November 12, 2012

Biography Like Film

One of the stylistic goals in Walkin' Lawton was to skillfully--and extensively--use dialogue. I genuinely wanted to create the feeling of a screenplay.

Years ago, I first read All Too Human: A Political Education, by George Stephanopoulos. I was struck by the fluid quality of the story--it read like a novel, not non-fiction. The dialogue was thick and dramatic. One had the feeling of being "in the room" when great decisions were being made. I think there is an episode of The West Wing that is actually called "In the Room," because that physical proximity to power is closely guarded on Capitol Hill and in the White House. On the show, staff people at the White House measure their power sometimes by counting the inches between their desk and the Oval Office.

With Walkin' Lawton, I tried to make each chapter like an episode in a series. They would be connected. Each chapter represented one dimension of a single person. But each episode, in my vision, should be a separate, distinct entity.

I think if Walkin' Lawton were set to music, the soundtrack would play Johnny Cash, Creedence Clearwater Revival, and Willie Nelson. 

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