Derry, Northern Ireland

Derry, Northern Ireland
A book I'm working on is set in this town.

Sunday, July 30, 2017

One little change...

And that starts an avalanche of other changes. I've got a good two dozen moments that need reworking. Some for details. Some because this makes them better. Bits that have to be updated. New ideas. Shifts in logistics. OMG, just by swapping heights between Adam and Lando. And more in the untouched part of this rewrite that show Adam's new size helps some actions make sense.

Today I got through the part where Adam gets kicked out of Lando's house. I'm waiting to re-re-rewrite the jet sequence till I've redone this part of the story. I guess this means I'm finally tumbling into the real story. Seems my main method of writing is redoing it until things start to jump before my eyes. Over and over and over...just like William Wyler made his films.

I just remembered it. He was notorious for doing dozens of takes because he didn't like what he was seeing. This was back when they were shooting on film, so he'd only print the takes he felt might be usable...meaning he shot a hell of a lot of film that was never even processed before he was happy.

There's one story about when he and Bette Davis worked together on Jezebel. It's set in New Orleans in the 1850s, and she's a Southern Belle known to be something of a hellion. Her big entrance is on the back of a horse that she's just tamed. She's wearing a riding dress, gets off, and goes into her house to greet guests coming to her party, even though she hasn't changed clothes.

Wyler shot the scene 45 times. Bette fumed and fought with him. But he printed every one of the shots then showed them to her, and she saw that her first 10 takes were very actressy and showy. It wasn't until the 45th shot that it seemed perfectly natural for her to pick up the train of her riding dress with her riding crop. So maybe I've taken some of Wyler into my style...

Jeez...that means I'll spend another 10 years on Place of Safety!

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