Ava DuVernay, Keynote Address at 2013 Film Independent Forum
Neil Gaiman, Advice for your writers. (Basically, elves won’t come in the night and finish your story)
The Writer’s Room: Breaking Bad (I’m so mad I don’t the Sundance Channel!)
Finally, we write! The last assignment was to write the first 3 pages of the script. Being the first draft and all, I have some work to do, but I like where it’s going. The direction feels more clear than my first attempt at writing the actual script.
The note I really took to heart from the previous assignment was was “don’t pull any punches” as in, just show the drama.
Just got notes back on the first three pages… He likes it! He only gave me a formatting note, how to show 2 characters talking in 2 different locations. (happy)
This week we work on the Step Outline for Act 2, which I’m really REALLY excited about because I thought we’d stay in Act 1 for this class. If I end up with the Step Out line for my whole script, that means I can finish my script early next year. (happy tears)
Cause as it stands, I can’t afford to take the next class next semester. (sad tears) They ideally want you to work on one script throughout the duration of the program, but that’s not going to work for me as I’ve been skipping semesters. If I can finagle 2 or three scripts tho… (happy tears).
Since last we met, I had to come up with some key moments from my script, my teacher didn’t respond. Did he hate them? I didn’t even like them all. I did end up using some in the step outline tho…
The next assignment was to re-write the “treatment” we worked on and create an actual treatment. We were separated into writing groups and had to post the treatment then give and receive feedback. I’m pretty sure mine sucked and I anticipated all the feedback I got. I need to work on the second act which is not nearly long enough or dramatic enough. I also need some bigger moments. The thing that’s really thrown me off is that my structure has changed since it’s first incarnation, it seems so dull. I’m working on applying the relevant notes… and trying to figure out what’s relevant and what’s not…
The next assignment outline was a Step Outline for the first act, Step outline being a list of every scene. My teacher said it was good (!) I just need to work on setting up my main characters and their situations… Isn’t that always the case?
Smart is what you get, not what you are.
—Asenath Andrews, founder of Catherine Ferguson Academy
Don’t let life drive you crazy. You drive that motherfucker, it’s yours.
— Jennifer Lewis, Urbanworld, Baggage Claim Q&A 2013
The elevator to success is broken. Take the stairs.
—Jennifer Lewis, Urbanworld, Baggage Claim Q&A 2013
When do we get to the good stuff? When do we get to write for real?
I was not wild about last week’s assignment initially. Last week’s lecture focused on character. We had to write three different treatments for our scripts with three different characters as the protagonist, but not our actual protagonist.
I thought it was weird. But, ok teacher, whatever you say. I’ll go with the flow, anything to not fail. …Then I started writing. And everything made sense. I immediately began to see the benefits. I started to see the characters as fuller people, particularly in relation to my story. Their wants and needs. Their relationship to the actual protagonist. How they fit into her goals. I saw new conflict. Better conflict. Better backstory. A better story.
I guess my teacher knows what he’s talking about. He liked what I wrote and gave me some questions to consider to flesh things out.
Some questions included: Who is the audience rooting for? What is the point of the story?
Pretty important/standard questions to answer.
I’ll answer them, trust me. And then I’ll be able to start writing my script. Then I’ll be able to re-write it, a couple of times. Then I’ll be done.
Over and out.
I sent my professor some details (not quite treatment) on my script, per an assignment last week. He sent back his thoughts and said it was good! …but what I had was essentially Act 1.
Rich! That aligns with the issue I had writing my script initially. I got stuck after the first 10 pages if you’ll recall.
I need to go back and look at my structure. I also need to “be prepared to dig deeper,” as my professor said, to get to the essence of the story. …That feels so, dramatic. Dig deeper. I think to do that I need to stare out of a window, at night, while raining, in the backseat of a moving car, cab?, and pensively watch the world pass me by, as I prepare to dig deeper, the cab stops, do I get out? Nah, taxi driver, you’re my shrink for hour, circle the city again…
The good news is I have the first act! Now I just have to figure out the rest. …of which I thought I had.
Continuing one step at a time.
I’m taking Screenwriting 1. By the end of the class I will have all my pre-writing done and the first 10 pages done as well. …Which I already did, but I’ll hopefully do it the right way this time.
Where in the world is all the time?
As far as writing, I haven’t. I registered for my next screenwriting class this week and plan on developing my feature within an environment where I can constructively figure out what the hell I’m doing. You win some you lose some.
Now, I’m trying to figure out when to take a week long vacation, things keep coming up, such is life.
I need a full time job ASAP. …I’m feeling the urge to make a big move, been feeling it for a while, but I think it’s time to seriously consider a big change.
Not everything is in the cards for everyone, I think I could travel the world, taking pics, writing and just experiencing the world for the rest of my life.
LIfe’s too short. <3 Trayvon
I have bios written for all my characters and I have cards for some scenes, but apparently not enough. I’ve been trying to research how exactly to go about writing a screenplay (my class script analysis so we didn’t get into much detail). I’ve seen different methods and I’ve been trying to curate them into something I think’ll work for me. I know I need to write an outline/treatment, but I got a little stuck and impatient. I got the first act written out and thought, “hey, why don’t I just take it section by section, starting with the first act!” So I did. I wrote 4 pages one day. Awesome! Then 6 pages!
…as I finish the 10th and final page, I’m excited because I’m finishing the first act! Oh my god, I’m doing it! I have the first act of my screenplay finished! This is easy so far… Then it hits me. The first act isn’t 10 pages. Shnikes. See, I’ve been reading about screenwriting for so long, the whole, first 10 pages shit has been beat into my head, so much so that it had blended together with my interpretation of the length of the first act.
My excitement faded. I have to flesh out these 10 pages. My plot points will remain the same, the inciting incident happens where it should, I mainly have to move the Act 1 turning point up about 15 pages and fill in about 14 pages. Geez.
I’m still excited I have even this much written. I just need to take a step back. Really that’s how I am with most things in life so, meh, par for the course.
Writing, that’s what I want to do.
I took the first class towards a screenwriting certificate this past fall. In short, it was amazing. I came out of it knowing for sure I want to write and with the skills to do so…well at least a solid foundation.
I’m in the process of writing my first feature screenplay. Or should I say, I’m in the process of beginning the process to write my first feature screenplay. I have the structure, I just need to outline and flesh some things out, which is proving to be quite difficult.
My goal is to have a finished script by the end of August. Oh, and of course I’m already behind my weekly goals.
Let’s see how this goes.
I reblogged this a week ago, my wish came true 2 days ago, hopefully my wish will come true this time
reblog and make a wish
this is my second time reblogging and my first wish came true so
i have to
i did this a few days ago and it also came true, i was freaked out like fuck
here goes nothing
well lets see
i remember a few months ago, wishing that my crush would like me back on this post
and now he’s my bf
..WISHING AGAIN. YAY
woah the notes!
trying this hopefully it works lol
….. why the fuck not.