Hello, you utter delight. I recently had some good news. A month or so back, I took part in TAPS' annual Continuing Drama course, which this year took place in Old London Town. It was a three-day affair which I can heartily recommend: I learnt a great deal, which I will almost certainly blog about separately soon.
The culmination of the course, however, had a competitive element, in that everyone needed to pitch a 23-minute one-off original TV drama, then write the script. Ten people out of 30-odd would then be chosen to address their assigned script-editor's notes (my script editor was the lovely Nicola Larder) in order to produce a second draft, at which point four final scripts would be selected. Ghost Writer, my own script - a relationship drama with a supernatural undercurrent - turned out to be one of those four, which made me very pleased indeed.
So, what next? It's all happening rather quickly, much like TV. The four scripts will be shot over the weekend of December 4-6, on the Emmerdale sets. I'm delighted to have a wonderfully experienced director in the shape of Miss Marple/Love Hurts veteran Guy Slater, with whom I spoke on the 'phone today. It was great to hear that he liked the script a lot, and that the only tweaks he needed to discuss right now were practical, physical concerns like sets and props. It was also nice when he 'phoned me back after having spoken to the casting director, and asked whether I'd be "miserable" if an Irish character had to be made non-Irish. Needless to say, I wouldn't be miserable about that at all.
I'm very much looking forward to heading for Leeds over that weekend and experiencing a day of rehearsal before the shoot. During that prep-day, I'll need to be armed with a laptop, in case spontaneous rewrites are needed. Love that pressure and that challenge.
After Ghost Writer and the other three scripts have been filmed and completed, they'll be readily available to view on the TAPS site. You can see the last few years' films there right now, including Rewind by m'learned colleague Rob Eveleigh.
I've privately thanked - or at least, I really hope I have - everyone who helped me, in some way or other, with Ghost Writer's evolution. But thanks once again. The script means a lot to me, and I can't wait to get it on film.