For the last few weeks, a story's been growing in my head. Having learnt from a couple of abortive, over-excited attempts to plunge straight into scripting, only to be scuppered by a sizeable plot-hole or plot-gap, I've simply let it grow while making copious hand-written notes. On Friday, I finally sat down and wrote 11 pages. Yesterday, I wrote another 15, bringing the story to its end. First draft complete.
It's obviously too short at 26 minutes. But it will probably end up as a half-hour drama, which I'll enter into the Red Planet Prize competition. In the first round, you submit only the first ten pages, and I'm sure the second-round judges would rather read a brilliant 30-pager than a feature-length behemoth.
Hopefully, this script will end up being sufficiently strong, after the forthcoming Power Of Three treatment. I'm pretty happy with the story, and suspect it could be the best thing I've written. I'm taking the Red Planet Prize very seriously: it's an incredibly important affair. Not only has it been launched by the remarkable Tony Jordan, but Doctor Who's exec producer (and the BBC's Drama Commissioner!) Julie Gardner is among the second-round judges. Look at all those doors, just waiting to swing open...
One of the best things about the comp, is the way it really does lay down the gauntlet to any writer who thinks they've got what it takes. It's for everyone: not just those with agents, previous productions or Royal blood. There's no moaning to be done about exclusion: all that remains is to sit down, work them fingers and produce your very finest work. Who else is entering? Are you writing something new for it, or submitting your favourite script?