Writing A Timeless Tale & Avoiding The Story Being Dismissed As A Liberal Screed

by Shelton Bumgarner
@bumgarls

The thing I realized today is there’s no way to avoid my own personal rage at MAGA from coming out. My hatred of MAGA is so central to the conceit of the tale that I’m just going to have to accept that I can’t do what I really wanted to do, which was write a great tale that was on its surface just that.

As such, if there’s any chance this actually gets published and is a success, there’s a real chance that there will be a lot of hate-readers. The presence of Trump is felt in the very DNA of the story. I want this to come across as a political fairytale for woke Park Slope moms. A guilty pleasure, if you will.

While I may be able to get close to that, I can’t help that it’s pretty obvious who this story is directed towards. My only hope is that the characters are interesting enough that at least some of the center-Right might be willing to put aside my subtle ranting against MAGA long enough to enjoy the story.

The tale is supposed to be an indictment of extremism in general. That’s the goal. But I have to admit to myself that if this story actually gets any traction that a lot of conservatives will be so angry at how much rage I’m directed at MAGA (if in a fuzzy way) that they will bitch and moan about the story in general.

But I don’t know. I just don’t know. This is not meant to be high art. This is pop art. It’s meant to be a snapshot of the Trump Era via allegory. But the main point at this time is to simply finish the first draft.

One thing that’s really important to me is to try to make this sufficiently timeless — much like the movie Network — that it stands on its own terms and is not dated too quickly. We’ll see, I guess. I just have to believe in myself and keep writing.

You can’t edit a blank page.

Why I Walked Out Of ‘Booksmart’ (But You Should See It)

by Shelton Bumgarner
@bumgarls
Instagram: WriterShelt

I hated Booksmart.

I hated it — and hate it — so much that I begin to seethe with rage at the idea of it. And, yet, it’s nothing personal against Olivia Wilde and the movie itself is probably pretty good — if you’re a woke, bi curious Generation Z girl taking your SATs for the first time.

I walked out of the movie at just about the inciting incident because first I despised that clueless rant about lesbian sex, I hated how bad some of the acting was obviously going to be — Billie Lourd, sigh — I hated how much of an updated rip off of Heathers the movie was and I hated the entire premise of what I was expected to sit through for the next hour and a half.

So I bounced.

This is coming from a person who bounced from an equally critically acclaimed Bird Man. I hated that movie and walked out of it, too.

Now, the reason why I even talk about any of this to begin with is while movies like Booksmart serve an admirable purpose and help proto-lesbians see representation in film, they also have a corrosive effect overall. What I mean by this is Booksmart is a prime example of how Hollywood — or at least a woke subset of it — apparently has completely given up on 48% of the audience and just wants to suck its own dick (to quote The Mooch.) There’s a reason why Sniper was such a huge hit — there’s a pretty big untapped market for center-Right heteronormative storytelling. (Not to cast aspersions on non-heteronormative stories, just to observe what’s going on.)

Again — I was not the audience of this movie and only went because I keep seeing ads for it in my center-Left social media echo chamber. It was like I was being guilt-tripped into seeing it. I did not want to see it, knowing I would likely hate it. But I decided to give it a chance. And, guess what?

I fucking hated it.

The great sin this movie committed is it allowed its ideology to take over and warp the narrative of the movie to such an extent that I couldn’t get pass the inciting incident and left the theatre altogether.

But given that I was not the audience and I did not see the entire movie, I still feel comfortable recommending it to other people. If you’re younger than me, or more of a Leftist, you probably really will love the movie as much as the entertainment-industrial flack complex tells us you will.

Anyway, I’m writing a novel that deals with a lot of the same issues as Booksmart. But, given that I’m a smelly brutish male, I’m sure even if I’m as empathetic as possible to the stories of people don’t look like me, someone, somewhere, will discount the novel as simply another member of the patriarchy exploiting the lives of women, minorities and members of the LGBQ+ community for their own gain. (I’m being a bit sarcastic, dummy.)

All I can do is keep my head down and try to tell the story I want to tell. I think Wilde did a great job, you should go see Booksmart and ignore everything I just wrote.

Who would listen to me, anyway?

V-Log: Novel Notes For June 8th, 2019 — Development Is Going Well (So Far)

by Shelton Bumgarner
@bumgarls

Some thoughts.

Novel Notes For April 4, 2019 — AOC, The Internal Logic Of Movies Versus Novels & County Government Issues

Some thoughts.

V-Log — How The Sausage Of Novel Development Is Made

by Shelton Bumgarner
@bumgarls

Watch me talk for nearly an hour in a vague way about the novel I’m developing.

On The Issue Of My Novel’s ‘Theme’ & ‘Tone’

By Shelton Bumgarner
@bumgarls

As I slowly begin to understand how I write a novel, more subtle issues come to the fore — like theme and tone. I really, really like the conceit of the story, but I have a ways to go when it comes to more complex issues that will take the novel to the next level.

But I’m still just developing the story, so I have some time yet. But, if nothing else, I at least have momentum. I feel like I’m getting actual work done, not just spinning my wheels.

In the below Scope I talk at length about this issue.

V-Log: The State Of The ‘Thriller’ I’m Developing As Of Jan. 23rd

by Shelton Bumgarner
@bumgarls

In this wide-ranging Scope, you get a lot of interesting information about a wide-range of things going on with the novel I’m developing. Enjoy.

V-Log: The State of The ‘Thriller’ I’m Developing As Of Jan. 22nd

Some thoughts.

V-Log: Struggling With Structural & Character Issues In The ‘Thriller’ I’m Developing As of Jan. 20th, 2019

by Shelton Bumgarner
@bumgarls

Some thoughts.

V-Log: On The Notion That Someone Might ‘Steal’ My Scifi Novel Concept

by Shelton Bumgarner
@bumgarls

Some thoughts.