Taking it to the Field: Research Part 2

TucsonSo in part one of this journey to Tucson, I wrote about conducting firsthand research for my screenplay. The research took place at Tucson Greyhound Park, a run-down, deserted, out-of-date greyhound racing track.

The track announcer had just begun to read off the dogs for the first post. I had been texting my daughter, so I told her I needed to go, and I headed outside.

Continue reading “Taking it to the Field: Research Part 2”


Taking it to the Field: Research Part 1

TucsonFor one section of my screenplay in particular, first-hand research would be necessary. The only problem was that the research would require a trip to Tucson, Arizona. But it was a trip I knew I would need to take at some point.

Part of my movie takes place at a greyhound track. There was a time when greyhound racing was the sixth most popular sporting event in the country, and race tracks dotted the map. But the heyday of greyhound racing is long gone, and most of the tracks are closed. Only a few are scattered across the country, with the majority of those that are still open in Florida.

Tucson Greyhound Park is the one closest to the West Coast, so I set my sights on traveling there.

Continue reading “Taking it to the Field: Research Part 1”

Screenwriting Secret: Don’t Relieve the Tension

gmail, checking emailI’m feeling the tension! And seeking relief.

I keep nervously checking my email. Way too often.

But I can’t help myself. I am waiting for feedback on my screenplay. Yet again.

I just spent the past two months on a new rewrite, making some adjustments requested from a group of investors who took a look at it back in February. They want more tension. My response to that was, “Yeah. No kidding.”

Continue reading “Screenwriting Secret: Don’t Relieve the Tension”


A Screenwriter’s First Time on Set

Mike Lizaraga, The Shell, screenwriting, interview, writing, film making, Chapman
Here we are – post interview.

“Now who are you?” the production manager asked.

Mike Lizaraga had just joined the set of his first film where a crew of about 50 people prepared to bring the characters from one of his short stories to life.

He watched as the production manager worked her way around the room, assigning people their jobs for the day.

Then she turned to Mike. He was one of the first on the set that morning and one of the last to leave. But who was he?

“I’m the screenwriter,” he responded, unsure of his role in the process but determined to witness the magic. Continue reading “A Screenwriter’s First Time on Set”


Preparing for My First Interview

Mike Lizaraga, Michael Lizaraga, screenwriting, The Shell, student, writing, short story, horror genreI am meeting with Mike Lizarraga tonight for my first interview for this blog!  The reason he is my first is actually a great story, so I wanted to share that with you beforehand.

I have taught college English for 20 years. But like everyone else, there is always that first semester. In fact, I just spoke with my niece Josie the other day as she is finishing her first year as a teacher (she teaches fourth grade, something I think only saints or crazy people can do!).

Talking to her reminded me of my first class. Continue reading “Preparing for My First Interview”