Post by Sean Z P Harris on Aug 10, 2011 17:03:25 GMT -5
I found the experience to be a mixed bag. After I'd managed to figure out an outline the rest (of the first draft at least) was plain sailing.
My advice?: Figure out a step outline first and make sure every character is different. That way you can write the first draft quite quickly without worrying about the dialogue. If all the characters are different, the dialogue should be different as well.
Post by napolyphonic on Aug 12, 2011 13:17:41 GMT -5
I've just finished my 4th feature.
I love writing features because I love movies and I always tend to think on the scale of a grand story. I have a hard time writing shorts unless I'm given the limitations beforehand.
Features are the most rewarding form of screenwriting because you have this thing you've created, a world full of characters and story that exists on its own.
I never use the same technique to get through the first draft of a script, so as far as advice goes, I'll reiterate this: Get the damn first draft done! I never really outline, so my first draft is usually the story in raw form. As an example, for my latest script I had most of the major story points in my head, I finally wrote them on cards so I could remember them, then just started pounding my way through the first draft. I would glance at my cards to make sure I was hitting everything I wanted to hit. In the end, the draft was 168 pages long. Yeah, I did the same thing "Holy shit, that's a lot of cutting." Now, after 3 rewrites, it's at a decent 120, without any of the main story points being discarded. It's an example in just getting it done and cutting it later.
Finished script #11 two weeks ago and I am now 30 pages into a contained thriller called Cocos Island. Needless to say, I love to write.
I generally start with the concept, then develop a short outline hitting the highlights. Finally, I do some character work. I use an Excel spreadsheet to flesh out my characters. (See attached sample from my script, Bad Penny -- and please feel free to steal).
Post by singsalsing on Aug 16, 2011 10:31:42 GMT -5
I took a free-flowing approach on my first feature length script. First came the "what if?" story idea and then I started playing around with the characters. I play-acted most of the major scenes over and over again driving around in my car (thank god no-one could hear me!) Pieces of dialogue that I thought were strong or I thought were important to the storyline or characters were jotted down. After a couple of months "becoming" my characters, I put fingers to keyboard and knocked the first draft out in a little over a week. Since that first rough draft, I have edited and redrafted a number of times. I plan to go back to it again soon to look again with fresh eyes.
For my second one, after taking in lots of comments and advice from this site and others, I thought I should use the traditional method of index cards and spreadsheets but I have found it all a bit too regimented and consequently, I haven't got very far with it.... so it's back to my slightly crazy creative process of having conversations with myself sitting in traffic. It works for me. As important as plotting and storyline are, you need to know your characters inside out. I don't think writing notes and back-story is enough for me; I need to walk around in their shoes and talk in their voice.
I carry a little notebook around with me and everytime an idea pops into my head it goes into the book. It could be a name, a character trait, a piece of dialogue, or even a storyline.
I work full time, forty hours minimum a week. I also have a home and a family. Sometime it is very hard to juggle what you want to be doing with what you should be doing. Finding the inspiration and temperament to imagine and write when your world is jammed full of reality is often my hardest barrier.
Post by masternorken on Aug 17, 2011 18:41:37 GMT -5
I've written four features. I combined two of them. Then wrote 2 alternate versions of that combined one. So now I have 3 features and working on a spec pilot at the moment while waiting for notes on one of my features,(never stop writing).
before writing a screenplay I setup a outline, but it's not like other outlines, (i think) Eg..
Logline goes at top of notepad doc
Notes: I post names of manga, anime, movies,video games etc that I want to examine while writing my script like:
Berserk/Blade(1998)/Resident Evil 1(ps not gamecube)/Final Fantasy 8
Music: Music that I think should be in the movie during a certain scene but I know won't:
C by Dir En Grey - during sword fight in Oakland Coliseum
JDOE - 25, stalwart, rugged, Fav weapon: Kaskara, M16 Works for secret govt. agency
Main Ant - Very Tall, red pupils, likes hoes and strippers (yeah they're the same). Has superhuman strength. Hates govt. because they experimented on him when he was a kid.
Quotes: Here I place quotes that I've heard that sound great
"I slept with your mom"
Here I do notes for each page of script like
1. JDoe walks into post office to deposit mail. A disgruntled employee with an Ak47 holds the place up. JDoe stops employee, (throws ballpoint pin into eye... slides across floor and tasers employee)
3-5 Jdoe who is weightlifting gets updated on new mission/prepares for mission/bangs wife
6-7 Main ant wreaks havoc on douchebag congressman's 3000 dollar fund raiser party
Yeah something like that. I usually start writing after I get to number 10 of course the info above is just an example. I did add in a few things that I actually like in the notes and music area just to give a clearer picture, (couldn't help myself) but everything else is whatever came to mind.
Hope that helps. This process overall helps me write features real easy.