Wednesday, June 22, 2005

[The Limit] Big effort coming up

My goal’s to have a second draft of The Limit on the market by August 7. Doing that requires a massive amount of focus and time-management. Since applying the concepts from Critical Chain (a book on project management) worked for finishing off Draft 1, I’m going to use them again.

Some of the relevant ideas are:

  1. Assume all work gets done at the last minute.
  2. With that in mind, halve my time estimates for how long it’ll take to do things.
  3. Put the 50% of time I’ve saved into a safety buffer at the end of the project. That time can get fed into the project if any particular step starts running behind.

Here’s my plan.

A. Edit Draft 1 [finished by 3 July]
B. Send script out to readers. [12 July]
C. Polish Draft 2 [17 July]
D. Send script out to producers. [18 July]

A. Edit Draft 1

26 July
Read it. [0.25 days]
Emotional Engagement Chart. [0.25 days]
6 Hat review. [1.5 days]

28 July
Boil 6 Hat notes down to 1 page. [0.25]
Write up a ‘Gut’ report of what I feel about the script. [0.25]
Compare 1 page note and Gut report. [0.25]

29 July
Consult with Andrew (depending on his availability). [0.5]
Distill core problems. [0.25]

30 July
Re-edit. [4 days]

So, assuming everything goes according to plan … which it won’t … there will be a leaner draft to send out to a select few readers on July 3. It’s a totally insane schedule and I’m feeling slightly stressed even writing about writing it … but I have a couple of aces up my sleeve.

First, I’ve done this sort of thing, under these constraints, many times before – on the TV series and on at least a couple of feature films. Second, I have that safety buffer. Say the re-edit gets bogged down. I have days I can draw out of the buffer and spend on the rewrite.

Third, once I’ve finished that rewrite and handed it off to our readers, I can relax again for at least a couple of days. So it’s not like this is persistent pressure through to the first week of August. There actually will be ebbs and flows. It’ll be tough, but I think it’ll be achievable.

No comments: