the final segment of the “LONDON?” series
THE 1st AND FIRST OF JUNE
Today is far less daunting. But I’ve learnt from this: I only know my limitations new. I know what I need to do and it’s been very useful.
At the moment, we’re outside the National Theatre, sitting on The Queen’s Walk. I can see Waterloo Bridge to my left and the entire South Bank complex sits behind me. There’s a helicopter flying above us, and a cellist is playing close by. It’s peaceful here. And breezy. The last few days have been so hot, and this makes a nice change.
I miss my friends. I never thought I would. That said, when I get back to Norfolk I’ll want to be back here.
I live a strange life.
Big thanks to Andrea for letting us stay, and I salute London for being the most alien place I’ve ever been.
I could do with a pint.
A drunk just walked by and mumble some shite at me. Aye well. Life’s a funny fucker.
Still, London’s… No. I won’t say till I know it better. 4pm.
‘Def Con One’ – Pop Will Eat Itself
This is Victoria Coach Station. Do you know I lost my ‘all-day traveller’ yesterday? I did. I did, y’know. ‘S’true.
Donna’s on the phone at the moment; a nice man gave her some phone credits. I think he was Australian. Whatever, it was damn well fine-spirited of him.
I just hope I can get away with overshooting Peterboro’ on the coach and get off at Wisbech…
Today, we walked all over. I tried to find various DOCTOR WHO and PRISONER locations, but only managed a couple. It rained like hell as well. Well, what do you expect? This is Winterfood, the world’s worst Londoner. 6.15pm
‘Doin’ The Do’ – Betty Boo
I need a holiday, you know, and it worries me that due to my changing lifestyle I may not be able to take one this year; money’s a difficulty also. But I’d love to take my rucksack and set off into the heart of the Lakes, or Ireland, or Scotland, or Northumbria; ideally with a girl I love and appreciate, to see how we fare. It’d be fun. I want it to be Miranda Wasp. I wonder if I shall ever see her again now?
Give me a holiday… I’d really appreciate it.
I’ve written an introduction to my script for FRANKENSTEIN…
TO WRITE AN ADAPTATION OF FRANKENSTEIN HAD BEEN AN AMBITION OF MINE SINCE 1986, AND IN THE FINISHED WORK I HOPE TO HAVE EXPLORED NOT ONLY MY OWN CAPABILITIES AS A WRITER, BUT ALSO THE THINGS THAT HAVE BOTHERED ME OR HAVE MATTERED TO ME IN RECENT YEARS. THE PLAY IS NOT MERELY WRITTEN AS A PLAY BUT ALSO AS A SERIES OF DIRECTORS’ NOTES AND OTHER CONCEPTUAL MEANDERINGS. BUT THE COMPLETED SCRIPT IS HOPEFULLY THE TIGHTEST AND FINEST OF MY DRAFTS. SO FAR, THAT IS…
I WOULD ASK ANY AUDIENCE TO TREAT THE WORK AS, FIRST, A PIECE OF ENTERTAINMENT, BUT I WOULD ALSO LIKE THEM TO PERUSE AT THEIR LEISURE THE IMPLICATIONS OF SUCH AN ADVENTURE, PARTICULARLY THE EMOTIONAL, PHYSICAL AND PSYCHOLOGICAL EFFECTS OF VICTOR FRANKENSTEIN’S WORK; THINGS EVEN MARY SHELLEY IN HER NOVEL MAY HAVE OVERLOOKED. DEATH AND RE-ANIMATION OF THE DEAD IS SURELY NO UNCOMPLICATED MATTER. I WROTE THIS PLAY FOLLOWING A SUCCESSION OF LSD TRIPS, WHEREIN MY OWN APPRECIATION OF DEATH WAS RADICALLY ALTERED. I HOPE THIS PLAY WILL HAVE THE SAME EFFECT ON ITS AUDIENCE. FINALLY, I HOPE TO RAISE QUESTIONS OF WHETHER OR NOT MAN OUGHT TO BE BENDING NATURE TO HIS WHIMS; WHETHER OR NOT HE HAS THE RIGHT TO MAKE ‘MONSTERS’; BUT I DON’T PRETEND TO PROVIDE THE ANSWERS, MERELY TO ILLUSTRATE WHAT HAPPENS/MIGHT HAPPEN WHEN MAN BECOMES GOD AND MONSTER BECOMES MAN.
I LEAVE YOU WITH MY OPINION THAT THIS WILL BE A NEW AND GRIPPING FRANKENSTEIN, FAITHFUL TO SHELLEY, WHILST IMBUED AND FLAVOURED WITH CONTEMPORARY IDEAS AND CONCERNS. IDEALLY, THE SCRIPT WILL GO HAND IN HAND WITH MY COPIOUS STAGE DIRECTIONS, BUT IF THIS IS NOT A FUTURE DIRECTOR’S WISH THEN I WISH HIM/HER LUCK AND SUCCESS WITH THIS, MY OWN PERSONAL FAVOURITE OF MY WORKS SO FAR.
RITCHERD J WINTERFOOD
JUNE 1st 1990
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Next time: ‘While I Weep…’