Out of the Rut

I’ve been blocked with my screenplay for a while now.  I was sailing along perfectly well and then bam!  Hit a wall.  I realized that the opening sequence was unsuitable for the genre.  I’m writing a romantic comedy of sorts and the opening scenes are all about action.  I’m not sure the scenes flow into the story.   I also noticed some discrepancies.  My opening sequence, as currently written, displays my protagonist as some sort of loser/slacker thief.  Funny guy, but maybe a little too douche bag-ish.  His transformation in the film would be need to be too dramatic for a rom-com.  Plus, it takes away from my worthless, waste-of-space antagonist.  It’s not the character I have in my head.  Also, what happens to his car and his belongings after the warehouse scene?  It just doesn’t work.

I toyed around with it for a while, and then pretty much gave up.  I set my notes aside and left it.  I haven’t been writing at all for weeks now.  Well, probably longer.  Mentally, my energy was wasted elsewhere.  I did manage to watch a few movies, read the screenplays, and then watch the movies again while following the scenes on the pages, so in a roundabout way I was still involved in the process. 

Yesterday, after patiently treading through the muck for what seemed like ages, I became officially unblocked.  I had my note cards at work and dug them out over my lunch.  I shuffled them.  Put them back in my bag.  Sighed.  Retrieved them from their hiding place and made myself sit with it.  Or, rather, walk with it.  I thought about the opening scene as I strolled down the sidewalks that circled the hospital, and from this meditative walk arose a new beginning—screen wise, that is.  I felt giddy and giggled aloud.  It was crazy.  I jotted down a mini beat-sheet and nearly wept with joy.  Even later in the afternoon when I peeked at the sequence, I felt butterflies in my stomach just as if I had a schoolgirl crush.  It’s not as though the new scenes are that good; it’s the fact that I broke through the wall.  I have a new opening sequence, which is more than likely not the one I will use in my final draft, but it is a leap for me. 

I’m out of the rut and the ideas are flowing beautifully once again.  It’s the loveliest feeling.

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