How ’bout that?

This was supposed to go up yesterday, but didn’t. And I’m glad about that.

Because then I was working towards the end of Act One. Progress was slow, and I wasn’t happy. I needed more things to click. More to fall into place. I wanted to fill in that gap between page 17 and the end of the first act. And nothing was coming to mind.

So I stopped for the day to resume my role of dad, sans car. And in a great metropolitan city, that means public transit, which means more time getting from point A to point B. By the time we got home and had dinner, I was too wiped to write anything blog or outline-related.

Jump ahead to today. I take care of the running and laundry issues, then finally sit down with LUCY. The blank space where I left off yesterday stares back at me.

I know what I want to happen, but the words get jumbled up between my brain and fingers. I start to type. Okay. That works. Ooh, maybe not that. How about…this? Nice. And this. Hey, that’s cool. The scene/sequence that ends the first act takes up a lot of space, but it reads quickly, is chock-full of exciting adventure-type material and does a good job of showing what my hero is capable of and ends very neatly.

I might even go so far as to say I was practically giddy as I finished. Getting to the next point will definitely be a challenge, but as long as I stay focused and remember where this is supposed to go, it should work out fine.

I know it still needs a lot of work, and I wonder what the writing group will think of it this weekend, but I really think I’m off to a pretty good start.

And it was a lot of fun to write. I love that feeling.

No Movie of the Moment tonight because I’m at V’s hockey practice. But I did watch more of Season 1 of MODERN FAMILY during the laundry phase. Still hilarious.

-On a sad note, I learned today that my film teacher in high school passed away a few years ago. What a shame. He really was one of the first to open my eyes to the world of film beyond the malls and multiplexes.

Like just about every screenwriter, I dream of winning Best Original Screenplay. Part of that scenario would involve me thanking him for what an influence he was to me. Even though he’s apparently been gone for a few years, I’d still do it. He will be missed.

That’s more like it

After spending more time worrying about whether or not I’d make progress with the LUCY outline, I managed to punch out a good portion of the first act over the past 2 days.

My mantra for the time being is ‘just keep going!’  What I have now is chock-full of action and excitement, and while it was supposed to end around page 17, it doesn’t.  And I feel oddly fine with that.

Of course, the group may have something to say about that on Sunday, but that’s okay too.  I doubt they’ll be too much in a snit about it, anyway.

As always, this is still a rough draft of the outline and will need a lot of work when it’s done, but it was a great feeling of excitement being able to write like this again.  Thinking of a scenario, plotting it out, making it sure it’s logical and realistic, while also inserting the fantastic into it to make it cinematic.

Boiled down to one statement: It’s what I live for.

And tomorrow, I get to do it again.

The weird thing is as I make progress, the way the story is developing keeps changing.  While I work on the story, I have to try and stay on track in terms of keeping it along what I want it to be.  It feels like it would be too easy to let the events drive what happens, but I have to really make sure I stay in control.  I hate when I don’t.

But as long as I know where it it I want to go, it should be fine.

Tomorrow – the push towards the end of Act One.

Movie of the Moment: not a movie, but a fantastic show from the BBC.  SHERLOCK, the incredibly re-imagining (a word I hate) of Holmes and Watson in modern London, courtesy of Stephen Moffat (spelling?), who was also a big part of the relaunching of Doctor Who.

The writing is crisp, the acting is great.  Overall, mind-blowingly great.  It is such a pity that American writers can’t be this good.  American TV would be an entirely different animal if they could.  Thank God the British have such higher standards.

-As part of her birthday, I took V and a friend to see MEGAMIND.  It was also well-done and a lot of fun.  I also got to thinking about how kids movies today are so much better then when I was that age.  All we had back then were crappy Disney movies.  At least until STAR WARS came along.

Then it all changed.

Whyizzit?

This is going to be a short one, since I’m in the studio and technically working on the air, so my attention is directed all over the place.

Early during this shift, I worked on my script stuff, which I usually do when I’m in here. Today it was an attempted rewrite of the LUCY plot points.

And once again, being in here makes my creative juices flow (which sounds more provocative than it should). I wanted to try and put a more solid story together, and that’s what seems to have happened.

The midpoint could be a little stronger, but it’s all coming together a little easier.

I wonder if not focusing entirely on the story and constantly being distracted by actually having to do my job is the key. Maybe my creativity is more effective when I’m supposed to be doing something else.

If I did this every day, this script would be done in no time.

And that would be cool.

Well, dog my cats!

About a month ago, I got an email telling me that the company known as Script Quack was following me on Twitter.  They do script analysis.  So no big deal.

A week after that, they posted a general tweet saying the price for the basic analysis package was reduced from $75 to $50.  Interesting.  Maybe this would benefit DREAMSHIP.  But there’s that cost thing.

Would it really be worth the money?  I’ve never had this done before, but I really like the script and want to know how to make it better.

I decided to bite the bullet and do it.  Hope the $50 is worth it.

The days go by.  I hear nothing back after a few days.

More days pass.  It’s approaching the one week mark.  I start to fear I have been taken by a con artist.  I even dream the end product came in the mail and was sitting on the dining room table (which it wasn’t).

Saturday comes and goes.  Still nothing.  I’m not feeling very positive about this.  I decide to wait until Wednesday to drop them a line.

Just to verify their legitimacy, I go to their website.  There on the homepage is the disclaimer “Get your notes back in under a week or they’re free!’

That’s interesting.

Sunday.  We’re getting ready to go to the airport to pick up K.

My phone DINGS!  New email.

And there are the notes.  Legitimacy verified.  I skim the opening.  They seem very enthusiastic about the script, which is nice.  I stop there, since we have to leave in a few minutes, and write back to them saying I haven’t looked at the notes yet, but gently bring up their disclaimer.  I run a worst-cast scenario where they try to weasel out of the deal.

A few hours later, I get an email saying I am right, that it took 8 days, I’m entitled to my refund, and I get to keep the notes.

And it ended up being free!

Even better, this is the start of a blueprint for a new draft of DREAMSHIP that, if done properly, could be sent back to the Nicholl next year.

Cool.

Epilogue:  I look at the notes.  Very detailed and helpful, even though they got the villain’s name wrong.  I printed them out for further study.

What’s really cool is that I can work on this and keep going on developing LUCY.  I may even be able to take lessons learned on the former and apply them to the latter.

Really cool indeed.

Movie of the Moment:  Not necessarily right now, but I watched IKIRU and FORT APACHE over the weekend.

IKIRU started out slow, but got very interesting as it moved along.  I was very surprised at some of the subject matter being discussed, especially for when it was set.  You’d never hear the word ‘diarrhea’ in an American film from the 50’s!

FORT APACHE was a typical John Ford western.  Henry Fonda did a good job, though.  John Wayne still had the swagger, albeit turned down.  But once you see a modern-era western (OPEN RANGE, DEADWOOD, etc), it’s hard to look at these and not think ‘why is everything so clean?’ and ‘why isn’t anybody swearing up a storm?’  A bit predictable, but still fun.