I wrote this new draft after taking on all of the advice I had received from the first one. In this draft, of the advice I took on, I rewrote the introduction of George Jenkins much earlier and with more emphasis than before. I completely reworked Tessa’s introduction which I’ll get more into later and I rewrote the final dialogue scene between William and Jackson, removing William’s monologue and adding a jump in between when Jackson lights a fresh cigarette to when he has finished it to symbolise a passage of time.
I’ve also made some additional changes that came to mind as I was preparing to write this new draft. Among those were the introduction of oil leakage subplot with Maggie, the first scenes where Jackson is introduced to William and co. at McKinley’s ranch and extra additions to Tessa’s narrative arc as her new introduction informed my choices to include certain scenes.
One of the scenes I included was actually showing the bank robbery at Nickelwood Town and we see the act of Tessa’s mother Miriam getting raped and killed. Initially I was only going to allude to this in dialogue as an event that has already happened but I felt that I needed to show the traumatic event in Tessa’s life that propels her into her character arc of wanting to bring these men who did this to justice, the same way I established William’s character journey from the opening sequence of the event that fuels his thirst for vengeance.
I also tried to introduce Tessa in a different light than I did in my first draft, showing subtly her desire to rebel from what society expects of her. I attempted this by showing a scene in which Tessa is dressed in riding clothes and hides her riding boots away from her mother who was about to enter her room. I did not put much emphasis on Donald and Michael Trager as I did in my first draft as I felt it was better served to save those characters for the next episode. I also introduced the character of Sally Harding as a potential mentor figure to Tessa rather than someone she already knew as I felt that the audience would want to see how that relationship is established.
Additionally, I also rewrote Jackson’s first encounter with William and co. as I felt that the version in the first draft was too stilted and the scenes felt forced. With this draft I tried to make it seem as natural as I could make it.
The feedback I got from my tutors on this draft was overall positive, but they gave me a few points to consider. One of those points was that Tessa and Sally’s conversation scene felt like a meeting between two potential lovers. This took me aback because that wasn’t my intention when I was writing this scene but the more that I think about it, the more that I think that this could make an interesting dynamic to their relationship. It made me aware that if I was going for the mentor-protege relationship, it would just be a carbon copy of William and Jackson’s future relationship and that’s something I did not want to repeat. So I’m considering taking these two characters in that direction as I feel that it would give my script a contemporary relevance by featuring LGBT characters, even though it is set in 1900s America.
Another piece of feedback I received was that my reintroduction of William after 8 years needs to be clearer. So I’m thinking of having a visual reference that links 13 year old William to 21 year old William which I think would make for a nice transition.
Also, with the second converstion scene between William and Jackson, I was told that Jackson readily questions William’s desire to chase outlaws when in their previous scene he rebuffs him so I need to rewrite that scene to give Jackson the power in that scene and have William earn his interest.
And finally the role of Doggett was thought of as being just functionary in the scenes that he appeared in. I’ve been given the suggestion of fusing his character with Wyatt who appears later in the script as he will serve more of purpose later on in the story so this is a suggestion I would most likely be considering.