I completed the final edit of Jester. I’m pleased with it. Very pleased. It turned out better than I thought, and the break I took from editing that to do the script for Jago meant that I returned to it with clear eyes. I could read through and spot the errors.
There will still be some things I miss, and things I might consider changing, but it’s done. Best to walk away rather than chew on ever-decreasing circles of editing that lead nowhere.
Got to do the cover now. I’m torn between the image Lucas did for me, and another idea I have.
Then some publicity.
Then onto the next thing.
Sitting listening to Left Foot Media on YT, talking about the movie Sicario 2. He mentions the “Call to Action” – one of those tropes that all writing-theory types go on about. I don’t mind it, it’s a good thing to have, but it’s such a rule. It’s become a box-tick.
The only rule should be: tell the story.
I made it to the end of The Batman. It only took me five sittings.
I feel like there were numerous good screenplays in there somewhere, and they’d all been torn up, thrown into the air, and whatever landed on top became the final script. If it was written by committee, the committee were drunk. While speaking different languages. In different rooms.
It was bad.
How can they take such a great, unbreakable, premise and make such a mishmash of a movie? I like RP as an actor, and Andy Serkis is always good, it’s a cosmic law. The characters are great, of course – how could there ever be a bad Penguin? I’d like to see a Penguin movie in which he does lots of evil stuff, and survives, thrives even.
I can see a Catwoman movie in the near future too. But they need to make it low-budget; lo-fi; gritty: it doesn’t have to be Joker, that was a one-off, but it could be a movie worth watching. Oh, and it has to be said, apart from the opening sequence, the action wasn’t believable. It was silly and got sillier. Which is fine if they were going for an Adam West type of Batman (though this most recent iteration wasn’t fun either), but if this was supposed to be Batman-meets-7even, which I think on some level it was, it should have at least been believable.
Anyhow, I’m breaking a rule, writing while drunk. I should follow Hemingway’s advice and edit this tomorrow, when sober.
Which is what they should have done with The Batman.
Sober would have just been a bonus.
A reader-friend of mine suggested I create audio-books of my stories. That’s a great idea, and one I might investigate, but the time I spend doing that is time I spend not writing.
So, back to the next book.
Which is Jester, part two of the Jago trilogy. It’s mostly written, I’m just doing a final copy edit and working on the cover design. I don’t do PR as such, I lost most of my connections to the ‘literary’ world a decade ago, and those few I had left, I’ve lost touch with. No loss. I put some of my stories on a couple of websites, and I trust that readers will discover my books. And they do.
For a business plan, that leaves a lot to be desired but as a singleton, I have limited time available, and I can choose to either write, or do the other stuff.
I choose to write.
For years I was in the habit of writing in Macdonalds, starting very early in the morning, and getting it out of the way before the day had really begun. Cheap coffee, wifi and free parking, and I could sit in isolation and write, with no disturbances. Lately though the local MaccyD outlets have been putting a clock on the parking. In some places, you get a £30 fine after one hour.
A 60 minute limit puts a crimp in my writing.
I do have a nice office at home but WFH brings its own issues, not least my partner Jas and my border terrier Angus, who are both lovely and great to be with. But being solitary is a fundamental requirement of writing – it flows better when there’s nothing to disturb me.
Walking the dog just then, I had the urge to write limericks. As I wrote a couple of nonsense poems in my head, I had the urge to laugh out loud. I had a strange, too-pleasurable feeling in my head, right above my left eye.
And now it’s developing into a queasy pain.
It’s been a fortnight since the last big one, though I’ve had a few tiny ones. Despite the medication they find ways to sneak in.
I expect I’ll have strange dreams tonight.
I went to watch Emo Batman. I thought it’d be good. I like RP and I’m a fan of Batman.
I lasted about thirty minutes. The rain was properly “7even”, Pattinson was suitably moody, and all the Hollywood boxes got ticked, but it just didn’t work. There was nothing there to grab me, there was zero chemistry amongst any of the cast, not just between Batman and the Cat Lady, but even between Bruce Wayne and Alfred, or Batman and Gordon.
It felt like a movie written by a room full of squabbling movie execs.
The Batman himself moved with the grace of a leathered-up Frankenstein’s monster. Was he wearing platform boots? I dunno. I’d assumed that the kohl eye make-up inferred someone lithe and skinny and fast, but instead he was hukling and slow.
They need to retire his number and come up with a new superhero. Or maybe just come up with some new ideas for movies. The whole superhero thing is getting old.
I’ve pretty much completed the screenplay for Jago. It’s not perfect, but then, I’m not a screenwriter. It is 120 pages, which is industry standard, and it is interesting, but whether or not it’s got enough to interest a film-maker is beyond my knowledge. I suspect not. I don’t think it has anything like this, the greatest seven words ever in a screenplay.
And with that massive vote of self-confidence, I’m ready to send it off.
Initially, I intended to send it on 28th April, as I’d promised it for the end of that month, but I might send it earlier. One more read through and then I’ll decide.
Whatever happens to it, once it’s gone I can get back to my core activity, which is writing stories. I’m currently completing the follow-up to Jago, Jester. More on that soon.
there’s an old joke:
Q: what’s the fastest car you’ve ever driven?
A: a borrowed car.
I sort of feel like that with the script I’m working on.
I’m taking risks, I’m being brutal, in a way that I just wouldn’t if it was a novel – that is, if the intended audience was me, not a script reader.