I was pleased to see Steven Moffat, the creator of the recent BBC series Sherlock and writer for Dr Who, win the Special Award for Outstanding Writing at the Writers Guild Awards yesterday, and not only because I think that Sherlock is a great series that is very well made. I also like what he said following the announcement: “Write what you love. I’ve never loved anything as much as Dr Who and Sherlock.”
He makes it sound so simple – just write what you love. I suppose, in essence, it can be that simple. If only we could all be as successful.
On a different note, I’m intrigued by the whole issue of modern day adaptations of classic novels, such as Sherlock Holmes, and have often thought about trying my hand at writing one (though probably choosing a book that hasn’t already been done, or in some cases done to death; I’m thinking of a certain Dickens classic featuring three ghosts.) I think that when done well, as Sherlock has been in my opinion, they can bring classic stories to a whole new audience, and provide those who loved the original stories with a different perspective on the plot and characters. The basic building blocks of so many stories can be applied to modern day situations and be just as relevant as they ever were. But I do think there is a fine line between such adaptations being done well and being nothing short of hideous. As someone close to me once said, “There’s nothing worse than going to the theatre to see King Lear, only to find out it’s been set in a flat in Middlesbrough.”