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June 15, 1999:

Tuesday night

I was afraid I had jinxed myself--after producing 2300 lines (about 8000 words I think) on Sunday, on Monday I wrote hardly anything at all; maybe 400 lines.

Now, you might think that was because I used up all my good ideas, and perhaps so, in one sense. But I had come up with all those ideas on Sunday as well; it wasn't like I had been having ideas for weeks and finally wrote them all down.

So I did write down a bunch of ideas on Monday, and some text. Indeed, "only" 400 lines isn't that bad; some screenwriting books I've seen say to discipline yourself to make sure you write at least three or five pages a day; 400 lines is about eight pages.

Still, it's annoying when you feel like "I'll be 'done' this in three days" and you're not. Fortunately, using all the ideas I came up with on Monday, I actually was pretty productive today. I might get in another hour or so of writing after this, but I'm now up to about 4400 lines, so I was nearly as productive today as I was on Sunday.

However, I've also decided that this script goes by a lot faster than a normal script. The page-a-minute rule isn't actually a very valid rule of thumb in general, but I have a lot of stuff where there's talking while there's unrelated action in the background, which basically requires twice as much writing (or even worse, due to extra blank lines).

So I'm going to target a normal length--120 pages--and assume that it'll actually play shorter. Not that any of this really matters--even if it were "competitive", it would no doubt get heavy rewriting before being produced.


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