Delidio’s Cadence is one of those stories that started as a short story then progressed into a novel. We’ve all had those. However, this story soon developed into a nightmare that rivaled Freddy Kruger. Forget being slashed while you slept, Delidio was killing me with incisions of indecision. Something just wasn’t right. I experimented with voice, style, narrators and different points of view, but nothing was working. Then I had (as if I didn’t have enough challenges in my life) a revelation to split the book into character sections and have the main character doing a first person point of view but, because she is a soldier, I wrote her passages in first person with one small difference. There weren’t any I’s, me’s or my’s. It was hard, challenging, and I have to admit a little fun, but something was still not right. Aaaaarrrrgghh! It was like Freddy showing up in one of my nightmares with butter knives and spoons for fingers. It just isn’t right. A little hilarious but still not right.
No matter what I tried, it wasn’t working. Then came the wave of getting back into my screenplays and like a small meteor landing inside my bubbling pot of bolognaise sauce and making a mess, Delidio’s Cadence slapped me to attention and forced me to surrender all other stories. My orders, whether I wanted to follow them or not, are to adapt my novel into a screenplay. I’m only a civilian damn it!
Where do I begin?
I had been drafted.
I was being punished. The hardcore formatting issues, the translating prose into descriptions, the deleting of obsolete scenes and characters, not only hurt my brain, my eyes and my poor fingers, but the theme of the story changed too! I was amazed that my laptop hadn’t conked out due to being abused and continually poked at.
Eight days into my conscripted service and I had finished the first draft. Say that again because I don’t believe it myself. The story and the characters all fell into place.
I once had a tutor and manuscript assessor tell me that it read like a movie. Am I feeling like an idiot? Of course I am. I still have a few issues of world building and some other tiny issues with some character relationships, but it’s a first draft and a first draft is better than no draft at all.
Not everyone’s heart is in tune with humanity’s; that’s the tag line for the moment. For the first time I’m writing a uniquely Dark Urban Australian Fantasy and I’m feeding on the fear and uncertainty; why? because that’s what life’s like for my characters living in a world that doesn’t care about doing what’s right.
I’ll keep you posted.
The screenplay soldier,
E. J. McLaughlin