Monday, November 27, 2006

Inside Information

Finally got the date for a Procedure I’ve been waiting for. Had one last year, after various health issues I won’t trouble you with, and they removed a Benign Polyp. I thought it would be nice to have the BP in a jar on my desk like a … like a what? What would do justice to a BP floating in preserving liquid? I’m thinking mushrooms, baby’s fingers, penises. Anyway, got another Procedure lined up to check all is still well in there. It’s basically not too unpleasant except for the foul Preparation you have to drink twice, 12 and 24 hours beforehand. You mix it in half a glass of water then try to get it down you, like Dumbledore drinking that poison in the Half Blood Prince. And we know what happened to him. Will be keeping you minutely informed re my insides in coming weeks.

In that spirit … woke up in night with stomach ache. Line of pain across upper stomach. Probably appendicitis, I thought. I can’t have my appendix out, I’ve got too many deadlines. Will I have time to get two scripts off before it bursts? Will I be able to explain to Spouse which scripts to e-mail, where to e-mail them, how to attach them and properly encode them? All from my hospital bed, while suffering from complications brought on by a Superbug? Then I went to the loo, and pain disappeared.


Three Top Gigs

The Clash at Lewisham Odeon

The Specials & Dexies at Aldwych

Bowie at Parc des Princes

Monday, November 20, 2006


A while ago, six months maybe, my friend S came up with this promising TV idea, and together we made it into a good 3 page Outline. Much harder than it sounds. A 3 page Outline can suck all the promise and life out of an idea and leave it like a dry, hopeless, inspiration-free husk. But our Outline bounced and amused and engaged. Well, we liked it anyway, and so did someone from an Independent Production Company, (who used to work on The Show, which helps.) So we write a first ep. Then rewrite it. Then rewrite it again. But the big thing is – and this does not always happen – each draft is getting better. It really doesn’t always happen. There was one writer who put her script through change after change after change over a period of several months. Eventually she thought Sod it, and sent in her original script again. Yes! Said the Script Editor. This is exactly what I wanted! Our experience has not been like this. The only difficult part has been handling mood swings from S. S has never worked on TV before, so goes from inappropriate optimism to utter despair very quickly. I remain on boring even keel. (It’s not just scripts I underwrite, (see below), it’s my own emotions too.)

And then the Independent Prod Co said ... No. After all that. Not surprising, but disappointing all the same. So it’s gone out via my agent to make its way in the world, knocking at the door of several other IPC’s. And we’re Waiting To Hear again.

Went to big party for The Show, laid on by sponsors. Fairground rides, loads of drink and food, rubbing shoulders with stars and execs. All very nice, but the highlight of the evening was definitely the chocolate fountain. What a remarkable invention.


3 Films I’ve seen recently and highly recommend

Good night and good luck
Kiss Kiss Bang Bang
The Consequences of Love

Tuesday, November 07, 2006


Had the edit on those two episodes mentioned below. Nearly four hour phone call followed by a few days work. Quite a lot to do. The storyline was always a bit thin, and I failed I think on first draft to bulk it up. The underlying message of the edit was Make It Bigger. I get that sometimes. I have a tendency to underwrite. Comes from writing Literary Fiction, probably. Took me years before I could bring myself to put an exclamation mark in a script. They’re considered the work of the devil in Lit Fiction, but they’re common currency in The Show. And why not? They’re pretty common currency in life too.

Son has been saying Bye Bye very sweetly for some time now. Has lately started saying Hello too, in an almost uncanny impression of Elmer Fudd. Part of me wishes malapropisms and Elmer Fudd impressions would go on longer. Daughter told me on way to school that she’s going to draw everybody’s shoes, and put their names next to the pictures. Why? I wondered, sounding casual but wondering about incidence of autism in six year old girls. It’s so she can go in the toilet and see who’s in the cubicles by looking through the gap under the door. Because she’s a Detective. Should we be worried?

And in other news, had the piss taken out of me for ordering Cheese Souffle in a restaurant. Cheese Souffle, it was implied, is effeminate. Can this be right? Had Wild Boar with Mustard Mash for main course which I think must make me unusually conflicted.


3 Favourite Short Stories

The Swimmer John Cheever

For Esme Salinger

Revenge Ellen Gilchrist