Pre-Order Dollar Deal: The Story of the Stephen King Dollar Baby Filmmakers

Dollar Deal: The Story of the Stephen King Dollar Baby Filmmakers is finally available for pre-order at, Kobo, iBooks, and Smashwords. It will also be available on July 29 through Barnes & Noble for the Nook.

To pre-order the book in either the Kindle edition or as a trade paperback, head on over to and the book will be sent to you on the day of its release, July 29. Here are the links for the other sites as well:



BARNES & NOBLE NOOK (Not yet available – check back on July 29)

iBOOK (on iTunes)

Also, make sure to bookmark for a number of special features and videos concerning the Stephen King Dollar Baby Filmmakers.

You can contact me at and I am available for interviews. There is also a limited number of review copies available if you write for a site or publication that reviews books.


Stephen King has been writing bestselling novels for years and, from the start, many movies have been made based on his popular stories. Since 1976, King has also worked hard to help young filmmakers get their first break through his Dollar Baby film program. Through this deal, King allows an aspiring filmmaker to create a short film based on one of his short stories, as long as that story was not already optioned for a major movie or television show.

Over 80 filmmakers made a Dollar Baby film over the next four decades and some of these filmmakers have gone on to enjoy success in the entertainment industry, with Frank Darabont (Shawshank Redemption, The Green Mile) as the Godfather of the entire Dollar Baby phenomenon. Dollar Deal: The Story of the Stephen King Dollar Baby Filmmakers tells the story of 19 of these filmmakers as they talk about making their Dollar Baby film and the careers that they enjoyed after creating their Stephen King short film.

Dollar Baby filmmaker Shawn S. Lealos (I Know What You Need) interviews each of these filmmakers about their road traveled, from college campuses to Hollywood, including Peter Sullivan (Night Surf), Nick Wauters (Rainy Season), Jeff Schiro (The Boogeyman), Jay Holben (Paranoid), and many more.

Dollar Deal: The Story of the Stephen King Dollar Baby Filmmakers

Update on ‘Dollar Deal: The Story of the Stephen King Dollar Baby Filmmakers’

Yeah, so that happened.

I returned to my website in January and said that I was going to re-dedicate myself to posting to my blog, keeping you guys updated on the status of my Stephen King Dollar Baby book.

Then nothing.

Well, that was for a very good reason. I have been busting my tail to get Dollar Deal: The Story of the Stephen King Dollar Baby Filmmakers ready to publish. It is almost ready and will go on pre-sale later this month.

Cool? Cool.

Over the next few weeks, I will be introducing you to 19 different Stephen King Dollar Baby filmmakers that I profile in this book and talking a little about what makes them so special and inspirational.

This book, for those who don’t know, is about the actual Stephen King Dollar Baby filmmakers, as they talk about what they love about Stephen King, how they made their Dollar Baby movies, and how that helped them achieve success in their careers following that.

These men have gone on to make their own feature length movies, led by Frank Darabont himself, who made other Stephen King adaptations like The Shawshank Redemption, The Green Mile and The Mist after he made his Dollar Baby, The Woman in the Room. A lot of you may know that he also created a little TV show called The Walking Dead.

Other Stephen King Dollar Baby filmmakers went on to write for TV shows like The Vampire Diaries, The Mentalist, The Americans, and one even created the sci-fi TV show, The Event. There is one Stephen King Dollar Baby filmmaker who has become a novelist himself, another who has made SyFy Network monster movies, one who edits documentaries for the History Channel and another who works for Playboy in their video department.

These people have stories that continue to inspire me as I prepare the book for the final copy editing phase. I am proud to introduce you to these people in my book.

So, keep your eye on my website for more information about the release of Dollar Deal: The Story of the Stephen King Dollar Baby Filmmakers, as well as a small peak at each of these amazing filmmakers.

I am also available for interviews and you can contact me directly at

Isn’t it Strange How Important Music Really Is?

I hate to be one of “those dads,” but I am so glad that Christmas vacation ends in two days and Ash can get back to school. I hate hate hate telling him that I can’t play with him and have to work. As a writer, all my work is done at home, so over the last two weeks I have gotten very little done and have gone to the last minute on some assignments with deadlines.

That can end on Monday and things can get back to normal. Now I just have to figure out how to get out of bed early again.

Anyway, since I have so much work I have fallen behind on, and since I am me, I have taken some time to set up some playlists in Spotify. Yeah, I have finally decided to give the Premium service a chance since it is only 99 cents for the next three months. So, the first thing I do is set up playlists of songs I want to listen to while I am writing.

* I thought these were all original songs, but some songs have the wrong singer’s names beside them and the quality goes up and down based on the song. Am I just confused about what is included here?

Anyway, I don’t listen to music as much as I used to. No, I’m not one of those A-holes who claims that music today sucks and the only good music is old music. See, I was someone in the 80s who loved new music and basically saluted with my middle finger anyone who claimed that the music of the day sucked. I won’t become those people now that I am – not as young.

However, while putting together these playlists, I am shocked at how much music meant to certain moments of my life. I wonder why I don’t let music affect me in the same way now. Honestly, some memories are based completely around music.

