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  • Archive for June, 2012

    50 Kisses – Love v Fantasy II mark II…

    2012 - 06.30

    Following yesterday’s draft for the SWF ’50 Kisses’ competition, I have an Edit By Community win! With thanks to all those who wrote with suggestions, I have a completed 2 page entry – similar but tighter, with not one but THREE kisses AND actually to length. Well. Marginally. Oh, and a happier open ending.

    Might have to try this more often. You guys ROCK!


    LEATHER JACKET MAN (LJ MAN) – beautiful in his own right, and wearing an exceptionally beautiful leather jacket – proceeds.

    DONNA (V.O.)
    No. You’ve still lost me. You fell in love with the man – or the jacket?


    MAGS perches on the arm of a couch, absently plucking the petals of a single red rose. DONNA sits more conventionally, wine glass in hand. On the coffee table, a half-eaten pizza and a flyer for Valentine’s Day Specials.

    Indeed, therein lies the question.



    MAGS cycles past LJ MAN, entranced by his jacket. She slows.

    MAGS (V.O.)
    First: the jacket.

    DONNA (V.O.)
    You stalked him?

    On LJ MAN: MAGS now rides slowly behind, having turned back.

    MAGS (V.O.)
    I was enamoured. What kind of man could wear such a garment? I decided he must be a heroic figure. Lethally genteel. A spy, perhaps -


    INT. BAR – DAY

    LJ MAN leans against a bar, suave ala James Bond. Seeing an elegantly dressed MAGS, he pushes aside his martini to take and gently kiss her unresisting hand, his eyes on hers –



    MAGS (V.O.)
    – or a steampunk space cowboy. The kind who cleans up six kinds or intergalactic vermin before breakfast.

    LJ MAN swaggers in with a stupidly souped up SF gun. Pulls MAGS in by the waist, kisses her extravagantly, while aiming the gun at the camera and FIRING –



    MAGS (V.O.)
    Or an urban superhero, fighting for justice and… other stuff on the streets of post-apocalyptic London -

    LJ MAN stands back-to-back with a cat-suited MAGS, surrounded by THUGS. They share what might be their last kiss, then draw their respective post-apocalyptic weapons to face their fate –



    MAGS slowly rides past LJ MAN, eyes still glued to the jacket.

    MAGS (V.O.)
    – and then it occurs to me that the jacket might be a maguffin, and I was actually attracted to its wearer.

    DONNA (V.O.)

    Completely oblivious to the gate/tree/post/pedestrian she’s about to ride straight into –



    Only then I fell off my bike.

    And did he chivalrously come to your rescue?

    MAGS plucks the last petal from the rose.

    Alas, no. And what if he had? How could he have possibly lived up to the man I had imagined?

    You realise this says a lot about why you’re still single.

    MAGS looks all secret-squirrel.



    MAGS hauls her bike back upright, dusting herself off. Ahead, LJ MAN pauses, looking to MAGS as though he might turn back.

    She grins. Ready to give this a go anyway.

    50 Kisses – Love-Fail II

    2012 - 06.29

    So the London Screenwriters Festival is ambitiously running a competition to crowd source 50 short films. It’s called ’50 Kisses’, is based around the question of ‘what is love to you?’ and needs to be set on Valentine’s night – all of which make three really strong reasons why I only got around to writing an entry the day before it closes.

    Well, on the penultimate day I confessed on Facebook that I had no idea how to approach this question, and then started something terribly melancholy. Semi-autobiographical, you see, melancholy being a generally accurate emotive state for the vacuum which is my love life.

    Not that the 2 page films had to be about that kind of love – although the Valentine’s night setting probably screwed up a few more original approaches. I had a strange moment on the tube recently. I thought I’d try that on for size.

    2 pages. Set on Valentine’s night. Exploring love. Thoughts welcome.


    Pedestrians and cyclists pass, going about their business.

    DONNA (V/O)
    No. You’ve still lost me.

    Amongst them weaves the back of LEATHER JACKET MAN (LJ MAN).

    DONNA (V/O)
    You fell in love with the man or the jacket?


    MAGS perches on the arm of a couch, absently plucking the petals of a single red rose. DONNA sits more conventionally, wine glass in hand. On the coffee table, a half-eaten pizza and a flyer for Valentine’s Day Specials.

    Therein lies the question. (more…)

    Riding the bell-curve. And finding voice. Possibly at the same time.

    2012 - 06.26

    So I currently have something of a social media Problem, which is to say that I’ve overloaded this website with a number of my interests, not all of which everyone considers complimentary. When I’m feeling vital and bullish I tend to petulantly toss my hair at this and say ‘well it’s all me, and it all intersects, and if you’d rather have me in boxes, you probably don’t actually want me so let’s just clear all that up now before people get upset, shall we?’

    You really don’t want to me see when I’m upset.

    And when I’m feeling less bullish and more broke and vulnerable, I think ‘I should really do something about that,’ a thought inevitably postscripted with the ineffable ‘later’.

    So until I decide What To Do About It, I’m just going to make a point of my holistic theory, however bullheaded, and write blog posts that straddle and connect facets of my life. Which pretty much explains the eloquence of this post’s title.

    It started with Chris Jones/Living Spirit’s first London Breakfast Club event for screenwriters. One of the greatest joys of working as a city Personal Trainer is that I’m now able attend stuff like this, and I am always up for a cooked breakfast. After too many hours in the Box I also tend to crave things like daylight and the company of story geeks who will happily sit down and dismantle films, books and TV series over a plate of burnt and greasy food cooked far beyond any nutritional value.

    The first Breakfast at the Phoenix Artists Club featured the lovely and personable Linda Seger as the guest speaker, talking largely about the difference between Art and Craft, and their impact on Voice. And because I currently spend much of my life in a black and neon underground gym learning not to write fictional stories on the page, but to rewrite/edit the lives of clients who come to me to change their personal stories, my brain started connecting everything Linda said to my new vocation.

    All stories give someone a problem, and the story itself lies in the gap between where that person is, and where they want to be. The writer’s job is to be as creative as possible about crossing that gap.

    All PT clients turn up with a ‘problem’ – be it weight, strength, aesthetic, rehab, they want more energy, general health – and the success of their training program lies in whether it enables them to close the gap between where they are now, and where they want to be. The PT’s job is to be as creative and inspiring as possible about closing that gap.

    As a writer, you have to know what you can bring to the table, Linda says – what you bring that no-one else can.

    As a PT taking on a new vocation and business, I am exploring what it is that I can bring to my clients. What I can bring that no other PT can. (more…)