March Hares in June

Being roughly midway through the second draft of my screenplay, Grand, I’m really happy to see the script coming together on the page before me. This is obviously part of a greater process; I believe every writer in every form is continually progressing or developing in some way, through the writing itself.  Besides doing some major work on my script, such as adding or removing scenes, I’m cutting back on superfluous adverbs and the like.  The first draft was simply to get the story “out”, to bear it; the second draft is to slap its back and wash it clean. That’s what I’m doing now. I’m also interweaving the scenes a bit more, rather than having one long scene followed by another, which I tend to do due to my penchant for theatre. I had previously decided to make a major character change (remove the hoarding element of Val’s life) but I have subsequently reversed this, as it was turning the overall story into something completely different.  Oddly, I’ve added two minor characters.  I usually believe less is more when it comes to characters but these two just seemed to arrive on my door step on day. I’ll let them stay for the time being but one wrong move and they’ll get the chop. I have encountered a few problems in redrafting, namely issues around getting the entire story into the script without it becoming a saga. I need to think long and hard about some of the scenes, as I know the first draft was a bit repetitive in places. But that’s fine, first drafts are the place to make the mistakes. And I’m guessing second drafts too. I aim to have my second draft finished by the end of June.

As if I wasn’t busy enough (like a lot of writers I’ve a day job too) I’m trying to work on a collaboration with an old friend for an upcoming brief. It’s just in the initial stage at the moment but I’m really excited about it. At present it looks like it’s going to be a performance piece with interactive multimedia based on the theme of forgetting and memories. We’ve a general idea that needs to be teased out but it’s all sounding very promising right now and I’m looking forward to progressing with it. Also, as we’ve never worked together before, it could be make or break for us. The idea for the theme came from the loose brief provided but, as I write this, it’s dawned on me that it isn’t really any surprise that “memories” would feature in this colab.  Úna, my colab partner, and I have a relationship somewhat based on memories. We met in primary school and were friendly throughout, more so around the ages of 10 or 11 if memory serves me. I certainly recall getting into trouble in Mr.O’ Brien’s class for chatting too much with her. When primary school ended we went our separate ways, her to the girls’ secondary school and me to the boys’. That was that. We perhaps saw each other in passing the odd time but given that we lived in different towns it was rare (and not forgetting that there was no internet/social media or mobiles). Flash-forward to 2010; while “researching” on Facebook (okay, snooping) I found her profile and thought “why not say hello”. A few messages later and it was like we’d never lost touch. She’d followed her artistic passion, which was no surprise, and appeared to be as mad as a March hare (again, no surprise). This was followed by her visiting me from her hometown while we went to a music festival and we’ve kept in touch on and off ever since.  So when I  was recently thinking of collaborating with an artist from a non-writing background it was a no brainer really. Let’s hope this will be the beginning of a great collaboration and not the end of a beautiful relationship.

No pressure. Be grand.

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