That might also be because I only listened to Christian music as a kid and never got into the evil secular rock and roll until I was about 18. First concert I ever went to that was non-Christian was Cinderella, Winger and the BulletBoys. I loved the show, but I still regret that I chose that over Poison and Tesla because, at the time, I had no idea who Tesla was.

I remember in 1989, my best friend Bill and I went to Blockbuster Music so we could buy the Motley Crue Dr. Feelgood cassette the day it came out. Yeah – the cassette. Hell, I used to spend most of my paychecks in used music stores browsing the cassette tape section.

I finally bought my first CD player in 1990 (the things were stupid expensive back then) and then bought my first two CDs (they cost like $20 back then). They were George Michael’s Faith and Poison’s Open Up and Say Ahh… I should take a minute here to say that I have no embarrassment at all for the music I like and listen to and will tell anyone who I like. As I said when I was talking about old people looking down on my music – people who laugh at my choices get the middle finger, regardless of age.

I saw Warrant at the Zoo Amphitheater and stood in the rain to watch them play. I saw Warrant again with Bill and then we went to the Samurai Saki House and had beer with them (actually at the table with them) before watching them play the Green Acres theme song with a metal beat. I have to say that my only real regret was missing the Guns N Roses concert because I never got to see them play with the original band.

Remember FM radio? It used to mean something.

I listened to The KATT and especially listened every time the Blade Runner was on the air. Hell, it was almost 20 years ago and I remember his thoughts about the death of Stevie Ray Vaughan (“you could put Motley Crue in an airplane full of drugs and crash it and they would come out unharmed with a new live album”). Every time I park my shopping cart in a holder at Wal Mart, I remember his anger at his Trans Am getting scratched and how he damned everyone who let their carts roll free.

Blade Runner talked about Halloween and asked why, when people rose from dead on Halloween, they were Zombies, but when they rose from the dead on Easter, they were the Savior. A decade later, I shot my short film What Would Zombie Jesus Do? and it originated from a Blade Runner segment I heard years before. The coolest thing is that Blade Runner was in that short film for me and we are still friends today (I met him over a decade after I listened to him on the radio).

I miss real dee-jays who talked about things that matter instead of trying to sell cars. That is why I listed to XM Radio now, and the dee-jays there don’t do anything but make jokes and spout trivia (except one or two exceptions, like Eddie Trunk’s awesome show on Hair Nation. Anyway, if you want to hear some good music, check out Blade Runner on his Internet radio show –

Well, here we are in 2015 and I find myself listening to music only when I am driving, and it is almost always a classic radio station – either Hair Nation or Lithium (grunge). Sometimes with Johanna, I will listen to her station, which is The Pulse and new music, and I like a lot of what I hear there. But, that is about it. When I have my iPod on, I am listening to podcasts usually, so maybe Spotify will help me get back into music again. I don’t know.

Anyway, Monday Ash goes back to school and I can start writing regularly again. Of course, there will be the usual content that pays the bills, but I also plan to start putting more work into Renegade Cinema and will finish writing the first draft of Dollar Deal: The Story of the Stephen King Dollar Baby Filmmakers by the end of January – guaranteed. Plus, my podcast is coming soon and I will have more info on who my guests will be soon.

Until then, keep your eyes on this blog and I will keep you updated on my progress – and ramble a little along the way. Anyway, tell me you love me in the comments below and I will name a character after you in my daydreams while I am avoiding working tomorrow.

And, just to prove I like more than just old hair metal:

OK, maybe they still share a trait… Suck it.

Happy New Year, ie. I’m Back

I’m back.

Well, technically I never left. All my writing is still available all over the Internet (specifically at my site Renegade Cinema and at the many content sites I write for, with AXS getting most of my work now).

However, it is time to really light a fire and what better time than the New Year, since – you know – everyone follows through with making changes on New Year’s Day.

But, I am gonna do my best.

Basically, here is what you have to look forward to from me in 2015. I will keep writing more than I have time for in order to pay the bills and keep food on the table and clothes on the back of my family.

I’m also going to work harder on getting Ash involved with things outside of the home. That includes intermediate swimming lessons starting next Tuesday and he is getting back into basketball starting the Wednesday after that with games every Saturday for a month. No more procrastinating and forgetting to sign him up for sports and no more just making him watch TV and play inside every night while I write more than I have time for.

Yep, that is the conundrum I find myself in. But that is solved by just writing more while he is in school and not jerking around so much instead of writing.

Oh yeah, and there will be more writing coming too in the form of the Stephen King ‘Dollar Deal‘ book. It is time to stop talking and start doing. I think I have finally cracked the book. I did all the interviews a long time ago but have been struggling with putting it together. I think I have figured out how to put it together in a way that will entertain the readers while still being a quality book. And it will be finished soon.


Anyway, I will also write this blog to make myself follow through, because I have plenty of time to write something else…

Here is the bottom line. I will do everything I can to keep making money, while giving Ash more time, while also putting the pieces together for the future (the books) so that I can start to try to help make Johanna’s life better as well.

And I’m starting a podcast in the next couple of months.

Welcome to the circus that is my life.

** Some of the links on the side of the page don’t work yet, but hang with me, I’m getting there.