What I’m Reading & Watching
Currently re-reading Paper Towns while trying to figure out what to read next; currently watching season 5 of The Good Wife, which somehow manages to keep getting better.
What I’m Writing
My first piece for Sad Girls Guide was published! It’s called “TALKIN BOUT IT: Women In Film” and I’m really proud of it. I’m also working on a letter to Megan, which clearly takes precedence over my screenplay, as does outlining another project because clearly I’m really good at
procrastinating getting shit done. I’ve also been writing a LOT of emails at work…does that count?
What Inspires Me Right Now
I’ve been thinking about Aaron Sorkin a lot this week. The West Wing is one of my favorite shows of all time, and I’m also a huge fan of Sports Night and Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip, not to mention A Few Good Men and The American President…needless to say, I’m a fan. And while I’m aware of the issues in his work – namely, the lack of racial diversity and his so-called “women problem,” but I still appreciate his smart, quick dialogue, witty characters, and idealistic (if not naive) views on American politics.
I’m sure by now, you’ve read about “the campus rape conversation” that took place in last Sunday’s episode of The Newsroom, and that you’ve formed an opinion on the situation. Here are some (more) recaps. I, like many others, was dismayed as I watched, as well as honest-to-goodness disappointed that someone who I looked up to could have written something so blatantly ignorant. Though the “innocent until proven guilty” idea is the basis for our legal system, the argument ignores the fact that rape is prosecuted very differently from most crimes. Only 20% of student rapes are reported. 10% of reported rapists get arrested, only 8% are prosecuted and a mere 3% are sent to jail.
Coincidentally, the Monday after this episode aired, there was a scheduled Writer’s Guild event at which they aired The Newsroom finale and had a Q&A with Aaron Sorkin himself. Spoiler: if you’re a Sorkin fan, I bet you can write a really good drinking game without even watching the episode. In any case, this recap of Sorkin’s remarks is worth reading, as is this response on HBO’s site.
All of this is to say I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about the separation between the artist and their art, as well as the responsibility of the storyteller to the audience. Is the storyteller – particularly, someone like Aaron Sorkin, whose characters pride themselves on always being on the moral high ground – responsible for what their characters say in a way that’s different from Vince Gilligan, or Shonda Rhimes, whose characters have more questionable morals? Do we as an audience have the right to demand that? I’m not sure what the correct answer is, or if there is one. I doubt it helps that we’re far more media savvy and culturally aware viewers, but should the fact that we’re in the age of think pieces change how a storyteller approaches a story? Regardless, something to think about, especially as someone who wants to write television one day.
What Else I’ve Been Up To
It’s been a rainy day in Los Angeles. No, really:
Fucking bananas out there. Drive safe friends!!
Also: so excited for the Renegade Craft Fair this weekend! Woohoo!
Writing Quote Of The Week
From Mark Twain:
Never put off till tomorrow what may be done day after tomorrow just as well.
Have a good weekend, friends! xo