Suji eats peanut butter.  And loves it!

I’ve managed all 0 pages in the last 24 hours, putting me on pace to complete this script…never.  Which kind of puts  a damper on things as the episode is scheduled to prep in a little over a week and I just know everyone else on the production was kind of looking forward to it.   As I was telling my buddy (and Dark Matter Co-Executive Producer Ivon Bartok), I kind of feel like I’m performing a high-wire juggling act without a net.  I pulled it off on Episode 304, sitting down to a script with the loosest of outlines and having it all come together in my head over the course of day that saw me produce an astounding 32 pages!  I embraced the premise of this latest script because it’s tonally similar to 304, assuming I’d catch creative fire at some point but, alas, it hasn’t happened yet.  And as I pass the halfway mark and head into Act 4 where all those set-ups are supposed to start paying off, I’m still scrambling.

Every time I sit down to write a script, it never fails.  There’ll come a point in the script where I’ll grind to a halt and think “This is the one, the one where the solution won’t strike me out of the blue like some religious epiphany.  What will I do then?!!

My gut tells me that the key to the puzzle, the heart of the story, lies in the kid’s thru-line.  But what’s the missing link?

Incidentally, if you have any idea, just post it in the comments section and save me the aggravation.

Once this script is done, I can look forward to a hard-earned hiatus – and that penultimate episode that sees a spillage of not one, not two, not three, not four, but FIVE sensational secrets.  Thought you knew everything there was to know about our crew?  Well, prepare to be surprised.

Okay, back to the script.  Maybe, if I can power through this third act tonight, it will all come together tomorrow morning.  And, after that, dare I say it?  Smoooooooth sailing?

31 thoughts on “January 29, 2017: Waiting for smoooooth sailing!

  1. Obviously Akemi gave you the key… peanut butter. Sticky situation, solution spoon fed at the last moment, saving Suki… er .. the crew from starvation or catastrophe.

    IOW I got nothing. Except faith. You got this.

  2. Debra already posted what I was going to suggest, so I think you should go with that and keep on going! You’ll come up with something, I know it.

  3. Slow deep breaths, Joe. Inhale. Exhale. Repeat. Sip of Saki. Bite of Bourbon cookie. Digest. Repeat.

    Remind yourself you suffered this same (high wire without a net) feeling, right about at this same point in production, last season and got through it. You found a way past the angry seagull last year. You will again.

    Go buy yourself a bottle of soap bubbles and some gold glitter. Stand outside blowing bubbles while Akemi simultaneously releases those nanoscopic dust particles of fools gold from their capped genie bottle to stream freely on the wind. Within each bubble sent sailing on its way, assign a spontaneous one or two word thought.

    Your magical “thru-line” will be found in the midst of this fun carefree little parade.

  4. Here’s another “release” metaphor a writer friend told me he once successfully tried.

    He bought himself an inexpensive archery set and a bunch of disposable/paper bulls eye pads. With every arrow he sent sailing, a spontaneous emotion or word traveled with it . The words/emotions that helped him hit the bulls eye were of course given extra points. About 30 minutes into the game he had found the elusive emotions & words he needed for his current writing project.

  5. I agree with Jon Brew. Sometimes a complete change of focus helps the ideas to rise to the top.

    Suji definitely loves peanut butter. My cat, Riley, does too. I put it in my oatmeal and he is always right there hoping for a lick.

  6. need something with a bit more kick?

    Try throwing a baseball as hard and fast as you can at glass bottles. sitting atop milk crates, lined against a brick wall. Release a word/thought with each speeding pitch. Each bottle you smash could be the head of a DM enemy.

  7. I know how you feel. Last year I thought I would be sending the summer watch the new cable programs I fell in love with like “Dark Matter” and a couple of others. In stead I woke up from a bed that was strange to me and the people around me were different. I found out about my accident. I heard the word Bethesda and thought I had frequent flyer miles coming my way. What a disappointment to learn the truth. The accident happened a few miles from my home. Recovery also. It has been tough but I will get to my old job with the airline. See it could be worse.

  8. I thought Suji was going to eat the spoon!

    Dreaming about it may help. I’d sometimes come up with a really good answer, then scramble for pen and paper and just when I was going to write down, it would disappear from my brain. I hated that. Good luck!

  9. just thought of one more.


    Have your lovely art director make a pinata of your head stuffed full with delicious candy flavors you enjoy most. String it up. Grab a heavy wooden baseball bat and start violently BASHING your head until it gushes wide open and spills the goods all over the floor!

    (Dont forget to release a spontaneous word/thought aloud with each swing, eh.)

  10. Not that I’m sure of the context of the kid you’re writing about (admittedly out of classroom school drama’s been taking my time up lately, but I am writing my feeling out into a script!) but maybe something about a toy (a rag doll, a teddy bear, a toy train, perhaps?) might help.

  11. Remember, you asked for this. 😆

    The kid has a wise 60-something aunt; the kid looks just like Auntie as a teen. Auntie does a clone transfer to see Five and ends up in a younger, look-like body. Auntie and the kid get together and…
    1. Cause a lot of near-twin confusion
    2. Combine young genius with old experience to save the day!

