Are you Slacking off in there?

I have been a bad blogger the past couple of days. I can only promise it's because real work is getting done... mostly.

"The Trendsetter" is coming along [Re: Untitled Short no more]. The opening is finally polished to what I've wanted it to be this whole time [you've no idea how many times I've written those eight pages... ten pages... fifteen pages...but roughly 8-10 now!]. I solved the problem of the protagonist's job, much thanks goes to John for that [Re: The Bathroom Monologues], and while big chunks of the script had to be tossed to fit it in, I feel so much more confidant in what I have now.

This, I think, is where I might be a negligent writer, or at least a writer that most would have trouble understanding. Most people would think something like a character's job changing could be easily fixed within the script. Even if you're writing around a character who's working a great deal, feasibly you could make the changes with Word's "Replace" feature. Then change a couple of scene settings, write a few new descriptions, and you're gravy.

But I just can't do that. I mean, in a pinch, I have, but most often what I end up with is a page that looks [to me] like it's been hacked at by a med-school reject with a rusted meat cleaver, and then sewed back together like some screenplay-Frankenstein. This could be me being OCD [hate using that, when did that get trendy?], or maybe I'm right and a trained or even untrained eye could look and see the seams of where the changes have been made. I don't know. I will admit to rarely feeling comfortable enough to submit something I think is sub par myself, especially just to see if, in the future, I might be able to get away with a few screenwriting shortcuts. But the risks of exposing the work far outweighs the time lost in re-writes.

But that's fixed now, and all that's left is one really important reveal I'm trying to figure out, and actually just sitting down and shaping the dialogue and scenes to fit the outline as it stands. The problem of the reveal is a surprisingly simple one that I should have seen coming, but didn't. Since the overall gimmick to this short is that this "writing letters about your feelings to strangers" thing that the protag. did once, randomly, in a moment of passion, has caught on as a really big self-help trend, how do you show that? How do you reveal to audience that a single letter has started something big, and do it -- cleverly -- right way?

My mistake was, in the outline, that I have the whole thing strung out gradually. You get a little bit here, and here, and here, and you put it together as you go along. But what I really need, sort of right out of the box, is the shock of recognition, and the audience wondering: "did one letter cause all this?"

Like any problem, it just needs some thought. I'll get it... I might even go looking for some help.

I'm still feeling bad. Lots of soreness in my hands and arms, probably from the typing, and the sinus infection. Sleeping patterns have just been...strange. Dreams have been distressing, too. They've had continuity, glasses got damaged in one, kept the damage from dream to dream. Its strange how much more "real" it all feels when that happens, like a second life.

Next couple of days, will be thinking about Christmas. More on what that means later.


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