Eugie Foster (eugie) wrote,
Eugie Foster
eugie

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Day After Tomorrow, Writing stuff

Went to see The Day After Tomorrow. I think it helped that I went into it with such realistic expectations. Going "oooo" at big, shiny special effects was my most important entertainment goal, tempered by the realization that the writing would undoubtedly be sub-par. So I was pleasantly surprised.


Yes, there was much gratuitous silliness, like the sick child, and the wolves. And yes, the actual sense of the character's behaviors was often hard to buy. Like why exactly did Adrian Hall (Dennis Quaid's character) feel the need to travel to New York to retrieve his son? If he'd waited until the storm had passed and the rescue helicopters could fly again, he could have as easily hitched aboard one of them and "met" his son at the library. His showing up a few hours earlier had no survival value to the trapped teens, and resulted in the death of his old work buddy. Furthermore, his injunction to his son to "stay there!" was problematic. What if they could have found a better place to weather the storm? Someplace higher with perhaps more insulation and protection from the elements. And these clever youths huddled in the library. WHY were they burning books when there was so much wooden furniture in the library which would burn longer and better? Yes, the books would be good starter fuel, but paper burns incredibly quickly. Something slower burning, like wood would have been better. Also, some characters (Hall's wife, for e.g.) could easily have been completely cut from the movie with no loss to the plot.


But regardless of the flaws, I think the writers made a greater effort at scientific-sounding explanation babble than I thought they would, such that I was willing to suspend my disbelief regarding the "flash freeze" danger. And, true to my expectations, the EFX were fantastic! I leaned over several times to Matthew during the initial destruction scenes and whispered excitedly into his ear "Shiny! Shiny!" or "Splashy! Splashy!" while bouncing in my seat. That's how good they were.

So, flawed and gratuitous, yes, but also enjoyable, as long as you're not expecting anything more meaningful than great, big walls of water, and head-sized chunks of hail.



Writing Stuff:

Received the contract and check from Abyss & Apex for "Inside the Witch's Oven" yesterday. I must say, I'm quite impressed by these folks. Not only did I receive prompt payment and have no issues with their basic contract, but they also included an SASE for me to send their copy of the signed contract back to them in. It's a little thing, but pre-paid $.37 postage, a #10 envelope, and a printed label goes a long way to making me feel like they go the extra distance for their writers. It's a small, but extraordinarily considerate gesture.

Also received a "well-written but not a proper fit" from the Clash of Steel anthology. Grumble. I'm having a difficult time placing my high fantasy tales. Out it goes again.
Tags: contract, writing biz
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