After a day of meetings at the Banff International Television Festival, I am beat. Of course at 6 pm the day is not over. There is the Awards Gala to go to, and then later on, the St. James Gate Pub to visit. I am contemplating cutting the day short since I'm pitching tomorrow. I'm not sure if that's sanity or laziness talking, and I'm too tired figure it out.
It's amazing how tiring walking around and chatting with people can be. But then, it's amazing how tiring sitting at a keyboard, or breaking storycan be. I gather our brains use something like 20% of all our energy. I don't know if heavy thinking and emoting truly requires more calories than watching The Simpsons
, but it feels like they do. They definitely require more mana.
The Banff Springs Hotel is a spectacular grand hotel built by the Canadian Pacific Railway in the 20's for very wealthy tourists. The location, in the middle of the Rockies, is gorgeous -- by a bend in the Bow River, with steep crags rising up on all sides, sometimes shrouded in mist, in the winter covered in snow. Either it's tragic that the only time I go to places as grand as this is when it's work, or it's wonderful that I can write it off.
I was able to get to one actual Banff event, a talk by Paul Haggis. The writer of Crash
talked about how he started writing with no particular plan, just took two characters off on a toot until they ran into some other characters, and so on. I hope all the young writers who were in the audience don't think that's the way to write. Paul wrote Crash
after writing sitcoms and TV drama for 20 years. At a certain point you internalize story structure and you can try the highwire without a net. It can waste a lot of time if story structure isn't in your brain already. I'm working with a charming young woman who has a character she wants to write a movie about, but the movie doesn't seem to come, because she's not sure what the story is, or she lets herself get so caught up in the scenes that she loses the movie they're there to support.
Of course it's your own trip, so be my guest, but please be aware that there's a warning on that one.
And to all you crazy CFC kids here at the fest: keep workin' it, baby! Show the love, and it will come back to you.
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