Thursday, October 25, 2007

Practicing What I Preach ...

Andrew Moore, plotting fool, at a Starbucks somewhere.

I'm working on a screenplay in my low-tech fashion. As you can see, I have two piles of note cards. The pile closest to me is the pile of blanks that I'm writing on. The other pile is where I discard them as I go. I keep a legal pad (sometimes a comp notebook) handy for any additional general notes or dialogue ideas that spring forth.

In fact, you can see I have some dialogue scraps written.

My process is a bit like putting together a patchwork quilt. It's all bits and pieces, scraps of ideas that relate to each other. Before long the bits and pieces come together in one glorious, keyboard pounding session, and voila! A first draft is born.

I know plenty of people (cough - mom - cough) who have incredible stories to tell. What's more, they have the passion inside them to tell the stories. When you hold a finished novel in your hands, or watch a brilliantly penned script unfold before your eyes on the screen or stage before you, the work can be a bit daunting. These things never (well, hardly ever) spring full born from an author's mind. It really is just putting one word after another. It adds up over time. If you never take that first step -- then the next, then the next -- you'll never get the job done.

Or, as they say, the Great Wall of China was built one brick at a time.

NaNoWriMo, the National Novel Writing Month, begins very shortly. I'm not doing it this year because I'm writing a play, directing another play, and trying to crank out some spec scripts. If you're feeling stagnant and need a creative flush-out, I highly recommend you take the challenge.

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