A Small Creative Update

In lieu of writing dialogue or poetry today (the will is strong, but the mind is weak), I’ll talk a little about what’s been going on with me creatively lately.

Over Winter, I’ve been working on my first paid screenwriting gig. I still wanna direct like you wouldn’t believe, but it’s a hard life being a nobody with no resources who wants to convince people to work with him. Especially if he’s socially retarded. Like Confucius said, “When it’s obvious that the goals cannot be reached, don’t adjust the goals, adjust the action steps.” So, I switched gears. I can always direct, but I need to be noticed now (and get money). Luckily, I was in the business of being a writer-director, so screenwriting was an option. The day I did some looking on Craigslist is when I found what led me to the gig I have. The creative journey the script’s been on has been interesting. The director listed Fellini, Antonioni, and the like as influences for his film. For those who don’t know, they’re the creme de la creme of Italian directors. I’d seen a few of their films, so I suggested myself, expecting something arthouse-y (I’m not knocking arthouse, I love arthouse). However, the film he wanted to make was, initially a long episode of “Married… With Children” (I’m not knocking “Married… With Children,” I love “Married… With Children”). What the film is now is a strange dark comedy (I’m not knocking… ah, you get it).

In… August, I think, of last year, I decided to turn an idea for a “Doctor Who” spin-off into an adult animated series. Being around me, it wouldn’t take long to peg me as a Wholigan (I don’t ram it down throats, but a look at the t-shirts I tend to wear and my keys… heck, I even walk around in The Twelfth Doctor’s coat [sports fans do worse]). I’ve been a lifelong fan for almost three years and have seen every episode since 1963. One of my favorite characters is a Time Lady named Romana (Time Lords and Ladies are alien time travelers who can live a really long time and change their appearance up to twelve times, essentially). I thought it’d be cool if she had a mature show, and thought about what could happen in it. Geeks do it all the time and call it fanfics (“fan fiction,” and stay away from slash fics [far, far away…]). I couldn’t put the ideas away, though, but I knew it’d be almost impossible to do it… as is. When George Lucas couldn’t get the rights to Flash Gordon or “Hidden Fortress,” he made Star Wars. I wasn’t thinking about shooting for heights so high, but the notion of rejigging an existing universe to make one for oneself wasn’t so weird. So I took my Romana idea and, with the help of a friend, turned it into something new. A funny thing happened in the planning. I came across a TV pitch contest (a pitch involves telling the money people your idea and try to convince them to give you money). There was enough of the three-season series planned to write a decent pitch, so I did. And as of this week, the series made it to the quarterfinals. Next month, I’ll find out if/that I made it to the semifinals.

But it hasn’t been a completely fortuitous road. For instance, I had a potential screenwriting gig stop abruptly. It was a series that an ex-sex worker wanted to make. As you can probably tell from some of my dialogues, I have no scruples about sex and sexuality, and I’m an open-minded guy. The project appealed to me greatly and I wrote a sample scene. Things were looking fantastic, then I asked for a little money upfront. I’d like to think that I’m a hard worker, and that it’s not strange to want something at the start. Now, she might have other things going on in her life, but we had a decent e-mail exchange going until I asked for money. Crickets, dear reader. Crickets in my mailbox. Like I said, she seemed like a busy woman, so maybe something came up that needed her undivided attention. At the same time, it could be that she took offense at me and my request. Which I can understand, I’m a nobody right now. However, if she took offense and doesn’t wanna work with me, I don’t see why I couldn’t even get a “piss off” e-mail. Well, if that’s the case, I still hope her show gets made because she had some great ideas. And I’m far from angry about it. All I did was write six pages. I do about that much here every day (well… almost every day).

I think that’s about it so far. Well, there are two other things, but I don’t wanna talk about them until there’s more behind me than in front of me.

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