Phew!

The past couple of weeks have been hectic, and the last seven days in particular.

I never started the Diploma in Film Studies for the qualification; I did it for the learning. Yet, as always, I wanted to do my best.

I think I’ll do fine. I’m not going to fail; it’s a matter of what mark I’ll get.

Today I handed in an application for the MA in Screenwriting at the Huston Film School. There was a considerable amount of material required for the application, which was unfortunate for me as the deadline was two days after my final exam. I really had to push hard to get the work done in time, but I managed it (with about five minutes to spare!).

It’s a smart idea, actually, to require so much written work. You weed out the people who are all talk, but no action. I suppose some won’t provide a complete application. I may get called for an interview in a couple of weeks, but I’m cool with that. I would enjoy discussing the course and my reasons for attending.

The best part of applying for the MA is that now I have two full movie treatments. Even if I don’t get into the course – nothing is guaranteed – I’m better off than I was before. I enjoyed coming up with the treatments, watching the ideas flow out, and forcing myself to finish them. The most difficult part was keeping it down to four pages. In both cases I had to practically half the original page count to get it to the required length. No matter how difficult, it’s a useful exercise; it forces you to be concise, to excise the unnecessary, and get to the point.

The problem is you can only supply the gist of the story. There was so much more I wanted to explain, but couldn’t. A true movie treatment is usually at least 5 pages long, though occasionally they get up to 30 pages (at that point it’s a mini-script, so I don’t see the point). If you figure that one page of your treatment equates to 10 pages of script, then you’re looking at an average of 8-12 pages to summarise the story. I’d have appreciated the extra length, but enforcing a shorter word count for the MA made sense. I wouldn’t cherish the thought of ploughing through even a small number of applications.

I’m all talk about movies at the moment since they have dominated my thoughts lately. I’m looking forward to shifting gears. Perhaps I’ll tackle another short story – I’ve enough ideas knocking around my skull – or do a spit and polish job on my more recent pieces and send them on their way.

It’s time to prepare for a visit to rejectionville: population millions.

But beforehand: a brief interlude in which our heroine gets to rest her brain and enjoy a long weekend.