Tuesday, May 01, 2007

My other half part 2

Two people have recently asked me about my relationship with Writing Partner, so I'm going to go into more detail today about how we work together. And why.

It was not too long ago that I was asking people for advice on how to work with a partner, and here I am a few months later feeling pretty good about my experience.

Partner used to be Houseguest. Before that he was Date.

I went out one night with a friend of mine and her boyfriend. Boyfriend's friend joined us during the evening and he and I hit it off. He got my number and called me and we went to El Cholo for what turned out to be the best date I ever had. We ended up at my place in a lightsaber battle. That's not a metaphor. I actually own two toy light sabers and we battled.

You can say it. I'm the coolest girl ever. It's okay.

A few days passed and Date had some roommate problems and he needed to get out of his house. So I cooked him dinner and he crashed at my place. The next night he didn't want to go back so he crashed again. Then he just kept staying until a month later when he decided he wanted to move to a faraway land. That's how he became Houseguest.

And that's how I learned that although we like each other very much as people, an excellent date does not necessarily turn into an excellent relationship. We argued constantly, but he helped me figure some things out and I helped him make a few important decisions. And somehow in the middle of it all we started being creative together and Houseguest became Writing Partner.

Then he moved away and has yet to return.

A great plot for a romantic comedy, no? I've tried it and I'm just not a romcom girl. But if anybody wants to use it you can buy me a few beers and I'll give you more details and you can go write it yourself.

Since Partner lives so very far away we've done all of our writing over emails and phone calls. I usually start a story because I'm pretty clear about opening scenes. I'll write as much as I feel like and then email him the pages. We talk about it on the phone then he writes the next set and emails them back to me. Then we talk on the phone again.

Sometimes I'll make changes to what he wrote, sometimes I'll stick to my own stuff. We sort of play it by who has the strongest vision.

Even though we disagree about everything else there is to discuss, we tend to work pretty well with creative differences. I'll give an idea and he'll give an idea and after we explore why we feel the way we do we usually come to some third idea that is better than both of ours were.

I'm better at action, he's better at comedy. I'm better at dialogue, he's better at plot. I'm better at personal stories, he's better at sweeping themes. When we work together our scripts are always better than they are when we write apart. At least, that's the case with the three projects we've worked on so far.

The toughest part was that he didn't have MovieMagic, so I had to constantly reformat everything to and from RTF. He has it now, though, so things should get easier.

I'm really glad we only went on one date. If we'd been a couple I probably would have stabbed him before I realized how well we work together. Some things are just meant not to be.


  1. But you're barely into Act II of your story with Writing Partner.

    You'll soon reach your darkest point when you think there's no interest in your scripts and all hope is lost.

    Suddenly, a reversal! A producer will greenlight your project and through a whirlwind of coincidences you two will find yourselves in Hollywood, for the premiere of your latest film.

    After a night of celebration, you will stare longingly into one anothers eyes - realizing, that yes, this relationship is work - but it is a relationship.

    You will kiss passionately and have a light saber battle to end all light saber battles.

    The force will be strong in him.

  2. Ummm

    Ew, no. Never going to happen.


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