Are Short Films Worth It?

The Importance of Short Films

Getting back in the director’s chair for Rose and the Outlaw was more rewarding than anticipated. My end game has always been to direct, but most of my filmmaking career had been spent in post production and writing spec-features.

As mentioned above, I thought feature length IMDb credits should be the only focus. But the decision in 2020 to write and direct a short film ‘Rebel Without a Crew’ style changed my mind completely. In fact, the sequel to Rose and the Outlaw is already scheduled for 2021!

Are Short Films Worth It?
On set shooting Rose and the Outlaw | Released 2020

You Learn By Doing

Writing and directing Rose and the Outlaw opened my eyes to the importance of actually doing the craft. Sure, I’ve spent thousands of hours working as an editor and a writer, and these are crucial skills. But you only become a director by… wait for it: directing.

Rebel Without a Crew

Robert Rodriguez, James Cameron and other successful filmmakers talk about the importance of being experienced in not just directing, but every aspect of making a movie. Why? Because it helps you communicate more effectively with crew. It also empowers you to make more creative decisions, and it avoids delaying your shoot if someone can’t make it. The sound mixer is sick? Well if you know how to run sound, you don’t have to delay.

The timeline for Rose and the Outlaw in Avid Media Composer
The timeline for Rose and the Outlaw in Avid Media Composer

Short films are ideal for teaching you how to do it all, because you in fact do have to do it all. Unless you actually have the budget to pay a bunch of people. On Rose and the Outlaw I was forced to run camera, sound, direct, edit, do sound design and color. All on top of acting in the film. And as difficult as that was, I’ll never have a production hiccup due to reliance on crew.

Building An Audience

The path of the indie filmmaker today is to build an audience. You can have talent, great scripts and still get nowhere because financiers and studios often want guarantees before they spend their money. A new filmmaker coming to them with an existing audience can go a long way.

Speaking of that, if you’d be so kind to follow my YouTube channel, I would seriously appreciate it!

Keep IMDb Fresh

IMDb is owned by Amazon, and it’s the de facto place to have credits in the film industry. When I worked as an editor on indie features, my IMDb profile stayed current. But when I switched to writing spec features, it looked as if I’d fallen off the map.

Directing IMDb qualifying short films helps keep me active on the industry’s largest resume database. It also allows people to rate my films, which helps overall marketing endeavors. If you’d like to rate Rose and the Outlaw on IMDb, that would be HUGE. Thank you!

Reckoning: My Next Film

The sequel to Rose and the Outlaw is titled RECKONING and scheduled to go into production November 2021.

The sequel will be longer (25 minutes), have more characters and be shot on “real” equipment. Reckoning is set in the 1800s in the town of Little Cataloochee, NC. This mountain town doesn’t exist anymore, but is now part of a national park. However, you can find fascinating history about Little Cataloochee online.

So are short films worth it? You bet. If you’re an aspiring filmmaker, my recommendation is to get your feet wet now and learn the craft of story telling by writing and directing short films!

Thanks for reading. If you’d like to be in on the behind-the-scenes action for Reckoning, sign up here.

How to Install Linux Malware Detect on Debian

It only takes a single malware incident on your linux server to have you vow against such an outage in the future. The good news is that you can install Linux Malware Detect (LMD) on your Debian or Ubuntu server for free.

What is Linux Malware Detect?

Linux Malware Detect is a malware scanner released under the GNU GPLv2 license. LMD is updated by community resources and other methods. LMD ups the malware detection game by not just discovering threats at the OS level (trojans, rootkits, etc) but also at the user account level which is a growing issue in shared hosting environments.

Main Site:

From the site: “The defining difference with LMD is that it doesn’t just detect malware based on signatures/hashes that someone else generated but rather it is an encompassing project that actively tracks in the wild threats and generates signatures based on those real world threats that are currently circulating.”

1. Install Inotify Tools on Debian

Inotify is used to monitor and act on filesystem events. You’ll need this for Linux Malware Detect. Inotify is available from Debian’s official repositories.

apt-get install inotify-tools

2. Download Linux Malware Detect (LMD)

To download maldet or LMD simply go to your server command line and type the following. The first will download LMD and the second will extract the files.

tar -zxvf maldetect-current.tar.gz

3. Install Maldet

You’ll need to change to the downloaded directory and run the installation script. Change the directory path name to match the version of maldet you extracted. For example, at the time of writing the current version is 1.6.4. So that would be cd maldetect-1.6.4.

cd maldetect-1.6.4

4. Edit Linux Malware Detect Config

The configuration file is stored in /usr/local/maldetect/conf.maldet. Open this file in a text editor and set the following values:

email_addr="[email protected]"

5. Install ClamAV®

Clam AntiVirus is an open source antivirus engine designed to detect trojans, viruses, malware and other nasties on your linux server. When you install this scanning engine, LMD will work with ClamAV for improved scan performance and also increased detection capabilities.

apt-get install clamav

6. Perform a Scan

To do a manual scan, use maldet –help to see the options. For example, to scan everything in the /var/www/ folder you would type:

maldet -a /var/www

7. Update Linux Malware Detect

To update LMD use the following commands:

maldet -u
maldet -d

The first command updates the signatures from and the second updates the version.

8. Automatic Scans

When you install Linux Malware Detect it will add a file to the /etc/cron.daily folder called maldet. This file downloads definitions and performs daily basic scans. However, I personally add cron jobs to do the updates along with some specific scans on my servers.

crontab -e

This will open up an editor (you might have to select your preferred editor of choice. I always us Nano). I then add commands to update definitions, LMD version and run two different scans:

5 1 * * * maldet -u
15 1 * * * maldet -d
30 1 * * * maldet -a /var/www
30 2 * * * maldet -a /var/lib

Crontab works beginning with the minute, hour, day of month, the month, day of week and then the actual command to run. The wild cards will not limit. So using a wild card for day of month will make the command run every day.

Once you save this file, you should see it show up under the user you used to create it in /var/spool/cron/crontabs.

9. That’s A Wrap.

Your debian server is going to run a little safer now! A huge thank you to the people behind LMD and ClamAV. You can make a donation to LMD on their main page: