Logline and Treatment for I Hope She Cheats on You

This is my main project for the screenwriting class that I have been taking this semester.  We have to write part of a screenplay.  This is the Logline and Treatment for the film which is entitled I Hope She Cheats on You, which is altered from the idea, I Hope She Cheats on You With a Basketball Player.  See also: this and this.

Logline

An aspiring celebrity psychiatrist suffers a blow to her credibility in advising people on all types of relationships when her famous boyfriend cheats on her with a ditzy heiress.  She plots revenge by befriending the heiress

 

Overview

My film is called I Hope She Cheats on You.  The story focuses on a psychiatrist named Dr. Ginger who achieved worldwide fame when she wrote a self-help on relationships in general called How to Get People to Respond to You Favorably; she hopes to achieve even more fame with her second book, called How to Get Men to Respond to You Favorably, which seeks to help women achieve what they want in relationships, and eventually, Dr. Ginger wants to host her very own talk show.  She has a talent for manipulating people, and she has used her talent to write self-help books, though she writes them in a way where her advice is presented in a manner where she does not outright advise people to manipulate others.  However, when Dr. Ginger’s movie star boyfriend cheats on her with a kind-hearted, but ditzy heiress, she is devastated, not least because her own relationship troubles threatens her credibility.  Wanting revenge, she decided to befriend the heiress, with the goal of manipulating her into cheating on Tommy.  This story is about relationships and people often want them to be successful, but they don’t always work out like they want, and how when people are hurt, they may try measures to make the people who hurt them feel their pain.

 

Character Set-Up

Dr. Ginger is a psychiatrist who wants to be famous on the level of people who are known for giving advice in the public eye such as Dr. Phil or Iyanla Vanzant.  She is well on her way to achieving that goal with the success of her first self-help book.  However, Dr. Ginger also wants personal success.  She wants to marry her boyfriend, the famous movie star, Tommy Jorgensen, but he seems disillusioned about their relationship.  When she discovers that Tommy is cheated with the air-headed heiress, Sally Van Dyne, she is devastated, but not wanting to lose him to a woman that she is condescending towards because of her apparent lack of intelligence, Dr. Ginger forces Tommy to choose either her or Sally; Tommy chooses Sally.  With this setback coming hot off the heels of the release of her second book, which is about giving women advice in romantic relationships, she fears that she will lose her credibility, and everything that she has worked so hard to achieve in her life.  Dr. Ginger blames Tommy for this, and so she decides to even up the score; she befriends Sally with the intention of manipulating her into cheating on Tommy.  But as she grows close to Sally, Dr. Ginger begin to question what she is doing.

 

Tommy Jorgensen is a famous actor.  He first met Dr. Ginger when they appeared on the same talk show; Dr. Ginger appeared on the show to promote her book, and he appeared to promote his latest movie.  He admitted to being a fan of the book, and this led to them bonding and eventually moving in together.  However, their relationship hit some snags because Dr. Ginger began using treating him not like a boyfriend, but more like a subject for her book.  Eventually, he cheats with a fellow celebrity, Sally Van Dyne, and they begin a longstanding affair.  Above all, he wants to be with a woman who views him as a human being rather than being viewed a subject for a self-help book.

 

Sally Van Dyne is often viewed as an idiotic, superficial person.  However, despite how the tabloids depict her, she is a woman who is far less superficial than she might appear.  She is deep.  Sally bonds with Tommy because he sees her as not just an airhead, but as a woman and a human being who is multi-faceted.  She may not be the most intelligent human being, but Sally is a kind and decent human being.  She feels bad about hurting Dr. Ginger, but when Dr. Ginger befriends her, she is happy, but she is too naive, however, to see Dr. Ginger’s ulterior motives.

 

Story

Dr. Ginger is a psychiatrist who was simply a normal psychiatrist.  She counselled patients, and she prescribed them medication when necessary.  In her spare time, she began writing a self-help book because she found her job to be mundane, and she wanted to be famous for giving advice to people.

 

This paid off.  The resulting book, How to Get People to Respond to You Favorably, became a smash hit.  The book became a bestseller with 60 million copies sold around the world in several dozen languages.  It was number one on various newspapers’ and magazines’ best sellers, in all eligible categories, for more than 52 consecutive weeks.

 

One day, while Dr. Ginger is promoting her book on a talk show, she meets the famous movie star, Tommy Jorgensen, who appeared in a different segment to promote his latest movie.  He was also a fan of her book, and they immediately hit it off, began a romance, and they moved in together.

 

In the meantime, Dr. Ginger has began writing her next self-help book, called How to Get Men to Respond to You Favorably, which seeks to help women achieve what they want in relationships.  Dr. Ginger wants to move onto the next level with her relationship with Tommy: Marriage.  She decides to do a series of many different experiments for her book.  She begins dropping hints about wanting to get married, and she uses these experiences to aid in helping herself in writing the book, which she hopes will surpass the success of the first book.  Dr. Ginger starts using manipulation to get Tommy to propose and change other things about yourself, again to see how this can her help with writing her book.  This starts to make Tommy feel isolated.

 

Upon the release of Dr. Ginger’s second book, she is happy, and she even dedicates the book to Tommy saying that he was her biggest and most important inspiration.

 

Then she finds out something horrible.  She walks in on Tommy having sex with Sally Van Dyne, a fellow celebrity and reality TV star, who is known for being very ditzy, and who is an heiress to the Van Dyne hotel chain.  Furious, Dr. Ginger throws them out.

 

However, when their affair is revealed, Dr. Ginger is publicly humiliated, not least because people are now questioning her credibility to give relationship advice.

 

She decides to take Tommy back, partially to salvage her professional credibility, and partially because she doesn’t want to lose him, and she tells him to choose either her or Sally.  He confesses that he loves Sally now, and he felt trapped because Dr. Ginger. treated her only as a subject for her book instead of a boyfriend.

 

Dr. Ginger is hurt over the entire situation, and her second book does not sell as well as the first one.  Wanting revenge, and blaming Tommy for all of her problems, she decides to befriend Sally and manipulate her into cheating on Tommy, so that Tommy knows her pain.

 

She approaches Sally alone.  Sally is hurt because the press has labeled her as a “homewrecker.”  Dr. Ginger says that she does not blame her for the end of her relationship with Tommy, and that she forgives Sally.  Sally who is a fan of her books, appreciates the gestures, and she accepts Dr. Ginger’s offer of friendship.

