What is your favorite Beatles album or song?
Oh yeah: that script challenge thing I’m supposed to be working on.
The other day I went looking for this email I sent back on 3/7/07:
3/31: plot outline
5/15: act one (approximately page 20-30)
7/15: midpoint (approximately page 50-70)
7/15 – 7/31: Italy vacation (no writing)
9/30: act two (approximately page 80-100)
11/15: act three (approximately page 100-130)
12/31: clean-up and complete first draft (trim down to 90-120 pages)
I am currently at 42 pages with Psycho Ex, so unless I crank out 38-58 pages this weekend, it looks like I’m somewhat behind. No worries.
The good news: I’m almost halfway through act two on my revised outline. Instead of the clean-up I was hoping for between 11/15 and 12/31, it looks as if the first draft I complete by 12/31 will be a VERY rough first draft.
The bad news: What used to be my entire act two is now merely the first half of act two, with the events/outline of the second half of act two somewhat of a mystery at this point – call it an exciting “process of discovery.” This is good for quality, because the script is becoming alive as its own thing and telling me the “old idea” wasn’t big enough, but it’s bad for arbitrary inorganic deadlines. This script is messy and one of the least consistent scripts I’ve worked on – the rough draft will be particularly rough – but they all feel that way. The clean-up does wonders.
My new thing is this: 2 pages a day. On the surface, this seems laughable – how can progress of a measly 2 pages a day ever get me anywhere? I better be much more ambitious than that, right? But when you really get into it I believe this is a great idea. If I actually get in the chair and open the file, I can come up with 2 pages easy, almost always more. 2 pages a day is modest and doable. It is not intimidating. And most importantly, it GETS ME IN THE CHAIR. And 2 pages a day means… 7 scripts a year, doesn’t it?
So far it has helped. We’ll see.
How much do you usually pay for a haircut?
There is no such thing as “too much garlic.”
What is your favorite candy bar of all time?
Saw this”screenplay wanted” listing on one of my newsletters:
>>We are looking for completed feature-length quirky drama scripts that draw on magic realism, something in the vein of ‘Mulholland Dr.,’ ‘Lost Highway,’ or one of Haruki Morukami’s novels (e.g. ‘After Dark’). Submissions should be for stories that examine the darker shadows and corners of human nature, albeit from an unusual perspective. We do not necessarily intend to focus so much on violence, but more on a fresh perspective of a deeper truth or perception – something that offers us a newer way of seeing things, possibly using a subtle sense of humour. It should speak with cinematic grammar and language and be visually atmospheric. It should not be so obscure as to be totally uncommercial and needs to be entertaining and have a good pace.
>>Budget will not exceed $6 million. WGA and non-WGA writers may submit.
Now, aside from a tangential discussion about what exactly he means by “magical realism” (my definition seems to be different from his), I figured this was the most direct solicitation for a script like Aftershocks that I am ever going to see in my lifetime. (Directly referencing Lost Highway and Mulholland Drive? Where has this guy been all my life?!) So I wrote the guy a quick note and submitted a logline/synopsis. We’ll see if he asks for the full script.
And if you’re reading this and you’ve never read Aftershocks, why not?
There is now Neil Sedaka on my iPod. And I am damn proud of it too. 5 stars.