Apr 2, 2010

Three Unproductive Days

drizzle It drizzled on the drive down, but not even enough to wash away the dry white smear on my windshield. It's another overcast day, but this one has less charm than the first one, somehow. Perhaps this is all becoming routine, and the small daily variations are losing their power to excite.

On that theme,I had pancakes today. They're always fantastic. But the coffee is a little weak, and the crowd is a little noisy.

For a couple days, I've been constructing the movie in outline form on a website called checkvist. And now, having worked on it for another morning, I can say for confidently: it is tedious, and not helpful.

I'm losing information, and I'm wasting time encoding the story into an outline form. I'm too methodical to make a sloppy outline, and I'm too bored to finish a thorough one.

The only realization I've come to while doing it? I probably don't need Jon to go to work on the first day. And that means Maggie's poo-flinging even less necessary.

This was a mistake. The outline was intended to speed me toward the screenplay stage, but it's slowing me down instead. I should either write directly from my blog entries, or I should get back to work on my treatment. And I should do it promptly!

The only reason I'm not writing the screenplay now is because I feel there's still a great deal more cutting, combining, and cleaning to be done. There are more opportunities to make the story more efficient, and there is nothing more disheartening than writing a screenplay that is clearly too long from the word go.

Last night, I was up until almost 1:00 AM, talking with Alli. This morning, I didn't oversleep, but I moved very slowly. While dressing, I sent Stirling some feedback on his most recent sketch for his class, via my cell phone's e-mail. Then, I tried taking Sepulveda rather than the 405, and it didn't help at all. 

Now, I'm here at Norm's, significantly later than I'd like to be, and I feel strangely unwelcome. I can't say why. And I don't want to write. And I don't want to be here. And, frankly, I don't want to be anywhere else.

[Insert sound of fussy baby crying here.]

It's now clear that I'm not going to make the Nicholl's Fellowship deadline, not even the late one. It's going to blow past me by a mile. And I reflect: I've been writing screenplays for 8 years. Why do I have nothing to submit?

evilotter Oh, and one last thing: my computer is yet again not charged. Yet again, I have no idea why. I carefully plugged it in before bed, but that plug simply refuses to stay in the socket. There's some creature sneaking in and unplugging it at night, and I suspect otters. They're good at manipulating things with their little hands, and the local otter gangs hate me.

They have their reasons.

Anyway – today, I'm thinking of making a notebook of all the posts I've made about Sick Day. I think that will be easier than browsing the website, and it will also be a nice physical activity.

In fact, I'm going to go in and do that now, rather than watch this laptop slowly die for not good reason.

Moving On
After my laptop died, I went to work early and used the time to do something that proved unreasonably difficult. I printed out all of my Sick Day labeled blog entries in chronological order, in a small notebook size.

Apparently, all the modern blog hosts won't let you reverse order, and won't let you set the number of pages as unlimited. I may need to find some way to migrate my blog over to my own server, on Moveable Type...

Or at least some way to make a mirror of it there.

Now it's 8:20 at Norm's. It was a very busy morning here. I had the big breakfast for only the second time and continued reading through the little booklet I made yesterday, highlighting good ideas and details that I'd forgotten.

And somehow, I forgot my cell phone at home, on the charger. I guess exhaustion really can make you stupid.

Once I'm finished highlighting, it's back to the treatment. I know that I can find ways to make this more efficient. There are a lot of scenes that are only doing one thing: I can make them do three or four.