Diary of the Raven: Everything Counts (In Large Amounts)

Polishing a script is like a Big 10 football game. A lot of grinding, and not a whole lot of movement. (Not a perfect analogy, perhaps, but it’s been months since I’ve had college football to be excited about, so I hope you’ll let that one pass.) It is, however, tiny detail after tiny detail, with each one rippling through the piece, necessitating more and more changes. And then, just maybe, one rolls back around and makes you rewrite the piece that started the thing in the first place.

An example – one of the characters is younger, well-educated, and a little bit out of place in our setting. (To be truthful, they’re all a bit out of place, but that’s another story.) At first, it doesn’t matter – she’s there because she needs to be, and she’s well-educated because she needs to be. It was good enough to forward the storyline, and it worked. But she wasn’t at all satisfied with that. (Characters have a way of getting away from you. At least the good ones.) She wanted more grounding, a reason to be there, and so I decided that she had left and come back. Went away to college, couldn’t deal with the big city (or did something happen at home? So many options!) From there, it was only natural that one of the other characters had known her growing up, which changed their relationship entirely – not only what they talk about, but how they talk. Pretty soon, he’s acting like a chatty uncle and telling embarrassing stories. A nice, settled family.

And then, something pops up at the end of the script, and suddenly all of that has the potential to change. (What change? Sorry, that one’s still a secret!) And strangely enough, the characters are ok with it.

That’s one example of dozens that I could give you – little pebbles making big ripples in the script. Seemingly isolated incidents that have their echoes in everything around them. Sort of like life, I suppose. Then again, since my characters seem to have their own ideas about how they want things to turn out, life may be exactly the right phrase. But that’s another story.


1 Response to “Diary of the Raven: Everything Counts (In Large Amounts)”

  1. 1 anna marie September 27, 2007 at 2:38 pm

    She’s sorry to be so demanding but awfully glad that you kept changing her 🙂

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