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Concept

The writer gets it –

he or she is not wanted, not good enough, not connected enough, not polished enough…

and yet, your tenacity, your individuality, your vision, etc. will finally get you the BIG BREAK you deserve, right?

Let’s hope so.

In the meantime, there’s some reading to do. Blogs like this one, perhaps.

Although I’m a writer/director (and a producer) my focus here is mainly on the writing in films (can we even call them films, isn’t everyone on video now?) Yes, I might talk about the directing or the acting, but I’m mainly here talking about the writing.

Maybe sometimes I don’t get it. So feel free to argue with me. That’s where the comments can come in useful.

I wouldn’t pretend to be able to get it every time.

If you’ve been writing professionally, or even in the hope of becoming a professional, you’ll probably have had some experience that might be described by the title of this blog.

As a writer you are conditioned to get it – in the back, in the neck, in the pit of your stomach… You invariably see the irony of your situation better than anyone else in the business.

I was talking with a writer friend on the phone when I stumbled on the title, indeed the concept, for this blog. We were both going into a sort of writer’s huddle, gnashing our teeth, recalling bitter disappointments that had derailed our shoot for success and set us back years.

(Of course we were laughing. If you’d filmed the scene we wouldn’t have been laughing, the audience would have been – but we didn’t have an audience, save for ourselves, so we were laughing, it’s the only way…)

For years, I’ve felt like Myles in the movie Sideways. I nearly wept during those scenes between him and his agent – because they were so completely grafted from my own life, like skin.

So far I’ve been the writer who gets it – in the back, in the face, around the ear… some of the stories you’d hardly believe, but they happened. They used to make hilarious anecdotes, now they bring the taste of bile to the mouth. I need Myles’s beloved Pinot Noir to wash it down.

Just occasionally, I pluck a wafer of success from the jaws of defeat and I suck on that for a while and somehow bounce back encouraged to believe that one day I’ll enjoy what is commonly known as a breakthrough, as opposed to what is threatened every few months – a breakdown.

Producers tend to regard us writers as a breed that feels sorry for ourselves. The funny thing is, we’re seldom surprised by betrayal – it’s just how we would have written it after all. We understand every twist there is to understand.  And yet…

… the strongest of us struggle on, Beckettian heroes, inching toward success, recognition, (madness?) … a sign that we haven’t toiled for nothing. We give up so much of ourselves in what we do, we are like martyrs falling on our pen.

But let me not descend into melodrama… With this blog I’m hoping to be able to give you the kinds of insights that will help you write more coherent, more compelling stories. With any luck you will take from here a few ‘lessons’ that will make you a writer who not only gets it, but gets on… and on…

 

 

 

2 Responses to “Concept”

  1. nicp says:

    Somehow only just saw this Fran. As dependable as ever! I mean to be doing more here in the coming weeks. Cheers

  2. nicp says:

    Hi Jay, thanks for the comment. I’ll check out the service you mentioned – once I’ve got enough time to get back to this blog on a more regular basis! Up to my neck in producing a charity commercial for the Teenage Cancer Trust at the moment, which I’m directing on Sunday 4th December.

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