I like deadlines. Like most men, I’m only really organised when I have to be. However, when a deadline swims into focus, I get all Kubrickian and things get done in a frenzy of military precision. My entry for the Red Planet prize this year is no exception. Bearing in mind I had nothing that fitted the brief, three months still seemed like a generous timeline in which to get a 60 minute script written, read, abused and rewritten. And what’s more, I’m on schedule – a month and a bit to write the thing, a week waiting for feedback, and then a fortnight of rewrites. Sounds perfectly reasonable to me. I did something similar for Sharps a while back, but in comparison that took me three days – if I write any more than about ten pages a day, I tend to go somewhat manic, probably due to the reservoir of coffee I have to throw down my neck in order to keep pushing things forward.
So, deadlines: I like ‘em. There’s certainly enough of them to keep me busy at the moment - as well as Red Planet, there’s also that RISE thing. The difference here is that I have something that is essentially (bar the odd tweak) ready to go – I’ll spend a week looking at that, and then it’s on with the treatment I’ve been looking at since March of this year. I’ve been informed it’s about “85% there”, so another month fiddling about with it should see it OK. I also got a nice letter back from the BBC Writersroom last week inviting me to submit my next script on an “as and when” basis, so I’ll have to cook something up for that. And then there’s METLAB: my treatment is progressing slowly, but as I’ve had to go back to scriptural year zero, it’s no surprise really.
Come about the end of October, I’ll be due for a holiday, unless a whole other bunch of deadlines show up in the meantime. In which case, I’ll get the coffee on…
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