I’ve got a lot on my plate at the moment and all of it has to be done NOW. Perhaps before now. In fact, it has to be done quicker than it takes to write the word ‘now’.
I finished the third draft of ’til Death last week and handed it in, the response was almost immediate – it’s spot on. Does that mean it’s finished and ready to go?
Sadly, no. Although there shouldn’t be any more major story tweaks. From now on it’s just adjusting for budget, location and cast. Plus adding in the list of little images which spring to mind while I’m idly hitting people with sticks or swords.
On top of that there’s the supporting material – the writer’s vision, which, as usual, was me sitting on a large pile of money. Strangely, they won’t let me write that and I have to dress it up a little; and since the latest draft of the script is dramatically different from the treatment, I also have to alter the treatment to fit.
For those of you who don’t write treatments at all, it is sometimes a necessary skill – the treatment sometimes gets packaged with the script in order to secure financing so it’s a skill we all need to master. True I could probably get someone else to do it for me, but since it’s my words (in script form) the treatment is trying to sell, I’d rather it was my words in the treatment doing the selling.
Also on the list are:
A sketch for a theatre project I’ve been promising to do and haven’t quite managed yet.
A list of episodes for a TV series with a brief synopsis of each.
A re-write to a sitcom pilot.
And the rest of the re-write to my sword and sorcery epic – which isn’t actually at the bottom of the list, honest.
There’s quite a lot of work there and it’s all pending immediately. The sketch is a quick one when I can squeeze it in but the rest are a bit more complicated. The treatment re-jigging is a boring but necessary slog, the writer’s vision is hard because I don’t have any, the episode synopses – although brief – need a lot of thought to make sure they all make sense and tie in together, and the two re-writes are … well, re-writes. These things take time.
The key component in all of these isn’t really the writing time, it’s the thinking time. Writing is the last stage and the literal tip of the literary iceberg.
I used to have this theory: when your available resources won’t cover the tasks required, the best course of action is to bugger the lot of them and spend your resources on something which makes you happy.
I used to apply this primarily to money. If paying one bill still leaves five other final demands from people who want to take you to court, then fuck it – six final demands isn’t any worse than five and paying each of them a couple of quid is just insulting. It’s obviously a far superior strategy to spend the money on comics and damn the lot of them. A strategy which gained me a lot of comics and an extremely poor credit rating.
I’d like to think those days are behind me now, that I’m older, I’m wiser and I’m more mature. Sadly that’s just a delusion and faced with a mountain of work I’m taking the only sane option …
I’m off to Disney Land, who’s coming?