-nous droit à un long générique pour le premier épisode comme ça a été le cas pour Atlantis.

silver_comet
silver_comet

Amazing, that the car thing actually worked. You didn’t just go for a meal, which raised your spirits and inspiration, did you? wink

Do you use recording equipment for your thoughts when you’re in situations where you can’t write them down soon?

Interesting – um, discussion (?) – you wrote about yesterday. I can’t understand, that such people don’t realize, that they actually hurt the cause they are fighting for. Shouting, whistling and stuff like that will never work. You only have the chance to convince somebody with good arguments, IMO.

Answer: Because, of course, you all come up with such terrific questions.

*LOL* Somehow, I expected an answer like that. wink Thanks for answering anyway.

Answer: I’m holding out for the brain microchip that will allow me to do it all – make phone calls, take pictures, watch film and television, and learn how to darn a sock.

Huh, reading that, a scene from a Dr. Who episode immediately crossed my mind. A guy voluntarily got a brain microchip. The only problem, every time somebody close to him snapped his fingers, the guy’s head opened. smile

Sentrebiwonumaltanquopeq
Sentrebiwonumaltanquopeq

Are any of the directors/writers/actors/producers (etc.), that are involved in Stargate, vegetarians or vegans?