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SimplyScripts Screenwriting Discussion Board    Unproduced Screenplay Discussion    Short Scripts  ›  Heroes Moderators: bert
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SimplyScripts
Posted: July 20th, 2015, 8:09pm Report to Moderator
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So, what are you writing?

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Heroes by Steven Clark - Short, Drama - A father and son take a journey they were never supposed to make, on a day they'll never forget. 9 pages - pdf, format


Visit http://www.simplyscripts.com for what is new on the site.


-------------
You will miss 100% of the shots you don't take.
- Wayne Gretzky

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SimplyScripts  -  July 20th, 2015, 8:33pm
fixed link
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LC
Posted: July 20th, 2015, 8:29pm Report to Moderator
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Do you like to eat pie after a good movie?

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Don, getting a 404 error on this one.


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SimplyScripts
Posted: July 20th, 2015, 8:33pm Report to Moderator
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So, what are you writing?

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Link fixed.

Don


Visit http://www.simplyscripts.com for what is new on the site.


-------------
You will miss 100% of the shots you don't take.
- Wayne Gretzky
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LC
Posted: July 21st, 2015, 1:39am Report to Moderator
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Do you like to eat pie after a good movie?

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Steve, I might come back to this to really look at the writing closely but to tell you truth the subject matter was so sad and so disturbing I woudn't have noticed any typos, format errors, overwriting blah blah, etc. if I tripped over them.


SPOILERS BELOW:

I reckon that means you did a good job and I don't mean to damn you with faint praise but once again, desperately sad subject matter, even with your 'walking into the light together' ending.


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StevenClark
Posted: July 21st, 2015, 4:13am Report to Moderator
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Thanks for posting, Don -- and fixing.

Wow, Lib. I really don't know what to say. I'm glad you got through it. No need for you to revisit this if it bothers you so. I understand.
Thanks, as always, for checking it out!

And to think... I'm actually working on a comedy next.  

Steve


Fair's Fare
An unsavory mechanic takes a shortcut that may not cost him his life but, by golly, he just might wish it had.
http://www.dropbox.com/s/3o0108q746tld5q/FAIRSFARE.pdf?dl=0

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StevenClark  -  July 21st, 2015, 4:33am
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DustinBowcot
Posted: July 21st, 2015, 4:20am Report to Moderator
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I was sitting with my mouth literally agog during the first five pages... but then it fizzled out for me with their dialogue in limbo.

Nothing really happens from then onward. They simply walk into the light together. For me the story ended when he locates his son in limbo. Maybe the light is already visible up ahead and they decide to go into it then and there rather than the walk that doesn't accomplish anything.

I think the story needs more while keeping the same page count. Wouldn't the Gunman be shot by police or something and end up in the same place? Maybe as father and son head into the light, Gunman appears behind them, runs toward the light. Father shields son, ready to defend him with his life or whatever, then something bad happens to bad guy... maybe sucked into a different type of vortex (ergo hell).

Anyway, good luck with it mate. It's written well, with perhaps just a few missing commas... but they don't affect the read at all.
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StevenClark
Posted: July 21st, 2015, 11:16pm Report to Moderator
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Dustin,

Thanks for the read. I'm glad that the opening kept your interest. I thought it was good, but what ultimately matters is the opinion of the reader.

I'm in two minds on this one. I know it's not the best I've written, and I had issues with the second half of this. I really wanted to convey a sense of the father and son reunion to be as if nothing at all had happened. The way I saw it, this new place/existence they inhabit wouldn't require them to think about what tragedy came before, but instead what lies ahead.

I also tried to set the story up so as the father went to pick up the child in the first half, so did the child come for the father in the second half. At least that was my intention. But the shorts don't give me much room to maneuver, unless I had a really tight and cohesive story, which this is not. But it's an attempt.

Steve


Fair's Fare
An unsavory mechanic takes a shortcut that may not cost him his life but, by golly, he just might wish it had.
http://www.dropbox.com/s/3o0108q746tld5q/FAIRSFARE.pdf?dl=0
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RichardR
Posted: July 23rd, 2015, 8:53am Report to Moderator
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Steve,

Comments are ethereal sometimes?

