Saturday, April 16, 2005

First Pass Complete

The first editing pass is finished.

The script's been cut from 233 pages to 169.  64 pages in all.

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I'm going to celebrate ... by watching The X Files

Or seeing a movie.  

Or going to Starbucks and reading what I've written. 

Or catching up on my reading at Borders.

Maybe all of the above.

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My first pass hardened down the dialogue itself.

Now the real fun begins.  Looking at the story again.  Seeing which scenes are unnecessary.  Folding scenes into each other.

Determining which characters need to be minimized to centralize the screenplay around our star:  Luc.

It's hard, when you're as much in love with your characters, as I have become, to eliminate scenes that sharpen their characters.  But that's where playing god of our world becomes necessary.  And tough.

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I demand the same of my students.  It's so difficult for them.  They fall in love with their own writing and can't make the difficult choices. 

I feel the same way right now when I look at the stack of pages that is my first draft of the first half of the screenplay.  A lot of material. 

Hey.  At least I've got something to work with.

I have several weeks to continue editing, I suspect, before I get the rest of raw material from my co-writer Steven.  At that point, I'll shift back into right brain and continue writing the rough draft.  Hopefully, I'll edit more in my head and have to do less on the page.

Until then, I'd like to use the time to cut what I've written and polished over the past month down to 90 pages (at 169 pages, I've got 79 pages to cut).

If my estimate is right, the rest of the material -- when written and edited -- will make up the last 50 pages, bringing in our "First Shitty Draft" at 140 pages.  We can then sharpen the second and third drafts to 120 pages.

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More than anything, I'm enjoying this process.

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