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Crowdfunding success! Thank you!

Something Like Summer movie castAfter a whirlwind of activity that I’m still reeling from, the Indiegogo campaign for the Something Like Summer movie finally came to a close. How did we do? With your help, $77,330 was raised, about a third of that in the last twenty four hours. The outpouring of support impressed a private investor so much that after the campaign, they contributed another $30,000, bringing the total higher than the $100,000 budget the producers hoped to raise. So we did it! Thank you guys so much! I really appreciate your patience during this process, all the enthusiasm, and of course the work each of you put into helping us realize this goal. This movie couldn’t have happened without your help, so I hope you’re all feeling warm and contended right now. I’m proud of you guys!

Much of this money will go toward producing the soundtrack for the movie. For me, one of the highlights of the livestream broadcast was being able to hear Austin McKenzie speak about his upcoming role as Benjamin Bentley. What a charming guy! He also sang for us. Totally on the spot, without any sort of background music, Austin sang… and it was one of the most beautiful things I’ve ever heard. It also reconfirmed in my mind the importance of bringing this story to screen, so that moments like when Ben first sings to Tim can truly come to life. I also hope you got a chance to hear how passionate all the people involved in making the film are. This story is in safe hands! Filming is due to start next year in Portland, Oregon with a final cut of the film ready by the end of 2015. There will be a lot of exciting news along the way, so please stay tuned, and be sure to visit the movie site at www.somethinglikesummer.com frequently. Up next? Something Like Thunder, followed of course by Something Like Fall. And some new art from Andreas! Stay tuned!

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At last! Meet Tim Wyman!

Davi Santos is Tim WymanThe suspense sure has been building for this one, and to my surprise, that has been a learning experience for me. I know Tim inside and out, but the casting of him made me really boil his character down to a handful of qualities, all of which an actor would require to portray him. Handsome? Yeah, obviously, but that’s highly subjective. So at the very least, I was hoping for an actor with dark features, both in regards to skin tone and hair, and one that most people would agree is attractive. Tim’s actor would also need swagger. Jace might put on the charm, but Tim knows how to crank up the smolder. He also has his boyishly goofy moments, so the actor would need to be playful. Then there are the rare moments when the mask slips and Tim allows himself to be sensitive, vulnerable, and affectionate. All these things are crucial, and a tall order for any one actor to deliver.

When the movie producers first mentioned the name Davi Santos to me, I was just about to board a flight. I only had enough time to Google him and see that he was hot. That was good. Only later did I seek out every clip of the guy I could find, and boy are there a lot! His beginnings in acting school, solo performances, commercial spots, staring roles in independent films, appearances on major network television, and of course theater. Davi Santos seems to have been everywhere and done everything. This made it harder for me to get a handle on him, because he’s all over the place, and I don’t mean that in a derogatory sense. Davi Santos seems to live and breathe acting. While watching so many clips that it made my head spin, there were definitely many moments where I saw my Tim. A cocky smile and some shameless flirting. Or moments of introspection and flickers of vulnerability. So yeah, already in my mind, the names Davi Santos and Tim Wyman are becoming synonymous.

Davi Santos got the smolder!All that’s needed now is taking all four cast members and putting them in the right situations. It’s one thing when a new James Bond actor is announced, but it never feels completely real until we see him doing James Bond stuff. Just imagine Davi Santos squaring off with Ben Baur in an argument, or getting knocked over by Austin McKenzie cruising along on his Rollerblades. Seriously, just try to picture those things for a moment, because this is really happening. To ensure the movie is a amazing as it deserves to be, we still need your help, so please treat yourself to one of the fun perk packages available on the Indiegogo page and help spread the word. Want to know more about Davi? Check out the new episode of Big Gay Movie below. Also be sure to watch Davi in The Cure, a short film he co-wrote. The boy’s got talent!

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Tim Wyman, where are you?

