Musings & Thoughts for Wednesday, February 17, 2021, or: Adventures in Screenwriting – The Tale of the Sleep-Deprived Scribbler

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Hi, there, Dear Reader. It’s a cold and gray afternoon here in New Hometown, Florida on Wednesday, February 17, 2021. Currently, the temperature is 64˚F (18˚C) under cloudy skies. With humidity at 87% and the wind blowing from the north-northeast at 4 MPH (13 KM/H). the feels-like temperature is 64˚F (18˚C). The forecast for the rest of the day: we can expect scattered showers and a (supposed) high of 77˚F (25˚C). Tonight, scattered rain showers will affect our area. The low will be 69˚F (20˚C).

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I woke up way too early this morning – at 3:10 AM Eastern, to be exact. I don’t know what roused me from my sleep – maybe it’s the futon on which I lie down at night or maybe it was the light from the kitchenette area (the Caregiver always forgets to turn it off when she goes to bed), or maybe it was the predawn chill. I don’t know which one of those factors woke me up well before the dawn, nor do I care. All I know is that I’m tired, I’m cranky, and not in a mood to suffer fools lightly.

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I do care about the fact that I was going to start working on the first draft of my new screenplay for my friends Juan Carlos Hernandez, Adria K. Woomer-Hernandez, and their production company Popcorn Sky Productions. I have the basic premise for a new comedy-drama that will be another story, as Juan would probably describe it, “about today.”

I don’t want to talk too much about “Project X” too much before I email my first draft to New York. First, I only have the basic “what if X happened to certain characters because of Y?” idea in my brain, not the entire script. Second, even though I’m not writing a franchise blockbuster script under a non-disclosure agreement (NDA), I think the film will work better for you – the audience – if I keep the details under wraps for the time being. Suffice it to say that if I do my job right and give my friends a crackerjack script, it’ll be a good film.

Actual screenshot from Movie Magic Screenwriter 6, the software I prefer to use when writing a script.

And this is why I hate it when I get up much too early and can’t go back to sleep. I had my daily writing schedule for today planned before I went to bed last night: write my blog – this post – early in the morning, take a shower, shave, get dressed, then start writing the first pages of “Project X” while listening to John Williams: Greatest Hits, 1969-1999 – the CD version, not the digital version which has three musical themes less.

But as a result of my predawn meanderings – guess who had to turn off the pesky kitchenette lamp because none of the other five adults I live with can be bothered to turn a little switch? That’s right…me.

Sleep-deprived writers can’t come up with good story beats, witty dialogue, or strike a balance between drama and comedy. Maybe William Goldman, David Koepp, Tony Kushner, or Ben Hecht could – alas, I’m not as experienced as those screenwriters. Hell, even writing this blog post feels like I’m that guy from Greek mythology who was condemned to push a boulder up a steep hill for eternity, only to have it roll back down to the foot of the hill, in a never-ending causality loop.

I’m so tired that I think I’ll go to my futon and – in the words of my most recent ex – “sloth.” I can’t take naps during the day unless I’ve been up and about for over 36 hours (something I’ve done a few times while waiting for hurricanes to pass through the two areas of Florida where I’ve lived or on the day my mom died, almost six years ago), so a cat nap is out of the question. I could read for a while, though, or watch something on my Internet-connected TV.

And if I’m lucky, maybe tonight I’ll sleep well and won’t wake until 6 AM!

On that note, Dear Reader, I’ll close for now. And until next time, stay safe, stay healthy, and I’ll catch you on the sunny side of things.

Published by Alex Diaz-Granados

Alex Diaz-Granados (1963- ) began writing movie reviews as a staff writer and Entertainment Editor for his high school newspaper in the early 1980s and was the Diversions editor for Miami-Dade Community College, South Campus' student newspaper for one semester. Using his experiences in those publications, Alex has been raving and ranting about the movies online since 2003 at various web sites, including Amazon, Ciao and Epinions. In addition to writing reviews, Alex has written or co-written three films ("A Simple Ad," "Clown 345," and "Ronnie and the Pursuit of the Elusive Bliss") for actor-director Juan Carlos Hernandez. You can find his reviews and essays on his blogs, A Certain Point of View and A Certain Point of View, Too.

4 thoughts on “Musings & Thoughts for Wednesday, February 17, 2021, or: Adventures in Screenwriting – The Tale of the Sleep-Deprived Scribbler

  1. I’m always the one who goes in turns off all the lights. My husband has a bad habit of turning on the counter lights under the cabinets in the kitchen. He leaves a little light on by the table in the hallway and he leaves the light on by the front door. He also leaves lights on in the basement. Well, I don’t care about the basement lights The rest bother me quite a bit. For some reason, he can sleep with them on but I can’t.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. When I lived in Miami with my late mother, I was always conscious of the cost of electricity. Not so much as a young boy; I used to be terrified of the dark…so much so that I slept with my lamp on till I was 12 or so. I outgrew that, though, and by the time I was a teen, I was good at turning off lights when I wasn’t in a room and keeping the thermostat on the air conditioner at 78 degrees F.

      My ex, aka The Caregiver, is totally the opposite.

      Liked by 1 person

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