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Wednesday, 22 June 2011

The New Script... The Approaching Competition

So my TV Drama Spec script didn't pan out for a suitable Emmy scriptwriting competition entry. But a new script was decided a few months back and is almost done. It's a sixty page family drama and road trip type affair written specifically for the Sir Peter Ustinov Television Scriptwriting Award 2011

Every script starts out with the best intentions and has an ideal way forward. But due to various factors they can sometimes fail to materialise how and when you wish. However, this one arrived at the right time, took me by surprise, by the heart, and demanded (by way of emotional blackmail) to be written before anything else. I had to comply. 

What begun as a fleeting glimpse of an unbreakable bond between two characters developed into a larger story and a collective journey of discovery. It's a story about the fragile but wondrous nature of childhood and family, the vicious inner workings of assumptions and fear, the destructive and irreversible beast of time, and the power of understanding and forgiveness.

Cool Runnings 

From that fleeting glimpse and initial idea six months ago, through developing and writing, it has been a fast and enjoyable process. It wasn't all easy going and had a few issues. But even during the challenging and tough moments they were enjoyable because I was learning and improving on the script as each day passed. 

However, after three months since embarking on the scene breakdown, here we are two drafts and various revisions later, with last minute tweaks and proof-reading to go, the third and competition draft is almost complete. 

I've had smooth sailing or  "cool runnings" (as it's better termed) with scripts in the past but not since my scriptwriting student days at Bournemouth University (2006 - 2009) have I had one jump out of me in such a quick amount of time. That scene from Alien springs to mind or the KFC advert. But in this case, the beast is a television script, refined; with universal themes, profound moments, an engaging narrative, and powerful uplifting message.

I have had a strong vision on this since the beginning and a clear ideal on each element that informs the whole. Its fast progress is down to just getting on with it and striving to express this particular screen story in its own unique and emotionally complex way. 

Without question the approaching competition deadline helped to spur me on somewhat but after taking it easy on the scriptwriting front for a while and partially displacing the responsibility over to the Myself of Tomorrow, I realised that I have been avoiding the inevitable and so should just get on with it, full throttle. 

The Competition 

I'm really pleased with the script so far and have learnt some new things on this project and re-realised a few old ones. Overall, it has been a joyous and productive experience. I look forward to improving on the script over the next week and locking it down for the competition.

With my heart and soul poured in, a lot of hard work and effort, and writing to an ambiguous entry requirement (family audience), I hope the judges will see something in the script and potential with me as a scriptwriter. If not, there are always other scripts to write and competitions to enter, and I will be no less fond of this script, which by the way is called In My Footsteps

"My aim is to put down on paper what I see and what I feel in the best and simplest way."

- Ernest Hemingway

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