… Try to relax. Keep goin’!
Easier said than done that, isn’t it?
The thing is, just recently as it were, I decided that I was going to write some ‘random dialogue’ on my Facebook page – y’know? Seriously, just for fun – as I hadn’t written any in a while. The situation I setup was a very simple one. Two guys. Old friends. In a cafe. Having a conversation. That’s it. Literally. Giving myself that scenario, I was then able to just go and… WRITE!
Now, it would come to no surprise to those folks who know me, that out of all the writing I could possibly do, dialogue is probably the one thing that I am not too bad at overall – even if it’s just an initial piece of writing. True, I don’t think my stuff is absolutely the “best” there is – arrogance befalls upon one eventually – but it is something I do have a bit of a knack for, and I would safely wager, that this is from pure interest. I just like it when people are engaging with one another.
So, I wrote this short dialogue between two people, put it up there for friends and family to read and then came the idea – “let’s shoot it!” – do you know what I said?
“Eh, why not?”
After seeing a SModcast by Kevin Smith sometime ago now in which he basically spoke about ‘living a “why not” life’ I was inspired to say “yes” purely because of two reasons:
- This was a good friend of mine making the suggestion and I knew he was serious about it.
- Why not?
This was a little bit of a problem though. Not Question 1. Question 2… Seriously. It must be a part of my nature at times just to say “yes” because I don’t want to discourage others – even if it’s on me in some small way. Or a big way…
This is where I flipped out a little bit. I just wasn’t happy with it all.
For one thing, it wasn’t finished – it was just something I put up just to – put up! – essentially. I also put it up just to let my family and friends know as well that I hadn’t stopped writing creatively. I mean, who knows? Truth be told, maybe it was out of pure vanity – what am I? – going to lie at that potential possibility?
I just hope if it was, it was just the work of my “inner-arty-ego” just wanting a little light shed upon it. It’s the one side of myself I cannot deny, nor ignore – and yet – I don’t really like it. It makes me feel phony and self-absorbed. But it’s there. So, if that was the case, then fine. However, I did receive some feedback from a mate of mine back on Aussie shores (basically) giving me a thumbs up saying: “yeah man! I love it when you write conversation!”
I cannot deny the feeling. It felt nice to have a pat on the back, even if it was just to encourage my writing frenzy once more.
So that was all good. The thing I was unsure about was filming this thing.
It wasn’t up to scratch for me. For one thing, none of the characters had a name. This is important to me as a writer. I let my characters unfurl, but at the very least, I know a little bit about them as they take me on their own personal journey. I didn’t know these guys well enough. I knew the conversation they were having – the context of it – but not who they were. Not good enough right there. So I wasn’t happy nor confident wanting to shoot this thing and I have very nearly pulled the plug…
Yesterday, when I met up with some friends, I put forth the reason why I wanted so desperately to pull the plug on this whole project and why I had lost all confidence in it and my own ability as a writer and director of film. They encouraged me to really think about it at the very least, even though they could see where I was coming from. They had re-invigorated the reason why I should really consider re-writing this thing and getting it out there – even if it was just to say: “hey – check it out! – look at what I can do!”
You only live once.
So I thought about it. These friends of mine are great people. Real people. They have their own real things happening in their lives as well. I started to think after all this: it’s just so nice when we’re all together working on something. It’s something that we’re all a part of together. Our creative process just seems to happen as we all get on and support one another. It doesn’t really get better than that as a creative team – no matter how much experience or money you have – if it flows and just “works” – let it *EXPLETIVE* work!”
So I made a compromise. I set a goal: if I can re-write the entire script the way I want it and I’m happy with it – I’ll give it a really good shot.
So yesterday I downloaded Celtx and started rewriting the script once more with a clearer vision: this time, if I was going to do it all again, it would be not just one conversation between two characters, but at least three different episodes occurring at once.
Hey, Tarantino is an obvious influence – and I respect that and honorably pay homage stating that right there – but I love the idea of interconnected stories. They fascinate me. We’re all connected on this big,blue marble of ours in some way, shape or form – so I would love to explore that properly if I were to ever write or make films. So hence, Quentin Tarantino’s ‘Pulp Fiction’, Alejandro González Iñárritu’s ‘Babel’, Doug Liman’s ‘Go’ and Greg Marck’s ’11:14′ – are just some of the films that have influenced my writing style over the years. Not to mention, just people themselves are fascinating and rather frightening at times. How do you really know what your neighbour is up to? Or, how do you know what someone is going through or has been through?
So, with that interest in mind, I have a lot of writing to do as of right now but thankfully, I have started to write as of last night. Now, once again – if I cannot write this by the deadline set – there is no film. It’s simple as that. I have high expectations and I expect to at least always try to put my best foot forward. But this seems to be something that others are passionate about as well, so that is generating some fuel for the fire…
Let’s burn the pages alight with something resembling a shoot-able script.
Or at the very least, a script that I can say I’m proud of.
BELOW IS THE VIDEO LINK TO PART OF KEVIN SMITH’S “WHY NOT?” SPEECH. CHECK IT OUT: