ALLIGATORS IN A HELICOPTER

a pro script reader ponders movies, reading, writing and the occasional personal flashback

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Still Truckin'

So my determination to screenwrite for at least an hour a day is still going strong. Today makes 45 straight days.

The rules are pretty simple. Actual typing of screenplay counts. Reading over screenplay and scribbling all over it with a pen counts. Concentrated brainstorming and jotting down notes counts.

Doing arm curls with a stack of screenplays doesn't count. And no roll-over minutes. I write for two hours one day, I don't get to take the next day off.

Progress?

In 45 days (of rarely writing more than 90 minutes a day, tops) I have:

-- Taken a TV spec (which I had written the first half of), wrote the second half, and polished it all up to a shine.

-- Taken a low-budget thriller spec (that I had 50 mediocre pages of and some general notes on the rest), totally reworked those 50 pages to work, and finished the second half as well. The current draft, which I'm putting the finishing touches on tomorrow, is clocking in at a satisfying 95 pages. And it all feels good.

-- Done some substantial brainstorming on a comedy, which I'm supposed to be writing with an online buddy (we came up with the basic idea a year or so ago), though it's time for him to step up to the plate.

-- Brainstormed some other notes I had made on other projects, and rewrote them in an official "ideas" log.

Not bad for six and a half weeks in which I never had enough time to actually grab half a day to do nothing but write.

But set aside an hour a day, and the pages pile up. Plus the stuff is fresh in my head, and I'm constantly suddenly coming up with a fix for a particular scene. (Off the clock, of course).

Feels good.

What are you waiting for?

8 Comments:

At 2:59 PM, Anonymous kristen said...

one hour a day is a good approach. that's what I'm doing now, though not as strictly as you. it's been more like 1.5 hours one day, half hour the next, ramping up to the full throttle.

keep up the good work!

 
At 4:00 PM, Blogger Carlo C. said...

Glad it's working out.

 
At 6:10 PM, Blogger E.C. Henry said...

Scott, your dedication is inspiring. Like the talented, and witty, Kristen, I too TRY to write an hour a day, but sometimes it's longer, sometimes shorter than an hour.

I guess "what I'm waiting for" (my reasons for writing so damn slow) is the fact I'm a perfectionist, and in my mind I'm constantly tabulating this massive list of things I want to change or spice up in the script I'm working on. It's not like I'm writing is real bad. I LOVE what I write, it's just I want it to be special, and in that persuit sometimes I psyche myself out.

After some deep, contemplative thought I've come to the conclusion that what I need to improve output is to hook up with some young hottie. A chair ornament of sorts -- only one with some measure of brains, who can sit on my lap and calm my nerves when I get out of sorts. A muse with a mini-skirt, if you will.

- E.C. Henry from Bonney Lake, WA

 
At 6:35 PM, Anonymous Matt said...

Great job! I'm more of a streaky type myself. For a certain period of time, say a week, I'll write like a madman. Several hours a day for that entire week until my brain is fried and I can't go on any longer. Then I'll take a few days off to lounge around, then it's right back to it.

 
At 8:42 PM, Blogger Laura Reyna said...

I try to write every day too. If you do a little each day, it adds up.

But I remind myself that if i miss a day or two here & there, it's OK. I try not to beat myself up about it. Castigating yourself just makes it worse, it's counterproductive. I learned this the hard way after many yrs of "detest fests".

Continued success, Scott!

 
At 11:32 PM, Anonymous Elver said...

And, hey, if you're looking for someone to read and critique the stuff you write, drop me a note at elver.loho@gmail.com -- I'm always looking for fellow writers to owe me a reading on my own stuff ;)

 
At 10:39 PM, Blogger Cezaro said...

Thank you for posting this Scott, it helps. =)

 
At 8:54 PM, Blogger Jallad said...

Thanks for the inspiration. It always seems that momentum drives success. Do you try to write at the same time everyday or just whenever you can find an hour?

 

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