Wednesday, 10 June 2009

This time it's personal...

I've got a few subjects I'm keen to prattle on about, but they're going to take a bit of time to research. For the next couple of weeks I've got more freelance work than available days (hurrah - it might be time to finally crank up the 'Trip to Japan' fund!) So, here's a what-I'm-up-to update to prevent the creaky wheels of the blog from jamming up completely.

We've just got back from a long weekend (Sat-Tues) in Lyme Regis. I was planning to use the rainy weekend to break a bit of writing, but 'unfortunately' they got it totally wrong and the weather was smashin' from Sunday morning on. So, scribbling was replaced by strolling along the shore, listening to the gentle sigh of the tide and gawping at ammonites.

Anyway, I did manage to get some work done on the lengthy train journey back from Axminster. I started to carve out the shape and major sequences of the second half of Foot Soldiers (feature-length script about a bloke who gets sucked too far into the world of pedestrian direct action).

I work in a fairly iterative way, exploring the theme and psychological aspects of the characters and story until scenes and sequences start to suggest themselves. I wrote a few pages of stream-of-consciousness-style thoughts on what needs to happen, and a rough scene breakdown - with key images and bits of dialogue - shouldn't be too far away.

We're also rumbling along on Care and Control, the drama series based on social work that I'm co-writing with a friend. We're currently reworking our first draft after a few people had a look at it; we're trimming back some of the 'personal life' stuff and focusing much more on individual characters and their social work stories.

One of our readers - a former writer for The Bill and various other series - pointed out that if people are tuning in to see a series about social workers, they'll want to see them actually doing social work rather than a load of generic personal stuff that could apply to abbatoir workers or reiki practitioners.

Anyway, the general tone of the notes we've received is positive, so we're still quite excited about getting on with it. My co-writer has been a social worker for nearly 20 years, so she's got more story ideas than you could shake a copy of Final Draft 8 at.

Finally, if anyone who reads this is going to the Torchwood preview at the BFI on Friday and fancies meeting up for a swift half afterwards, give me a shout. I'm not the tedious old stoat you'd expect from some of my pompous blogging!

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