    PS: Along the way, the pair adopt twin raccadillos.

    PPS: You go, Duptiang!

  12. When I write dialogue for a story I like to put myself in a situation where I’m doing something boring, like dishes or laundry, something that requires me to use my hands, but not my brain. It helps my mind to refocus. Then I talk out the conversation out loud.

    Doubt that it’s a very helpful suggestion. Though, I know you’ll do good. You always do. I have faith in you Mr. Mallozzi.

  13. Take a shower. Or go for a ride in your car. Didn’t you say that usually helps? Good luck!

  14. I too, agree with @Jon Brew and @glowyzoey. Just walk away for a couple of hours. Catch a film, take a walk or do something different …. Things can build up and it seems like none of them will get sorted – your brain gets knotted up as you don’t want to let anyone down… You won’t

    So go on have a go 😊 I find it helps if someone else tells you to leave it too. So here goes ….

    Hey, Joe!
    Jon Brew, Glowyzoey and that OtherOne are telling you, you should have a break. Go away and relax. Let it all go. It’ll be fine.

    You’ll see…. It does work. Honest 😊

  15. Feeding my Brandi peanut butter from a spoon is one of my great joys in life. She goes all cross eyed and concentrates like it’s the most important thing she will ever do. It’s simply awesome.

    Here’s an idea for your script hump:
    FADE IN:


    TWO is awakened by the sound of shower water running in the adjoining bathroom. Puzzled, she rises slowly and peers around the doorway to reveal ONE showering. He turns and greets her with a smile.

    You’re welcome! Hey, it worked for Dallas.

  16. Gosh @Duptiang. That’s scary.
    You sound so determined to get back to your old job – that’s brilliant! Take good time and you will do it. 😊

  17. Head to a gun range, rent something loud and high caliber, and blast some targets. Doing something unusual often breaks the brain loose.

    Mmm, peanut butter. I made dog biscuits from PB, brown rice flour, and applesauce, with a little parsley. The neighborhood dogs loved them.

  18. Lots of good suggestions here for your writer’s block Joe. For the last several days (1-2 weeks), I’ve been avoiding work on a project that annoys me. Perhaps out of lack of motivation or confidence, but more likely because I think it’s a waste of my time. So I found other work issues to do instead. Eventually, like today, I will have to tackle that odorous issue because its due date is coming up fast.
    My advice is, step away from the task, do something entirely different and absorbing for a short while, make yourself not dwell on the problem at all. Your subconscious will bring you back to it because it knows your deadline.
    @Ponytail’s suggestion is good too, shower or take a car ride as this has helped you previously.

    We all have confidence in you Joe because you are a proven, true, creative genius. It’ll get done. Don’t sweat it.

    =^-^= =^-^=

  19. Ponytail: I’ll pick up donuts!

    Well, I hope you woke up with an epiphany this morning. You could always bring back One. 😉

    Prayers to Quebec!

  20. The solution is to watch adorable vids of pugs eating peanut butter! For me it’s washing dishes or taking a shower, something about water running gets my brain percolating.

    Writing outdoors with birds singing and fresh air works great too, I miss being able to lunch in the park (kinda snowy and icy out there now). I can stop mid thought and just zen out looking at the view. I never feel pressure to get work done, instead it feels like you have license to daydream. I think it comes from all the daydreaming I did as a kid on our front porch in our favorite tree.

  21. Lots of suggestions for getting back into your flow 👍
    …..My gut tells me that the key to the puzzle, the heart of the story, lies in the kid’s thru-line. But what’s the missing link?

    Storyline we’ve still to find out – Five giving Three, ‘Boone’s’ lock box in Ep203.
    The missing link – finding out what’s in the small box with the spider design in that box!

    Not tried this before, does this link work to the image?

  22. One way to help you is by giving me the answers to your quote contest. Just email it to me!

  23. Joseph Mallozzi, I would really like to audition for dark matter but I don’t know how to contact you other that through your blog!

  24. @ TheOtherOne you were right. Accept the food was not bad if you can belief (that would make my dog happy.) I have no memories accept one day waking up, but things are improving. I was unconscious for ten day. The therapists were great. Keeping the positive attitude is very important. The right side works and can get up and down stairs. At rehab I was a terror in my wheel chair.

  25. Lots of good suggestions…go with your gut instinct! Or move in a totally unexpected direction.

    I love to dip my Hershey’s chocolate pieces in my peanut butter.

  26. Okay… it’s hard to imagine you ever getting stuck on scripts… if you’re open to an idea, how about introducing new tech and explaining how it works.. like using a few of those floating drones with some augmented reality, add in 3D models as a diorama to plan out a Raza mission, that goes terribly wrong, then run a few more failed scenario along with fantasies that are just bazar, until the scene cuts to Zoi or the forgetfull robot, with one of those blank stares… who then offers Raza Crew the one good idea.. end of episode

  27. I’m late to the party so I’m certain you’ve figured out how to get the angle you were looking for but all the above suggestions I would have echoed (a shower, a drive, whiskey/whisky).

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