You know that old Rolling Stone song ‘you can’t always get what you want, but if you try try try, you just might find you get what you need’.
I’m a writer, a screen writer to be specific and as a screen writer I deal primarily in character’s wants and needs. Well that line is basically the basis of a good screenplay. If your character is to go on a full emotional journey, she has a ‘want’ that she’s aware of and a ‘need’ about which she is very possibly completely oblivious. If she at least gets what she needs it’s a happy ending. If she doesn’t……tragedy!

So if I were to start writing a screen play about a 37 year old woman who picks up and takes off to Paris I would be sure to invest her with a strong want. Maybe she’s after adventure or simply a change from her humdrum life back in Ireland. Perhaps she’s trying to escape something  or better again maybe she’s looking for something, maybe love.

If she is anything like me possibly she’s not even sure of what she wants. Maybe it’s simply that she finds herself at 37 as a single woman with an erratic career and in penury while most of her friends have become settled down and married with children. Maybe her social life also seemed to dry up over night and she too hadn’t even a glimmer of a date in over six months. Maybe she also found herself waking up at 4 am with the worries after a few glasses of wine, obsessively counting down the days to forty. Is not wanting to spend another Friday night in alone watching that Irish tv staple ‘The Late Late Show’ enough of a reason to up sticks and take off on a whim to Paris? Maybe not as an inciting incident in a script, but in real life it felt pretty compelling.

So here I am! With few friends, little money, a paltry few words of the language and no real sense of what I want. Maybe it’s a mixture of the aforementioned. Adventure, a change, escape from gloomy recession ridden Ireland . Maybe I’m looking for something and yes it could be love.

Now if I was in a screenplay this would be the start of lots of adventures. If it was a rom-com at least I could be assured of a happy ending, but scarily, this isn’t a screen play, this is my life. Any attempts I’ve made to impose a structure on it before ended in chaos before the first act!

So knows if I’ll get what I want but maybe if I ‘try try try’ I’ll get what I need! What ever the hell that might be!

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