Monday, October 6, 2008

The Writer's Tale

I meant to do other stuff today but spent all the daylight hours devouring this gorgeous book. And then holding myself back because I don't want to run out of fresh stuff to read in it. It's simply magnificent, far from the fluffy vanity project you might expect for this kind of thing, it's a proper 500-page tome that gives you a genuine insight into the writing process (a little pet hobby of mine), the day-to-day trevails of running a show like DOCTOR WHO, and the life and (incredibly filthy) mind of its writer Russell T. Davies. The presentation is perfect; it's just a raw series of e-mails between Davies and the book's editor, interspersed with script extracts (usually as part of the e-mails) from virtually every stage of the writing process (including deleted scenes such as the origin of Davros!), production notes, screen captures, on-set pictures (all on glossy paper), and - best of all - lots and LOTS of Davies' own cartoons, all of which are BRILLIANT! He mentions at one point (I can't remember where, I've flicked up and down this book so many times that I've no idea where anything is in it) that he was dead set on a career as a cartoonist for Marvel or DC when he was a teenager, but was turned off the idea when his careers advisor told him he had no chance because he was colour blind (?!?) - a grave error judging by his work in this book, which is largely of a professional standard; he clearly has a great mind for visual cues. In fact I'd love to see what he'd do with a full-fledged comic book product (either writing or drawing it!).

I HIGHLY RECOMMEND THIS BOOK. RRP £30, but Amazon offers it for about fifteen quid (at time of writing, anyway). Don't wait for the paperback, it needs that hard cover. The two authors are signing across the country next week. I've barely even read very much of it but I already know it's a wonderful product, well worth having.

UPDATE: you can read a fifty (!!!) page extract HERE.

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