Keeping Track: Post 4

A weekly blog post was always a noble intention, wasn’t it?

Screenplays

Okay, big week. No Fun is complete. At least, I have a complete draft. It’s 99 pages long and it’s called The Secret Society. I’ve added it to my CV. It’s a thing now.

I now have to get a draft that I’m happy to send by Wednesday. In an ideal world, I’d like to hear it read out loud. I’m not going to have time. My wife Sarah has a copy and I might send it to a few other people for a basic sense check.

Getting other people to read stuff is a bit traumatic, as people rarely have time to sit and read other people’s scripts. Especially when they’re 99 pages long. That’s why a table read is much better. You get to drink wine and eat crisps, and spend an hour and a half larking about, rather than having to sit and focus. It’s pretty agonising for me, though. We did a table read of my first film in the living room of the flat I was living in, and all of the stupid and immature things that you write become huge and obvious. That’s why table reads are good for your script and bad for potential heart attacks.

Oh, and Tom has become Pete. That was strange. I’ll write about that some other time, I think. It was like your dad had been replaced by some guy who said all the same things, but was a bit tubbier.

Sitcoms

But wait! That’s not all! We had a meeting about our team-written radio sitcom on Tuesday. Myself, Sarah and Kate had all failed to do as much writing as we should, and that was basically because of bad notetaking on all of our parts at the last meeting. Plus, we always meet up after work, and generally have – at absolute maximum – about 90 minutes of productive brain-time before our heads melt.

So we spent our Tuesday 90 minutes doing a careful scene-by-scene breakdown of the first half of the script, and we’re planning to meet up again to do the second half. It’s feeling a bit clearer now.

Other stuff

Oh, and also, I went with the truly splendid Julie Bower to the book launch of The Creative Screenwriter at the BFI. The book is a fascinating collection of writing exercises to think more creatively about writing, rather than following the formulaic version of screenwriting espoused by other books. We did a couple of the exercises in the launch workshop, and then drank a glass of wine. I managed to spill quite a lot of wine on the shiny metal floor of the BFI. I was carrying too much stuff.

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