Writing Movies

I’ve certainly been slacking on my thoughts here, haven’t I? I can’t believe I skipped the entire month of June. Oops. But I suppose we all need a break. I think I was just getting tired of rushing to the computer when it was time for bed and trying to pound out something intelligible. I would often go to bed too late feeling like I hadn’t communicated what I wanted to say. Maybe I just needed to start earlier. Or take a month off. At least this way you didn’t have to hear me rant and rave about the Fourth of July and the pledge of allegiance.

One reason I haven’t been writing lately is that I’ve been thinking a lot about professional writing. I’m a writer. My college degree says so. And being a writer, I’ve always wanted to write a book. Actually many books — I don’t think I’d be satisfied with just one. Every now and then a book idea take hold of me and I become consumed with it for a few days, sometimes a few weeks. Then it usually sputters and slowly fades away.

A few weeks ago that happened again, in a slightly new and larger vein. I had the opportunity to read the script for a new movie that’s coming out next year. I was given the opportunity with the notion that I would give suggestions for improving the script. I commented on nearly every page of the 90+ page script, urging them to take it up a notch and make it a worthwhile movie. In the end, I doubt my suggestions will be taken at all.

The whole experience left me thinking that I could write a better movie, and since then my head has been swirling with movie plots. At the time I came up with a basic idea, which then I decided I’d have to write as a book first, and I started writing some simple character sketches to get started. Of course I didn’t get much farther than that. It’s sputtered out the way most of my ideas do, not from being poor ideas, but from simply being undeveloped. One of these days I’m going to make it over that hurtle.

Lately I’ve had some more encouragement to try the movie writing hurtle. It seems like the last several movies I’ve watched just plain sucked. I mean, I’ve seen movies suck before, but these were the suckiest bunch of sucks that ever sucked. Okay, they weren’t that bad, but they could have been so much better. It was like movie written by committee. Lame. The plot and theme just didn’t hold together and when it was over it felt like a big fat waste of time. After one such movie and my usual ranting my wife commented, “You’re just too smart to watch movies.”

I appreciated that comment. Perhaps it’s time I did more than just complain that anything you can do I can do better. Perhaps it’s time I stopped just reading books and trying to watch intelligent movies. Maybe I should just write my own and get it over with.

Sometimes you need to give yourself a little pep talk. Thanks for listening.

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