I can see the puzzled looks on your faces, wondering, from the fact it is a review what the title could mean, well let me explain.
I think at heart most writers are geeks, it comes with the territory, we have to dissect everything, know the back stories and worry about continuity, all the stuff most people will overlook if they are enjoying what they are watching or reading. To an extent we can switch off and push these thoughts aside, the difference is for us they are always there and once we spot one the urge to proof read comes bubbling to the surface, I think that’s why I have yet to read a writer giving 50 Shades of Grey a good review.
My favourite geek out involves a man in a blue box! Yes, I am a huge Doctor Who fan to the point where I actually listen to several podcasts based on the show. But for all I have taken from Doctor who as a simple viewer, as a writer the podcasts and new Who are helping me improve my skills. This was my Doctor number four also known as Tom Baker the man in the scarf, growing up there were three companions that resonated with me and not suprisingly all three were strong women in their own way, they needed to be to survive with my child hood Doctor.
The kickass warrior
The female timelord..
and the first of his companions and the one who has assisted more doctors than anyone else and will be sadly missed
Now I have to say I am not a full geek, I can’t store every detail of every episode ever made in my head but I love the Doctor which ever incarnation I am watching. I love most of the companions, I love watching the way the characters develop, especially in the newer series where it could be argued that they get to play far more pivotal roles, likewise the relationships between Doctor and companion.
But above else the thing I gain most as a writer in a deeper appreciation for not only story arcs but the way the reader/viewer feels about them. Fandom can get a little obsessive at times and some groups are very exclusive but Fandom in its wider context encourages discussion and healthy constructive dissection of plot, arcs and the mechanics of story telling. That of course is not forgetting the whole concept of non linear storytelling which is perfectly demonstrated by the Doctor’s and River Song’s conflicting experiences of where they are respective to each other in their relationship. The idea that a story does not need to be told in linear fashion is not a new one but no other story has ever taken it to quite the same lengths and sustained it over such a long period of time. This year Doctor Who celebrates fifty years of regenerations, monsters and stories which have captured generations of followers and no doubt will for ever more my four year old is already developing the bug although he does believe mummy can buy him a working TARDIS and Sonic screwdriver at the supermarket so I think a few lessons in the difference between science fact and fiction may be required.
The science in early Who may be dated in some respects but the characters are developed enough that even watching now the bad special effects and amusing costumes can be forgiven because you care enough about them.
And as writers isn’t that what we want, others to read our words, for them to resonant, be discussed, and if we are really lucky to be enjoyed from one generation to the next. Not every story has been brilliant but the good have far outweighed the bad enough to keep fans coming back, and not everyone will like every thing you write even those who do love your writing will seldom agree on your best story or characters. The ne thing that it has shown me is that just because one story does not work you do not throw in the towel, you re invent, recreate if you take time away you find other creative outlets to keep your dreams alive.
I have no idea if in fifty years time anyone other than family will remember I ever wrote anything but I do believe that in my own way I will have if I am lucky made a mark somewhere, for someone, that I will have inspired someone or given them the support to pursue their dreams.
Think about the TV shows you love what have they taught you?
One final clip of one of my favourite Doctor’s bowing out.