I get to go Austin, Texas this weekend and I am really excited — for a lot lot reasons.

It’s the South X Southwest Festival (http://2007.sxsw.com/) and this is a huge event. Mainly created for the music community, the first part is devoted to the film and interactive world. It starts Friday. I will be speaking on a panel Saturday at 11 a.m. and the rest of the time I will be “in the booth” and “on the floor” with my publisher Michael Wiese’s right hand guy, Ken Lee.

I also will be handing over to Ken the manuscript of Save the Cat! Goes to the Movies, which weighs in at 2 pounds, 340 pages, 2 years – and many, many returned phone messages on my part, all saying: “Sorry, I can’t go to that wild party, I have to write my book.”

So 2 pounds lighter, I will be let loose in Austin, and let me just say as WASPily as I can: Yee-ha.

I’ll get better at it.

Austin is also the place where we shot Blank Check. And somewhere in that great city, on the end of a suburban cul de sac is an actual castle that our little hero Preston Waters buys as part of his million-dollar spending spree. No, it was not built for us; it pre-existed. When the location scouts found it, we couldn’t believe our luck.Â

Also in Austin, in one of the nicer hotels along the river actually, co-writer Colby Carr and I typed the last draft of the script. Some computer glitch had erased the draft we had, so on the night before shooting began, Mr. Carr and I actually re-typed the whole thing from Fade In to Fade Out. We also marked the occasion by signing the back of the armoire in the room, noting the date and time — 5:30 am — of this, the final-final-final draft. Did anyone ever turn that piece of furniture around and wonder? Gee, I hope so.

I will be back Tuesday in time to discuss every writer’s secret weapon, a tool that can be applied to all aspects of writing. What is that? you ask. Yee-HA!