Fantasy Book-Adaptation Casting, Part 2

I’d suggest Shirley Henderson (from Harry Potter, Trainspotting, Bridget Jones’s Diary and a tonne of indie-films, notably Wilbur * ), to play the part of Kit Bainbridge MP; married to the aforementioned Toby Bainbridge.

Because when you need someone who’s dinky but powerful, the first answer’s OB-viously her, right?

Fantasy-casting your own book’s adaptation seems naffly useless. The chances of a book – assuming it’s published in the first place – ever being adapted for TV or film are slim, and even if it is, the chances you’ll have any influence over casting are even slimmer. But bear with me, it’s actually very useful – especially if like me, you’re more wordy than visual – to hold an image of someone who looks like your character in your head while you write. It helps you to picture their responses, their body language, how they interact within space. Even if a character is drawn from real people, it’s best to picture the neutral image of a familiar stranger. If you picture ‘real’ people you can end up fearing their reactions, and fear gets you nowhere at all…

Yesterday evening I had a phone catchup with a fellow frustrated-journo friend and former housemate. She’s recently started writing fiction again after long periods of being too knackered, and talked about how liberating and exhilarating it was. It resonated so very much. Fiction writing is like exercise; a difficult habit to form and a very easy one to break – especially if you’ve got a self-sabotaging streak in you the Catholic Church wouldn’t envy. But when you’re actually doing it, there is nothing in the world (and I mean nothing – sorry prospective partners, chefs and tourists boards…) to match it. Part of me (a very big part of me) is dying of frustration and impatience to finish this. But if I’m really honest, another part doesn’t want it to end…

* If you’re ever out with me, remind me to tell you about a really freaky coincidence involving Wilbur…


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