The opening is solid, although a bit detailed for me.  I don't need to know the school has a baseball field.  The fight is good but depressing.  The protag loses...although in a way he wins.  The second half holds no surprises.  It's just dad and son and some banter.  I prefer surprises.  Otherwise a solid read.  

Best
Richard
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Max
Posted: July 23rd, 2015, 6:09pm Report to Moderator
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Steven,

I thought this was a rather chilling script, but I think the writing could use some polishing.  You could certainly teach me a thing or two about how to tell a story within the confines of a short.

The DARK VOID scene, which may or may not be cliche, was necessary for me and certainly helped with the shock factor.  I actually thought that was stronger than what came before because of the appearance of Leonard.

Stories like this are always going to be relevant because there's always another school shooting around the corner.  It's just the way of the world I guess, and you've managed to capture the tragedy rather well.

I'm not going to comment on each individual piece of writing, but here's an example of what I mean...


Quoted Text
A gust of wind and the man's coat opens briefly. The muzzle of
a rifle makes a brief but unmistakable appearance, then is
quickly tucked back in.


You've already stated that the rifle makes a brief appearance, so the last bit in bold isn't necessary.

The word "brief" is repetitious here as well, and when it's coupled with what I mentioned previously, the read becomes a chore.

I'm not going to bring up anything more than that because I believe you have the ability to work through the writing on your own.

Peace bruh  


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Forgive
Posted: July 23rd, 2015, 7:40pm Report to Moderator
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shot blast
-- maybe a shot-blast or a shot blasts?

     DAVID
But, how'd you know I was here?
     LEONARD
I didn't. I just...knew.
--well he didn't or he did.


Len, I... I don't think you're
supposed to be here.I was supposed
--space after  'I'.

I think this is a tricky subject to write about. First part, you've gone for repetition of events, second part you're gone from interpretation.

The bit that bugs me is that I'm wondering if you have kids-- Leonard seems to bounce around in regard to his age - he seems too aware one minute, then very innocent the next:

My 6 yr old:
     LEONARD
Can we go back and haunt Mommy and
Julia?
     Daddy
No.
     Leonard
Why?
     Daddy
Because it would scare then
and I said so.


Overall, I'm not convinced to be honest. It's literally a script of two halves (like part one ends at the end of page 4), and I don't know which one it wants to be.
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StevenClark
Posted: July 23rd, 2015, 8:30pm Report to Moderator
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Max,

Thanks for reading, bruh! Excellent catch on that passage where I used brief twice. I hate it when that happens!

Honestly, not very much for me to work out. This was one of several shorts in the works and I chose this one to finish. Think I chose the wrong one. However, the second half was why I chose it because that material with the father and son is bittersweet and heartbreaking to me at the same time. I thought it showed that, regardless of what happened in the opening, none if it really matters anymore. This new life is the only thing really, no matter how uncertain it may be. I don't think it holds up, though. Maybe some day I'll come back to it. For now, on to other things.

Steve


Fair's Fare
An unsavory mechanic takes a shortcut that may not cost him his life but, by golly, he just might wish it had.
http://www.dropbox.com/s/3o0108q746tld5q/FAIRSFARE.pdf?dl=0
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StevenClark
Posted: July 23rd, 2015, 8:39pm Report to Moderator
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Simon,

Thank you for checking this out. Good to see you around the boards lately.

I think what you said about Len being too aware and too innocent at times is a good catch. I was aware of that. Basically, I think children are very aware of things most times. And yes, I have a son who's going on six. From the opening where David was picking Len up, it's now reversed, where Len sort of becomes the one to find his father through all this confusion and helps to lead him to the light. Still, I didn't want the reader to lose sight of the fact that Len is only six, hence the innocence of his comments at times. So I guess in this new world, he's a bit of both really.

Kind of a weak explanation, I know, and I don't expect to convince you or anyone. Just the way it turned out. Like I told Max--not one of my best. I had reservations about this all along but I finished it anyway.