 

As they grow close, Dr. Ginger learns a lot about Sally, about how she feels it’s difficult to live up to her family’s expectations, seeing as she is not exactly what people would consider to be “cultured.”  Sally points out that she is not as stupid as people think she is, but on her reality show, she simply acts that way because that’s how people see her, and that’s how people expect her to act.  She’s not a genius, but she’s not an airhead either.

 

Dr. Ginger is amazed by Sally opening up herself like that.  She begins to question whether using Sally to hurt Tommy is really worth it.  But when she learns that Tommy and Sally have gotten engaged, her feelings of anger towards Tommy resurface, and she impulsively calls in an anonymous tip to a local tabloid magazine that Sally has cheated on Tommy with her ex-boyfriend.

 

The fallout is, predictably, devastating for everyone that’s involved.  Tommy and Sally deny the report, and they vow to sue the tabloid for millions of dollars.  Dr. Ginger realizes that she made a horrible mistake, not only because she hurt a relationship, but because she ruined the relationship of someone that she considered a friend.

 

Realizing what she has to do, Dr. Ginger makes a public confession, that she tipped off the tabloid.  She publicly apologizes to both Tommy and Sally, and she states that she needs to leave the public eye and focus on her own issues before she can responsibly and reputably help other people.

 

Tommy and Sally, shortly afterwards visit, Dr. Ginger.  Dr. Ginger tells them that if they want to harshly admonish her, she deserves that and far worse.  But they they apologize for ever hurting her in the first place, and they ask if they can start over.  Dr. Ginger is shocked, but she is reluctant to rebuild some sort relationship; nonetheless, Dr. Ginger agrees the try.  The movie flash forward a year, where Tommy and Sally are getting married, with Dr. Ginger as Sally’s maid of honor.  Also, Dr. Ginger had recently released a third and a fourth self-help book dedicated to both Tommy and Dr. Ginger:  How to Be the Best Friend You Can Be and How to Be the Best Romantic Partner You Can Be; in addition, Dr. Ginger has a new boyfriend, and they are taking things slow, but still are happy together.

 

 

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Ginger Redman (Yes, I know that I need to come up with a better name for this character.)

Hello, all!

Today, I will talk about the main protagonist of a romantic comedy I have conceived, titled, I Hope She Cheats on You with a Basketball Player.

Dr. Ginger Redman, is brilliant psychiatrist, wh0 came to worldwide fame when she wrote a self-help book, The Subtle Art of Manipulation: How to Get Anyone Anywhere to Do Anything You Want.  She shared her skills of manipulating people with the whole world, and her book became a huge success.  It was on the bestseller lists of several major newspapers in all eligible categories for over 52 consecutive weeks.  It was translated into dozens of languages and sold more than 60 million copies worldwide.  However, Ginger learns that manipulation does not work on everybody, and and finds that sometimes, she needs to think outside the box in order to ensure successful relationships of all types.

Screenplay for My Short Film for My Digital Film-making Class

This fall, I enrolled in a digital film-making class.  The objective of the class is to learn the entire film-making experience.  This includes things such as conception, screenwriting, story-boarding, lighting, filming, finding actors, and editing the film on a computer.  This is quite a challenge, and yes, I am struggling, but regardless, I am committed to making best possible short film that I can make.

The film has to be two to five minutes long, and it has to be original to the class.  Anything done outside of the specific class (including the screenplay) whether done for another class or on one’s own time , would not be an acceptable project under most circumstances.

This project involves my character Luna .  In this story, she wants clothes, but does not have any money for them.  Her mother refuses to give her the money, saying that she does not need new clothes.  Luna decides to find the money another way, and in the process, she learns about what really matters.

Enjoy.

