Feb 22, 2010

Prevarications and Procrastinations

Inexplicable Resistance
I can't make myself think about this screenplay. (I'm giving it the codename Sick Day for the blog).

I feel like I'm trying to give my dog a pill. I feel like I'm trying to clip the cat's claws. I want to hold my brain down and make it think about this thing, but it snarls and snaps and kicks away, and then it hides under the couch and growls softly for hours. Not even a treat will lure it out. Not even opening and closing the front door. It wants absolutely nothing to do with this script.

Look at it! Look at this brain! It chooses to discuss its inability to to discuss the screenplay rather than actually discuss the screenplay! These are advanced, professional avoidance tactics, here.

It's possible I'm still adjusting to nicotine deprivation. It's possible my brain is atrophied by a tedious routine, by a dirty apartment and a cluttered room, by these lengthening commute-times and overburdened work-days, by all this drudgery without hope of advancement. It's also possible these huge, black clouds of creative discouragement, blown in by FK, by 8-years of getting-nowhere, and by a mounting sense of audience disinterest, are bumming me out a little. And sure, it's possible I don't feel like I've got another special screenplay in me.

What's certain is, my discipline is in the toilet.

Have you ever been driving, and maybe you're changing lanes, and suddenly, you're sure you're about to plow into something, maybe something hiding in the corner of your eye? You feel a rush of adrenaline. It tingles. It tenses. And then, you fully focus on the danger, and you realize -- there's nothing there. The danger is gone. In fact, the danger was never there at all.

Thinking of this project, I feel that rush sometimes. Literally, a spark. I feel that mental spasm. I'm going to write this. I'm going to skip the outline. It's all right here, just outside my vision, right there, in the corner of my eye. I'm going to do this. I'm going to find the Flow, I'm going to get in the Zone. All distractions will slip away, and it will happen, like it used to, in the beginning. Because it's all right there, I just have to find the time to transcribe it down...

But then I look closely. I try to see what it is I'm plowing into. And it's gone. There was never anything there at all. A mental misfire. Thought there was something there. But there wasn't.
Tomorrow's Mission
I need to crack this.

I need to regain my discipline.

I need to figure out - what are the unsettled QUESTIONS - what don't I know that's keeping me from writing this?

I need to write out everything I know about the story, by hand, on a single sheet of paper.

I need to find the time. I need to find the holes.