Apr
0

Writing for your Audience

Writing for your Audience

Ok, I’m in the home stretch of preparation.  I confess, I’m feeling squeamish about showing you the outline for the film I want to write – but having promised to blog the process, I guess it’s time to show you what a charlatan I am.

That said…

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Apr
0

The Plot Thickens

The Plot Thickens

I’m like that television ad for language lessons, in which the German Coast Guard receives a mayday call, “Help! I’m sinking!” and the young guard replies, “Vot are you sinking about?”

It’s 2 am and I’m sinking. I’m sinking about my friggin’ plot. Seems we’ve entered the long dark night of the story.

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Apr
1

The Long Dark Night of the Second Act

The Long Dark Night of the Second Act

So, I’m going through Hell, and I’m only 4 pages into my screenplay. I should, by logic of date, time, and final page requirements, be up to (ooo, say) page 23. But as you’ll see from reading through my previous pages – I’m still plotting. So what happened? You know what happened. You all be here at some point…

Act 2.

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Apr
1

Get Out Your Building Blocks

Get Out Your Building Blocks

There are several excellent books by speakers who deal with structural analysis. Syd Field is the original and (in my opinion) his books are still the best. Linda Aronson  is also good for analysis of the deconstructed story. And (oh, alright) Robert McKee if you’re the sort of private school boy who wants to be whipped into shape (but, actually, Charlie Kaufman’s film, “Adaptation” is more entertaining and relevant to the writing process, and Brian Cox is less of a parody of McKee than Mr McKee.)

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Apr
0

EXERCISE 2: Character Building

EXERCISE 2: Character Building

As a friend’s mother likes to tell me: “You need to have character, not be one.”

There is a Freudian notion that our motives are based on ‘seeking pleasure’ and ‘avoiding pain’. I don’t know much about psychology – but that’s a great paradigm for establishing your characters, and giving them a clear motive to be in your story.

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Apr
3

Exercise 1: The Story

Exercise 1: The Story

Ok guys, it’s time to get out your nail gun and glue.  We’re gonna build us a story.

I thought by way of an example, I’d apply this to my Script Frenzy idea. I’m finding this a particularly vulnerable thing to do – so try not to judge me too harshly:

Can you tell your story in:
* One paragraph (The Pitch)?
* One page (The Story)?
* One sentence (The Theme – In A Nutshell)?

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Apr
1

Show & Tell

Show & Tell

One of the big differences between writing a Novel and a Film, is that the Novel is a ‘tell’, while a film is a ‘show’. It’s not just semantics. Most Novels are written in the past tense, with an inner dialogue which tells you what happened. The Screenplay features action and dialogue which ‘shows’ you what’s happening.

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Apr
0

The Liquid To Crystal Caveat

The Liquid To Crystal Caveat

Caveat: Architect Frank Gehry has a philosophy of design that he describes as ‘liquid into crystal’. It’s a process by which all creative ideas are allowed to flow before solidifying into a final (beautiful) shape. He even advocates rejecting the ideas that you are most committed to as ones that are most likely to cause you to solidify before you are ready. I think Gehry has his hair on straight. So while we are all in this ideas development phase let us remain free to whatever ideas sweep us away, and to go back and revise the ideas as they form.

Apr
0

The Exhilaration of Victory

The Exhilaration of Victory

American General, George S. Patton was a dab hand at the epithet. I must view scriptwriting as a battle, because I find myself quoting him – a lot.  Today’s quote (the one to kick off Script Frenzy) is, “Accept the challenges so that you can feel the exhilaration of victory.”

In order for you to experience the exhilaration of completing your first screenplay, there are a few things you’ll need :
Desire
Pyjamas

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Mar
1

Script Frenzy

Script Frenzy

I’m in a countdown to the start of Script Frenzy.  Just getting my world in order.  I have a story idea, and some ideas jotted down.  This is a test, really…

One. Two. One. Two. Check.