It's thundering like fucking Mjollnir here, BTW. I blame NBC.
So this is rich. Tom Eubanks is an author, screenwriter and playwright. His novel, "Worlds Apart," was published by iUniverse. And his play, "American Right," is going to be produced by a theater in Oxnard. He also wrote and directed an independent movie called "Open Spaces." He is a private investigator and he will also proofread your novel or screenplay. Not for free, of course; this is a business.
So as you can see, he's terribly accomplished and he really, really hates Harlan Ellison. He's not alone. Lots of people really, really hate Harlan Ellison. But it's the way Tom Eubanks really, really hates Harlan Ellison that caught my eye.
In the second paragraph, Tom Eubanks, author/screenwriter/playwright/private investigator, has this to say:
I detest science fiction. Always have. You sci-fi buffs out there: it's nothing personal, and I'm not saying there's anything wrong with you because you like all that crap. I'm just not interested. I never watched The Outer Limits or Star Trek; I liked the first Star Wars movie for the characters and the pioneering special effects, but the sequels just don't interest me.
Now he's REALLY got my attention. I LOVE people who detest entire genres! What an open-minded fellow he is. So we know this is gonna go well.
I agreed with what he was saying up until the last minute. Then this loud-mouth turned his venom on amateurs. Did you notice? He blames amateur writers--writers who haven't made any money yet writing--for creating the climate for big wigs in Hollywood and publishing to expect writers to write for free. I believe writers should be paid for their writing, too, but to say that professionals are "undercut by the amateurs" is just pathetic. Yeah. 20th Century Fox would rather have Tom Eubanks write their next Star Wars sequel for free, rather than have Lucas and his team write it for millions. Huh?
I don't think they're gonna get someone who detests science fiction to write it, Tom, no matter HOW accomplished you are. I understand why this got under Tom's skin. Because, see, he isn't really a professional. He can pretend that the credits he has are legitimate but they really aren't. We all know that. So Tom is taking this personally, and it's understandable. Tom has no business talking about film and TV. None at all. He hasn't worked in it professionally. Nor has he worked professionally in the publishing industry. Self-publishing, as great as it may be for some people, lies outside the business as we know it.
In an interesting twist Tom Eubanks, author/screenwriter/playwright/private investigator, claims to be an amateur. He does this for the love of it. If this is true, why is the guy's website all about how he's a fucking WRITER?
I get why amateurs bristle at Harlan's words: They haven't done it yet. They don't work in the business, and they don't know how the business works. The last thing they need or want is to be faced with some professional telling them the truth. But Harlan's right. And we are all culpable. We ALL do WAY too much work for free. I wish I were as brave as Harlan to demand to be paid for my work, but I'm not. And I know he wishes writers would stop doing work for free. But that door was opened a long time ago, and it isn't likely to be closed. And that sucks. You know what else sucks? That some asshat like Tom Eubanks thinks he knows how things work. Harlan doesn't need me to defend him, Lord knows, but when somebody as unaccomplished as this moron says something stupid, I'm going to mention it.
But really, I think, it's about this:
In other YouTube videos, he espouses his atheism, demeans those of us who believe in a higher power, and rants against any kind of religion. But in a stupid exchange between himself and Robin Williams, he raves about L. Ron Hubbard's inventing a religion, Scientology, which, if you know anything about it, routinely devastates peoples lives.
I'm gathering from this comment that Tom's a Christian fellow. Maybe even a hardcore one; I don't know. But how DARE anyone have a contrary opinion, particularly when it's about religion. Yes, religious people are SO firm in their belief that any mention of religion being totally made up makes them furious. Hey, if your belief's so fabulously strong, shouldn't you just shrug this shit off? Tom also totally misunderstands what Harlan's saying about Scientology. Shocker.
Oh -- and read the comments. Such fun!
My second rant has to do with horse racing, so you may look away if this is confusing. So. The Eclipse Awards. I knew Zenyatta would get hosed for Horse of the Year but I didn't expect that the Mosses and John Shirreffs would be treated so poorly. Yes, sports is about numbers. But sports is also about genius and adoration and events that defy description. That's what Zenyatta provided last year. Now, that Goddam Jess Jackson has stolen TWO HOTY titles from her. Curlin didn't deserve to be HOTY over Zenyatta, but the unbelievable bias against California racing gave it to him. Rachel Alexandra is a deserving HOTY, but I just can't get past the clear, obvious disdain the turf writers have for California.
Also, one stupid fucking moronic turf writer voted for a horse other than Zenyatta in her category. Seriously, WTF is wrong with you? If someone is this fucking stupid, maybe their professional credentials should be revoked.
Bob Baffert said that our sport would suffer if Zenyatta wasn't rewarded. I couldn't agree more. The turf writers are like the sci-fi geeks who profess to love the genre but trash it at every opportunity. With the decision to give trophies for owner and trainer to Jackson and Steve Asmussen, the turf writers just ass-raped the sport. Apparently, quantity is the only thing that matters. Fuck quality. John Shirreffs won the two classics this year, but Steve Asmussen gets the trainer award? For what? Four months of putting a saddle on a filly who was already a superstar when he got her?
And the Mosses, who could have retired Zenyatta after her win in 2008, bring her back and do the unbelievable with her. Yet Jess Jackson, whose only claim to fame is having enough money to buy whatever horses he wants, gets the owner award. I mean, he bought Curlin when it was obvious that horse was going onto better things. Then he takes the horse away from the trainer who nurtured and developed him. He buys Rachel after she wins the Kentucky Oaks by 20 lengths. Jesus Christ, people, I would have bought her, too, but I didn't have ten million dollars lying around! He takes THAT horse away from her trainer. And these guys are REWARDED for this. Jess Jackson gets rewarded for skipping the Breeders Cup, and NOBODY has the balls to say to him, "Still smarting from Curlin's loss, huh?"
The Mosses, by comparison, bought Zenyatta as a gangly yearling who was covered in hives. They listen to their trainer, who nurtures her for two years before finally starting her. She sets record after record and they always do what's right by her. Well, fuck you, Mosses and John Shirreffs. You're based in CALIFORNIA. We don't give a shit about California and with the synthetic tracks, now we can be even MORE obviously biased.
Zenyatta carried 129 pounds in the Vanity last year. Let's see how Rachel reacts when she finally has to carry more than 121. Turf writers, YOU ARE HEARTLESS ASSHOLES. Sports may be about numbers and statistics and how wonderful the East Coast is but it's also about moments, and there wasn't a bigger racing moment in the DECADE than Zenyatta's win in the Classic. You guys blew it.
I mean, this on top of "The Hangover" winning a Golden Globe and a WGA nomination? WTF is going ON?????