THE EMPTY SPACES #6: Save, save, save, delete, delete, delete...
A Psychodrama Spacefiller
By Bradly E. Peterson
The column title for this week is a reference to a part of "Neil Gaiman's Teknophage" comic that was written by Comicon's own Rick Veitch! The passage refers to a part of the story where the character "Rob Nichols" was working in the data processing area of the Phage building, capturing memories, saving some and deleting others. Pick it up from the back issue bins, ($'s 1 - 6), as it's a damn fine read.
Something that struck me while reading it was a sort of disconnected breeze of a thought about the way our thought processes seem to work, or at least the way mine seem to work. When writing a story, sometimes we write something not really thinking about it, and it doesn't really make sense at the time. Later on, when reading what we've written, those things don't quite register the way we did when we wrote them... Sometimes we read it and wonder, "What the heck was I thinking?", and other times it sparks a different idea. Something that hadn't occured to us at the time, but fits in perfectly with the story we're trying to tell. No idea how it works... It's like these ideas just sort of float in from the ether as if they just happened to land in our head instead of someone elses, y'know?
Although the reasons for it are unknown, ideas can change with time. Sometimes they evolve into something better, and sometimes they just sit there crying out to be changed into something else (but we don't quite know what that is), and others hold up to our scrutiny, and the passage of time. What to keep? What to delete? What to change? Sometimes the rules we go by determine it, and sometimes we just know what feels right or wrong when we read it. Whatever criteria you use, it doesn't really matter... Sometimes the first thing you put down on paper is exactly what needs to be there, and sometimes not. It all depends on you, how you create the story, and how it says the things you want it to say. Very hard to define it, but you know it when you read it.
By way of example, I've done a short strip. It's sort of a before and after kind of deal. Look for the differences and the things that didn't change as well. The idea is to show that often the first thing you put down on paper ISN'T working exactly the way you'd hoped it would, and that a bit of tweaking, evolving, what-have-you can make the all the difference in the world. To be honest, there really wasn't a lot of changes made, but the ones that were, did make the difference. The first version really doesn't work very well at all. I thought it was pretty stinky, in fact. But it's up there, warts and all to illustrate how something stinky can be made uh... non-stinky. heh...
Here's the stinky version:
And here's the edited version...
No change here...
Big change in Phil. He's still pretty clueless, but for different reasons. The first Phil was sort of a stoner guy, while this one appears to be more uh... Well, more Republican, I suppose. heh...
Here's another big change. The original Phil was just sort of stupid, while the new Phil is a smartass. I think this fact alone makes the POX ON YOU
bit funnier. You and I run into smartasses everyday, and sometimes, we'd like to see them get a little of what's coming to them, right? Well, here it is! heh...
Here's where a second gag was added, and we also address the Pox
bit again. I think it unifies it more as Dave tries to "express his concern" over the pox
he has inflicted while placing the blame elsewhere. Dave doesn't want to wreck the "friendship" with his neighbor... At least not while there are sirloins to be had. heh...
(Note: This new forum is great! Expect to see more strips in the future, now that you don't have to go elsewhere to access them. This might well make this forum the hip and happenin' place to be on the net! As if it already isn't? heh...)
The strip is also archived at: http://www.fastlane.net/homepages/drama/665/panel1.htm
Yah'll let me know what you thought of the strip itself and also on how YOU edit yourself, and rewrite and re-script. Also, let's see some preliminary sketches of characters as opposed to how they are now! Let's discuss!
NEXT TIME: uh....
(The contents of "The Empty Spaces" do not neccessarily reflect those of COMICON.com, it's managers, members, friends or relatives, and are solely those of Bradly E. Peterson, who is, quite frankly, a bit off. All contents are © 1998 Bradly E. Peterson, and should not be used without permission, but ask and ye shall recieve. He's easy, that guy. "The Empty Spaces" is a Psychodrama Press production, and let's just leave it at that.)
(Note: there were replies to the original posting)
Rewriting scripts Joe Zabel 11.02.98
Re: Rewriting scripts Justin Savage 11.02.98
Bradly E. Peterson
"Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds"
(Albert Einstein) http://www.fastlane.net/homepages/drama/
[This message has been edited by Bradly E Peterson (edited 11-24-98).]