Wednesday, 14 December 2011

Lock-in Day

I have to admit that I approached the lock-in day with trepidation. A whole day at the Arts Centre locked into a room with my fellow writers and also a 1-1 tutorial with Sarah Woods and Sian Summers to be grilled on the final idea pitch. Also a lock-in that doesn't involve alcohol. Also aren't there health and safety guidelines about locking a group of writers in a room together?

We'd been asked expand on our two page pitch to a fuller document to send in advance and then answer questions on it. I didn't manage to get mine as completed as I would have liked. I got most of the story down though and two of the characters break downs done and then by the Saturday session I'd got all the characters apart from two down. The antogonist eludes me slightly and in fact he still does. He's a bit foggy still but I'm getting closer to him I think. Also until the morning of the lock-in my TV journalist had eluded me, though on the morning of the lock in I watched a BBC news report on divorce stats and suddenly Pauline became clear though her name is now completely wrong.

My tutorial session was great, lots of queries that forced me to clarify things, it was suggested I should explore farce - and funnily enough I've just started to read One Man, Two Guvnors. In a happy trip through of coincidences that seem serendipitous I spotted this discussion

I have no idea what the farce formula will entail, how it will strengthen or indeed box-in my play. But I look forward to exploring farce over Xmas. As I've got my parents with me for Xmas there is already a huge potential for farce especially as my living room has two entrances and my dad is partially deaf!

I came away from the tutorial feeling confident - but that I had a mountain of trailing strings to tie together.

After the morning tutorial I spent the day focusing on plotting and moving the story as well as trying to find the undercurrents. Basically I played with post-it notes for about an hour. Post-it note work is not to be taken lightly or mocked, a hell of a lot can be achieved with precise placing, maneouvering and colour coding schemes. By the end of the day I had a pretty good idea of the whole play and worked out what the play is about which is a pretty useful thing to do ahead of starting to write.

Now all that's left to do is write the whole thing by 6th February.

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