I am having a very weird week; I have no idea if it’s been good or bad. Every time the universe gives me something with one hand, it takes it away with the other.
Last weekend I got an email from a producer who needed a feature script, fast. There was money in it, but it had to be done by the end of the week. The best bit being I’d kind of already started working on this script a month or so ago and had a rough draft of the first thirty pages plus the producer’s notes on the story and scene order.
Was I interested?
Small problem, I was going to be away Monday and Tuesday; back home briefly on Tuesday night, then away Wednesday to Friday. Not much of a problem really, that’s what laptops are for.
And then it broke.
In a panic (I need my laptop; I really, really need my laptop) I rushed out to the shops and tried to buy a new one. Unfortunately I have no money, or at least very little and my credit rating is well below average. I’m not blacklisted, but it’s a fairly hefty shade of grey.
I ran in with the intention of buying the cheapest one I could find; on the grounds the worst spec available today is far superior to the ’99 model which I’d just broken.
At least, that was the plan.
Pretty soon I’d got myself into the ‘this one is only a hundred pounds more and it’s twice the spec; but then if I’m going to buy this one, then this one is twice as good again for only another hundred pounds…’ Before I knew it I was trying to get credit on an eight hundred pound laptop.
Survey says… no chance.
Dejected, I went home, determined to dig out my soldering iron and fix the ancient old bastard. Luckily, mid ‘How does this come apart?’ Mandy, my wife, points out we now have home contents insurance specifically for these things.
A quick phone call later, they whisked my old laptop away, inspected it and pronounced it beyond economical repair. I could have a new one.
Only snag is, it’ll take until the end of the week to turn up.
I now had Sunday afternoon, Tuesday evening and Friday night to write the script. Maybe Saturday morning if I pushed my luck. So my week goes, frantic scribbles, frustrated time in a hotel room; more frantic scribbles, loads of frustrated time in a hotel room.
But it’s okay, I’m doing it. The God of inspiration is on my side. Unfortunately, the God of ‘not having some bastard smash into your car and drive off without leaving a note’, wasn’t. I now have matching dents in both sides of my car.
I got home today to find my new laptop waiting for me. It’s lovely, sleek, stylish and fast as you like. In fact, it’s the one I tried to buy last week.
But it doesn’t actually work. They’ve sent me a brand new, broken laptop. I know they replace like for like, but that’s taking it too far. An hour on hold and they tell me the best thing to do is take it back to the shop. I pack it back up, race to the car, drive like a lunatic to the industrial estate, only to find…
We don’t have a PC World in Eastbourne. We’ve got all the sister shops, but you can’t actually swap from one to the other. I did try, but the teenager in the shop wasn’t having any of it, even when I offered him a tenner. Honestly, kids today are far too principled.
So there’s my tale. I’ve got a paid commission; but no time to do it. I’ve got a brand new laptop, which doesn’t work; and a nice new ding in my car. Am I having good luck or bad luck? Does the world like me or loathe me?
I have no idea.