About Mario

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Born and raised in Los Angeles, Mario Piumetti is a freelance writer of science fiction, horror, screenplays, and nonfiction. He has a bachelor's degree in English from California Lutheran University and an MFA in creative writing from Antioch University. An avid music lover, his work is heavily influenced by rock, punk, and metal. You can contact him at mario.piumetti.writer@gmail.com.

Friday, October 23, 2015

Creative Death

It happened again.  The story I began earlier this month fell apart.  I didn't mean for it to fall apart, you guys, it just happened.

Acorn was a science fiction story about an alien spore germinating in a small town and infecting the townsfolk.  Cool, right?  And it was...for a while.  Inevitably, what happened to all my failed stories is the same thing that happened to Acorn.  I got tired and bored with it.  And I guess I can partly blame the day jobs for it too.  I'm so tired at the end of the day that I pass out rather than write, and I sleep through my writing session the next morning, barely even having time to down a mug of coffee before heading off to work.  When I do get a chance to catch up on my days off, so many days have gone by that I'm struggling to get up to speed on what the hell was going on when I left off.

I'm not making up excuses.  I'm just telling you what went down.  Focus and time management are critical in anything you do.  But there's the fun factor as well, isn't there?

A novel is the longest piece of writing you can do.  Stephen King says it shouldn't take longer than a season, or about three months, and I heartily agree.  But I also agree with him that you have to have fun, otherwise writing becomes a chore you hate and something you feel obligated to do rather than looking forward to.

In that regard, if three months is the time limit to get to the finish line, one should be the limit to telling if there's really any potential in the story.  If you lose interest within the first month, then you should go write something more enjoyable.  Unless you're contact-bound to finish it.  Then you just have to suck it up and write.

This offers no cozy solution, I know.  This is one of those "trust your gut" posts.  As I write this, a friend of mine is telling me, "Sometimes ya gotta push through."  I feel like that's too simple.  I feel like I need a constant kick in the ass.  A writing group.  An accountabilibuddy.  A word pimp.

Or maybe I'm just in the throes of a panic attack.  Probably both.

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Writing vs. Research: An Epic Battle to the Death!

For the last two or three weeks, I've set aside time almost daily to do some additional research, mostly in preparation for an ambitious writing project I've got in mind.  I've also gotten a whopping nothing done on the writing project I'm doing now.

Part of the problem, I know, is time management.  I wake up a little too late most mornings to get an hour of writing in before I have to go to my day job, and in the evenings, I feel too exhausted to commit to another two hours.  When I began planning out this week, I allocated my two-hour evening sessions towards research.  Surely, I thought, that's still time used productively, right?

Wrong.  Well, sort of.

On the one hand, this future project does need the research.  I can't deny that I can already tell it's too ambitious to go in blindly.  But I also can't deny that the primary job of a writer is to be a storyteller, not a researcher.  And given, that I have an end of the year deadline on the first draft of this current project, the research, productive though it may be, is also a potential procrastinator.  That's got to stop.

Today, I adjusted my schedule to fill my evening sessions with active writing time come hell or high water, and consolidated my research into a several-hour block on one of my days off.  It's easy to sit down to a documentary, but if I spread more blocks of writing time throughout the week, it should make it easier for me to stay committed towards reaching my deadline.

Or something.

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Crazy Random Stuffs

Fact: I suck at blogging lately.  Or rather, I suck at staying committed to it.

Another Fact: There's been a lot going on in my life lately, and I haven't really had time to write a new post until now.  So I don't have commitment issues, just "sit my ass down at my laptop and pump out a post" issues."

In any case, I didn't even realize until now that a month has gone by and I've all but vanished from the Inter-Webs.  So it's time for the usual prescription: a big ol' update...

Personal Life

I moved about a month ago, and I'm still sort of settling in.  Love the new place, especially the home office at my disposal.  It's pretty much the office I've always wanted and never had the guts to ask Santa for.

The Day Job

Anyone who knows me will tell you that 2015 has just plain sucked work-wise.  One company I worked with for a few years let me go without telling me until a month after the fact (nice!).  Temp work was sporadic and short-term.  Great interviews fizzled out into the abyss.  Now, suddenly, I'm working steadily again, hard at it like an animal, and I couldn't be happier.  My two biggest jobs right now are laborious with a gardening center and a moving company, but I think Stephen King will always win the "worst day job" game with New Franklin Laundry.  I've had way, WAY worse jobs than these, so I really have no right to complain.  Additionally, I'm reliance script-reading while taking the advice of many friends from grad school to look for a teaching post with local colleges, which brings us to...

The Writing

Yes, I am finding time to write, just harder to stick to it when you're so exhausted at the day's end you want to (and often do) pass out.  Right now, I'm working on a new science fiction story.  I'm not ready to talk about it, but I plan on having the first draft ready by the the holidays.  I'm also doing research to expand the Document.  This mainly involves screening documentaries, which is time-consuming and I can't wait to be done with it.  A friend of mine in the entertainment industry also suggested I turn my story Unholy Spirits into a short script.  He said it looks promising, but I know better than to get my hopes up on its future.  The Unholy Spirits script is really meant to be part of a portfolio I'm assembling to submit to agencies.

And that's pretty much what I've been up to: working and writing with sleeping and eating mixed in to shake things up.