Monday, December 20, 2010

Long term hopes and dreams

The lovely, manly, and powerful Paul Cornell is doing his Twelve Blogs of Christmas again, and I highly recommend that you go there and have a read. The first one here covers the writing-related things he hasn't done yet, but would really like to do. He also wonders if other writers have a similar list - I normally do my big end of year summary blog post thing, but I think his version is much more fun and interesting, and I feel like a change, so I'm shamelessly copying joining in. Here goes:

Run my own TV show: By "my own" I mean, created or co-created by me, where I'm the lead writer. I've had tons of fun playing with other people's toys, but I want to play with my own toys, run my own universe, set my own rules. As you'll have seen from several other posts, there are plans afoot to (hopefully) make this happen, and I have several potential things underway at various companies. But as with all development, you never know until you get the go ahead, and it can be rejected at any stage. I've talked about this before here, and how time consuming it can be. That's just how it works, it's a huge risk and financial commitment for the powers that be, and they need time to make sure it's all worth their while. Which is why there's never anything to announce until you are actually filming something, just in case. But fingers crossed.

Write a freelance episode for a US TV show: This one's fairly low on the likeliness scale, in fact, there's pretty much no chance right now. There are a lot of working US writers who would be in the queue before me, even if I was living in America, so it wouldn't make much sense to hire me for an episode. But I'd really love to do one, partly for the fun of writing the episode itself, partly for the chance to work in that intense environment with those amazingly talented people. Any preference? Sure, I'd love to do a Dexter, Castle, Human Target, Leverage, The Mentalist, or CSI Las Vegas. I'd also love to do a Glee, but I'm sure they'd look at my blood-splattered TV history and just stare at me in horror. Although I don't always do violent, death-filled stuff, I've written plenty of nice things with happy endings. Honestly, you kill *one* baby...

Direct a movie: This is another thing that is possible and in the works, but depends on a lot of things falling into place. Lots of things in development, lots of possibilities. So fingers crossed again.

Write comics: Another possible thing that I've been working towards, so more crossed fingers. It's a different set of tools, a very different discipline to TV and movie scripts, so I'm still learning how to do it. I have several pitches I'm working on, so once they're ready, I'll have to try and convince some artists to join forces with me. And if I ever got the chance to do a Batman or a Punisher comic, I think I'd probably explode.

Write a non-DW or TW short story: I've loved writing short stories for Doctor Who and Torchwood, but I'd really like to write one set in a completely different world, without characters I already know, just to see if I can. Preferably for a themed anthology, so it's not just on its own, but can hang around with friends in a book somewhere. What?? Stories get lonely without company. They're like pets.

Write comedy: A lot of my work has funny stuff in, and Severance is even called a horror-comedy (although I'd argue it's a horror with some funny bits), but I've never managed to do a pure comedy piece. I tried, ages ago, but was so focused on trying to bring the funny, the plot never materialised and so the jokes didn't work. I've realised that I need a strong, high-concept plot if I want to do a comedy - but is that really out-and-out comedy, or just a funny high-concept thing?? The ultimate test would be to come up with a sitcom. A lot of the things I've done lately, I chose them because I wasn't sure if I could actually do them, because the very idea scared me. You've got to challenge and scare yourself, sometimes. And the thought of doing a sitcom terrifies me, I have no idea how to even start. So it's definitely something I want to try.

Write a play: See above, about challenging yourself… There are many specific types of restrictions and things you just can't physically do in plays, but I want to try and do them anyway. I love being on set when my stuff is filmed, so I'd kill for the chance to see something of mine performed, live, every single night, for the entire run, it must be absolutely electric.

Write a James Bond movie: The only one from Paul's list that I'd also like to do, and I suspect it's on everyone's list. Which is why I'll probably never get to do it. But hey! I never thought I'd work for Doctor Who, have a movie made, or even get paid for writing anything. So why the hell not? Dear producers: I am available and cheap. And fast. And not crazy (well, mostly).

Write a Knight Rider movie: Yes, seriously. I'd jump at the chance. It's been in development for ages, not sure why it's taking so long - it's a talking car! Who solves crimes with his human friend! How is this difficult?? Call me, producers!

Be a rock star: Yeah. Who doesn't want that?? I'd love to be in a band, belting out rock songs on stage to huge crowds, doing guitar solos. How is it writing-related? Well, I'd write the songs. That counts. Sadly, my fantasy is hampered by two small obstacles: I can't sing, or play any instruments. But hey, that never stopped (insert your favourite rock star's name here)!

So there you go, that's my list of current hopes and dreams. There are probably more that I've forgotten, but these are the ones that I think about regularly. Hopefully I can make some of these happen soon. I'm not tagging anyone, but like Paul says, I'd love to see what other writers put on their own lists. Have at it!