Saturday, September 01, 2007

The Lost Weeks End

It’s been a weird couple of months on the writing front. In the time set aside, it gradually slowed to a crawl and then pretty much ground to a halt.

There was work to do – a rewrite after getting notes that nailed the flaws. While new scenes and revisions, including a whole new opening, eventually covered page upon page of foolscap, somehow I couldn’t translate it to the computer. Then work on another project never got beyond scrawls on paper, even though there was already a detailed story treatment.

I could say it was “as if the characters had gone away or simply decided to sit this one out and I couldn’t hear their voices in my head.” Putting it in such a pseudy artsy-fartys way would mean having to douse myself in a piss and petrol cocktail and leap into a raging fire.

Whether it was simply the uncomfortable heat that permeated the summer nights in the city or simply the typical worries of real life intruding, the first couple of sleepless nights turned into prolonged insomnia. Once that kicked in, what writing was done was usually scribbled in the early hours after pacing around the flat, putting down on paper different variations or versions of the same scenes.

Two things helped drag me out of the hopeless pattern: a lot of encouragement from Potdoll who I discussed the story’s plot with in emails, and the Red Planet Competition deadline. Of course, while I may have not physically progressed in writing the script, the story had been rolling around in my head for so long that come Thursday morning, when I sat down to write those first ten pages it was a much easier process.

By late afternoon they were done. Rather than dance around the room as planned, I went out for the evening. Before leaving home I had emailed the pages off to Potdoll, to prove that I had finally got back in front of the computer. And bless her, returning home I found a return email giving me absolutely perfect notes.

After a good night’s sleep, a brief re-write later and it was done. There was even time to streamline the initial ten pages of an existing script, paring the description down and quickening the pace to a degree that, stupid as it sounds, I couldn't read quick enough to keep up. Once done, that went off too.

A weird couple of months, as I said. God, it feels good to be back writing.


At 11:58 pm, Blogger potdoll said...

there's something wrong here - you go off tarting around town while i sit at home reading your script?!

I think I need to have a word with myself!

At 12:59 am, Blogger Good Dog said...


It was only drinks in a hotel bar on the Euston Road with Work Buddy and the Governess to talk about work. Then a pizza across the street.

They crossed on a bizarre narrow cycle route through the traffic. I waited for the lights and had fun with a driver who decided he didn't need to stop at a red light.

So... it wasn't the usual tarting. Honest.

Thanks again for the invaluable observations.

At 8:38 am, Blogger Lee said...

Good to hear you're back behind the keyboard. I've had my own problems this month, so didn't get anything off to Red Planet. But hey, tomorrow is another day.

At 11:46 am, Blogger potdoll said...

I didn't get anything off to Red Planet either. bum.

At 9:04 pm, Blogger Lara said...

Oh well, me neither, Pots. There's always next year/other comps/blank celluloid to direct onto ourselves though...yay!

Good luck with it, GD. Great news you're back in the 'writing seat'.

At 11:57 pm, Blogger Good Dog said...

And thank you all for being a lot of help the past few months.


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