Monday, June 23, 2014

Book to Film Adaptions

By Aaron Cole

I sincerely apologize for the prolonged absence. I didn’t even really realize how long it had been since Tamara and I posted. Long story short we both started school last August (right after our last blog post) and summer started a few days ago for us. In that time We worked on writing a few things ( 2 collabs and 2 solo projects).I’ll do a proper update in another post and hope to start blogging more frequently.

Today’s post is an age old question asked by TCWT 

“What are your thoughts on book-to-movie adaptions?”

I personally am all for book -to-movie adaptions. 

People always say Hollywood is running out if ideas, so it turns to books and remakes for adaptions, but that’s just not the truth. The truth is, book to film adaptions are nothing new. Think back to some of the greatest movies of our times ex. the Wizard of Oz, Gone with the Wind, Breakfast at Tiffany’s, The Outsiders. Hollywood has been adapting books to film for generations. It's not a fad, and it won't be stopping any time soon. 

Recently, the adaptation I have been obsessed with (as my mom, dad and siblings will tell you with a sigh and an eye roll) is The Fault in Our Stars. I know, I know. There were some changes made and some differences in the movie, but I think that when adopting a book to a film, change is something to be expected. There were some small things that I thought didn’t need to be changed (like Augustus being 18 in the film, even though he was 17 in the book) but I assumed everything must have been thought out by the people behind it.  Regardless I think the film was amazing, and so realistic. Not to mention it was emotion and I cried like 694835934534 times. Even considering the changes, I’d see it again in a heartbeat. Scripts and novels are designed differently and have completely different structures.  It is impossible to think every single detail from the book can make it into the movie.

A movie has to flow a certain way to get a plot across, just like a book. Most of the times book adoptions are two hours. Think about how long it takes you to read. For me, if a book is amazing I can finish it in around six hours.  That would be ALOT of unnecessary detail if an entire book was formed into a movie. As a fan of books, I appreciate when a book gets a movie adoption because it bring a whole new set of readers to the community.   (Even though, I'll admit it does make you feel a little less hipster when a book you love becomes mainstream.)

Now onto the next question. 

“Would you one day want your book made into a movie, or probably not?”

It would be really awesome if one day someone wanted to turn my book it a movie. For my current WIP, I think it seems more like a miniseries, but I would be up for an adaption of any kind. I think that if that ever did happen, I'd want to be as involved as I possibly can.  Being an assistant director (who just runs errands for the director and crew) would be amazing and if it was approved I'd would want an opportunity to help with a script. My reason being, I write YA and most of the time in movies the dialogue sounds like it was written by a middle aged person trying to sound like a teenager, not an actually teenager, I think I’d want to help make the dialogue sound real. (NOTE: I do not have anything against middle aged people, I actually live with a lovely middle age couple who are nice to me most of the time, my parents). Even though I am studying theatre (acting professionally is another one of my dream jobs), I also would love to get a screenwriting degree (USC is literally my dream college).

The first time I ever attempted to write anything I was around seven years old. It was actually a script, not a book. The said script was almost a direct rip off of the movie ‘Spy Kids’. (Don't act like you weren't a fan). After that script, all of the things that I wrote were directly influenced by the movies I watched or from the books I read. It wasn't until I got high school (maybe a little bit before that) that I started to create my own original ideas. So movies really influenced what I wrote, whether I chose to recognize it or not. 

Even though I would love to be involved so I can learn more about the film world, I'd want the people who are involved in the making of the film to be in charge. I wouldn't want to be that pesky person who demands for everything to be perfect. (I’m not sure I’ve ever heard of a writer like that). 

Usually, I've noticed that whenever the writer of the book responsible for the book adaption is involved or constantly visits the set of their movie, the movie is always really good.  
Ex. Suzanne Collins wrote the first Hunger Games script, John Green was present on TFIOS set, Veronica Roth was present on the Divergent set and Louis Sachar wrote the script of Holes. So I think that when the writer of the novel gets involved the movie, for the most part the movie ends up better. 

All in all, as long as the book to film adaption looks good, sign me up and I’ll see it.

