The going has been a little rough over the last couple of days. Sadly, I don’t think I’ll be making this 5pm deadline for a comp today, but that’s alright – would rather get the script right than hurry it off to be judged. My fingers on my right paw have taken on some heavy duty the last few days and have rewarded me with some fairly distracting shooting pains. I’ve resorted to typing with just my left hand, and am doing so right now. Very, very slowly.
The piece itself is beyond the 10,000 word mark, though still just over 40 pages and I’m not sure how I’ve done that. Hand issues not included, this has probably been the hardest piece to write that I’ve ever taken on, which came as quite a surprise to me. However, thinking on it, I can see three reasons why this is:
1) I abandoned writing it and came back to it after receiving differing feedback notes. This has turned it into a bit of a hybrid monster that slopes around, uncertain of it’s place in the world/literary history.
2) Following from that, while I have the structure nicely plotted out in Mindnode, it is completely ludicrous. The second act is a monster and the third is worryingly brief. Also, since I have basically shoe-horned in a protagonist, this has led to me not filling him out as much as the ‘antagonist’, Mehta. I told myself this is all fine since, actually Apocalypse Now is structured similarly and we don’t know a heck of a lot about Willard (they cut out his character development bits!). Then I realised: have you SEEN that movie?! It’s a terrible template for a piece destined for a mainstream broadcaster.
3) A General Fuzziness. Truthfully, I’m having trouble finding the emotional core of this piece now. The focus has slipped since I bought Jordi in as a proper hero character, and the only way back is for me to mirror his own issues in Keval’s as a way to power the compulsion to finding the man/himself. That’s not done yet. Identity, ambition, guilt. Need to repeat those over and over. Here we see the value of solid outline/treatment over a structural diagram, kids. Don’t rush that stage if you’re working on a long form project (anything over 45 minutes, I’d say) – you will pay for it.
So yeah – bit lost in the woods with this one, and along with the pain a little demoralising. Have to just keep on slugging and send it to Farokh, who will then identify the crippling flaws that run through the piece like rich veins of vomit. I will likely then go on to staunch these with witty lines. Nice.