As a faculty member at Concordia, I get access to the school libraries, including the research databases. This helps immensely when I fact-check Reader’s Digest (Canada) articles. I can search databases of newspaper articles and academic journals and company records and similar goodness from the comfort of my underwear.
One such job was coming to a close this week, with only two real sticky points to resolve. Part of my attempt to check these passages was a search of Canadian newspapers. My search turned up a five-year-old article that bore an uncomfortable resemblance to the piece I’d been given.
I reported my find and the editors agreed that whether or not their article echoed the earlier through plagiarism, subconscious influence, or chance, it was too close to run. My contacts at the magazine offered a million thanks, but my work on that piece stopped dead. The editors will soon send me a small fluff piece to work on in the meantime, but my discovery has meant two days so far of research down-time.
That’s not necessarily a bad thing. I had time to complete and submit two entries for My Take. One still impresses me; the other seems a tad forced. Given the limitations of dialogue and length, I did well. I’m optimistic the first may win.
Other than that, I spent time reading TriggerStreet scripts. If there’s one thing I learned over the last month, it’s that a prolific reviewer can keep their decent-but-not-great script in the top ten through sheer quantity of review credits. I need to get “Sheep’s End” back up there, even as I continue to jot notes on how to improve the next draft.
My plan of attack for “By the Book” is to watch similar movies for clues on externalizing internal conflict. My top choices are “Ordinary People”, “Annie Hall”, and, yeah, even “The Break-Up” (when it comes out on DVD). I’ll also watch “Inherit the Wind” for reasons that if you’ve read the treatment you’d understand. At the very least, I owe that flick an homage.
Tomorrow, “72 Virgins” heads off to the Expo 5 contest. That’s become Plan A.