As 2011 will likely be the only remaining year for me to get things done before the Mayan-predicted CGI apocalypse of 2012 (which will become decidedly worse in the second half, even with John Cusack in attendance), I thought I should write something down about my writing goals. Admittedly, this was also prompted by James Moran and Paul Cornell doing the same thing.
Rather than thinking up New Year’s Resolutions that I’ll look back on at the end of next year and feel sad about not having accomplished, these goals have no time limit. So if my life ends and I haven’t achieved some of them, I won’t even have to beat myself up!
Get a literary agent: Yeah, yeah, I’ve harped on about this enough over the course of the year. Even I’m bored of it. But I’m nearly there, I think, and this is definitely the number one “make sure it happens asap” entry here that I want to cross off the list.
Sell a novel: This follows on from the last goal and is inextricably linked. In today’s climate, the chances of selling a novel without a literary agent on board are about the same as Lord Alan Sugar becoming Shaver of the Year. After goal number one has been achieved, though, goal number two will hopefully follow in short order.
Write a screenplay set in space: The majority of my favourite films are sci-fi, and I’ve always wanted to write a script set in the great beyond that measures up to the classics I’ve loved. This is one of the things I want to sort out next year in off-time between novels. I have a good idea about what I want to do, too.
Write for Doctor Who: I think I’d take to this like a Drogba to the turf. The vagaries of the UK system, where you can’t write spec scripts for existing TV shows and have them read by anyone, makes this one of those long-way-off goals, and who knows, New Who might be in hibernation again by the time I have the slightest chance of writing for it. Still, one can dream.
Be in a cinema that’s showing something I’ve written: Whether it’s my own screenplay, or one of my novels that’s been adapted by somebody else, I get goosebumps just thinking about this. The lights going down, the BBFC certification screen showing the title of my work, actors playing characters on the big screen that started off in my head, seeing a new perspective on a world I’ve created… it’d be absolutely brilliant.
Revive Star Trek on television: Er… yeah, this one’s a bit of a long shot. JJ Abrams is doing a fine job of revitalising the franchise when it comes to the cinema, but I’d absolutely love to reboot Trek on the small screen and give today’s teenagers the thrill that I had when watching The Next Generation. Chances of this one happening: 0.0001%.
Write the next entry in an existing franchise: I suppose this is vaguely linked to the last one, but this would be more of a writer-for-hire kinda thing. Fashioning a Terminator script worthy of the name, or a Bond movie, or a new and brilliant sequel to some other series that I’ve grown up loving, would be very satisfying. Creating my own stuff will never get old, but the idea of playing with someone else’s toys for a while does appeal.
Make the Top Ten of the New York Times Best Sellers list: Or: “Become a commercially successful author”. I don’t have to be mega-rich or anything (though it would be nice), just comfortably enough off to write for a living, but I really would like to write stuff that a lot of people want to read and are willing to buy. I’m quite commercially minded and think that if I do manage to get published, this one might eventually be possible, given the right exposure.
Make a Youtube hit: A couple of friends and I are hopefully going to think about this in the near future. The plan is to write something really cool, film it in lo-fi guerrilla awesomeness, and then watch it spread virally like a… er… virus. Key ingredients: brilliant script, uniqueness, well made for zero cash. Not too difficult, then, eh?