Tuesday, March 08, 2011

Here I go again on this draft

Annnnnnd it looks like I have to rethink the whole thing again.

Got new notes. Notes said the script isn't working. Characters are interesting, voice is ever present, motivation is off. Why do these characters do these things?

I keep getting this same note and I keep sitting down, addressing the note, handing it back in and getting that note again. So clearly I need more than just a simple fix. Something at the core of the script is not working.

In years past I would have abandoned the script and tried again, and there are still scripts - one as recent as last year - that I abandoned for that reason. But I love these characters and think this story has tons of potential, so I'm going to do another round of massive changes to the first half of the script. I think the second half is working for the most part, but because my first half isn't strong enough people aren't buying how things turn out.

Michael Arndt said he wrote Little Miss Sunshine in three days, and spent a year rewriting it. I remember when I first heard that thinking that sounded ridiculous. I couldn't imagine spending that much time reworking one script.

I can now. It's annoying.


  1. Hamboogul9:26 PM

    I'll post a comment since I'm procrastinating.

    Before you embark on a major rewrite (your nth), go back and read the very very very first version of this. Find out what you loved about it. Don't lose that.

    It's like being in a marriage rut for a long time. You forget the little things that caught your eye the first time. Her laugh when she tells a bad joke. Her smile when she looks at you in the morning. Her posture as she kicks a puppy.

    So keep that in mind.

  2. That's the weird thing about this script. I liked the second draft better than the first draft.

    But yeah, you're right. The biggest danger in this next draft is keeping the comedy, because the scenes have sort of evolved into a more serious situation. I'm hoping I can mix the two together successfully.

  3. the first poster5:16 PM

    was the title of this blog supposed to be sung to "Here I Go Again On Mah Own?"

  4. If you like. I never stand in the way of a good '80s tune.

  5. same guy, bored by DD right now6:35 PM

    Everybody have fun tonight,
    Everybody rewrite tonight!

  6. Meh. May you find a way to keep the funny bits, Garner seems partial to funny.

    Outside critic in design class, used to be assistant to Charles and Ray Eames, shared what others called problems, the Eames called challenges, an opportunity to find an even better solution. And it really can work out that way. A sailor moon upgrade. I have no doubt you'll find one.

    Looked for that Eames bit online, unsuccessful, did find this: Fifteen Things Charles & Ray Teach Us:
    1. Keep good company
    2. Notice the ordinary
    3. Preserve the ephemeral
    4. Design not for the elite but for the masses
    5. Explain it to a child
    6. Get lost in the content
    7. Get to the heart of the matter
    8. Never tolerate “O.K. anything.”
    9. Remember your responsibility as a storyteller
    10. Zoom out
    11. Switch
    12. Prototype it
    13. Pun
    14. Make design your life… and life, your design.
    15. Leave something behind.

  7. I cringed. Think about comedies produced in the past 10 years. Most of those comedies were made because they had talent attached (or established writers). A lot of the comedy onscreen is provided by the performance(performer). A perfectly written joke can completely fail if delivered poorly (think of every Seinfeld episode with changes to the cast). A lot of the spec comedy writers are already stars or good buds with stars.

    Go to Netflix and look at member reviews for “The Other Guys” or “Little Nicky”. What you are going to see is people have very specific and extreme tastes for comedy. Some people love Will Ferrell and some people hate him. Unlike drama/sci-fi/action/horror (IMO), you have a very small target when you’re aiming for someone else’s sense of humor. It may be a tough way to bust in. Seems like you need to build cred in TV first.

  8. stuck on 80s9:29 AM

    please title all your blogs for 80s songs.

    Write Like An Egyptian.
    All Out of Scenes
    I Can't Fight This Rewrite Anymore
    Sweet Scene O Mine

  9. Lol. I like that. Those are pretty good.


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