Monday 24 November 2008

Finally! Writing begins...

Well, last night I finally started work on my latest script - a feature length zombie epic based on a short script I wrote called "The End". I'd previously sent that short script to Gary Ugarek (the dude behind Deadlands) and he rather liked it and said I should expand it into a feature length script.

As soon as he said "you should...", I knew I'd end up doing it sooner or later. This is exactly how VHS: Long Play came about, when a fellow member of Homepage of the Dead said he'd love to see a sequel to VHS and that I should do one. That got my brain started immediately and within hours I'd thrashed out an idea for it, and a few months later I'd actually gotten around to filming it.

Obviously, this new script - this feature length zombie epic - is way beyond my own means. The purpose of writing this script would be to get it seen by people far higher up the ladder, so-to-speak. The idea is to try and come up with new areas not explored by the zombie genre, or areas that have been glimpsed at, but not expanded upon. I want to answer the little questions that fans such as myself came up with in reaction to Land of the Dead (a film that I loved by the way), and finally to really come up with some memorable and even downright fucked up moments, with a sprinkling of action throughout.

Prior to starting this script however, was a month of desperate malaise - I'd started the Final Draft file, gotten the text and font and so on set up how I like - and before that was a period of brain storming and sequence & segment mapping out. Essentially the script is written ... in a brief form at least ... all I have to do is fill in the blanks, glue the parts together, and generally polish the whole thing.

So I got it going last night, a month after I'd started the Final Draft file, and managed to squeeze out three pages. Now yes, that's not a lot, but it's something. Besides, starting a new script - just like starting a new essay when I was at university, or throughout school - is always slow at the beginning.

You're trying to get into the mode of thinking (I had to fish out an old script to familiarise myself with the layout again, not to mention remembering how to use the software itself), and you're also trying to get into the script itself - the surrounding story, and the plot within the confines of the first and last pages. You've got to get your head into the characters, you've got to get the projector in your head rolling so that you can see clearly what you want so that you can write it down - this is what I do when writing. I watch the film in my head, then write down what I see.

Also, there's the issue of getting my head back into my notes and scene/segment layouts I'd written a few months ago. I've got to find all those little nuances, those little ideas I want to sprinkle throughout and figure out all over again where and when I want them - like last night, I was writing the beginning of the opening segment, but forgot I was meaning to include a radio broadcast throughout the first interaction between two characters, so I had to head back and lace that in between what I'd written.

It feels really good though, to get this script going, and like I said before, even though I only did three pages last night, I actually got the thing started. I overcame my crushing malaise, double clicked that FD icon, and started hammering the keyboard. Hopefully I can continue with the script from now on with as little hindrance as possible.

1 comment:

Danny Smith said...

right on man, ive gotten out of a recent funk myself lately, and whilst left for dead and 30 days of nights got me in a the mood to finish "reaction" my 3 years and counting zombie feature ive just recently started on a supernatural horror, and i haven't written horror in a while, ive been leaning more in the age old dick'n'farts direction but i know what ya mean about starting a new script, i love seeing it all in my head thinking "yeah, yeah that woul be great on screen".

honestly, even if its out your means, forget that, write the movie you would want to see, if you focus on the fact you dont have the recourses to film it yourself right now you will unintentionally make cuts at times to suit it ,even without realizing it.
just focus on making something that will entertain an audience and youll do good my good sir!