anticipating next month to avoid the work of the present

They’ve announced the schedule for FrightFest, the London horror film festival I’ll be attending at the end of August. It looks great, and I’m excited about seeing the films and hearing from the directors and actors who’ll be there to introduce their movies.

There are 26 shorts and films on the programme, three more than last year. I have a weekend pass so I can watch all of them if I want–I sat through every film and short for the past two FrighFests–but that herculean task may be beyond me this year. But what to cut? I’ll wait and see how I feel over the long hot weekend… it’s always warm and sticky in London at that time of the year. Thank goodness for the fast service in the restaurants in the area. I’m particularly looking forward to eating in Wagamama and Tokyo Diner again. I won’t have much time to browse through my favourite shops, which is a good thing. The exchange rate between the euro and sterling is abysmal. I’m sure I’ll succumb to a few purchases, but I’ll do my best to keep it to the kind of choice items that are difficult to find elsewhere.

In less than six weeks, and a mere six days after I return from FrightFest, I’ll be starting the MA in Screenwriting. How quickly time passes. I’m not doing much work on treatments or screenplays for the summer. I’m sticking with short stories, because I don’t know how much time I’ll have for that format once I’m immersed in the course come September. Any kind of writing helps, of course.

The new short story electrified me on Friday night. It was distracting, actually, to listen to Yevgeny in full poetic charge, when scenes were writing themselves in my head. I managed to yank my attention away enough times to enjoy the mad Russian’s performance. When I got home I picked up where I finished and steamrolled onwards until the wee hours of the morning. I knew I was going to be busy that weekend, and I had a vague worry that if I didn’t keep up the momentum then I’d lose it completely.

I wrote a lot of words. I’m not going to enumerate them as I swore I wouldn’t fall into that trap on this journal. After all, I’m not convinced I’m going to keep most of them. I already love the characters, but since I don’t know where this is going, other than a vague destination, I refuse to fall in love with the prose. I can spot filler.

I’m already itching to prune what I’ve written in half, but since I get the feeling this could turn into a lengthy piece I feel I need to keep looking forward and ignore what’s behind me until the whole mess is completed. Then I can turn around, face the monster, and swing the axe.

If I complete it. I could easily end up hating the story. Part of it reminds me of a soap opera, and I can’t have that. I’ll have to insert popping eyeballs or squirming tentacles, with insane heroes running to a jangly off-key beat; anything but the slow boredom of people jawing around a table.

Character exposition is all well and good, but it’s got to keep your attention.

Enough work-avoidance.

Time to write more filler, and perhaps something that will remain after the axe whistles through the page.