Creative Issues

Too many options

Location At my desk in office in attempt to bring order to chaos | Mood Chugging along | Date 3 August 2006
Slightly confused by too many options after my week lying around with High Tide, so sent a couple of emails to our 'Crude Insiders': the 180 darlings who invested in or are working on Crude. Couldn't believe the response - tonnes of great ideas, tonnes of links to further thinking and tonnes of "good on you, keep going". What a fantastic, unintentional side effect of the "How we gonna fund this film without giving away the rights?" problem.

The heatwave continues

Location On the floor in the office | Mood Brain-exhausted | Date 2 August 2006
The heatwave continues. London's response: buy more air conditioners. I've spent the last five days lying on the floor with High Tide Mark, doing pilates (him), eating ice lollies (me) and both of us trying not to turn the electric fan on (seems inappropriate somehow). We are attempting to nail all the arguments/positions/key points to include. Extremely glad we decided to, as Mark has demolished many of my favourite ideas. (The Sweden no-oil-after-2030 is a red herring, apparently.)

Which Iraq war story to choose?

Location Sofa again. Springs coming through. Torn apart by cat scratching. Will I still like the threadbare look once the Crude millions come flooding in? | Mood Yearning for domesticity, terrifyingly | Date 25 July 2006
Real tears are dripping onto my laptop typing this, as Emma Thompson has just found out that it's all been a big misunderstanding and Hugh Grant isn't married after all. This is extremely worrying and not just because of my history of electrical equipment and water.

The kids learnt French

Location Not managed to get out of bed yet | Mood Lonely and miserable | Date 21 July 2006
Endless problems caused primarily, I think, by this crazy idea of making six documentaries in six countries at the same time. With a crew of two. All our stories are running away with us. Jeh is in the UK at an airshow, but we only found out via the news, so we missed filming his big press conference this morning - he's buying 10 more planes. Shit. That would've been a good scene for the ever-expanding angle. Al is getting stressed at us filming on the rig. Think he might be thinking of backing out.

And another reason not to watch Al Gore's movie

Location Middle seat in the row of jumbo Boston -> London | Mood Relaxing into solitude | Date 21 June 2006
Seems hard to imagine right at this minute, writing on a jumbo over the Atlantic, but I genuinely intend never to fly again once I've finished Crude. (At least: to only fly within non-damaging carbon emissions, so about one big flight every five years or so). So this is highly likely the last time I'll see my brother's family in Boston. Well, not the family - they'll be visiting England - but their house and their life. (Having said that, we plan to come back for more Al filming later in the summer, so may get one more chance.)

A Top 10 life moment

Location Four poster bed yet again | Mood | Date 14 June 2006
Met Friend's Sister in the park at a jazz gig tonight, when in Rome. We explained all our worries - could Al handle the potential fame? What if he loses his job? His sanity? Is he too fragile for the film?

Possibly my strongest ever doc character

Location Four poster bed again | Mood Hyperventilating | Date 13 June 2006
Filming Al on the flattened site of his old house. Photograph:  Chris Graythen   

Way out of my depth

Location Sofa at home | Mood Deep black | Date 1 June 2006
After personal appearance advice from my BBC Presenter Friend, who (apparently) effortlessly always looks the part, (I say apparently cos I now know she spends two hours on her hair every morning! Yikes!), I spent all day trying to get an outfit together for our Big Oil interview in New Orleans on Monday. Degraded myself in big chains in Oxford Street. Utterly hateful experience. Came away with nothing. Wish I'd never been born.

Who said ordinary people can't change the world?

Location 6pm. In bed with confused cats (too early) | Mood Thrilled | Date 29 May 2006
Official Day Off today. After a panicky start in the morning - what to do? - hooked up with old pal/new celebrity Eric Schlosser, author of Fast Food Nation, who's in town to launch his new kids' junk-food book. Helen and Dave McLibel came along too.

Morrissey saves the day

Location Literally hopping around office | Mood Major adrenalin rush coursing through veins | Date 22 May 2006
Been spending spare moments in buses and showers trying to think of a song for the opening Big Bang animation sequence. Starting at the beginning of the world, speeding through geological time, the formation then discovery of oil, cut to the artist recording the song, there s/he is in concert, then global satellite link up, then downloaded off internet etc etc. The point being to show all the positive stuff we've done with oil.