 Side note: Some of the adoptions I'm looking forward to are Paper Towns, Grasshopper Jungle, Winger, and The Giver. I wish someone would attempt to do the phantom tollbooth again. I LOVED that book.

                       Don't forget to check out everyone else's blog for the June Chain!
June 2014 blog chain prompt/schedule:
Prompt: “What are your thoughts on book-to-movie adaptions? Would you one day want your book made into a movie, or probably not?”
28th – – The topic for July’s blog chain will be announced.

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Queryholics Anonymous

Hi my name is Aaron Cole and I am a queryholic. This is my first time to Query Anonymous and Today I had multiple relapses.

4 days ago Tamara and I sent out about 10 queries. I now realize Fourth of July week was probably a bad time to send the queries in question out. It is not like I don’t love the query, In fact I think I love it more than I should and we have been working on it for months, the problem is this is a week many people want to spend with their families. I’m not sure if the agents who received them even have had the time to subjectively read the query given their already busy schedule. (This is my excuse for some of the agents who have not gotten back to us.)
The response to the query has been…..I will share that info in a few weeks when the future of TGOP is known. (TGOP is the current abbreviation for the Title of the book, from here on out that’s what I will call it)
During this time I have learned that I am not a very patient person. Between watching Gidget reruns with my mom and trying to live a query free life style my mind somehow always drifts back to it. Often I have self-diagnosed panic attacks as a result of this query epidemic. In the event that these panic attacks cause my death from my query withdrawal I have composed a list to help other writers going through the same addiction.


Do not, I repeat DO NOT refresh your email every second after logging in. 5 seconds logged in  to your email is not soon enough to refresh your email and it will not make much of a difference , trust me. To me it is a good thing that the emails aren’t pouring in. I feel if an agent isn’t super snappy with a response to your query they are carefully reviewing other queries. I would rather have a carefully reviewed query with notes (If said agent provides them) then a rushed response.

Solution: Check your email a few times a day.

Chances are if you have that shining email with a request for a partial or full manuscript the agent will still be equally as interested when you do get a chance to read and response .You sent to them, they know you are interested in working together. The saying ‘distance makes the heart grow fonder’ is true in this example. You will be more excited when the shining email is less expected.

Stay far away from this lovely site .You are welcome to post that your query has been sent, but besides that don’t log on until after the agent you queried has responded to you. Both Tamara and I are Guilty of checking on agents that we queried on QT. In a specific example we were creeping on  (anonymous agent's) page and saw that (she /he) sent rejections and request for fulls 2 days after we sent the query, and right now the agent hasn’t gotten back to us. This particular agent responds to every query received as well.  The most recent query that the agent responded to on July 3rd was one from the end of June so anonymous agent was probably, and still may be backed up with queries. So all is well.

Solution: Find other places on the internet to vent, ex .a blog :)
Now that your baby manuscript and query are all grown up and going to find that perfect college (aka agent) you have realized you have more free time then you expected. Instead of checking on your query every second (give it space to grow overbearing parent!)  You can pick up other hobbies. This blog has been a wonderful escape from QT and all of the mixed emotions I feel when viewing.

Do not pass up an opportunity to do actives outside of your home. I’ve done this in the writing process a few times and vowed not to anymore. I almost didn’t do a few fun things while querying like going out to eat with family today or swimming in our pool that has barley been used since we moved here. When you skip out on fun things the work starts to feel like, well work. It puts stress on you that no longer makes the writing process fun. Think about why you wrote in the first place, it most likely was to experience a fun new world and dive into the characters you so beautifully created, don’t lose that mentality. Drop the idea that query time has to be boring because that is the furthest from the truth

Solution: Go out and have fun!
During revisions/querying I went to a Miley Cyrus concert that I almost missed because I was afraid I would finish the revision/query on time. If you are a writer without a deadline one day of frolic and fun won’t hurt anything. In fact it may actually help you. After the Miley concert I had a lot more FRESH Ideas.