Missing! Tim Wyman
Last week was pretty spectacular if you’re Team Jace. We got to see a tantalizing glimpse of Baur in character as Jace, a new perk was announced paying tribute to one of Jace’s little idiosyncrasies, and just last night a new video was revealed, showing Ben and Jace getting all snuggly together. It’s starting to feel like this movie is just about them. Wasn’t there another guy? I’m pretty sure I wrote a whole book about him. So what’s the deal, movie people? Where are you keeping Tim? Well, director JT Tepnapa and producer Carlos Pedraza have appeared in their mysterious white void again (they exist on the astral plane, only returning to the physical realm to make movies) to explain what’s up with my beloved Mr. Wyman.

What do you think? I say we trust them. After all, what would be better for the Indiegogo campaign than announcing Tim? Unless they’ve got something to hide! But they don’t, because after being locked in my basement for three weeks, they cracked and told me who they intend to cast. Since then, I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about their decision because this is Tim we’re talking about. I took my sweet time deciding if I was happy with their choice or not. Recently I concluded that I am, because I suspect the actor is just as complex and layered as the character I hope he’ll portray. There’s more to Tim than just a pretty face, and the same can be said for this person. Handsome, creative, and at times, kind of silly. I’ve got a good feeling about him, so stay tuned, and in the meantime, please keep spreading the word. Many thanks to all of you who already have and continue to do so!

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Jace – The Fortune Cookie Connection

Ben Baur (Jace) with director JT Tepnapa

Ben Baur (Jace) with director JT Tepnapa

Lately the producers of the Something Like Summer movie have been doing cool stuff with Jace’s love for fortune cookies, but if it’s been a while since you’ve read the book, you might be a little confused. What’s this all about exactly? Well, it starts the first time Ben visits Jace’s apartment, where he notices “an inordinate number of paper fortunes lying around, implying that Jace liked Chinese takeout.” Somebody needs a maid! Once they get settled in the living room, the topic is broached:

    Ben set his glass on the coffee table, pushing paper fortunes out of the way to do so.
    “You sure like Chinese food!”
    “Not really.” Jace looked embarrassed. “I just really like fortune cookies. There’s a restaurant down the road that sells me full shipping boxes. I know it sounds insane, but they’re my absolute favorite treat.”
    Ben laughed and shook his head. Every time Jace opened his mouth, another eccentricity was revealed. Maybe it was this strangeness that scared potential boyfriends away. After all, Jace was attractive, intelligent, and funny. And he had a steady job. What else could anyone want in an eligible bachelor?

What else indeed? Later in the book, Jace takes Ben on his first international trip. Unfortunately, when landing in Rome, they have a brush with a pair of unsavory brothers, almost losing their luggage in the process. Ben’s bravery and a little quick thinking prevent this from happening. His motivation? He didn’t want to lose the surprise he made for Jace and brought along.

    Feeling more like himself again, he dug into his own bag and brought out a small cellophane-covered basket. He handed it over to Jace and waited nervously for his reaction.
    Jace pulled away the plastic to reveal a basket full of fortune cookies. They were a little misshapen but came in a variety of different colors.
    “Wow! These look amazing,” Jace exclaimed. “I love the colors. Look, a blue one! Where did you get them?”
    “They’re homemade,” Ben explained. They were a huge pain in the ass to make, but the expression on Jace’s face was worth it.
    “No way! What about the fortunes?”
    “Check it out.” Ben smiled as Jace broke one open and tossed half into his mouth.
    “Mmmm, good. What’s in my future?” He examined the scrawl on the little strip of paper and raised an eyebrow. “A thousand kisses will soon cover your body.” He raised his gaze from the fortune to look at Ben. “Let’s see if we can make this one come true.”

The scene ends there, which seems a shame, but I have it on good authority that they spent many nights fulfilling this prophecy. Fortune cookies are briefly referenced twice more in Summer, and of course it would be impossible for them not to get a mention in Autumn, which tells Jace’s life story. He’s out having dinner with his sister Michelle and his best friend Greg as this scene takes place:

