Saturday, June 18, 2005

Moosey Trousers


moosey trousers
Originally uploaded by jamesandthebluecat.
Looking after parents' garden while they're away, and under strict instructions not to let any food go to waste. Lots of new potatoes, raspberries, and rhubarb (ooh - I could make a really weird pizza!). Also tomatoes, courgettes and squashes, but they're still green. And a catering block of chocolate hidden behind some tins of soup. And some blocks of jelly. Yum. It's like being fourteen again. Next thing I'll be... buying roleplaying games and reading comics. Shiiiiiit.

Also, my parents don't have broadband, so I can't get distracted by World of Warcraft, which has to be a good thing. Last night I drove back to my flat, just because if log off with your characters out in the wilderness you get less experience points next time you log on. So an evening was spent taking all my characters back to an inn one at a time (you can teleport, it doesn't take that long, so it's kind of practical really, if you think about it). If you type '/sleep' they have a cute animation where they actually lie down and go to sleep, but I thought that was taking it too far. No point getting silly about it. Moosey's doing very well - joined up with a bunch of trolls and beat up some raptors, which was most satisfying, as they keep ambushing me when I go too far south, so an element of personal grudge-holding may have crept in there. However Moosey has picked up some rather garish red and green leggings from somewhere, so whereas he used to look like a minotaur on a mission of revenge, he now looks like a slightly camp dance instructor. With a bull's head. Or maybe that was a dream I once had. Or a date PP once had.*

The rewriting of sample scenes for top secret project had the expected effect: i.e. they picked another writer. They did have the decency to phone and let me know, and they're very keen on Romey loves Jools, which they've passed on to development people, so fingers crossed there. I don't mind too much about not getting the 'gig' as absolutely no-one calls it - I tend to either hit the right note with these things straight away or frankly not at all. I'm considering refusing to do sample scenes altogether - if they've read my stuff and like it, that should be enough, and as Wise Stuart (GW writer) says. it's not like they give out sample money, is it? Of the conversations back at various production companies could go two ways:

CONVERSATION ONE

PRODUCER: So what's happening with this crazy-ass James Henry kid then? (producers talk like this all the time, I've heard them)
COWERING ASSISTANT: Sir, he refuses to do any sample scenes! He says if we've read his scripts, that's enough to go on, and he's damned if he's going to work for free!
PRODUCER chomps his cigar for a bit. COWERING ASSISTANT wedges self into a corner, closes eyes in terror. Finally-
PRODUCER: Goddamn it, I like his...
COWERING ASSISTANT: Spunk?
PRODUCER: Moxie.
COWERING ASSISTANT: Oh.
PRODUCER: He's hired.
COWERING ASSISTANT: Can I go back in time and say 'Pzazz?'
PRODUCER: No.

CONVERSATION TWO

PRODUCER: So what's happening with this crazy-ass James Henry kid then?
COWERING ASSISTANT: Sir, he refuses to do any sample scenes! He says if we've read his scripts, that's enough to go on, and he's damned if he's going to work for free!
PRODUCER: Fair enough. We'll get someone else.

Hmm. Might have to think about this.

The kids' telly thing (monsters/fairy tale bits/puppets) is going very well though. Script editor encouraging me to go big and there pare it back afterwards, which suits me. It did take her three goes to get to remove the sinister hand puppet called 'Mr Starey' from the storyline, but I accept that she was right now. And I can put him back in somewhere else.

Agent Ginny was about to send off my film screenplay to a second batch of companies, but we had a chat about it first as it's become apparent that although it starts well, it quickly goes a bit bonkers and gets very confusing indeed in the third act, hence the standard reaction of 'I loved your script! I had no idea what happened in it! We could never make it!'

My first plan was 'let's send it out anyway, even if it's a tad wonky' as knowing it doesn't quite work just gives me that edge. In some way that... doesn't make sense. Also, I'm lazy, and rewriting counts as work. So obviously, I had to ring Ginny back later and say 'I'm going to have to rewrite it, aren't I?' So that's the plan. Initially I was going to just simplify the ending, but last night I thought of a whole new ending altogether, which would sort of tie into what I'm ashamed to say I was holding back for the sequel. And yes, I was thinking of it being a trilogy. Look, if you're not going to think big, there's no point even trying, is there?

* Yes yes, glass houses, stones.



2 comments:

cello said...

You've got all the talent it takes, James. You just need as much goddam persistence, optimism, arrogance, audacity, self-confidence and chutzpah(sp?)as you can muster. In the end, that's what gets people through.... I'm told.

Kalista said...

Be true to thyself.

That's a famous quote right there.