Tuesday, August 26, 2008

The first cut is the deepest

Been busy this week, partly working on a website (a pet project rather than work) and thinking about the feedback I had on the latest draft of Monsters.

And it's nearly September.

So I had to decide: One Night in Paris, my comedy which I'd planned to send to the Kaos competition hasn't been touched and needs plenty of work before it's ready. Meanwhile there's less than two weeks left. Or Monsters which needs more work and the deadline for the Red Planet competition is the end of September.

Yes it's true I could tighten up the first 10 pages of Monsters and just send those, while spending the next week blasting my way through a rewrite of One Night in Paris. But the plot lines in Monsters are so carefully knitted that the wrong change at the start could mess up scenes later on. It's a kind of all or nothing deal.

So I'm skipping Kaos. No point spending money on a competition with something that definitely won't make it past the first cut. And I'll concentrate on Monsters.

It's pretty weird really. This time last year I was sure Monsters was as good as it could get and I had a really good opening 10 pages. It didn't even make it through the first cut. (Though I was in good company with the other 1900 writers.)

This year I know my opening 10 pages are a 100 times better. And I know I still need to work on them.

Last year I was arrogant enough to think I stood a good chance of making the first cut. This year I'm much less certain.

Last year I laboured under the impression I could write. Yet this year I know I can.

I can be a truly arrogant bar steward sometimes ... but I learn.

What's on the turntable? "Dr Tyrell's Death" by Vangelis from CD2 of the "Bladerunner" 3 CD set. This is totally brilliant music inspired by a totally brilliant film. Ridley Scott's cut is definitely (and definitively) the best. He fixes some problems with the original edit and can you imagine a callback to re-shoot a scene 25 years later? He did it, and it is seamless.

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