    When the waitress brought their bill, three fortune cookies rested on the plastic tray. Without having to ask, all three were shoved in Jace’s direction. He felt a surge of affection for them both.
    “You don’t have to give them to me.”
    “Everyone knows what a whore you are for them,” Michelle said with a grin. “Just don’t forget to give us our fortunes.”
    Jace felt a little embarrassed, sitting there and eating all three cookies while they watched, but damn if he didn’t love how they tasted! Why were people always going on about chocolate chip cookies or whatever when they could be eating something so wonderfully crisp? Mixing up the three fortunes, he passed them out randomly.
    Michelle read hers first. “‘Ignorance is the greatest cause of arrogance, and knowledge the best cure for both.’” She thought about this for a moment. “Well fuck you, fortune cookie!”
    Greg laughed and then read his. “‘One doesn’t need to travel to find love, not if one is already home.’”
    “What’s that supposed to mean?” Jace asked.
    Greg’s cheeks looked a little flushed. “I guess I’m staying in Warrensburg. What else could it mean?”
    Jace eyed him, shook his head, and turned his attention to his own fortune. “‘Never loose your sense of humor.’”
    “Loose?” Michelle asked.
    Jace double checked. “Loose.”
    “Think that’s intentional?” Greg asked.
    Regardless, they all started laughing.

I actually got that last fortune in a cookie when working on Autumn, so it seemed appropriate to include it in the story. I kept the fortune for a long time before it disappeared. I suspect Andreas threw it away without realizing it was THE MOST IMPORTANT TREASURE IN THE WORLD! Ahem. We also learn in Autumn why Jace’s apartment was such a mess, and in Spring, I have Jason mention how he can’t stand fortune cookies as a playful way of distinguishing him from his similarly named predecessor. So as you can see, fortune cookies are a fun part of the Something Like… series. I really like that the movie people have taken this small detail and run with it. Today they just announced the creation of special Something Like Summer themed fortune cookies! The fortunes inside will be customized, so maybe quotes from the book, or cheeky references to events? I don’t actually know! But I’m excited. The only way to get them is through the Indiegogo campaign. The bag of fortune cookies will be autographed by Ben Baur, who is playing Jace in the movie. You’ll get a digital photo of him doing so, an HD download of the finished movie and the soundtrack to the film, and access to the weekly production diary. Not bad! The campaign is only running for one more week, so hurry up and get your cookie on!

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Something Like Fall – Get it RIGHT NOW!

Costars Austin McKenzie (Ben) and Ben Baur (Jace) meeting for the first time.

Costars Austin McKenzie (Ben) and Ben Baur (Jace) meeting for the first time.

I hope you’ll forgive the sensational headline, but I maintain that it’s accurate. Right now really is your only guaranteed chance to get the new story. The Indiegogo campaign for the Something Like Summer movie has reached and surpassed twenty-five thousand dollars! $25,000! That’s so amazing! Thank you to everyone who stepped up and contributed. I love you guys. For real. This means of course that Something Like Fall will be written, and that everyone who contributes will get a copy, even if the campaign doesn’t reach the full goal of $100,000. It’s important to note that Indiegogo is different than Kickstarter. Over on Kick, if you don’t fully fund a project, it doesn’t happen. One advantage of Indiegogo is that the money raised can still be utilized, even if it isn’t the full amount. So if you’re waiting to see how close we get to the finish line before you bother—as I sometimes do with Kickstarter campaigns—there’s no sense in holding back now. If the producers don’t get the full amount, your contribution will still be put to good use, and investors will be sought out to cover the rest. This could mean delays, or budget cuts, so if we want this movie to be the best it can be, it’s crucial that we rally and do all we can.

Thanks everyone! That’s why I’m happy to write Something Like Fall without expecting any profit in return. None of the funds raised will be given to me for doing so. It’s me chipping in, because I love these characters, and I really want to see them come to life on screen. I know how passionate you guys are about this story too, so please contribute, or share, or dig around in your grandma’s purse while she’s sleeping. Er, maybe not that last one. Just do what you can within the confines of the law. Contributing any amount is the only way to get Something Like Fall. Right here, baby! Considering how few people will be getting the story, even good ol’ Pirate Bay probably won’t be an option. So please take advantage of my willingness to work for free, chip in however you can, and let’s make this happen!

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Something Like Fall – Ben is back!