Do not call an agent whist querying. During this query process I have learned that I have crazy mood swings, One day I feel confident about my work, the next I feel like I have no idea what I have gotten myself in         to. On the unconfident days I tried to look up agents who I think would be a good fit for TGOP (Incase some of the agents on the list hate the idea).Many of these agents have been overseas. Because I know not to call agents in the USA I figured why not call someone in the UK? It was a bad Idea and the agent who I called wasn’t even accepting queries or enquires as they call them in the United Kingdom. They were very sweet and thank the heavens I didn’t leave my name.

Solution: Read or watch interview with agents.
 This is a much better option than stalking the agents. You can get to learn more about them without them knowing .Currently I am watching a Literary Agents: Full Uncensored Interview by the Hollywood Reporter, it’s amazing and I recommend it to everyone reading. (Click here to watch)

Do not pick apart your sent query. Step away from the query, I repeat Step away from the query! The query you sent has been worked on to the absolute best of your ability. You spent months working on your query and it is as perfect as you could get. If it wasn’t you would not have sent it. At this point there is nothing you can do to make the query better. Even if you do tweak it the query has been sent and it is not a good idea to send this  hypothetically tweaked query to them.(You could but you most likely will get a swift rejecting for double submission, so this is for the best.)

Solution: Wait.
Wait for the agents to email feedback to you, with their information you can tweak your query, if necessary. Hopefully your dream agent loves your query and you can move forward in this crazy world of publishing journey.

May the Force be with all your queries!


Side note I will copy this blog to word and count how many times I said query.
Guess 38
Query was said 36 times

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Query's,Graduations,Licenses and other Milestones happening

So we are wrapping up revisions and preparing to send our  baby MS out into the world in the coming weeks. (Tamara is also going to California State University so this works for her too)

Right now Tamara is out shopping with our mom and I am suppose to be doing revisions, but I like working together with Tamra so much that I'm waiting patiently until she arrives home .*tweetles thumbs* (I'm not procrastinating I swear!) 

I sent our current Query out to 2 places on the interweb today for critiques and am waiting to see how the response is.Its so strange because for the first half of the year  I've watched it grow from zero words to a 100k MS! That is a lot of words. Eventually in the coming days when we finish this batch of revisions it will be taken down ...A lot. Most likely by a few thousand  .

This is the first MS I had the pleasure of writing and  is the most words I have ever written in my life . I  am so proud that we actually buckled down and accomplished what we sent out to do ,so regardless of what happens in our publishing future( If there is one,I have faith that there will be) I am perfectly content.Worst case scenario I have a story that I  love that I could pass along to my family and hope that they love it as much as I do.

Speaking of Family our Grandmother visited from Georgia recently ( she went back home on Monday) We had a blast. We went to Universal Studio's Hollywood ( Although it is in Studio City -Not  Hollywood)  and took her to the amazing In-N-Out (now i'm crazing in-n -out). During her visit Tamara and I were often huddled around our laptop ,working on revisions like mad men(in Tamara's case woman).Ironically grandma's last day in town was the day we finally finished the MS and had a looser schedule to take her where she wanted to visit .Don't worry my mom and dad took her  to Hollywood which I sadly missed,not because of the MS but because they left at 7 am and I am in no why shape or form a morning person.I didn't receive the text from my mom until I woke up at 11 (But i have Hollywood with grandma in the past so i haven't missed out entirely.

Besides the MS being completed a lot of other wonderfully amazing things happened.I got my permit,Tamara Got her License ,and Tamara Graduated High School !!!!!! (the use of unnecessary capitalization is crazy) She graduated from the same school as me ,although she attended a different section of it .She was the top of her class and we are all extremely proud of her. After the graduation we went to Cheesecake Factory to celebrate and had a cook out at when we got home.We eat a lot.

With school being out of the way for the summer  for both of us we can now focus on other things .This means making the MS the best it can possibly be ( A small goal for me in the summer is to get my license!) So I guess If I want the book to be completely done I should get back to editing and revising and stop procrastinating ( Fine, I admit it that is what I'm doing)

Until next time!


Thursday, April 4, 2013


So this is our first blog post, AH, so exciting! We can not wait to start posting, till then we'll leave you with this! Enjoy!

P.S.We would post more, but its midnight. Long day working on the MS tomorrow!(Please disregard the over-used exclamation points)

May the force be with you! 

Aaron & Tamara