Today’s bizarre exchange with my Japanese girlfriend:

“Even elves need to do peepee, just like everyone else.”

“No, he just wanted sausage.  Currywurst.”

Well, I am on a creative roll.  In the past three days, I’ve delivered a draft of that Southern Gothic script, wrote the “alternate” draft, got 10 pages into that wildly over-the-top SF actioner (If Tarantino produced scifi, this would be it!), came up with two disturbingly memorable teasers for the two new scripts Paul and I are about to write – PLUS beat out rough outlines for both, AND put together a four page pitch for how I would translate “that book” to television.  I’d like to chalk it up to discipline or being well rested or maybe even the inspiration offered by my accelerated reading pace, but I have a feeling much of the credit goes to the Knob Creek Single Barrel Reserve 9 Year Old Bourbon I picked up last week.  On the one hand, I’m very pleased with my creative output and the fact that, when we hit L.A. in April, I’ll do so armed with a half dozen pilots.  On the other hand, if none of these pilots have sold by this time in September, I’ll be less than pleased and may actually have to start considering alternate career options.  A few of the ones I have in mind, in no particular order:

1. Professional Magic the Gathering touring gamer: But I’ll have to learn how to play first. It looks like a cross between Gin Rummy and Dungeons and Dragons.  Am I close?

2. Llama farmer: What more is there to say?

3: CNN pundit: Probably the easiest to achieve since the position doesn’t require any actual qualifications.

4: NFL cornerback: Given the fact that I’ll be competing with men half my age, I’d have to temper expectations of actually winning a starting position.  Unless, of course, I try out for the Philadelphia Eagles.

5: Amateur masseuse practice client: Sacrificing my body for a worthy cause.

6: Mystery drinker: Sort of like “mystery shoppers” except instead of being paid to shop and critique retailers, I’ll be paid to drink and critique bartenders.

7: Assistant to whatever YOU do: I’m going to need you to put in a good word.

This list is a word in progress, so feel free to offer suggestions.

1Lulu and I, out for a nice steak.

28 thoughts on “March 15, 2014: Writer? Producer? Llama Farmer? What’s next for me? YOU decide!

  1. Magic the gathering is more like a cross between poker and chess. I have been playing it for about 15 years and have been playing D&D for about 38 years (yes I still play). Last years Magic world champion took home a $40,000 prize. If you would like to know more about magic I can answer some of your questions.

  2. September? Hmm…want to swap houses for a week? We’ll be due for a Vancouver vacation, and you could oversee our kitchen remodel. 😉

  3. I have actually worked at #5 – bloody awesome & I didn’t have to pay!! Aromatherapy, Indian Head & Deep Tissue Massages were all on offer, and I indulged myself for 2 years. I think I saved over $1,000 and have never felt better.

    I have also worked at #6, well kind of worked at #6, as I have been a mystery shopper, but the only jobs I was offered was for a local motor car parts shop and a local liquor store. although I was paid for the first ($15 only) the second required me to purchase alcohol to the value of $25 and I was reimbursed not paid :/ but mystery shopping for a bar sounds great. 😀

    I would gladly take you on as an assistant, but the following are the not negotiable requirements for the position:

    * Must be able to type 46wpm on a keyboard.
    * Can sew a straight 1/4 inch seam with a walking foot
    * Can knit 6 rows (stocking stitch) per 15 minutes (& keep the wool in 1 place and out of the way of the cats)
    *Can make the world’s 2nd best scones (there is NO way you can make scones better than me!!!)
    *Know the difference between scones & biscuits (hint: don’t go to Martha Stewart dot com for the answer)
    *Know the diffference between vintage, retro & reproduction fabrics

    (P.S. It’s a wet sunday & I’m bored!!!)

  4. I had currywurst when I went to Berlin, twas a german sausage with curry sauce and fries….

    As for the job, got to be something foodie, a critic of some nature

  5. you know.. I am sure that Llama farming can be a tricky business.. have you thought what happens when they need shaving.. are they just gonna let you do it? or do you have to fight their kicking off..? what is the profit in it? do Lama require regular daily walks? how would your neighbors react to the potential noise and smell hazard?

    OK, here are a few suggestions for you Joe:
    1- dog walker (first thing that came to mind)
    2- cook ! come on! you know it 3- model (this one can be used loosely.. or you can just be Lulu’s walker when she models)
    4- Japanese teacher (OK… you can hire Akemi’s services)
    5- grooming services (easy peasy… unless you get bitten)
    6-psychic and tarot reader (as good as anybody else)
    7-coffee maker in Hollywood or @MGM (I do that at the moment and folks love me at work, no shame, and I get all the positive reviews)
    8- Christopher Judge”s personal trainer (you may need to do some research on that.
    9-Stargate ring cleaner and artifact collector.. you could sell them on the quite side for extra cash
    10- writing skills and screen adaptation adviser to novice writers 🙂

    Having said all of the above… I will keep my fingers crossed for you in April – when in April is it again? I will be off for 2 weeks i think.. so i will have time to do some praying :)… I will pray because the world will be a safer place, and so will the lamas is you stick at what you do best 🙂
    Have a great Sunday guys 🙂

  6. How are your “Needlework” Skills..? Crochet? Knitting? Putting up with the ELDERLY 24/7??

  7. I think April will go extremely well! However you can always be my assistant. I could be persuaded to put in a good word. As a mom I can always use help!

    Ooor! You could be a dog walker.

  8. Have you ever thought about being a guest lecturer (professor) at a university in your area about script writing or the movie industry or something along those lines.

  9. I think a chocolate tasting or alcohol tasting job would work for you:

    Or you can open that restaurant I think you would love and make Akemi master chef of the kitchen.

