spock: logic is sexy

Trying to re-write the Breakfast Club

So my reel_startrek story and I are not getting a long. It is a Breakfast Club AU, and I have never done this before, and it's harder than I realized it would be. Casting is the real challenge, mostly for the female characters. The reboot-verse doesn't have many to choose from, and none of them make good basket cases or spoiled princesses. I picked Uhura to be Claire, the prom queen, because I can imagine that when she was younger, her coolness and self-confidence might have crossed the line into snobbery, or at least could have been perceived that way. Also, Kirk was the natural fit for Bender, aka "the criminal," and I made Spock the jock, except he's going to be more of an academic jock/classp president type. The parental pressure angle works for me that way, and the movie sets up a bit of a love triangle, which is perfect for the Kirk-Spock-Uhura interaction. But now I feel like I'm trying to stuff Uhura into a role that isn't quite right for her, and that's never a pleasant feeling. Nothing in the rules says that this has to be an exact retelling of the film though, so I just need to remember that I can rework the characterization a little bit. And I also need to remember that I don't need to re-do the entire movie -- that would be awfully long, and I'll bet that most readers have not memorized the movie shot-by-shot.

POV is my second challenge. I have always written -- and strongly preferred to read -- stories written from a limited third person point of view because that's what most closely mimics real life. I think one of the most interesting challenges in writing is dealing with the fact that you can't see inside anyone's head by your narrator's, but somehow you have to convey enough about other characters' intentions and feelings to make the story resonate with your readers. Going omniscient always seemed a bit sloppy to me, like you're going to skip out on figuring out how to show who your characters and just tell us instead.

Movies, though, are inherently an omniscient POV -- or maybe some kind of weird super-limited POV where you can't actually hear anyone's thoughts unless the actor is good enough to let you imagine them. Where do I go with that? I can imagine writing the whole thing from Jim's POV maybe, or Spock's, but I don't want to give up those early scenes with each of the characters in the car with their parents; it tells you so much about them. Also, it turns out that writing omniscient POV is not quite the easy way out I imagined; it's difficult to organize, and it feels weird and uncomfortable because I haven't done it before.

Okay, so, writing plan...

I will write whatever bits of the first 30 minutes of the movie are in my head, including those scenes where each character's parent is dropping them off. I can switch POVs there, or if I want to see everything through one character's eyes, maybe I could change it so that the kids are getting signed in instead of dropped off.

Then I will watch the whole film again and make a list of key scenes that need to be kept, and possibly make myself a writing schedule to make sure those get done around all my other school related obligations.

If I want to do omniscient POV, I should probably give each character a section/scene to narrate rather than trying to juggle them all at once. That will make it more organized, and also not make me feel like I'm taking an easy way out. Also, I want to learn how to write substantive pieces that are not exclusively Gaila-oriented, so this will be good practice.

I will also mull further over who I want to play the asshole authority figure. Spock would have been excellent, but I am already committed to casting him elsewhere. That leaves me with Pike, who is hard to cast as an asshole, so I will have to think on this some more. Or play with the characterization so that he has some sympathetic reason for behaving this way. Maybe he snapped and he's on leave as a principal of some Academy preparatory high school that Jim got into because of course Starfleet wants to be able to claim the son of their hero...

Okay, now to do all this while also teaching and cleaning my apartment and reading that summer reading that we assigned our students....
I sympathize! I have never had luck with omniscient narration. And any time I read it, it's disorienting -- wait, suddenly we're in this character's head? Sloppy, as you said. I find that my best narrators are either the observant characters (no surprise), the ones who watch and assess, or the ones like Jim who are very open with themselves. Narrators like Jim, however, can also be problematic, b/c they can reveal too much too quickly and the story loses its mystery or momentum. Spock is fantastic as a narrator for this reason, b/c he would only reveal what is absolutely necessary at any given moment.

I think your casting sounds great! Spock as the character under crazy pressure from his family is perfect. And I like Uhura as the princess -- she's a good person, but yeah, she's prickly and a little prissy. I need to figure out how to write that as a flaw for her. Characters usually aren't that interesting to me unless they have a flaw that I can exploit, at least a little, lol.

I'm having a similar problem with casting my reeltrek fic. I know you've never seen Pump up the Volume (and you should !!!<3). I think I want Spock to be the one with the pirate radio station -- Spock could keep a secret like that, have this creative outlet for himself. But I also think Jim could be the crazy rebel with the pirate signal, and Spock is drawn first to his voice, then to the person when he figures out who it is. I also want to have Uhura and Gaila play big parts, too, if not as love interests, then compatriots in the us vs The Man dynamic that the movie so angstily sets up.

lol, and that turned into an essay. But I love writing strategy talk.

Good luck with schedule management! I've gotta get cracking on my own writing schedule. Let's see -- dissertation and fanfic. Which would I rather work on.
I admit it's been ages since I've seen The Breakfast Club, but here my Thoughts.

What about Scotty as The Basket Case? Sure, she's a girl in the original, but as you say, there really aren't many women in the movie. Breaking the laws of physics with bizarre new theories, accidentally losing Admiral Archer's dog. Admiral Archer then gets really pissed and sends him to Delta Vega (or detention. Either/or.)