Sunday, April 29, 2007

My other half

Writing Partner has an audition Monday for a major national ad campaign. As in a company you've heard of. As in if he gets this job, you will see him on your television and maybe your local movie screen between the Fanta girls and the library kids.

He called me Friday to say he didn't think he wanted to do it because he didn't know if a commercial could really be a stepping stone to anything bigger.

This is the same guy who yelled at me for an hour at my stupidity because I didn't want to apply for a Writer's Assistant position on a major TV show. I gently reminded him of that conversation. Then I reminded him of Orlando Jones and the 7Up commercials. Then I reminded him how much he hates his current underpaying uncreative corporate job.

He's shaving his face and going to his audition just like he should. I hope he gets it.

This man is the most frustrating person I know. We argue constantly. He picks apart everything from my character descriptions to my eating habits to my love life and every time I disagree with him he rolls out the old quotes from Miguel Ruiz. I've taken to just hanging up every time he uses the phrase "You're taking it personally" when he tells me I'm weak and don't have the kind of brilliance that his film school education provided.

Ok he never actually says that. I kind of paraphrase a lot and exaggerate and that's when he gets frustrated. I'm certainly not innocent in our miscommunication. Our constant, aggravating miscommunication.

Sometimes I fear the world will find us curled up on the floor next to a fallen chandalier, both grabbing at a blood-stained script with our lifeless hands.

Partner and I are so incredibly different in our taste, too. He wants to write more dramatic emotional stuff or satirical comedies that explore controversial political issues. I want to write action stories that force people to make a decision between two horrible choices. He doesn't really appreciate my scripts and I don't really get his comedies.

But something happens when we work together. His strengths and his weaknesses completely balance mine out. He sees what I don't and I can fix what he doesn't know is wrong. And in the end he is a very good friend, a friend who I alternate between wanting to punch in the face and wanting to hug it out with all afternoon. Because he is the most honest and good person I know, dispite his bizarre desire to overanalyze everything.

Right now we're working on this series of chapters for our feature script. It's supposed to be a dark comedy. But his chapter is coming out way too goofy to be dark, and mine is coming out way too intense to be comedy. So when we're done we'll swap. I'll make his more serious and he'll punch up the humor in mine. And then we'll argue for three days.

Edited to add:

We just spent an hour in a massive fight where we decided we couldn't be friends anymore. He was mad because I said he should flesh out his characters more.

After an long email battle and me hanging up on him twice, we both took a breath and decided that we each inidividually overreacted. Then we workshopped our script some more and laughed and promised to take two days before responding to notes from now on.

We have an odd relationship.


  1. Your relationship sounds so romantic.

    Be careful, one day you'll be fighting over dialogue - then you'll wake up buck naked together.

    I've seen it happen before.

  2. Anonymous8:32 AM

    pencil in some of your convos and incidents and make it research for a film about two collaborative writers

  3. I'm curious...

    I 100% get how you guys work, and why you are partners. Complimentary strengths go a long way. What I wonder is how you guys ended up as writing partners.

  4. That explanation will take a whole blog entry. I'll get to that tomorrow.


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