    Keeping good thoughts about your April prospects. But if that doesn’t pan out, I think I’ll be hiring an employee by the fall but the commute would be a bitch. But, you might like living down here. Low cost of living. Usually very little winter. This far south very seldom ice and snow. But I couldn’t pay you much. Minimum wage to start.

  10. The posibility you can´t work in tv writing/producing this year is equal to mine win megamillions ( near zero). 😆

    The Eagles cant afford you in that position. 😆
    A mix of llama snuggler farmer can be cute.

    Freedom for Llamas (Zoo phone phreaking)

  11. @skua:

    Libertad a las llamas!


    We’re praying for success in April; after all, animal farming is never as much fun in real life, since most farm animals have been bred for best output (wool, meat, eggs, milk) and not for sweet dispositions. A hungry sow or irate llama is not going to be fun to manage, let alone a whole herd of them.

    If you’re determined to get in to farming, how about aqua farming? Raise some trout with talapia (to close the cycle), and ship them off to your local seafood distributor every four months. Best of all, you don’t need to worry about getting kicked in the face while your trying to shave them (as is highly likely with a llama).

    As for football, I hear the Ravens have traded Michael Oher to the Titans, so how do you feel about playing Right Tackle?

    Okay I’m removing my tongue from my cheek now… 😀

  12. Wow. I would love to have been in on the conversation that resulted in that exchange. How… interesting.

    Glad to hear all the scripts are going great! With that many irons in the fire, something HAS to work out. Right? And then it will be smoo.. well, you know.

    You could check with David Hewlett re: the Magic game – I think he’s a big fan of that! Also, you’re way overqualified to be a CNN (or any American news program) pundit. I’m thinking of offering my budgie, Brio’s services: “My name is Brio… and I’m a budgie!!” (His favourite phrase.) I mean, it’s still more insightful than most stuff you hear on those shows.

    @arcticgoddess: At first, I read that as you were suggesting as Joe become a profession SMUGGLER. That sounds adventurous and fun, but not with that nasty drug stuff and all it’s balloons in weird places. I mean jewels, like diamonds and rubies. And if caught, Joe could just say he’s researching for a new script! I see no downside.

  13. I meant, “its” balloons, not “it’s”. Gah, and that’s one of my pet peeves, too.

  14. You could assist me at being a part time granny sitter/old lady sitter & full time grumpy gal

  15. You could teach English over in Japan?
    Dog walker? Jelly could stroll along behind you and the furries.
    Open an restaurant?

    You’ll land on your feet no matter what. Fingers crossed for successful projects (or “break a leg”-I don’t know which saying is applicable)!

  16. Extremely busy, but will say this:

    I think you should forget sci fi, fantasy, and horror…well…maybe not horror…and create a tv cooking show that specializes in animal guts and call it The Offal Truth.


  17. Joe. We just put out an add for a System Engineer Level 1. Its for the security company I work for. Although i have doubts about your qualifications, i have no doubt your unique personality would bring an interesting dynamic to our team. Although i dont have final say on who we hire, i do have the second most influence on who we hire… I could be bribed to use that influence for some aged alcohol… 🙂

  18. I worked on The Lord Of The Rings and have literally walked around Rivendell. I never saw any toilets so I can’t confirm that elves need to go peepee. I can, however, confirm that Gollum and the cave troll were anatomically correct under their loin cloths. 😯

    I don’t understand Magic The Gathering. I’ve watched people play and I kind of get what they’re doing but I don’t understand the allure.

    If Llama farming is anything like Alpaca farming then don’t do it!!! It’s basically a pyramid scheme. While there’s a limited market for the fleece the supply far outweighs demand and the only way to really make money is to recruit new farmers so you can sell animals to them. Have you ever seen an ad for Llama products? Conversely, how many ads have you seen trying to turn you into a farmer?

    You’re welcome to become my assistant! How is your Linux system administration skills?

    Seriously, though, with the number of crappy pilots that get picked up each year and turned into crappy shows surely you’ve got to have one that’ll get chosen! Not that I’m saying your scripts are crappy, just that they should get picked! Hmmmm, that didn’t come out right. I’ll shut up now. 🙂

  19. I was out walking my dog at a small local park that runs up a small hill when I met an elderly lady walking a lama. I was about 35, she was about 60, an aging hippie from the sixties who looked like she had spent way too much of her life in the sun and didn’t realize that hippie wear was long out of style. And did I mention she smelled like wet lama? Maybe that was the lama…

    She asked me to come back to her farm so we could “explore each others inner souls and outer bodies”. When I declined she offered to sweeten the deal by cooking dinner and twenty dollars.

    I declined and have avoided hippie women lama farmers ever since. And I found a new dog walking route.

    Anyways, I think your new career should be:

    Super villain.

    I don’t know how your going to monetize this idea, perhaps extorting dog walkers with your evil unholy army of killer pugs?

  20. #3 is hilarious and sadly accurate while I would definitely have a job for you regarding #7 – though given I operate on a grad student’s budget, I’m fairly sure your pay wouldn’t live up to your current lifestyle. You should probably go with CNN or the llama farming, but any time you want to do some academic research, I sure could use someone to code some UN documents for me. 😀

    That block you’re walking on is lovely!

  21. I already get a job for you !:
    Visual art critic beginng with a review of Hélène Labrie’s bronzes !!
    Have a nice day

  22. I’d say start your own dog rescue. The dogs would be well taken care of and only be given to really good homes. Either that are finally begin your plot for world domination. I believe that you already have the correct cufflinks for the occasion.


  23. The choice is as simple as the photo above. You should write crime novels about a detective and his plucky pug Lulu. You use your cover as dog walker to access the homes of the rich and powerful; your trademark is you always wear a natty suit, even when walking Lulu, a former military dog who has PTSD and who can sniff out crime.

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