I recently put together a writing group for sketch comedy; live and video.
This Friday I’ll be putting up my 2nd sketch at Upright Citizen’s Brigade’s ‘Not Too Shabby’.
Shabby is a chance for anyone to try out a sketch on stage, it’s free to the audience and the artists.
Tuesday I’ll be having rehersals with my actors. I can’t wait this is the first real rehersal I’ll have organized for a sketch of my own. That’s new and different.
Friday at midnight the sketch goes up – provided I get picked from the lottery system.
Assuming the sketch goes up and the aduience laughs, I’ll take the sketch to video. If they chuckle a little I’ll try to rewrite it. If they boo, then it goes away.
My Connection to MadTV
So this just in. I just signed up for a sketch writing class (also at UCB) with Colton Dunn
Colton was a writer on the last season of MadTV and was on one of the longest running cagematch champions at UCB called by several names though ‘Kaploosh’ and ‘Kadammit’ were the two longest running incarnations.
I also consider him a friend, though probably heavy on the acquaintance side of things.
So the class starts in 2 weeks, and will make Saturdays’ a 6 hr class day for me. 3 Hours of improv, then 3 hours of sketch writing. The beauty of this of course being, anything that worked in the improv class I may be able to bring over to the sketch class to make better. So this works out brilliantly.
My main goal here is:
A) put together a sketch packet to attract an agent
B) write at least 1 sketch I can film per month
C) create enough stuff that I can do a 20 minute show at UCB
So here it is I’ve been up forever, in the last 24 hours I pushed out over 12,000 words to make it over the finish line and beyond with 50,216 words. I went a little head strong , couldn’t bare the thought of having to wait to that last moment, so I pushed and pushed all day writing for a few thousands words a stretch and then going off to do something else briefly, eat pizza, get a cup of coffee, go live on stickam.com and talk to friends. But I kept forcing myself back to writing. And now at 3am I’m going to fricken sleep.
2 days ago the Nanowrimo Report told me it was going to take something like 11 days for me to finish the novel. So to that I say eat this:
Look for a new Path to Publication video about the strategy I used this year, and what’s next to come with my nanowrimo novel manuscript! Look for videos here: The Path Video Playlist
You’re taking longer than you want to get to your word count.
You’re not even getting to the word count you set for yourself.
You sit there looking at the screen and you’re kicking yourself over and over again.
So what’s happening? It’s 5 days in, the first week is almost over. You should be at 12,500 words very soon but you’re not even close are you? You probably already know what you’re doing wrong, where your wasting all your time, how you’re procrastinating on this.
Cut Out All Distractions When you sit down at your computer, word processor, pad of paper, w/e tell yourself you’re there to write and that’s it.turn off all other applications & Programs. Check your email for the last time and close it. Quit your instant messenger program. Close facebook. Tell your friends and family that knocking on your door will result in death by firing squad. Turn off the phone – and if you find yourself being distracted by the TV or iTunes turn it off.
shut off all programs
turn off your phone
hide from friends and family
turn off the tv/radio/iTunes
Do Not Edit One of the biggest things that will impede your writing is editing while you write. Just learn to leave mistakes. Don’t go back and fix thigns just cause MS Word has underlined it in a red or green squiggle. You’ll waste your time. This month is called “National Novel Writing Month” not national editing month.
Do not spell check
Do not grammar check
Do not research
Stop editing. They beauty about your built in spell check and grammar check, is that those little red and green squiggles will be there 30 days from now when the month is over and let you go fix those mistakes at that point.
Fixing things as you type not only wastes your time but it actually slows your creative flow and puts barriers in the way of your progessing the story. So let it pass.
Lastly don’t go off in the middle of your writing session to research “the ideal name for this character” or “that capital of Sri Lanka” or “is there an insect that can kill an elephant?”. Again you’ll impede your flow, hinder your creative process and waste time with which you could be writing. Make something up, and if you can’t make something up, make a note of somekind.
And for god’s sakes don’t stop writing just to write a blog post about what’s hindering your own writing process. … Oh shit… Gaaaaah!