Senior Project | A Balancing Act

instalate

Sometimes I look at my friends and wonder how they’re still upright. They do so much more than I do and I feel like I’m about to collapse into a pile of creative project-induced stress. This could also be because I’m fighting off a cold and I walked a 12k for the first time in…a while yesterday, but I do have a lot going on at the moment. On top of my senior project (which should be commanding most of my attention), I have 18 credits worth of classes, a play opening in a week and a half, and my own creative endeavors to worry about. Oh, and my social life and health. Those are important, too.

What I think may be the key to doing my best work on this is blocking out time every day in my crazy schedule to put all the other distractions away and just spend some time with my story. The first deadline for my project was last Friday and I’ll be honest with you all, I was not prepared. I came up with a pretty detailed treatment and bio for my main protagonist, but I definitely need to spend some time creating the rest of the ensemble and tweaking my treatment before I’m ready to write. Luckily, I have a little more time for development.

“Why does that document you’re working on look more like an English essay than an actual script?” you’re probably [not] wondering. That, my friends, is a treatment. A treatment is essentially a detailed outline in prose of the script. I find them to be very helpful because they help me figure out what I want the tone of each scene to be, which doesn’t always come across in an outline. Prose helps me fully flesh out each moment before I actually write it. Plus, I enjoy writing prose. Makes me feel smarter or something.

My goal or this week is to keep working on my characters and outline my second episode. It’s going to be a tough week as I’m just a few days away from Godzilla’s tech weekend, but if my crazy friends can still do all that they do, I think I can make it out alive. As a wise Tumblr post once said, “You have as many hours in the day as Beyonce.”

P.S. If you’re in Philly, come see Godzilla. We open on Halloween!

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Senior Project | Thundercats are GO!

I didn’t eat a lot on Friday. Most of my day was spent putting the finishing touches on my pitch for my senior project, the culmination of four years of work on my Screenwriting & Playwriting degree. Anxiety turned into hyperfocus which turned into forgetting to eat which turned into stuffing my face with pizza upon release from my pitch meeting. Pizza is everything. Pizza is the essence of life.

I share that anecdote with you, dear blog readers, as a way to announce that I will be blogging my way through the process of writing my senior project throughout this school year. In these senior project posts you’ll hear about each step of the cycle, my struggles to get things done on time in the midst of my already mad schedule, and hopefully a little bit about the stuff I’m actually writing. And then you will probably run away from the world of screenwriting screaming with your proverbial tail between your legs. If you’re like me, though, you’ll continue down this masochistic path because you just love it so much.

“So, Charlotte, what the hell are you writing this year?” you ask. If we were talking face-to-face I’d probably avoid this question like the plague and say something like, “How about that government shutdown, eh?” However, for the sake of transparency, I will fill you in. I’m working on two episodes (a pilot and second episode) of an hour-long drama with a working title of “The Middle Space”. It centers around a young woman who wakes up in a world occupied by people who are currently in comas back on earth. They support each other while they wait to wake up in the world of the living or enter the world of the dead, not knowing when they’ll move along. It explores themes of bodily autonomy, reinvention, community, and of course death. And yes, I know that pitch sounds depressing as hell. I’m still in development.

That brings us to…development! I’ll spend the next few weeks writing treatments and character bios for the pilot and probably sending a ton of emails to my advisor (sorry in advance). I’m really excited about this script, so my first instinct is to just dive in and start writing. I’ve got some things to work out before I can, though, and I’m learning to love the development process. It’s easier to start writing when you have a clear understanding of who your characters are and the world they live in. So that’s my goal, and I’ll be updating you weekly on my process. If you want to follow my process, you can sign up on the left side of this page or follow me on bloglovin. Let’s get writing, shall we?

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