After much head scratching, I’ve realised that I can’t include everything from my novel in my screenplay, not unless I’m happy for the film adaptation—a bit of positive thinking going on here—to be bum-numbingly long. I find this surprising, since Ama is not a particularly long book, coming in at a little under 75,000 words. I’ve read that a film script should be between 90 and 120 pages long (one page equating to about one minute of screen time). I could be wrong, but I think at the rate I’m going my screenplay could end up being closer to 200 pages or more—I’m at approximately the 36 page mark already and not even into the meat of the story yet. Although tempted, a Biblical scale epic is not my intention.
So, I’m going to get brutal with my book… Not literally of course; even though I wrote it, I still have to pay for paperback copies. There are a couple of things that I think I can safely remove, but careful pruning will be the name of the game, as most of it either ties into something that happens elsewhere in the story, or is part of character development.
After much contemplation, and being deafened by the voice in my head screaming ‘Just get-on and write the bloody thing’, I’ve decided to just… erm… write it, and worry about the number of film reels later. Like I said, I could be wrong and way off the mark. Time will tell, I suppose (unintentional pun).