by JEFF GEORGE
Nelson Mandela once said, “It always seems impossible until it’s done.” Good words to live by when you’re writing. There’s a million reasons to give up when you write. You sacrifice your social life, your sanity, and even your personal relationships – DON’T F’ING INTERRUPT ME! But if you give up, you’re dead.
Getting the script down from 160 to 120 pages was a Herculean task in and of itself. The original source material, a blog called LA Stories, was a seven year journey of one girl who dreamed of becoming a screenwriter, but crashed and burned and “died” before she was able to achieve her dreams. After sharing the script with a few writer friends, listening to suggestions, and being open to making changes, I took one more stab at editing the story to see if a 2-hour film could be scaled to about 100 minutes. 120 pages is for amateurs.
I took the “truncated-action approach,” turning full descriptive sentences into raw action verbs and beats. It’s not how one talks, but how most scripts are written. I took an even closer look at some of the voice-over… and threw out good portions of it (see “Kill Your Baby” for more details). I looked at some dialog towards the end and turned it into a title card preceding the film. And I came up with a killer title.
100 pages was the goal, and I almost got there. 103 is the final page count. I’m happy with that. It’s done. It’s ready to share with the world. Well, at least some literary agents and producers. Gotta get this baby made!
I present to you… “Monarch.”