Thursday, July 12, 2007

It's Been a Long Time...

Wow, I honestly cannot believe how much time has passed since my last post. The past six weeks have seen loads of progress in the writing portion of my life so I suppose that, in some small way, compensates for my absence from my humble post as blogger. While the Table has never been far from my thoughts, I have somehow managed to let my young site fall by the wayside, but thankfully, other projects have managed to inch towards fruition.

Since 2000 or so, I've been flirting with the idea of writing a screenplay. However, high school, family, friends, etc. always interfered. I had lists of story ideas, and pages of notes on one particular story idea. However, while I certainly had the aspiration to put this tale on paper, I only found the time (and the nerve) to actually start writing once I graduated college.

So, in January 2006, I set forth laying down scenes for my initial screenplay. The whole process involved extensive outlining, character development, the creation of scene-corresponding index cards, and a whole mess of notes. While I still pursued academic and professional endeavors, I managed to maintain a tenuous grasp on my screenwriting dreams, never completely allowing this project to escape from my thoughts. Whenever I could muster the time and motivation (In my opinion, the true task for any writer is pulling yourself together enough to get something - anything - done.), I found myself sitting in front of the computer, even if it meant I only got a single scene done. Every little bit helps, I guess.

Throughout the day, I would carry my notes and notecards with me, gradually developing the plot and characters of my masterpiece-in-progress. There were times where I became disgusted with the project, when I questioned my own sanity, and thought that any attempt at creating a screenplay was a futile effort. However, all of my hard work was (somewhat) validated when, right before July 4, I finally managed to complete the first draft of my screenplay.

While I remain mum on plot details (Somehow I don't think posting uncopyrighted material on the world wide web is a smart move.), I will divulge that the story is semi-autobiographical in nature. If writers should write what they know, I figured a tale vaguely based on myself couldn't be too hard to manage. After all, I can assure you that no one knows me better than myself. Although the first draft is, of course, still very rough around the edges (Much of the dialogue is stilted and awkward, character arcs need tweaking, and my themes aren't nearly as clear as I would like.), I now have something to work with. For the first time, I can say that I am revising my first screenplay.

I may be far from where I want the project to ultimately be, but the completion of this first crucial step has made me feel a bit more confident about my future as a creative writer. Aside from a few poems here and there, this is the first wholly original creative work I've made even remote progress on. I'm already loving the revision process, and I look forward to the continuing evolution of my story.

On another front, I have enthusiastically enjoyed my experience as editor of one of the sections of my college newspaper this summer. Although my tenure as editor will shortly be coming to a close, the skills I've acquired there will undoubtedly prove invaluable in the future. While my class schedule will preclude me from returning to head the section, I will remain as a staff writer in the fall, and I'm certainly open to stepping up to the plate again next summer.

Meanwhile, there's plenty of writing plans and opportunities on the horizon which I fully intend to explore. So, hang in there, fellow writers. Keep plugging at your side projects, and eventually you'll get there. At last, I'm making progress on my goals, and you can do the same too... Stay vigilant and remember what Ray Bradbury said: "You must stay drunk on writing so reality cannot destroy you."

Thanks for reading...I'll keep you all posted on my future projects. As always, if you have comments, bring them to the Table!