Failure

Script Frenzy is out.  Day 26 and I have four pages.  (Does one of them count when it’s the title page?)

It’s not procrastination this time (I worked on it plenty and have brightly colored post-it notes and index ccards pinned to a bulletin board to prove it); I blame poor planning and a late arrival.  Maybe some people can do it all in 30 days, but I think to effectively complete a screenplay or a novel in 30 days, you must have it mapped out ahead of time.  And I don’t just mean the character work, the motivations, the external goal, internal need, blah blah blah.  The story needs to be fully realized in your head or better yet on paper unless you want to spend a month writing incoherent scenes that have nothing to do with each other by page 100.  I don’t want to spend the whole challenge frustrated by tyring to find my story.  I want to write it.

The thing that stumped me the most was the beginning.  Well, what else could it have been if I only wrote three pages?  My Theatre Arts professor, who directed all the program’s plays, told me that often the opening scene didn’t come to him until sometime deep within rehearsals.  Granted, he already had the words in front of him, but I understand what he meant.

En Medias Res is always a tried and true method.  I think I was trying to focus more on the visual aspects of how the story would look onscreen rather than concentrate on the story itself.  Not to mention, I had no motivation for the sorceress Ilaria to abduct the young male gypsy (who coincidentally looked like a young Johnny Depp) in the opening.  Whatever I thought was her motivation had turned out not to be the case, and the opening scenes I had written were just blocking me from moving forward.  They were bridgeless.

And even though I’m a complete failure at Script Frenzy 2011, I managed to use the time to concoct a story and a plan for writing it where ideas can flow unheeded by deep chasms of crap.

Sigh

While doing laundry the other day at my mom’s house, I worked on my screenplay for Script Frenzy.  She asked me what I was writing, so I told her about the month-long writing challenge.  She asked me if there was a prize when it was over.  I said no, I would just get a finished screenplay out of it.  She said, “Oh, so it’s just personal.”  Meaning, it doesn’t really count if it’s not going to be published, optioned, bought, whatever.  I knew my mother didn’t mean it quite as sarcastically as I took it, after all, she has always supported my endeavour to write and seek multiple useless degrees in writing.  But it still made me upset, almost like I had to defend that what I was writing was just as important as if it had been under contract.

In a way, I guess it’s good that I still felt that internal pang of pissed offedness and I haven’t given in to complete apathy about the whole writing thing.  Now I just wish I could get back the same pang of excitement I used to have about it.