Mr Funny Pants Gets Inspired

Posted: January 26, 2012 by S. Trevor Swenson in General, Life, Me & Mine
Tags: , , ,
What?     Too literal?

What? Too literal?

I have been writing a spec script for a TV comedy pilot. I am finally writing something that I plan to actually submit. As usual, my grandiose fantasies of Golden Globe acceptance speeches and being an in-demand (and gainfully employed) comedy writer have been running at break neck speed through my brain. I have very clear visions of a comfy office shared with other friendly people who I love working with as we bang out this week’s story. My dreams all too often get the better of me. There are a zillion and one writers and spec scripts out there. Half a zillion of those writers are every bit as good as I am, if not better, and a quarter zillion have agents and connections and the like. It’s funny how form/rejection letters never seem to materialize in my fantasies. I have to keep reminding myself that in all likelihood this script will not be sold…the gold stretch limo sent by an HBO exec will not be coming to pick me up so we can hammer out a deal right away.

I think my current difficulties in school may have partially inspired me to do this. I desperately need to be doing something that I feel like I am good at (or at least comfortable with). I am failing miserably in my current chemistry class. Failing makes me feel stupid. I don’t like to feel stupid. There are all kinds of impending headaches with my major, my former major, my financial aid, my future etc. so I need this little project. I need the little success fantasies. It took me a fair amount of time, money and frustration to come to the conclusion that I have no aptitude for math and science classes. I don’t feel so great about it, but I suppose in some way it is empowering to have an awareness of one’s limitations. I don’t think I was always terrible at these classes. I think I may have blown them off in high school.

It’s great to be excited and enthused about something. It’s a feeling that has been absent for a very long time. I suppose we have to create this feeling for ourselves. The thing is, starting and doing it is often the biggest and toughest step. Getting up and going to the gym every day is generally tougher than the actual workout.

A writer writes . . . always

A writer writes . . . always

I am slowly developing some better writing habits. I am re-writing and things are coming out so much better. I am actually researching how the big boys do things. I am starting to feel like I can tell people I am a writer and it wont be complete and utter bovine poo.

Chong the cat has been exceptionally helpful. I read the various quips, punch lines and situations to him, and he in turn smiles, repositions himself and falls back asleep. How many people are so blessed with such an easy going audience to bounce ideas off of? He is uncritical and very friendly toward anyone who has mastered the intricacies of a can opener.

Gow has been as supportive and great as ever. She understands all too well my hypersensitivity and gets better work out of me without reducing me to tears. No easy feat. She listens to everything I read to her, and tells me all the annoying things that I keep doing in terms of my writing. (You need to stop writing “and the like” all the time) She has been steadfast, helpful and the like. Lucky me.

Ruprecht, who is a real writer (You know, the kind who gets paid to write something, gets published and that people actually read?) has been a godsend. His practical advice is most helpful and what’s interesting is that he too is very friendly toward anyone who can operate a can opener. Plus, the story of our long friendship is a big chunk of what my spec script is about. Now, according to the movers and shakers I need to somehow incorporate Ashton Kutcher, and explosions into my spec script and I’ll have a hit. If I ever become an in-demand writer, maybe I’ll be able to hold out for the actors and actresses I want to work with…Shatner, Hasselhoff, Lynda Carter and of course Charo.

A very useful skill to have, trust me.

A very useful skill to have, trust me.

An interesting thing about trying to write comedy in this format, is that it doesn’t really read funny. The flow of script writing is not the same flow as stand-up comedy or writing funny stories, blogs or satirical pieces. There are some script writing programs in the media lab at my school. One of the guys who manages the lab has been very cool and helpful to talk to. I had a class in video production last term and he was an enormous help to me. I swung by to see him a couple of weeks ago to pick up a DVD I’d loaned him. I asked him if he wouldn’t mind helping me format my script properly. I’d like to become friends with him, but that’s a little awkward…I’m not so sure that’s how friendships evolve. Maybe if I sent him a note that said “I like you platonically…do you like me?  Circle one – Yes/No”. On second thought, a note such as that kind of screams ‘restraining order’.  Maybe I’ll ask him if he wants to grab a beer sometime instead.

I’ve been so sad lately. Getting busy with something seems to be the best cure.

  1. Do I like this post? Circle yes or no. *Yes has been circled.
    I am glad you are finally listening to your pals and writing your comedy. You have a fantastic sense of humor and the way you word things is hysterical. I seem to remember a bathroom post that talked about a brown dragon. Please do pursue this!

    • It was “Fudge Dragon” and that was borrowed from Mr Matt Stone and Trey Parker of South Park fame. I borrow the occasional joke or reference, but unlike Carlos Mencia…I admit it.

      Thank you for your kind words. Remarks like this keep me going and mean so very much.

  2. Poopie Pants says:

    Ms. Poppie pants is sad that you are sad, but I’m glad you are writing more. It’s therapy for you and your readers.

    P.S. who REALLY uses chemistry anyway besides chemists? 🙂


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