New Clothes for a New Seasom
By
Ellis Sutton, Jr.
INT. LIVING ROOM – NIGHT
It is nighttime. ALMA, a forty-something businesswoman,
walks into the living room from outside. She is tired and
sits down on the couch.
ALMA
Oh, what a day!
Seconds later, LUNA, Alma’s fashionable teenage daughter
walks downstairs. She hugs her mother.
LUNA
Hey, mom! How was your day!
They stop hugging and Luna sits down.
ALMA
Ugh! So busy! I can’t believe my
assistant accidentally deleted the
files we needed. Almost set us
back!
LUNA
Sounds bad. Can I have some money?
ALMA
What in the world for?
LUNA
Clothes. I need new stuff to wear.
ALMA
But, Luna, you just got clothes for
Christmas a few months ago.
LUNA
Yeah, I know. That was my winter
wardrobe. Now, I gotta buy my
spring wardrobe.
ALMA
What about the clothes you got
right before school started last
fall? It’s warm enough for those
isn’t it?
LUNA
That was my fall wardrobe.
ALMA
Luna. There’s nothing wrong with
your clothes.
(CONTINUED)
CONTINUED: 2.
LUNA
Um, yeah there are. They went out
of style. I can’t show my face at
school wearing them.
ALMA
Sorry. The answer’s “no.”
LUNA
But, mom, I really need them. I
mean, sure, I liked my clothes when
I got them, but lots of things
changed. Like, no one wears those
boots Dad got me for Christmas
anymore.
ALMA
Luna, honey, you’ll just have to
learn two things. Appreciate what
you have. And there’s a difference
between needs and wants. You don’t
NEED new clothes; you WANT them.
LUNA.
No, I DO need them.
Alma stands up and walks away.
ALMA
I’m done! I’m gonna take a shower
and go to bed.
Luna takes her cell phone out of her pocket.
ALMA (O.S.)
And don’t even think about asking
your father for the money!
Luna puts her phone back in her pocket and shakes her head.
INT. CONDOMINIUM LIVING ROOM – THE FOLLOWING AFTERNOON
A MIDDLED-AGED WOMAN, Luna’s aunt LUCY is sitting at her
living room table typing on her LAPTOP. She hears a knock
on the door. She gets up to answer the door. It is Luna.
LUNA
Hey, Aunt Lucy!
LUCY
Luna! I’m so glad to see you. We
had a great Christmas!
(CONTINUED)
CONTINUED: 3.
LUNA
We sure did! Thanks again for the
dress!
LUCY
Of course, honey! I know how you
always like to look good!
LUNA
Yep, that’s me!
LUCY
Please, Luna, sit down down! Would
you like something to eat, drink!
LUNA
No, I’m good.
Luna sits down next to Lucy on the couch.
LUNA
So, how’s Al been?
LUCY
Your cousin’s been fine. The
University of Chicago’s lucky to
have him.
Lucy then frowns. Luna notices.
LUNA
What’s the matter, Aunt Lucy?
Lucy sighs.
LUCY
It’s just that pay for Al to go to
college has been so hard
LUNA
(confused)
How do you mean?
LUCY
Well, with tuition and housing and
all of that, it costs almost
$60,000 dollars per year.
LUNA
(shocked)
Wow!
(CONTINUED)
CONTINUED: 4.
LUCY
Yeah. And to be honest we can’t
really afford it. And with the
fact that Al wasn’t accepted
anywhere else and his father losing
his job, it’s been mostly up to me
to make ends meet.
LUNA
All up to you?
LUCY
Pretty much. I’ve been doing all I
can to make sure Al can get an
education. I mean, I’ve gotten two
extra jobs, I’ve cancelled the
phone and TV services, and I’m so
close to cancelling the Internet
too.
LUNA
(shocked)
The Internet?! How can you deal
without the Internet?!
LUCY
I don’t know. But I don’t have a
choice, really.
LUNA
You know, Aunt Lucy.
LUCY
What?
LUNA
Well, I got lots of clothes I don’t
wear anymore. I could sell them
and give the money to you.
Lucy gives Luna a big hug.
LUCY
Luna, thank you, honey for that. I
really meant it. But I can’t
accept that.
LUNA
But why? You need the help. And I
can do it.
(CONTINUED)
CONTINUED: 5.
LUCY
Yes, I’m struggling. But I don’t
want you to have to give things up
for me. You’re young. You deserve
to have fun until you grow up and
have to deal with all this
adulthood trouble.
Luna and Lucy hug.
LUCY
Now, I don’t mean to send you away,
but I’ve gotta get ready for work.
It was nice seeing you Luna.
Lucy gets up.
LUNA
It was nice seeing you, too, Aunt
Lucy.
Luna then gets up and leaves.
INT. LIVING ROOM – NIGHT
Alma is sitting in the living room at the couch with a
laptop and numerous papers and folders. Luna walks in.
LUNA
Hi, mom.
ALMA
Hi, baby. How was your day?
LUNA
It was fine.
Luna sits down next to Alma.
LUNA
Mom, I just wanna say that I’m
sorry about yesterday. I was a
spoiled brat. You’re right. My
clothes are fine. I don’t need any
new ones.
Luna then hugs Alma.
LUNA
I just wanna say thanks for being
the best mom in the world. I love
you.
(CONTINUED)
CONTINUED: 6.
ALMA
I love you too, Luna. And baby, I
want you have the things want, but
I also want you to know there’s
more important things.
LUNA
I know that now, Mom.
ALMA
What do you say I take a break from
all this work, and we watch some TV
together.
LUNA
Sound great, Mom!
Alma moves her papers, folders, and laptop to the side and
turns on the TV.
TV ANNOUNCER (O.S.)
Today, hot new designers reveal
their spring fashions.
Luna taps Alma
LUNA
Mom? Can I have some money for
that dress?
ALMA
(frustrated)
No! I thought we already went over
this!
LUNA
But, Mom! I need that dress! It’s
perfect for me!
Alma just shakes her head.
FADE OUT.

Ode to TV Tropes

One of my absolute favorite websites on the Internet is TV Tropes.  TV Tropes, whose full name is Television Tropes and Idioms, is a wiki that is devoted to cataloging various types of narrative devices, or tropes as they call them.  Despite its name, it not devoted solely to tropes from TV; it covers tropes from literature, film, music, comic books, video games legends, folklore, mythology, religion, the Internet and real life.

The site first began as a collection of tropes from the popular series, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, in 2004.  In the nine years since, TV Tropes expand tremendously to all types of media.

I first began using the site regularly in about late 2010.  I was so entranced by it.  There was so much information on various shows and movies that I had never found anywhere else; it most certainly was not on Wikipedia (which TV Tropes calls “The Other Wiki”).  It was also a good place to learn about narrative tropes and help aid writers in developing plot occurrences and characters.  I am happy that it helped give me direction in the development of one of my characters, Riley Diamond I used the trope called Cloudcuckoolander, which denotes a character who is odd and seemingly out of touch with reality.  I’ve since used the site to help develop other tropes in my other ideas.

I cannot say enough good things about it.  However, I will point out that due to the fact that it is a wiki, and therefore, can be edited by anybody, it is not suitable for academic research for essays and the like, just like Wikipedia.  Not to mention, it has very few sources, and therefore, it has almost no verification of the information listed.  However, much of the information can be confirmed by viewing or reading the media discussed.

However, the main strength of TV Tropes is its community of lovers of all type of media and wealth of perspectives.

I plan on devoting several future posts to various tropes listed on TV Tropes, but for now, I will briefly discuss a few of my favorite entries.

Your Mileage May Vary or YMMV

This focuses on tropes that are subjective.  They may involve differences of opinions on characters such as whether a character is unlikable or whether a plot element is weak or strong.

Designated Heroes and Designated Villains

These are YMMV tropes.  They refer to characters who are intended by the writers to be heroes or villains but who are perceived as unlikable or even villainous in the cases of designated heroes or likable, sympathetic, and even heroic in the cases of designated villains.  This often happens because writers do not realize that they are making their heroes unlikable or their villains likable.

Cloudcukoolander

As mentioned above, this a character who does odd things, and who seems to have his or her head in the clouds, so to speak.

Alpha Bitch

This character is mean girl of the school.  She does everything to assert her popularity and make the lives of the so-called unpopular kids a living hell.

What an Idiot

Another YMMV trope, this refers to characters who something that causes the audience or reader to think or say “What an Idiot.”  Many of examples listed on the site are structures as follows.

Situation

You’d Expect:

Instead:

Non Singing Voice

This refers to a phenomena that has mostly died out in musical films where if the actors did not have suitable singing voices, either in general or for the material at hand, then professional singer would record their musical numbers, and it is the singer’s voice, not the actor’s voice, heard during the musical numbers.  Occasionally, as in the film versions of the musicals West Side Story, The Sound of Music, and My Fair Lady, certain actors sang their songs only to have them re-recorded by more skilled skilled singers.  This has also happened in various animated musical films of the 1990s, particularly those done by Disney.

The Completed First Draft of My Very First Screenplay

Months later, I decided to return to my screenplay.  I knew that I would have to make some changed, but first, I felt that I should complete it, or at least complete as much as possible.  I made some revisions, shared it online in order to get feedback, made more revisions, and then I finally completed the first draft.

Here the first incomplete draft that I shared.

