Lyndsay Russell, Thursday 05 July 2012
Forget rainy England! This is the life!!!
Am loving it here... Weather is just too wonderful. Every day, it’s either sunny and hot, extremely sunny and hot, or outrageously sunny and hot. I swim in the morning to clear the head after I’ve downed a cactus-aloe nutri-vitamin ginseng smoothie. (Actually, that’s not true – I eat cornflakes laden with sugar and half and half milk).
We don’t start until 12.30pm because Lee likes working only afternoons (Yay!). Jake, his hyper-smiley have-a-nice-day assistant picks me up every day with a Starbucks in one hand, and a bottle of cold water in the other. At Lee’s apartment, Jake types as we lounge on the sofa just speaking out the words. (God forbid I break a newly acryliced nail!). Seriously, a fascinating experience.
Have already got a quarter of the way through first draft. Cookies and junk food daily adorn the table.
Learning loads from Lee about storyline/character/what works. Like a masterclass. Working really well together. Can’t understand why I don’t get offended or intimidated by him – as he’s a typical Hollywood Alpha male. But by some miracle, (probably the contract) I’m staying calm, holding my own and batting him lines and ideas that he polishes and shines. Funniest thing of all, is Lee says he HATES comedy writing - and he’s TOP of the US game. Agreed, the process is painful. There are great moments when it flows, hysterical moments - but the blank page/what next moment is horrible. Do any of us actually enjoy it?
Meanwhile, Lee’s producer has put me up in an AMAZING new home. Called Regal Place, I’m swanning around it like Gloria Swanson. It’s a vintage Hollywood bungalow in a private enclave of five others, in the shadow of Universal Studios. Soaked in history, Spielberg stayed here when he directed Duel, and it used to be owned by starlet Yvette Mimieux of 60s Time Machine fame. Adorable Landlady Randi (TV archive producer) is making it as comfortable as possible... adding hammock, new towels, pump for the waterfall, extra fairy lights on the terrace, flaming torches...
My neighbours are all in the business. Immediately to my left a male model/actor, (and I’ve just run out of sugar...), whilst further along another comedy writer, then a female comedian and two producers.
Feels like I’m floating around in a big, frothy dream-bubble...Telling friends and family to get out here fast, and use the giant sofa asap – before said bubble bursts!
Day off today, 4th July! Going to Lee’s party... jazz band, food and fireworks! Should be fun.
Missing Kingston loads... (well, okay. Just a tiny, teeny weeny bit) xx
Lyndsay Russell is a Kingston author whose new novel Making It Big has been optioned by Hollywood’s Lee Aronsohn (Two and a Half Men, The Big Bang Theory) to become a TV series. Lyndsay has been jetted off to Hollywood for five weeks to work on the script.