Back At It/The Challenge 2.008

2 things:

(1) I’m writing again, which is good – very good. After the move to the house took up all my time from September – November, the holidays came along. Between those and the endless puttering and fixing and buying new stuff for a 50-year-old house, I had really been out of commission for a while there. But this past weekend Michelle took both boys off my hands for a few hours for a birthday party, so I had 2 or 3 hours of good, quality time with Dead Guy.

Yes, Dead Guy. After being banished to the back burner since at least last summer, Dead Guy is forefront in my mind again. Which leads to the complications with

(2) The Challenge 2.008. As I suggested in an earlier post, I had really meant to come out guns blazing in early January with a New Year’s Resolution/Big Bold Statement about what the new challenge would look like. A schedule of milestones, deadlines to live up to, all that, to get both scripts completed in 2008. While the final goal – both scripts done and showable and uploaded to by the end of 2008 – is still unshakeably in place, the interim deadlines and timetables keep changing. Why? Because I had assumed that I would resume work on Psycho Ex first, finish a draft of that by April or so, get that polished and uploaded by the summer, and then keep right on trucking into Dead Guy for fall and winter deadlines. But now it appears that the two scripts are more entangled in my mind than that. Instead of writing one script and then the next, they have become interconnected, alternately as 2 sides of the same coin (the premises are mirror images of each other) or as serving as release valves – when I get stuck on one, the other one is always there waiting, a breath of fresh air. Therefore, it’s looking like I’ll continue with both at the same time, as two big chunks moving forward in semi-parallel fashion. So who knows which one I’ll finish first, or when? How should I assign deadlines or progress requirements when working like this? I don’t know, but I’m working on it. The whole point of this is to force myself to get productive again, not to devise a system with giant loopholes that I can simply walk out of.

It seems like there should be big milestones met by the end of each quarter, whether through a total page count of both scripts combined or otherwise. I’ll keep thinking about it, and if anybody gets any bright ideas by all means send them this way.

As for Dead Guy – I’ve gotten my head back in the game, but no new flow of pages yet. Mostly working on my outline, more concentration on The Line, character arcs, things like that. But specific work has been done too – the nearly-complete Act One has been tweaked and refocused, the first present-day scene is getting mapped out and taking shape, more details about Pete’s life and business trip are getting nailed down. More forward progress than we’ve seen in a long time, so stay tuned.

Now if I could just figure out how to get the boys invited to birthday parties EVERY weekend…


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