INT. RILEY’S HOUSE – NIGHT
RILEY DIAMOND walks into her bedroom wearing a bathrobe and
shower cap. She goes into her drawers and picks up some
clothes. She sees looks at a pair of her socks, drops the
rest of her clothing and storms into her brother ZEKE
DIAMOND’s room. Zeke is sitting at his computer. Riley
turns his chair around and show him her sock.
RILEY
What is this?
ZEKE
A sock.
RILEY
(agitated)
Don’t play dumb! What is this
stain on my sock?!
ZEKE
I thought it was mine. Then I
realized it wasn’t, but it was so
soft I kept on…
RILEY
(in a disgusted voice,
yelling)
Stop! Why would you do that?
ZEKE
It was an accident. Stop being a
drama queen.
RILEY
But the socks were very special to
me, and I spent a lot of money for
them.
ZEKE
Well, it was stupid to buy socks
for 200 dollars.
RILEY
You didn’t see the woman who sold
them to me. Her boyfriend got her
pregnant and left her four times.
She was broke and desperate. I
wanted to do what I could to help.
Zeke looks at Riley like she is stupid and oblivious.
RILEY (CONT’D)
But anyway, that doesn’t change how
I feel. Use your own socks or
articles of clothing next time.
Riley stomps out of the room crying and yelling and slams
Zeke’s door.
INT. SCHOOL HALLWAY – THE NEXT MORNING
Riley is wearing a back pack and standing at her locker
opening it frowning when her best friend MARISSA NOGALES
walks up to her.
MARISSA
Hey, Riley! What’s up?
RILEY
(in a sad voice)
My brother that’s what’s up!
MARISSA
(concerned)
What did Zeke do?
RILEY
Riley opens her backpack, and pulls out a large Ziploc bag
with a white sock in it.
He ruined my sock!
MARISSA
How?
Riley shoves the plastic bag into Marissa’s face.
RILEY
Look very closely.
Marissa scrunches her eyes and face while looking at the sock
through the bag.
MARISSA
I see a yellow stain. What is
that? Mustard? Paint?
RILEY
Let’s just say that my brother did
something to please himself.
MARISSA
Gross!
RILEY
I know! It was so special to me.
When that lady sold it to me, I
loved how I was able to help ease
her pain and help her feed her
children. And now every time I
look at I imagine what Zeke and
that lady’s love child would look
like
Riley shudders.
MARISSA
Have you talked to him?
RILEY
Well, no. I mean, I kind of just
yelled and cried and stomped and
acted like a huge baby. Maybe I
should talk to Zeke again.
MARISSA
I’m just glad my brothers don’t use
socks.
RILEY
How would you know such a thing?
Marissa shudders.
MARISSA
Let’s just drop it okay.
INT. RILEY’S HOUSE – LATER THAT AFTERNOON
Riley is sitting on the sofa in her living while on her
laptop. Zeke walks into the living room.
RILEY
Hi, Zeke!
ZEKE
(feeling despondent)
Hi, Riley.
Riley stands up and walks to Zeke.
RILEY
I just wanted to say I’m sorry.
About last night, I mean.
ZEKE
Apology accepted.
Zeke tried to walk around Riley, but she stops him
RILEY
Hey, hey, hey, wait. You’re
supposed to apologize to me too.
ZEKE
Yeah…not gonna happen.
RILEY
(yelling)
But that’s not fair you knew that
was my favorite sock!
ZEKE
I didn’t know it at the time!
RILEY
Well, you should have!
ZEKE
I’m not about the apologize for
ruining a cheap-ass sock that you
were scammed into buying. Excuse
me, I gotta work on my English
essay.
Zeke walks away to his room. Riley who is furious walks to
the bathroom, and she picks up his blue electric toothbrush.
RILEY
I guess, I shall fight fire with
fire.
Riley closes the bathroom door, and the sound of herself
brushing her teeth can be heard.
INT. RILEY’S HOUSE – THE NEXT MORNING
Riley walks past the bathroom where Zeke is brushing his
teeth. She starts to chuckle. Zeke spits out his
toothpaste.
ZEKE
What’s so funny?
RILEY
(laughing)
Nothing. Just felt like havin’ a
good laugh. Sometimes when
everything seems bad laughing for
no reason can help.
ZEKE
(feeling as though Riley
is just being her usual
oddball self)
Whatever.
Riley walks downstairs.
INT. SCHOOL HALLWAY – LATER THAT DAY
Riley is walking to class when her phones rings. She has a
text message from her ex-boyfriend KENDALL LEWIS. Riley gets
overly excited and oblivious to the fact that other students
in the hall are staring at her with bewilderment, she reads
the message. It says: “Meet me for lunch. I need to tell you
something.” Riley squeals in an expression of excessive
excitement.
Riley runs down the hall to Marissa’s locker.
RILEY
Marissa, I’ve got great news.
Kendall wants to talk.
MARISSA
That’s great, girl.
RILEY
Maybe he wants to get back
together. Oh my god, I have to get
ready. Anyways, I gotta go to
class, I’ll tell you all about it
after school. Bye.
MARISSA
I’ll see you! Good luck!
Riley runs off to class.
INT. SCHOOL CAFETERIA – AFTERNOON
Riley walks around the cafeteria to the table where her exboyfriend
KENDALL LEWIS is sitting.
KENDALL
Riley!
RILEY
Kendall! Hi.
KENDALL
So…how’s it goin’
RILEY
I’ve been fine. I had an issue
with by little brother, but I’ve
taken care of it.
Riley sits down next to Kendall and moves very close to him
in an amorous manner.
RILEY (CONT’D)
(speaking in a low,
somewhat seductive voice)
So what was it you wanted to talk
to me about?
KENDALL
Well….this is kinda hard to
say…well….um….I went to
the….doctor yesterday, and um she
told me that I might mono.
RILEY
(screaming)
WHAT?!
KENDALL
I just thought that I should tell
you that….just So that you would
know and check yourself.
Riley starts to feel sad.
RILEY
Oh my god! I have to go!
Riley runs out of the cafeteria crying.
INT. RILEY’S BEDROOM
Marissa is comforting Riley after the revelation that Kendall
gave her.
RILEY
(crying)
I can’t believe I might have mono!
MARISSA
Look, Riley, calm down. You gotta
keep your head up. You might not
have mono, and besides, it very
treatable anyways.
RILEY
I know its just, I feel so dirty.
Like I’m a horrible person.
Riley suddenly remembers something
RILEY (CONT’D)
Oh, my god! Oh my god! Oh my god! I
AM a horrible person.
MARISSA
Look, its not your fault!
RILEY
No! I might have given it to Zeke.
MARISSA
I’m confused.
RILEY
The other night, I was still mad at
him for ruining my favorite sock!
So I got revenge! I brushed my
teeth with his toothbrush.
MARISSA
There…are just no words.
RILEY
I know! Now what do I do?!
MARISSA
You gotta come clean.
RILEY
(feeling hesitant)
Okay. Zeke can you come here?!
Zeke walks into Riley’s bedroom.
ZEKE
What?
RILEY
You remember the whole thing with
you and my favorite sock and how
you did apologize?
ZEKE
(confused)
Yeah?
Well, I thought that you needed to
be punished. So I brushed my teeth
with your toothbrush.
Zeke gags in disgust.
RILEY (CONT’D)
Wait, there’s more. Kendall, you
know my ex, told me that he might
have mono so I might’ve given it to
you.
ZEKE
OK, now I gotta lay down!
MARISSA
Look, Zeke, we don’t know for sure
yet.
ZEKE
That don’t matter! That’s just
nasty!

