when is a script not a script?

This is sort of a continuation of my last post.

Another thing I liked was this interview with David Lynch.

Specifically this part:

The A.V. Club: With Inland Empire, I understand there wasn’t a full script before production. Were you writing scenes as you went along?

David Lynch: Let’s clear this up. When you write a script, at least what my experience has been, you don’t suddenly see the whole script and spit it out and type it out with no typos, just perfect, in one sitting. That never happens, never will happen. You get an idea, and you write that one out, then you’re going along, you don’t have any script, you had an idea and you wrote it out. Then you go along, you get another idea and you write it out. Now you have two ideas, but you don’t have a script. You go along a little bit more and you get a third idea, you write it out. And you look and you say, “Wait a minute, I have three ideas, and none of them relate to one another.” Fine! No problem. There’s no script, just three ideas that don’t relate. You go along and you get a fourth idea, and this fourth idea relates to the first three, and you say, “Oh, something’s happening.” And then, when something starts happening, more ideas flood in, quicker! Quicker they come, like schools of fish, schools of fish! And the thing starts to emerge, and a script appears. That’s exactly the way it happens. And that’s exactly the way it happened on Inland Empire.

I don’t make movies, obviously, but that’s pretty much how I work. Pieces and ideas and scenes, and then eventually they start to fit together. It’s like what happened on The Jan Sleet Mysteries — a series of detective stories that started to turn into a novel (a “stealth novel,” as I called it at the time).

What I’m doing right now is a bit of a technical experiment (I don’t think I’ve ever seen it done), and it combines a couple of different ideas, as did the story before (which is why it was longer than the first two, which were basically one-idea stories).

I wouldn’t mind writing more one-idea stories, but it’s the connections that are often the most interesting parts.

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