A little something for your desk.

December 14, 2018

 

You ever get to a certain point in a script or a story you're writing and suddenly lose total faith in it? Yeah, that seems to happen a lot to me. I have a collection of discarded and unfinished ideas, scripts, stage-plays, books and short stories that just keeps building and building. The very few bits that do actually get through aren't always necessarily the ones I think are the best, nor I they necessarily the ones I had all that much interest in, they're just the ones that I didn't give up on or lose interest in before I finished.

 

I wonder what that says about me?

 

Take, for example, the stage-play I'm currently working on. I know I've got to finish it and I know it needs to be done soon so I can start actually... you know, making the thing, and yet here I am on draft number I stopped counting a long time ago, and once again I've found myself staring at the words on the page and deciding actually maybe the best thing to do is go back to the beginning and start again.

 

I mean, Jesus! At what point do I get to actually finish one of these things? What's so frustrating about it is that I know I can. I've finished things before. What I think it comes down, really, is a total lack of confidence.

 

Not to say that I have a particular issue with my confidence. I mean, obvious I do to an extent, but surely I have to have some level of confidence to have made two feature films and a bunch of shorts, so it's not that I don't know I can do it because I definitely can. And I quite like the idea, that's the other aspect at play here, I know there's something good here that just needs a little bit of work to be great. But what?

 

I often find that it helps to just push through on things like this. Keep writing, just try to get to the end and then send it off to someone for some feedback on it. What do you think of my script? I'll ask, and then they'll come back with a perspective I might not have thought on.

 

I once sent off a script to someone I believed was going to look at it and offer some constructive criticism and they simply told me it was bad and that if that script had shown up on their desk they'd have chucked it in the bin. That was kind of bemusing to me since, A; it was a first draft so obviously not a finished product, and B; they didn't even have a desk.

 

Anyway, jokes on them because the script turned out to be The Door which... well, the poster than hangs in my hallway displays some really positive reviews, let's but it that way.

 

All of that's sort of besides the point. I'm not so much looking for some advice here as I am just getting some "frustrations" down on paper, as it were. Sometimes I hear that kind of thing helps. Maybe it will, maybe it won't, I guess we'll find out in a week when I return to write the next blog.

 

The point that I am making is that this isn't an issue I'm all that worried about, it's just one that's really bloody irritating. Eventually it'll resolve itself and I will find another project to finish, that seems to be the case for most things I do, but until them I'm in this sort of awkward limbo where I have to struggle through one something I've lost all of the faith in.

 

Incidentally, if anyone would like to volunteer to be my "script reader", hands up. I'm sure Daniella is getting frustrated with me sending her countless ideas and thoughts about things and expecting her to sort them all out for me. But, be warned, I don't take criticism well and I might cry at you, also it's unpaid.

 

Seriously, though, if you are interested and you can offer constructive criticism (constructive being the optimum word there. It's not good just telling me "yeah, it's not great" because I can't do anything with that. And don't mention your desk. I don't care) then I would definitely be happy to consider maybe, possibly, probably not working with you in the future.

 

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© Alex Secker 2018