Here is the second incomplete draft:
INT. RILEY’S HOUSE – NIGHT
RILEY DIAMOND walks into her bedroom wearing pajamas. She
opens her laptop computer, types in her password, screams,
looks disturbed, picks up her laptop, and storms out in to
her younger brother ZEKE DIAMOND’s bedroom where he is on
his own computer.
RILEY
What the hell’s this?
ZEKE
Ah, yeah! I went to that site
before I got my computer back
today.
RILEY
(agitated) Oh my god! That’s
gross! Why would you use my
computer and without askin’!
ZEKE
I just couldn’t weight any longer
for them to fix my computer.
RILEY
(in a disgusted voice,
yelling) You tainted my
computer
ZEKE
Stop bein’ a drama queen. Just
delete the history.
RILEY
That’s not the point! You don’t use
my computer without asking! And
especially not to look at nasty
stuff! Riley slams her laptop shut,
stomps out of the room, crying and
yelling, and slams Zeke’s door.
INT. SCHOOL HALLWAY – THE NEXT MORNING
Riley is wearing a back pack and standing at her locker
opening it frowning when her best friend MARISSA NOGALES
walks up to her.
MARISSA
Hey, Riley! What’s up?
(CONTINUED)
CONTINUED: 2.
RILEY
(in a sad voice) My brother
that’s what’s up!
MARISSA
(concerned) What did Zeke do?
RILEY
He used my laptop without asking!
And he left a surprise
MARISSA
What do you mean?
RILEY
Come with me. Riley and Marissa
walk to the girl’s bathroom and go
into a stall. Riley then takes her
laptop out of her backpack, opens
it types in her password, and shows
it to Marissa.
RILEY (CONT’D)
Look very closely. Marissa looks
disturbed.
MARISSA
That’s gross! Marissa looks
confused.
MARISSA (CONT’D)
And painful. Can you really do
that? Riley closes her laptop.
RILEY
I can’t believe he did that. I wish
I could unsee things. Why do boys
have to be so perverted? Riley
growls in aggravation.
MARISSA
Look girl. Just talk to him be
firm.
RILEY
Well, when I found out I kinda
acted like a big baby. I feel dumb.
MARISSA
Just sit Zeke down. Be nice.
(CONTINUED)
CONTINUED: 3.
RILEY
Okay. I’ll do that.
INT. RILEY’S HOUSE – LATER THAT AFTERNOON
Riley is sitting on the sofa in her living while on her
laptop. Zeke walks into the living room.
RILEY
(cheeful) Hi, Zeke!
ZEKE
(feeling despondent) Hi,
Riley. Riley stands up and
walks to Zeke.
RILEY
I just wanted to say I’m sorry.
About last night, I mean.
ZEKE
Apology accepted. Zeke tries to
walk around Riley, but she stops
him.
RILEY
Hey, hey, hey, wait. You’re
supposed to apologize to me too.
ZEKE
Yeah…not gonna happen. Zeke once
again tries to walk around Riley,
and she once again stops him.
RILEY
(yelling) But that’s not fair.
You used my laptop without
asking.
ZEKE
So! All you gotta do is just erase
the history!
RILE
You should’ve done that! In fact,
don’t use my laptop without
permission!
ZEKE
I’m not about the apologize for
making you see somethin’ that you
see in the girls’ locker room
(MORE)
(CONTINUED)
CONTINUED: 4.
ZEKE (cont’d)
everyday. Now excuse me. I gotta
work on my English essay.
Zeke walks around Riley away to his room. Riley who is
furious walks to the bathroom, and she picks up his blue
electric toothbrush.
RILEY
I guess, I shall fight fire with
fire. Riley closes the bathroom
door, and the sound of herself
brushing her teeth can be heard.
INT. RILEY’S HOUSE – THE NEXT MORNING
Riley walks past the bathroom where Zeke is brushing his
teeth. She starts to chuckle. Zeke spits out his toothpaste.
ZEKE
What’s so funny?
RILEY
(laughing) Nothing. Just felt
like havin’ a good laugh.
Sometimes when everything
seems bad laughing for no
reason can help.
ZEKE
(feeling as though Riley is
just being her usual oddball
self) Whatever. Riley walks
downstairs.
INT. SCHOOL HALLWAY – LATER THAT DAY
Riley is walking to class when her phones rings. She has a
text message from her ex-boyfriend KENDALL LEWIS. Riley gets
overly excited and oblivious to the fact that other students
in the hall are staring at her with bewilderment, she reads
the message. It says: “Meet me for lunch. I need to tell you
something.” Riley squeals in an expression of excessive
excitement. Riley runs down the hall to Marissa’s locker.
RILEY
Marissa, I’ve got great news.
Kendall wants to talk.
(CONTINUED)
CONTINUED: 5.
MARISSA
That’s great, girl.
RILEY
Maybe he wants to get back
together. Oh my god, I have to get
ready. Anyways, I gotta go to
class, I’ll tell you all about it
after school. Bye.
MARISSA
I’ll see you! Good luck! Riley runs
off to class.
INT. SCHOOL CAFETERIA – AFTERNOON
Riley walks around the cafeteria to the table where her
ex-boyfriend KENDALL LEWIS is sitting.
KENDALL
Riley!
RILEY
Kendall! Hi.
KENDALL
So…how’s it goin’
RILEY
I’ve been fine. I had an issue with
by little brother, but I’ve taken
care of it. Riley sits down next to
Kendall and moves very close to him
in an amorous manner.
RILEY (CONT’D)
(speaking in a low, somewhat
seductive voice) So what was
it you wanted to talk to me
about?
KENDALL
Well….this is kinda hard to
say…well….um….I went to
the….doctor yesterday, and um she
told me that I might mono.
RILEY
(screaming)
(CONTINUED)
CONTINUED: 6.
WHAT?! KENDALL
I just thought that I should tell
you that….just So that you would
know and check yourself. Riley
starts to feel sad.
RILEY
Oh my god! I have to go! Riley runs
out of the cafeteria crying.
INT. RILEY’S BEDROOM
Marissa is comforting Riley.
RILEY
(crying) I can’t believe I
might have mono!
MARISSA
Look, Riley, calm down. You gotta
keep your head up. You might not
have mono, and besides, it very
treatable anyways.
RILEY
I know its just, I feel so dirty.
Like I’m a horrible person. Riley
suddenly remembers something
RILEY (CONT’D)
Oh, my god! Oh my god! Oh my god! I
AM a horrible person.
MARISSA
Look, its not your fault!
RILEY
No! I might have given it to Zeke.
MARISSA
I’m confused.
RILEY
The other night, I was still mad at
him for ruining my favorite sock!
So I got revenge! I brushed my
teeth with his toothbrush.
MARISSA
There…are just no words.
(CONTINUED)
CONTINUED: 7.
RILEY
I know! Now what do I do?!
MARISSA
You gotta come clean.
RILEY
(feeling hesitant) Okay. Zeke
can you come here?! Zeke walks
into Riley’s bedroom.
ZEKE
What?
RILEY
You remember the whole thing with
you looking at porn on my laptop?
ZEKE
(confused) Yeah?
RILEY
Well, I thought that you needed to
be punished. So I brushed my teeth
with your toothbrush. Zeke gags in
disgust.
RILEY (CONT’D)
Wait, there’s more. Kendall, you
know my ex, told me that he might
have mono so I might’ve given it to
you.
ZEKE
OK, now I gotta lay down!
MARISSA
Look, Zeke, we don’t know for sure
yet.
ZEKE
That don’t matter! That’s just
nasty!

