Thursday, August 27, 2015

At the limit

This week I’ve felt like one of those unfortunate teenagers who keep taking and failing GCSE Maths.

I never had trouble with school. I was one of those annoying girls who got prizes for English and Maths and other things besides. Now, for the first time in my life, I am at the limit of my capabilities. I keep writing a pitch for my screenplay, and my mentor keeps sending it back with another bunch of criticisms. Over and over.

Do you know that quote about writing? “It is easy to write. Just sit in front of your typewriter and bleed.” That is how I felt yesterday. I kid you not. I was so frustrated, I cycled to the end of the Monsal Trail and beyond, when usually I only go half way along.

I have to write a half page pitch to accompany episode one, a story outline, brief character descriptions, and my CV, to send them off to a TV producer. It’s the pitch that is driving me bananas.

It starts with what they call the logline. That is a one sentence description of what the film/TV series is about that will grab the attention of a jaded professional.


I can write a tweet, a blog, a broadsheet article, an academic paper, a novel, a screenplay, and a bereavement card, but trying to sum up BUT I TOLD YOU LAST YEAR THAT I LOVED YOU in one sentence, which shows why it is different from any other story about a marriage under threat – and that includes why it’s funny as well as sad – well. It’s beyond me.

Do any of you want to have a go?

In the meantime, the world turns and the season is changing. This morning I took the dying sweet peas from the vase on my desk to the compost heap and found the first conker.


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