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 Message
    From: STRACZYNSKI [Joe]
 Subject: Err...I think something may not...
      To: GENIE  
    Date: 12/26/1995 9:58:00 PM  

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Err...I think something may not have been understood, or maybe my syntax
was sloppy...what I'd intended, and what I think is still there in the
message, was that I'd hoped that ST today would be as exciting in the 90s as
it was in the 60s. That was kinda my point, that ST in its first incarnation
*was* innovative and interesting and imaginative; I hope that wasn't
misconstrued.

(And Jose...yes, you're probably right on that distinction between the
two kinds of Trek.)

Came across this in my email tonight (it's now a tick before 3 a.m.).

This leads me to a request, which I am writing by email since I don't
have access to CompuServe or GEnie, but please feel free to respond to it
publicly rather than privately if you wish, since others may be interested
in your response as well. I would be fascinated, if you would care to
talk about it, about your writing process. Do you have a set time, a
predetermined schedule in which to write? Are you *able* to write like
that? Do you write rapidly? easily? enjoyably? Do you read your work-
in-progress aloud to hear the language? Do you solicit feedback from
others? Do you revise? much? What kind of revisions are you likely to
make? And if you do make revisions, do they occur as you go along, or
afterwards, or a combination? And, finally, would it be possible for you
to post (or email) any bits of writing showing the revision process?

I'm refraining from asking all the related questions I'd love to know the
answers to, but if this is a topic you'd be willing to discuss and think
I/we would be interested in other details as well, please do talk about
them. Thank you so much.

Marcia Goldstein

Since these were good questions, I thought I'd tackle them here. To the
first: no, I don't have a set time, except that I pretty much end up writing
all the time...when I get up, when I'm fighting sleep to go to bed, in-
between...basically, I chew on a scene over and over in my head until I'm
satisfied with it, then I write it down. Sometimes that process goes on at
the desk, or over dinner, or watching TV...but as soon as it comes through, I
get up and I write it. Consequently, once I've thought it through, "seen" it
in my head a couple dozen times like watching a movie, the actual writing, or
transcribing, is fairly easy. It's the thinking part that makes Zathras' head
hurt.

Most of my revisions take place before anyone else sees it; I don't
generally turn over the script until I'm happy with it. At that point, it's
published as an official first draft, even though it may have gone through
multiple revisions in my computer before anyone else ever saw it. Sometimes,
though, I get it right the first time, and what gets shot is basically first
draft. Once it's turned it, there are additional revisions, but usually of a
minor nature, changing sets to accommodate shooting, or just changing a word.
(I've been known to reissue a full page when we get into blues or pinks *just*
to change a word or two.)

I never read the words aloud because then they all come out sounding like
me; I can "hear" them better in my head, where I can hear the actual tenor of
Londo's voice. I never solicit opinions on pages while I'm still writing,
only afterward, and mainly in terms of production aspects. To do otherwise
risks you losing your direction and second-guessing too much.

Do I enjoy it? Yes and no. Writing is the one, the ONLY thing I'm good
at. Writing is also the hardest thing I do. I agonize over every word,
always fighting the fear that this one won't be as good as the last one, that
this time I won't be able to pull the rabbit out of the hat. Sometimes, when
a scene comes through completely of its own volition, it's great fun; when it
doesn't, it's agony. Sometimes I enjoy the writing process; sometimes I more
enjoy *having* written. It's kinda like taking a portable speed drill with a
3/4" steel bit and driving it into the side of your head...it's painful, but
after the first four inches in, you kinda start to like it....

jms

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