I’ve been knee-deep in development work for my projects this past month, responding to some thought-provoking notes on Steampunk Assassins from Ste Russell at Loves Me Not Films and attempting to whip The Greenwich Problem into shape before sending it out to producers.
However, three opportunities came along this week that had me dusting off old projects and exploring their potential.
The first was a call for feature screenplays based in and around Europe, which required writing a treatment for said screenplay. This seemed like a perfect fit for The Local, my Script Frenzy screenplay about an English doctor joining Welsh villagers in their fight against a construction company. A very “local” European story!
Unfortunately, I loathe treatments and I haven’t done a pass on The Local for about four months, so I needed to re-familiarise myself with the ins-and-outs of Act 2 to try and sell my story. Still ongoing, but my personal editor is on it.
The second is news of a relaunch for a new media series for which I was going to write before it got shelved. I had to flick through all my old e-mail correspondence from January (neatly filed, thank God) before I remembered what the script was even meant to be about!
Until today, I had little idea what I storyworld was but: think Star Wars. Think The Matrix. Think Battlestar Galactica. It’s a whole societal concept suitable for a multi-media platform.
Do I have something that might fit those requirements? Step in, Overambitious Island. There’s a reason I labelled the project with that daunting title and it’s because it’s a novel concept for which I developed not only an entirely new society but also a language. Yes, I decided I wanted to play Tolkien and have a go at amateur linguistics.
Remarkably, I can still wax lyrical about their education system, their core religious beliefs and their extensive martial arts. I can even remember the reasons the more right-wing elements of London hate their guts.
The lesson is this: if you were once enthusiastic about a project, you may set it to one side, you may even despair of it ever being worthwhile, but you should always keep an open mind about its future.
Except if it’s about dream heists. I mean, you could develop that thing for ten years, and nothing would ever come of it…