Busy, Good Day…(also an Amazon Studios Post)

Ahhhh….almost 1AM again. I wonder what life would be like with a regular eight to nine hours of sleep instead of five and a half. And still, there’s so much I’d like to do with my day even now. I want to watch The Fugitive, I want to read this new book I got, and I would even like to clean my office and pay some bills. As well as write this blog. It can’t all happen, because I am almost falling asleep as I write this–but perhaps I can work my way to the end of a post about my day…

Umm…I wrote that on Thursday night–and never made it to the end! Now it’s Saturday morning–I’ll try again.

Thursday morning was one of the few that I woke up and couldn’t immediate fall back into a deep sleep–probably because of the extra adrenaline running through my system, born of anxiety and nerves. I had a meeting with some folks at Amazon Studios to get their notes on my script, Children of Others, that won their best script contest last month. I was nervous because I had gotten some comments in advance, and wasn’t sure how prepared I should with a new “take” on the material. I was nervous because the meeting was in Sherman Oaks, and with my bad sense of direction, I can get lost in the valley, and somehow being late seemed a mortifying prospect, and I was also nervous because I’d recently found out that Ed Saxon was going to be at the meeting. He was one of the judges of the competition, so it wasn’t completely out of the blue–but when you meet people who have produced films you really admired, you can’t help but want to make a good impression.

But I found that once I got in the door (on time), my anxieties about things like impressions faded away. The offices (the ones in LA, not the ones in Seattle) feel like an optimistic start-up, cubes and conference rooms scattered in a large, largely empty space that they share with IMDB. Not many frills. It felt like people had more things to do than decorate. The woman who answered the door when I rang the bell didn’t know who I was (I think she might have been from the IMDB side), but before I even sat on the couch next to the messy pile of magazines, my contact, Michael, emerged from a cubicle and greeted me. When they asked me if I wanted water and I said yes, someone brought it to me in a disposable cup, instead of a bottle. These are all things that made me feel comfortable and in a familiar element. Polished-looking people at polished reception desks as soon as I walk in doors always make me want to check for holes in my sweater.

We did the normal chit-chat then talked a lot about the world of the story. This was really fun. We talked about backstories of certain characters, and the universe and rules–and there were some notes about improving the flow and the build of the story, and adding in some bigger, better moments. I’m actually looking forward to sitting down, listening to the recording of the session (even though I have a tendency to listen back and think I sound crazy) and working with the material with an eye to solving specific problems. And when I say problems, I mean less like flaws–though I’m sure there are plenty, and more like an equation.

The problem–as with so many things in my life, is–when?!
As soon as I left the meeting, the craziness of life resumed. Before the Amazon meeting had been scheduled, I had already made an unchangeable advisement meeting where I would choose and get clearance to take a class next semester. There wasn’t enough time to get back to school, so I had to pull off the road and do the meeting on the way-since navigating the 101 to 110 interchange while talking intelligently is not one of my skill sets. Work, of course, was about catching on the half day I had missed. After work I went to yoga class at the gym–which is on the opposite end of campus, followed by an event for the class I am currently taken–again on the opposite end of campus.

The event was a panel with various writers who are on faculty for the MPW program (this is the department where I’m taking my classes), talking memoir. One of the panelists was Bernard Cooper. He had been one of my class choices at my advisement meeting earlier in the day, but I had gone another direction. Listening to him speak however, he was so articulate and thoughtful, I went home and emailed the adviser asking if I could change my mind. She called the next day to say there was one spot left, she my class next semester is with him.

Yesterday was a full day. I have some craziness with work, so I worked til six, when Paul picked me up for dinner and another literary event, followed by a movie–and I’m about to leave to do a little “in service” time today as well. Because of writing, I generally try to avoid extending my day job into the weekends, but some aspects of the particular project I’m working on–which is not secret, just too big to explain here–have deadlines on Monday, and I can’t trust that a constant flow of visitors to my “reception desk” won’t make Monday fly by without my being able to achieve them. Tomorrow is already booked end to end, so I fear this afternoon is my only writing time–and that’s only if, once again, I decide to avert my eyes from the state of the house!

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