Documentaries and Brain Storming

by syaffolee

Recently, I’ve finished watching a couple of documentaries, one on psychiatry (The Brain: A Secret History) and another about Japanese philosophy (In Search of Wabi Sabi).  I really love watching documentaries–I think as a film or television genre, it’s probably my favorite.  Sure, I occasionally watch movies or cartoons, but not very often.  And as for other stuff like serial fictional dramas and situational comedies?  Forget it.  I’m not interested.  I think it has a lot to do with my preferences on fictional reading: I really dislike reading series where the author blathers on and on and on about the same characters.  It’s really similar to a lot of TV series.  That sort of stuff, I think, is difficult to do well without repetition.

Anyways, with Script Frenzy fast approaching, it means I have to come up with some kind of an idea for a script.  Last year, I managed to finish a sci-fi script, but I ended up semi-vowing that I wouldn’t do it again and that I would leave it to people who were real script writers.  You know, the people who actually love doing this stuff.  I find script writing to be the literary equivalent of memorizing the Krebs Cycle.

One piece of advice that other script writers give is to watch a lot of movies.  I think this is sensible advice.  By seeing how others make a successful screenplay, you learn the sort of tricks one should use to write a successful script of your own.  But the problem is: I am no film buff.  I find myself in the sort of position that, say, someone who never reads wants to write a book.  So why the hell am I planning on participating in Script Frenzy in the first place?

Most of it, I’m afraid to say, is out of a feeling of responsibility.  At the moment, I’m the only municipal liaison for the entire state.  And as the ML, I really should set an example for everyone else.

But however burned out and disgruntled that I feel, I’m not the sort to just give things up.  So I’ve been thinking about possible ideas that would make me excited about writing a script.  Well, I’ve been watching documentaries–so why don’t I make a mockumentary or something similar to that?  Surely, since I’ve watched so many of them, I’ve absorbed what sort of story telling techniques were used to relay information to the audience in an entertaining way.  I’ve already written a Nanowrimo novel about a documentary crew.  Maybe I can write a script using the documentary style.

I was thinking of using a journalist as the main character. He or she would be dispatched to find out more about something that the journalist thinks is a bunch of woo.  Except it turns out it isn’t.  Exactly what sort of subject matter the journalist is investigating, I’m still trying to figure out.  It could go a lot of ways: horror (like The Blair Witch Project), fantasy (“Oh look, there really are unicorns!”), science fiction (“What? A mad architect really did design the Vdara as a death ray?), comedy (possibly a mockumentary), or mystery/crime.

But it’s still a month away so in the meantime, something totally different might pop into mind.