Wednesday, 1 September 2010

The Joss Whedon Post

The next few blog posts are going to be out of order. Between being ill and flying all over the place (literally) I’ve not had time to sit down and view a computer screen. However, one thing I do want to post about is the experience I’ve just had, attending Joss Whedon at the Opera House. I was hoping for awesomeness. Awesome is an understatement.

I’m one among many who find Joss their hero and inspiration. He has been behind many projects. The most well known would be Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Those in the know also revere Firefly (& the movie Serenity). His more recent shows have been Dr Horrible’s Sing-Along-Blog and Dollhouse. As he mentioned on Sunday, it’s a cult (& an awesome cult at that).

The talk on Sunday was hosted by comedian Wil Anderson (recently of The Gruen Transfer & Gruen Nation) who as a fan ‘got it’. The afternoon ran as follows. Joss talks, Wil & Joss chat, Q&A with audience. In the end it ran about 20ish minutes overtime though I’m sure the audience would’ve happily stayed much longer. I know I certainly would have.

Joss mentioned he was switching his format as a result of other experiences including the recent Melbourne talk. So, he started to talk about essentially ‘why’. The why he writes/does what he does. He did it in the context of his shows and how a ‘small adolescent girl with superpowers’ is a recurring character for him. He explained how this works for him – what he is doing when he does this. He calls it going to The Dark Place. You need to capitalise it with the way he says it and as a writer it resonated. Deeply. He did admit that not all writers have this (though I think admitted or not, it happens) but it is what he needs to do. Essentially, it is that place that terrifies the bejeebus out of you but as a creative person you know that is exactly where you have to go.

The Q&A portion of the session brought up a variety of topics. Specifics for shows (Firefly, Goners, The Avengers, and Dr Horrible being the main ones), the writing/creative process and a few very heartfelt thank-yous for what he’s done.

There were a lot of other things discussed and I even managed to write a few handwritten notes (by the light of my phone) which I’m sure will be referenced in future posts.

I’ve really only skimmed what was talked about – if I went into minute details this post would be a novel in itself (& really I have my own stories to tell). I have to go delve into my own Dark Place now…before I head off to AussieCon4 on Friday.

If you’re interested in some of what was talked about, go here for an interview done straight afterwards for Triple J and also read Mel Scott’s Crossed Wires for her wrap of the Melbourne talk.