Tuesday, May 11, 2010



Last week was fairly hectic but hugely enjoyable nonetheless. First, there was the little matter of Story Engine in Newcastle, a screenwriting panel/workshop run by the mighty Ian Fenton. I was honoured to be one of the guests and had an utterly fab time with the likes of Jason Arnopp, Lisa Holdsworth, Ludo Smolski, Gavin Williams, comedy writers Messina & Rusling, Cecil & Riley, not to mention all the fantastic drinking talent, sorry, creative talent of the north east. I'd thoroughly recommend a visit to Newcastle ('twas my first time) but it would be even better to coincide it when Story Engine is on, as it's a cracking screenwriting shindig.

I arrived home late on Thursday night, couldn't sleep, then was up promptly for the train to London on Friday morning to finish off Origin (m'short film) at BBC Post-Production.

It's always exciting to go to BBC TV Centre, and I was anticipating a lot of election buzz in the building (Dimbleby holding court in Studio 1) but it was strangely quiet all day. Still, they've got a TARDIS and a place to take your photo next to the Doctor (although this is also a smoking area, so, um, odd).

It's a bit of a strange time work-wise at the moment. Lots of uncertainty seems to be the prevailing feeling for most writers I know while the usual amount of optimism, exciting prospects and promising leads continue to dangle their carrots within tantalising grasp. Everything could happen, nothing could happen. Nothing new there, then.

As I finish up Origin - it's done but there's one final, final thing I want to do - I'm already gearing up to make my next short. I should direct again. Now that I've glimpsed what that world is like, I miss it and am keen for another crack. No point waiting around for someone to give me the opportunity; got to take care of it myself. I've already got the ball rolling so it'll be interesting to see where it'll end up (bigger and more ambitious than Origin). More details as they happen.

In the meantime, got to keep my head down with the writing so there may be a bit of blog silence for a little bit. But if anyone's got any questions or topics they'd like to see covered on the blog, then let me know and that should ensure some regular postage of some sort. No news on this year's Red Planet Prize yet but I'll keep it on this bat channel if anything breaks.


Jamie said...

Congrats on finishing Origin (well, barring that one final, final thing!).

Far be it for the likes of me to dictate blog topics, but since you asked... ;-)

Uncertainty and dangling carrots just out of reach is very much the boat I'm in at the moment too. So on that subject, I'd love to hear your experience of navigating the gap between having your shadow script approved by a continuing drama and finding out whether or not you'll actually get commissioned from it. I know you did for Enders, good on you, but what was the time in between approval and commissioning like? Long wait, short wait? Anxious, sanguine? Meetings or radio silence? Did it feel like it was in the bag and only a matter of time, or were there other hurdles to jump?

Your previous post on the topic was really very useful, so it'd be brilliant to get another slice of your experience with anything you're free to share.

Or just keep your head down writing, that's probably the best thing anybody can do!

Looking forward to the RPP, btw.


Danny Stack said...

Thanks, Jamie. Will blog a reply this week.