Directions for the Drafts

Now comes the hardest part of the writing process: relaying the information to someone else so that it’s still my vision but they maintain some creative control. I know it sounds stupid, but I think one of the worst things this world ever invented was creativity by committee.

Now sometimes it works. Sometimes you end up with a Rolling Stone magazine or a Cheers television show or a Shawshank Redemption movie. But most of the time you end up with an Us Weekly magazine or a Veronica’s Closet television show or a Battlefield Earth movie. Most things that are done well only have one guy working it, one guy in charge. This way, you get products like Wired and Seinfeld and The Dark Knight. But these things weren’t created alone. Chris Anderson works with other writers, Larry David worked with other actors, and Chris Nolan worked with other… well, damn, did you see the list of people that worked on that movie?

The trick is to do what you need to do in order for your project to happen, but to let the other people have control over the things that they need to have control over. Anderson can’t write all the articles, David couldn’t write every joke, Nolan couldn’t take the reigns and act every part.

So now I have to take my script – which is in a novella format – and add directions for Colacitti. If there’s a certain scene specified in my head (“first we have a long, thin panel that shows Jed against a tree. The next panel is thinner, but we see just his eye…” etc.), then I have to be able to relate that. But I also have to be able to relate scenes where I haven’t thought of anything but the dialogue without sounding condescending (for instance, “Draw whatever you want. I don’t care” would be a bad decision). There are also scenes in-between where there needs to be a certain panel in a certain place with certain words coming out of a certain person’s mouth in a certain position somewhere midway through the scene.

So now that the whole script is finished, I have to add another 5 pages of directions. So far I’m on chapter 4 (there are 15 chapters overall).


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