Monday, 19 April 2010

Sunny day reading

I read "The Whole Equation", a quite wonderful book about the 'whole ecology' of Hollywood films, by David Thomson - all 400 pp of it.

For light relief I read "Wishful Drinking" by Carrie Fisher (hilarious and a touch sad).

Having completed the first draft so quickly I went into a kind of limbo, and just dropped the whole thing. It seemed far too soon to re-edit.

However, I am still thinking about it all. The other book I read this weekend was Crafty Screenwriting by Alex Epstein (subhead: Writing Movies that Get Made). However, I don't kid myself.

All of this seems like doing finger-exercises to me, practising writing. I really don't set out thinking I am going from rags to riches. The whole idea makes me chuckle. I didn't expect to go from street performer to Star Wars puppeteer and although that happened (a) I didn't plan it (b) I didn't remain in the 'rich and famous' world, but was just one more disposable Private in the film army.

The only reason I say all that? When I say I am writing a script, friends seem to assume that I am trying to make money or get famous or something.

Otherwise, what's the point?

Well, I never have had very good reasons for doing things. They have to amuse me. Whether or not they ever amuse anyone else seems neither here nor there.

So writing a paranormal movie might have some small chance of getting made.

Writing a movie saying there are no paranormal levels to existence, and that people are just kidding themselves, and conning others, seems doomed from the word go (like an atheist running for President of the USA). Hey ho. It may change in the re-write, of course, at least in the direction of ambiguity.

I think I want to amplify my 'baddie' who is currently a medium who is in it for the money, originally more of the 'sweet little old lady' type, but I want to move her in the direction of Madame Blavatsky, sitting there like Jabba the Hutt, rolling her cigarettes with haschish in (although modern Theosophists might skim over that aspect of HPB), a blatant and unrepentant charlatan who also seems to have had immense charisma, and a worshipping circle of followers.

As it happens, I have a soft spot for Madame, without her influence on my dad I suspect I wouldn't have been a vegetarian all my life, with a leaning to Hindu/Buddhist approaches to life (I didn't get that from The Sixties).

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