This is one of those rare times when I post a piece of writing that, IMHO, doesn't quite work. But I figured this might be of interest -- it's my first stab at writing a podcast episode of that recording-studio show I was kicking around.
I had a devil of a time writing this. Why was it so tough? I'm guessing there are several reasons: I don't know jack about how studios work; it's been some time since I actually screenwrote *anything at all*; and it's a first attempt, so I'm still fumbling for the characters.
But I'll bet the *main* reason is that I've hamstrung myself with this "found footage" conceit. I decided to write a series of podcast episodes that were ostensibly outtakes from recording sessions at this studio. That doesn't *sound* like it should be difficult. But I've already made it AFAICT-impossible to include a narrator, and it also forces me to do everything in real time -- there's no easy way to cut to another scene, or to cut to later in the same scene. And it's all pure talk-talk-talk, which makes me twitchy.
Also: somehow, I've completely avoided writing anything that's actually funny to me. And it gets just gacky with its on-the-nose-ness. Grr.
Still, writing a second episode ought to be easier than writing the first, so I may give that the old quixotic try. I note that No Shame Theater has resumed, so if I get a bunch of eps written, maybe I'll 'run' them there.
Anyway, here's that first attempt:
Desperation Studios SCENE ONE: LARS VS. THE SYNTH SOUND: A "START RECORDING" BEEP. LARS sounds Nordic, grim, and determined. LARS Lars Runnsen. March 15th, 1981. Prophet 5 synth. Test number twelve. SOUND: A MISERABLE, STATIC-Y SQUELCH. LARS Why must it do that? SOUND: LARS YANKS OUT A CORD, PLUGS A CORD IN. SOUND: ANOTHER MISERABLE, STATIC-Y SQUELCH. LARS Hmm. CYNTHIA has a southern accent. CYNTHIA Ooh. More farting noises. LARS Hello, Cynthia. SOUND: SQUELCH. CYNTHIA Lars, we're running real late -- LARS Tell the band I almost have it. SOUND: SQUELCH, SQUELCH. CYNTHIA Right. Homer wants that synthesizer to sound like... LARS ... a harp. CYNTHIA Right. SOUND: SQUELCH. LARS It's almost there. SOUND: SQUELCH. CYNTHIA To me it sounds a little like us losing a client -- another client. SOUND: NOW IT'S BUZZING. LARS See? Better. CYNTHIA Ooh, now it's a magical, heavenly choir. SOUND: BUZZ. SQUELCH. LARS I may need another hour. CYNTHIA I'm gonna throw out my crazy idea again. LARS No. CYNTHIA I've rewired half the board -- LARS No. CYNTHIA I know how a synth works -- LARS I refuse your help. CYNTHIA Right. (imitating Lars) "A woman can't possibly fix --" LARS I do not think that. CYNTHIA (imitating Lars) "I have to have all the instruments set up just so --" LARS No. CYNTHIA Then what the hell *is* it? LARS Nothing! CYNTHIA Are you just torturing the band for no reason? LARS I am scared! CYNTHIA What?! LARS I did not mean to tell you that. SOUND: SQUELCH. LARS This is new. CYNTHIA What's new? "Crazy musicians" ain't new. "Lars admitting embarrassing stuff" ain't new. LARS I mean the synth is new. CYNTHIA You want an older synth? SOUND: SQUELCH SQUELCH. LARS I mean synths. In general. I understand mics. I do not get synths. And if I cannot keep up with the new things, how can I keep doing my job? CYNTHIA Oh. LARS I am not good at other jobs. CYNTHIA Dennis ain't gonna fire you. LARS Dennis is crazy as batshit. And he is mad at me. CYNTHIA Hey, if you go, I go. Leave him with no engineer *and* no mixer. LARS You are being dramatic. CYNTHIA Yeah. I ain't lying. LARS Dennis would try to do both the jobs himself. CYNTHIA He'd likely electrocute himself inside of an hour. SOUND: SQUELCH. LARS Why can't I figure out this stupid machine? CYNTHIA You don't have time to figure out the stupid machine. Jesus, will you let somebody help you out for once? LARS I can't let you come in and -- CYNTHIA Do you trust me or don't you? LARS Yes. CYNTHIA Good. Make some room. LARS Oof! SOUND: WIRES PLUGGED AND UNPLUGGED, A VARIETY OF SYNTH NOISES. THE LAST ONE SOUNDS SLIGHTLY HARP-LIKE. LARS I do not know how you did that. SOUND: A FEW MORE HARP SOUNDS. CYNTHIA I'll show you later. SOUND: A HARP ARPEGGIO. LARS Thanks. CYNTHIA Uh-huh. LARS I will get the band. And I will tell them you fixed it. CYNTHIA Thanks. I'll set up the board. LARS Oh -- one moment. SOUND: A CLICK. SOUND: A BEEP. LARS "Test twelve complete." SOUND: ANOTHER CLICK AS THE RECORDING STOPS.
Mood: ambivalent · Music: none