Benjamin Bentley in Something Like FallThe Seasons series isn’t over! I’ve always been amused by the idea of writing a story to represent fall. Sure, we’ve already tackled autumn, but I kept this loophole in mind, figuring Something Like Fall could be a special story and not a full-fledged book. That time has come. As many of you have already heard, we’re trying to raise funds for the Something Like Summer movie. Private investors are doing what they can, but we definitely don’t have a huge movie studio backing us up with their millions. If we want this movie to be the best it can be, all of us need to chip in. No one is looking for a handout though. There are many rewards to be had, and Something Like Fall could be one of them. The movie producers are hoping to raise $100,000. To help inch us closer, the new story is being offered as a stretch goal. If we can reach $25,000 (We’re already halfway there!) I will write Fall, and everyone who contributes—no matter the amount—will receive an eBook version. The shocking twist? Something Like Fall will be excusive to this campaign. If you want to read the new story—which will include fresh cover art by Andreas—this is the only way. Contributing gets you lots of other cool stuff too. More on that later. Let’s talk about Benjamin Bentley.

Ben is arguably the most important character in the entire series, which makes it weird that his book is the thinnest. Fall, written from his point of view, will help correct that. Just the idea of getting to revisit him makes me want to cry tears of joy. That’s how much I miss Ben. Do you miss him? What about the other guys? Yeah, me too, so let’s do this! I recorded a few videos talking about all the different perks and contribution levels. One is short and sweet. The other long and meandering, which is more my natural style. You’ll find both videos below, and under that, more information about Something Like Fall. When you’re done soaking it all up, please click this link to visit the Indiegogo page. If you can’t afford to contribute, or even if you can, please help spread the word about this campaign. I’ll be pouring my heart into the new story, and I want as many people to read it as possible. Thank you in advance!

Perks! The long version:

Perks! The shorter version:

Something Like Fall PAQ (Probably Asked Questions)

Q. How long will the new story be?

A. As long as it needs to be. I never fluff up my stories with content I don’t feel is important, but let’s face it, my more recent books are a little on the chubby side. I’m calling it a short story for now. If it needs to be a novella, I won’t resist the urge. For right now I’m calling it a short story.

Q. When is it going to be set? After the events of Spring? Before the start of Summer? When when when?!?

A. I have a handful of ideas I like at the moment. I might choose one of them. I might use all of them. So basically, I can’t answer that right now.

Q. Is [Jace/Tim/Jason/Samson/etc.] going to be in it?

A. See the above answer.

Q. I prefer good ol’ tree-killing paper. Isn’t there some way of getting this story in print?

A. Here’s the deal: The stand-alone eBook version of this story is exclusive to this campaign. Someday I might choose to include Something Like Fall in a compilation of short stories or in a special anniversary edition of Something Like Summer. I honestly don’t have plans to do either anytime soon. The next anniversary for Summer is in 2016. What’s more likely is a special edition in 2021, which will mark ten years. If there are any trees left by then, such a thing will come out in print. So yeah, if you’re crazily patient, you’ll find another way to read this story. I’m hoping you’ll choose to support the movie campaign anyway, because I really want to see Ben and Tim kiss.

Q. When will Something Like Fall be released?

A. The summer of 2015 at the latest. That should give me enough time to finish work on Thunder so I can turn my full focus on Fall and give it the attention it deserves.

Q. If you want lots of people to read the new story, why are you making it exclusive? Can’t you put it up for sale after the fundraising campaign is over?

A. I could, but I’m the sort of guy who often intends to support stuff like this. Then I’ll get distracted by a hot guy walking by (usually Andreas), making me forget what I was going to do until it’s too late. But if I heard I needed to act quickly or I’d never see an exclusive episode of Doctor Who or whatever, I’d gnaw off my own foot rather than miss the opportunity. So yeah, I’m trying to motivate you. Is it devious? Probably. Will I make it worth your while? Oh hell yes! It’s worth noting that none of the funds raised will be given to me to write Fall. I’m freely donating my time to this because, like I said, Ben and Tim. Kissing. I gotta see it.

To check out the other perks you’ll get for contributing, please visit the Indiegogo page.

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