INT: NEEDLE CITY – DAY
ROBERT sits at his desk, typing out a post for his blog. (O.S.) rain beats on the windows of his office.
He pulls A 9MM AUTOMATIC PISTOL from his desk drawer. A LOUD CLICK is heard as the hammer is pulled back.
Well, here goes nothin’…
* * * * *
So, I was emailing with my agent a couple weeks ago, asking about what I can do to help get the rights to Untold Damage either optioned or sold next year when the book arrives. Her answer was basically, “Well, you have the chops, dude. Why not write the screenplay? It might help, right?”
And I thought, well… yeah. Why the F not, right? I haven’t written a screenplay in like 6-7 year, but before that I was averaging about three a year for the previous ten years. I didn’t ever think I’d go back to it, now but here I am, about twenty-five pages into the first draft.
And you know what?
I’m loving it. I guess I’d missed it more than I’d realized. And to be adapting my own book? It’s incredibly enjoyable. I can sit there and pretend that the head of Universal hired me to do this, lol!
No, not really, but adapting Untold Damage is quite the intellectual puzzle. I mean, it’s like, “Hey, I can’t have interior monologues now! So, how should I show this scene then?” Screenplays are ALL about “show, don’t tell”, which brings up all sorts of little conundrums that need to be solved. What the protag is thinking needs to be worked out in some sort of visual way, etc. Turning a book into a screenplay is sorta like tearing each scene in the book down to its barest of bones.
I started the process by sitting down the with a copy of the book and a yellow highlighter. I went through the entire novel and highlighted the scenes I felt HAD to be in the screenplay. I learned this approach from reading one of William Goldman’s books on screenwriting, can’t remember which, unfortunately. This approach turned to be VERY helpful. For this draft I’m pretty much keeping most of the dialogue straight out of the book, like when The Maltese Falcon was adapted. That was a VERY faithful adaption. Read the book, then watch the film. You’ll see what I mean.
On another note, my publisher has had both the “Vision Meeting” and the “Launch Meeting” for my book. Both went extremely well, and everyone is happy and enthused about Untold Damage. April of next year is still the drop date. They took the tagline I suggested and even THE CONCEPT of what I suggested for the cover. Judging from the other covers Midnight Ink has put out, I’m in VERY good hands. I’ve also made the changes my editor suggested to the book, and now it’s back on their desk (before deadline, I might add, lol), moving forward. Besides working on the screenplay version, I’m already hard at work on the next Mallen book, that I need to have done by next March 1. I’m also working on a couple of other things, but I’m going to save that info for later.
Keep up the writing! Talk with you soon.:-)