Wednesday, 11 September 2013

Novels from scripts


Which started life as ..The SANDRUNNERS..The  Screenplay

 Why the transformation?

 It goes a long way back. .In my  career in the TV business I have read, dissected, examined, queried  and finally shot hundreds of scripts, these have mainly been Drama scripts, Scripts with long running series, so there is always a continuity of style to consider, Scripts for Comedy, Scripts for Documentaries, yes there are some..  and of course scripts for Commercials, along with the inevitable storyboard.

There has also been numerous scripts for Movies.

When my partner Mary Lou Clarke and I decided to write movie scripts we took a year out and went to live in an idyllic place in Northern Italy, right on the beach, in spite of the obvious diversions associated with such a location we did manage to set down a number of detailed storylines  and one of them was The Sandrunners. 

At the end of the year we had to get back to work ad returned to London, we finally finished the first draft of the screenplay and it looked fine…more drafts and it began to shape up, then we produced the final draft.

Producers loved it, mainly because it was visual, had young attractive leads, set in the Tombs of Egypt, had a troubled romantic theme and a frisky mischievous pet camel, Suzy.

It was set in 1896 ,the year of the first of the new Olympics to be staged in Athens and involved
Political intrigue, rising Egyptian Nationalism, class warfare,  death threats, corruption and the inevitable Committee to Stop Everything.

Why was it not made into a movie?.. Simple…     The very reasons Producers would not film it were the things they raved about.

Costume Drama.. expensive

Trained Animal...expensive

Foreign and somewhat hostile location… expensive and to be avoided.

70.000 crowd at the Olympic stadium in Athens...unthinkable,  all in costume.

Lead players were essentially foreign… hard to sell.

And so it went on.

The film script. Along with several others by this time was put back in the drawer and we moved on.

Then we had a wonderful idea. The script and all of the others were great stories, why not turn them into novels, so that more than just a dozen or so film Producers could read them ..

Terrific, Lets start with The Sandrunners….

Several years later, having lost what remained of my once flowing locks and nearing insanity we managed to turn out a passable novel, then we began the hard work of turning it into one that people might like to buy and read.

It was an unbelievably difficult task, writing a film script is much easier than writing a novel where visuals have to turned into description,  in an entertaining and interesting way,

Hopefully,   Mission Accomplished….We finally published The Sandrunners.

We now have to set about marketing the book, meanwhile three other scripts have painfully passed along the writers fallopian tube and made the transformation from fertilised egg of a Script to a book.

Be prepared for..

The Stack..  An Australian Family saga starting in the First World War and culminating, (Book 0ne) in modern times.

Maginty’s Quest…A great adventure story for the intelligent adventurous 11/12 year old, with Pirates, Exotic sea creatures, a besieged family in modern day London  and some dastardly crooks…and lots of Magic.

The Fiddler…aka    Sex Drugs and a String Quartet.. A young Italian farm boy with great musical talent wishes to join Mozart’s orchestra.

 This raunchy adventure takes the reader into deep dark places and encounters in the Venice and Rome of that period.

Was the effort worth it?..  absolutely..   and we also learned a few tricks about writing along the way.

Now, where did my hair go, it was around here twenty years and four books ago..

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