And here is the completed first draft:

INT. RILEY’S HOUSE – NIGHT
RILEY DIAMOND walks into her bedroom wearing pajamas. She
opens her laptop computer, types in her password, screams,
looks disturbed, picks up her laptop, and storms out in to
her younger brother ZEKE DIAMOND’S bedroom where he at his
desk and is on his own computer. She turns his chair and
shows him her laptop.
RILEY
What the hell’s this?
ZEKE
Ah, yeah! I went to that site
before I got my computer back
today.
RILEY
(agitated)
Oh my god! That’s gross! Why
would you use my computer and
without askin’!
ZEKE
I just couldn’t weight any longer
for them to fix my computer.
RILEY
(disgusted)
You tainted my computer!
ZEKE
Stop bein’ a drama queen. Just
delete the history.
RILEY
That’s not the point! You don’t use
my computer without asking! And
especially not to look at nasty
stuff!
Riley slams her laptop shut, stomps out of the room, crying
and yelling, and slams Zeke’s door.
INT. SCHOOL HALLWAY – THE NEXT MORNING
Riley is wearing a back pack and standing at her locker
opening it frowning when her best friend MARISSA NOGALES
walks up to her.
MARISSA
Hey, Riley! What’s up?
RILEY
(frustrated)
My brother that’s what’s up!
MARISSA
(concerned)
What did Zeke do?
RILEY
He used my laptop without asking!
And he left a surprise
MARISSA
What do you mean?
RILEY
Come with me.
Riley and Marissa walk to the girl’s bathroom and go into a
stall. Riley then takes her laptop out of her backpack,
opens it types in her password, and shows it to Marissa.
RILEY (CONT’D)
Look very closely.
Marissa looks disturbed.
MARISSA
That’s gross!
Marissa looks confused.
MARISSA (CONT’D)
And painful. Can you really do
that?
Riley closes her laptop.
RILEY
I can’t believe he did that. I
wish I could unsee things. Why do
boys have to be so perverted?
Riley growls in aggravation.
MARISSA
Look girl. Just talk to him be
firm.
RILEY
Well, when I found out I kinda
acted like a big baby. I feel
dumb.
MARISSA
Just sit Zeke down. Be nice.
RILEY
Okay. I’ll do that.
INT. RILEY’S HOUSE – LATER THAT AFTERNOON
Riley is sitting on the sofa in her living while on her
laptop. Zeke walks into the living room.
RILEY
(cheeful)
Hi, Zeke!
ZEKE
(feeling despondent)
Hi, Riley.
Riley stands up and walks to Zeke.
RILEY
I just wanted to say I’m sorry.
About last night, I mean.
ZEKE
Apology accepted.
Zeke tries to walk around Riley, but she stops him.
RILEY
Hey, hey, hey, wait. You’re
supposed to apologize to me too.
ZEKE
Yeah…not gonna happen.
Zeke once again tries to walk around Riley, and she once
again stops him.
RILEY
(yelling)
But that’s not fair. You used my
laptop without asking.
ZEKE
So! All you gotta do is just erase
the history!
RILE
You should’ve done that! In fact,
don’t use my laptop without
permission!
ZEKE
I’m not about the apologize for
making you see somethin’ that you
see in the girls’ locker room
everyday. Now excuse me. I gotta
work on my English essay.
Zeke walks around Riley away to his room. Riley who is
furious walks to the bathroom, and she picks up his blue
electric toothbrush.
RILEY
I guess, I shall fight fire with
fire. Good thing Zeke always
sanitizes his toothbrush.
Riley closes the bathroom door, and the sound of herself
brushing her teeth can be heard.
INT. RILEY’S HOUSE – THE NEXT MORNING
Riley walks past the bathroom where Zeke is brushing his
teeth. She starts to chuckle. Zeke spits out his
toothpaste.
ZEKE
What’s so funny?
RILEY
(laughing)
Nothing. Just felt like havin’ a
good laugh. Sometimes when
everything seems bad laughing for
no reason can help.
ZEKE
(feeling as though Riley
is just being weird)
Whatever.
Riley walks downstairs.
INT. SCHOOL HALLWAY – LATER THAT DAY
Riley is walking to class when her phones rings. She has a
text message from her ex-boyfriend KENDALL LEWIS. Riley
gets overly excited and oblivious to the fact that other
students in the hall are staring at her with bewilderment,
she reads the message. It says: “Meet me for lunch. I need
to tell you something.” Riley squeals in an expression of
excessive excitement.
Riley runs down the hall to Marissa’s locker.
RILEY
Marissa, I’ve got great news.
Kendall wants to talk.
MARISSA
That’s great, girl.
RILEY
Maybe he wants to get back
together. Oh my god, I have to get
ready. Anyways, I gotta go to
class, I’ll tell you all about it
after school. Bye.
MARISSA
I’ll see you! Good luck!
Riley runs off to class.
INT. SCHOOL CAFETERIA – AFTERNOON
Riley walks around the cafeteria to the table where her
ex-boyfriend KENDALL LEWIS is sitting.
KENDALL
Riley!
RILEY
Kendall! Hi.
KENDALL
So…how’s it goin’
RILEY
I’ve been fine. I had an issue
with by little brother, but I’ve
taken care of it.
Riley sits down next to Kendall and moves very close to him
in an amorous manner.
RILEY (CONT’D)
(speaking in a low,
somewhat seductive voice)
(MORE)
So what was it you wanted to talk
RILEY (CONT’D) (CONT’D)
to me about?
KENDALL
Well….this is kinda hard to
say…well….um….I went to
the….doctor yesterday, and um she
told me that I might mono.
RILEY
(screaming)
WHAT?!
KENDALL
I just thought that I should tell
you that….just So that you would
know and check yourself.
Riley starts to feel sad.
RILEY
Oh my god! I have to go!
Riley runs out of the cafeteria crying.
INT. RILEY’S BEDROOM
Marissa is comforting Riley.
RILEY
(crying)
I can’t believe I might have mono!
MARISSA
Look, Riley, calm down. You gotta
keep your head up. You might not
have mono, and besides, it very
treatable anyways.
RILEY
I know its just, I feel so dirty.
Like I’m a horrible person.
Riley suddenly remembers something
RILEY (CONT’D)
Oh, my god! Oh my god! Oh my god! I
AM a horrible person.
MARISSA
Look, its not your fault!
RILEY
No! I might have given it to Zeke.
MARISSA
I’m confused.
RILEY
The other night, I was still mad at
him for ruining my favorite sock!
So I got revenge! I brushed my
teeth with his toothbrush.
MARISSA
There…are just no words.
RILEY
I know! Now what do I do?!
MARISSA
You gotta come clean.
RILEY
(feeling hesitant)
Okay. Zeke can you come here?!
Zeke walks into Riley’s bedroom.
ZEKE
What?
RILEY
You remember the whole thing with
you looking at porn on my laptop?
ZEKE
(confused)
Yeah?
RILEY
Well, I thought that you needed to
be punished. So I brushed my teeth
with your toothbrush.
Zeke gags in disgust.
RILEY (CONT’D)
Wait, there’s more. Kendall, you
know my ex, told me that he might
have mono so I might’ve given it to
you.
ZEKE
OK, now I gotta lay down!
MARISSA
Look, Zeke, we don’t know for sure
yet.
ZEKE
That don’t matter! That’s just
nasty!
RILEY
Look, Zeke, I’m sorry. I didn’t
mean for this to happen. But you
really hurt me.
ZEKE
Well, I guess was a douchebag. I’m
sorry Riley,
RILEY
I’m sorry, too.
Riley and Zeke hug.
INT. RILEY’S HOUSE – THE NEXT WEEK
Zeke is in his bedroom on his computer, when Riley suddenly
walks in. He immediately turns around.
ZEKE
(nervous)
Hi, Riley.
RILEY
I’ve got great news!
ZEKE
(nervous)
What’s that?
RILEY
Mom just got off the phone with the
doctor! We don’t have mono!
ZEKE
Yeah, that’s great! But, uh, I was
kinda in the middle of something.
RILEY
In the middle of what?
Riley all of a sudden looks disturbed when she sees Zeke’s
computer screen.
RILEY (CONT’D)
I think I know what it is. I’ll
leave you to it.
Riley runs out of the room, and Zeke smirks to himself.

