Friday, 25 January 2008

January Meltdown

That sounded a little unnecessarily dramatic, didn’t it? Let’s start again...

The script that had hung around at Hammer for a while before propping open a door at Marchmont for about a hundred years has now been taken under the kindly wing of METLAB. No doubt I’ll have my work cut out there over the next few months, but rewriting is kinda fun (in a vaguely masochistic way).

With that script out of the way, I've started angling about for something new to work on. I thought I’d alighted on something at the beginning of the year, but it turned out to be a false start (i.e., twenty pages in and I just wasn’t feeling it). So I’ve taken the momentous decision to write it in prose, which brought about another momentous decision: I have bravely postponed doing anything on it until 2009, which gives me another year to think about it.

So, something new.... hmmm... When in doubt, I always delve into old notebooks and half written/abandoned scripts in an attempt to revitalise something that once upon a time sounded like a good idea. And I think I’ve got one. Sort of. Maybe. What I've got is a rough and ready draft that comes in at the 85 page mark before it runs out of steam, but it’s got legs I think. I’ll drag it out and give it a dust down and see what can be done with it, if anything. And if I can – well, I guess that’s 2008 sorted out. As I spent the whole of 2007 rewriting, it’s about time I tackled something new.

It’s either that or antagonise Marchmont again, but I’m getting bored of that...


Jon Peacey said...

Overly dramatic? I thought you'd managed to lose the end of my January!

'...rewriting is kinda fun...'
-Please tell me how to enjoy it, please, please! :)

I disliked rewriting before going off to University; I hated it while at University and I fully loathe it now!

...and I really did ought to rewrite 3 scripts before I should think of trying to attract lovely people with them.

Chip Smith said...

I have the opposite problem, Jon - I love rewriting but find it massively difficult to start anything new. Even when I do, I limp to the end of it,shaking my fist at the sheer bloody hard work of it. Rewriting is the fun part to me.

The only tip I can think of is to get some coverage, either from some of our esteemed scribo colleagues or from friends. I have a little network of people I use quite regularly and it certainly helps to keep my enthusiasm levels running high.

Jon Peacey said...

You see I have a long list of things I want to get on and write and slow first drafts and re-writing frustrate my ability to get on with them... the process of writing slows down the process of communicating.

In fact, if I could just put the scripts down by thinking them I would!

I've a colleague from Uni who does me good coverage (he's now a pro. script reader for one of the regional agencies); we exchange extensive reports without fear or favour and thankfully, as our styles are so disparate, we seem able to find the gaps in each other's work... he tends towards 'magic realism' and I do dark, often political, thrillers and horrors. It seems to work out well. And since before Christmas I've started getting more coverage from the esteemed Lucy. It doesn't make me like re-writing any more but I hope that by taking more advice I will cut down the number of re-writes necessary.