 

The First Thing I Wrote Involving My Characters from the The Eccentrics

I began this short film sometime in early 2011.  Maybe it was about February or March.  I don’t know.  I don’t remember  And I suppose that does not really matter in the grand scheme of things.  As I have said before, I had been thinking about The Eccentrics since the fall of 2007.  However, other than some episode titles, I had never written down any stories for them.  They were all stored in my brain.  At that time in early 2011, I finally wrote down one episode idea.  It involved Riley and her brother Zeke and a conflict between the two of them.  However, it was incomplete.  I had only written the first scene.  I knew that I had not yet developed everything enough to write a full episode.  Therefore, I just wrote that draft the best I could.

Many months later, I shared this on the forum.  I received a rather poor response.  One was that it was hilariously awful.  Another comment was that the dialogue was too unrealistic.  One was that the entire premise was too implausible.  All of that really distressed me.

A couple of months later, I made a forum post about how I find it so hard to make a story plausible enough to allow for willing suspension of disbelief; I felt that having to stay within the bounds of reality was stifling to the creative processes, and that doing so was so frustrating that I felt that I should steal people’s life stories, so that I can guarantee that the story is realistic.  Other forum users responded.  One person said that it seems as though I can’t decided whether I want the story to be plausible or not and the MacGuffin, if it can be called that, of the story was implausible along with the dialogue.  I re-posted my screenplay as well as the entire summary of planned storyline for it and I asked for advice and asked the user how he would have written the story.  He said that there was no way to fix the plot because of the MacGuffin.  I got the idea that he felt my screenplay was devoid of substance and that I didn’t see; he said that he never said it had no substance, though in my mind at least, if a story can’t be improved, then it has nothing of value.  Another user then basically broke down party by part what I had completed of the story, saying that the dialogue was vapid, choppy and old-fashioned; that Riley’s actions were implausible; and that the story had undeveloped characters and huge plot holes.  Another person suggested advice that I should use contractions in my dialogue; he also said that my MacGuffin was poor, which echoed the rest of the sentiment concerning the MacGuffin and that I should change it.

I decided to finish the story and change the dialogue to make it more realistic, but in the meantime, I will share with all of you my summary and that draft that I had shared with that forum.  I hope you can recognize the MacGuffin, if it can be called that, and everything that was wrong with this incomplete first draft.

A girl is upset that her brother used her socks to masturbate with. Later on as he accuses her of making too big of a deal about it, she decides to get revenge by using his electric toothbrush to masturbate with. Later her ex-boyfriend tells her that he thinks he has an STD and that she should get herself checked. All of a sudden she begins to feel guilty about the possibility that she exposed her own brother to an STD. Then her brother starts complaining of symptoms and she feels worse. She confesses what she did. Then her brother reveals that he heard her using his toothbrush, and also overheard her telling her friend about possibly having an STD. He lied about having symptoms to teach her a lesson. Then she goes to the doctor and finds that she has no STD and is also told that STDs cannot be spread via toothbrushes as the bacteria cannot survive outside the body.

INT. RILEY’S HOUSE – NIGHT

Riley walks into her bedroom wearing a bathrobe and shower cap. She goes into her drawers and picks up some clothes. She sees looks at a pair of her socks, drops the rest of her clothing and storms into her brother Zeke’s room. Zeke is sitting at his computer. Riley turns his chair around and show him her sock.
RILEY
What is this?
ZEKE
A sock.
RILEY
Don’t play dumb? What is this stain on my sock.
ZEKE
I thought it was mine. Then I realized it wasn’t, but it was so soft I kept on…
RILEY
Say no more! That is so gross. Now my sock is ruined and I spent a lot of money from them.
ZEKE
Well, it was stupid to buy socks for 200 dollars.
RILEY
You didn’t see the woman who sold them to me. Her boyfriend got her pregnant and left her four times. She was broke and desperate. But anyway, that doesn’t change how I feel. Use your own socks or articles of clothing next time.
Riley walks out of the room

Characters for the Eccentrics

In approximately the fall of 2007, I was a junior in high school.  I developed a new idea for a TV comedy.  It was to focus six teenagers who are what people would consider to be odd.  I titled it The Eccentrics.  I really felt close to the idea because I was and still am the type of person who is “not mainstream” and I felt like I was an outcast in high school, who did not really fit in or belong.  I’ve been thinking about this idea every since then.  I have several episodes memorized in my head.

However, I feel that things are still not good enough.

I feel like that the premise is not original.  I need to come up with a way to give it an original and unique angle.  Also, not all of the main characters are even fully developed.  I still don’t have much of an idea on how to make some of them strange and unique.  I have three girls and three boys as the main characters.  The three girls are well-developed, though I think one of them is too strange to be plausible, especially with her personality and activities; however, the three male characters are not as well-developed as I would like them to be.  Two of the  boys are not very eccentric; the other is well-developed (he is partially based on myself), but I don’t think that he is eccentric enough.

However, I will share my character profiles here in hopes of getting some advice.

Characters for The Eccentrics

CYAN AQUAMARINE BROWN

Cyan is 16, tall, slender, and black.  She is an ultra-intelligent, over-achieving perfectionist, but certainly not one that is ordinary.  Basically, she is obsessed with the color she is named after.  Cyan lives and breathes the color cyan and all of its shades to the point that she dyed her hair cyan, everything piece of clothing, everything in her room her room, every accessory she has is a shade of cyan.  Her obsession, however, makes her something of an outcast among her the other studious students of her school.

Cyan is the oldest of three children.  She has a 14-year-old sister named Magenta.  Magenta has a generally mean demeanor.  She is embarrassed by Cyan and is not shy about putting down Cyan, her friends, or anyone in general.

ANDREW BREWSTER

Andrew is 16, tall, and black.  His passions are books, be they physical books, audio books, or electronic books.  He aspires to be an author and has submitted several manuscripts to publishers, but they have all been rejected.  Andrew has a rather cold demeanor in addition to his own social awkwardness.  He is quiet and stoic; he generally avoids expressing his emotions.  He is very shy and so acts cold and rude towards other people save for his five best friends.  He does this as a defense mechanism, but he does generally have genuine contempt for people he considers to be lowbrow or who in his view waste their lives or are beneath him.

Andrew is raised by a single mom.  She is similar very socially awkward and has generally unsuccessful friendships and romances.  The circumstances under which Andrew was conceived are somewhat unusual.  In college, his mom met his dad.  She was instantly infatuated with him, but because of her quirks and social ineptitude, he continually rejected her advances.  Her obsession for him was so great that she resolved to herself to always have a piece of him.  She spied on him while he was having sex with her girlfriend, and when they left their apartment she snuck in and stole his used condom from the wastebasket so that she would inseminate himself and become pregnant with his child.  However, shortly after getting pregnant she lost contact with Andrew’s dad.  She raised Andrew on her own, and despite often denying it, he wished he could reunite with the dad who never knew he existed and felt a measure of resentment towards his mom.

RILEY DIAMOND

Riley Diamond is 15 and five feet two inches tall.  She was born to a white Jewish dad and a black mom who converted to Judaism.  She has a 12-year-old brother named Zeke.  Riley is to say the least not a normal girl at all.  She is often oblivious of her surroundings and is always in her own little world.  Riley has strange, nonsensical hobbies such as singing songs from cook books, for example, or acting out her dreams or openly imagining poking people to see if something such as chocolate syrup will come out of them or personifying inanimate objects.  She regularly violates social norms and doesn’t seems to understand them.  Her first boyfriend was a boy with freckles and her obsession with counting them and naming them and treating his freckles as individual persons led to the boy and his family to move from Chicago to the suburbs.  Though not judgmental nor arrogant, Riley believes that she is the normal one and everyone else is strange.  Consequently, Riley is be very ditzy, naive, and gullible.  With respect to her gullibility, Riley enjoys helping people who are less unfortunate, but this regularly leads to being scammed; she is so stupid, overly trusting, and out of touch with reality that it is remarkably easy for her to be scammed.  She is so well known in her neighborhood for her gullibility that numerous people try to take advantage of her.

Riley’s relationship with her brother Zeke is a complex one.  Zeke often has to watch out for Riley to make sure her activities and schemes don’t go horribly and fix any damage that she causes.  Zeke often feels resentful of the fact despite being three years younger than Riley, he has to act as a babysitter to her.

IGNACIO “NACHO” RIVERA

Nacho is 15.  He was born to a mother from Mexico and a father from Puerto Rico.  He is fiercely proud of his Mexican and Puerto Rican heritages.  He is girl crazy.

MARISSA NOGALES

Marissa is 14, four feet eleven inches tall, thin, and the daughter of Mexican immigrants.  Marissa is an artist and non-conformist.  She enjoys taking all of the conventions of the world, artistic and otherwise, and totally subverting them.  She creates works of art in a variety of forms such as paintings, sculptures, on the computer and even the clothing she wears.

RODERICK “ROD” HARPER

Rod is 14 and black.  Compared to his friends he is the poorest.  He lives in a housing project, but he is certainly not the type of person one would expect to live in the projects.  (Incidentally, Rod isn’t the type of person you would expect to live anywhere in general.)