Steve


Fair's Fare
An unsavory mechanic takes a shortcut that may not cost him his life but, by golly, he just might wish it had.
http://www.dropbox.com/s/3o0108q746tld5q/FAIRSFARE.pdf?dl=0
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DustinBowcot
Posted: July 24th, 2015, 3:55am Report to Moderator
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Sometimes we can have great stories and be stuck for an ending... this is particularly true of shorts where typically everything comes together at the end, where our message or punchline is delivered.

In that respect features are easier. Far easier just to tell a straightforward story. With a short we have to think of something that makes the whole beginning worthwhile.

Steven, this one is worth thinking about. The opening is excellent, so the end needs to top that. For my mind, going into Limbo, sets this story on the journey to accomplishing that. It's what happens in Limbo that is important, and where you need to deliver your message/punchline... which, I'm sure you're aware of... just put some real thought into it and I'm sure you'll think of something.
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colkurtz8
Posted: July 26th, 2015, 3:33am Report to Moderator
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Steven

“A gust of wind and the man's coat opens briefly. The muzzle of a rifle makes a brief but unmistakable appearance, then is quickly tucked back in.”

- For a moment there I thought he was going to be naked underneath and something long, slender and cylindrical of a different kind was gonna pop out  

"OUR FUTURES ARE BRIGHT!"

- I wonder is this a little too heavy handed? Does it have to be so tragically ironic?

“A bullet WHIZZES past David's ear.”

- So the Gunman has spotted David and was shooting at him? I only ask because the preceding prose of "disappears down the corridor" and "quick flash of black" suggested  he was moving away from David who was still unseen by the Gunman.

“His back to David, the gunman now fifteen feet away... ten...
five... He whirls around”

- Ok, that must have been a stray/ricochet bullet which flew past David as it definitely seems here Gunman is unaware of his presence.

Good job on the fight scene, well written, very tense. I thought David was going to come out on top when he knocked out some of Gunman's teeth...it wasn’t to be unfortunately.

It’s very much a script of two halves here. As always with your work you show a lot of empathy for your characters, which, as a predominant cynic, I can still appreciate and can't help being warmed by. This is not something I would write but I'm glad someone out there takes this approach with their stories and always looks for the positives, even in most bleakest of circumstances.

Having said that, in a purely narrative sense, I wasn't sure about the turn this took on page 4. As I believer that we become a worm buffet after we die, I'm not the most receptive audience to deriving happiness or hope from a speculative afterlife where we all join hands together in some shining, rainbow colored paradise...especially after what has happened, the way in which Leonard and David meet their end. Sorry, my (admittedly low) rose tinted factor is sufficiently breached

In those opening 4 pages we have a very suspenseful, high stakes drama around a scenario that has unfortunately become all too familiar in recent years, it builds and builds escalating to a struggle and culminating in violence and death, it’s devastating and I was with it every step of the way...but then to resolve that, for want of a better word, with the meeting of father and son in the next life, happy and together, seemingly free of any worry, sorrow, anger or regret just feels a little too simplified, reductive and almost disrespectful to what has gone before. As if they can just wipe it from their memories and pass into their eternal reward, unscathed.

I'm sure others will really respond to this and I can totally see why but my heathen mindset just can't get behind it thus it feels unearned and unsatisfying.

Col.


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StevenClark
Posted: July 27th, 2015, 9:22am Report to Moderator
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Thanks RichardR for reading. Your thoughts are appreciated.

Dustin,


Quoted from DustinBowcot
Sometimes we can have great stories and be stuck for an ending... this is particularly true of shorts where typically everything comes together at the end, where our message or punchline is delivered.

In that respect features are easier. Far easier just to tell a straightforward story. With a short we have to think of something that makes the whole beginning worthwhile.

Steven, this one is worth thinking about. The opening is excellent, so the end needs to top that. For my mind, going into Limbo, sets this story on the journey to accomplishing that. It's what happens in Limbo that is important, and where you need to deliver your message/punchline... which, I'm sure you're aware of... just put some real thought into it and I'm sure you'll think of something.


I thought a lot about what you said and I agree. Features are easier to write in the respect you mentioned. Thanks. While on holiday last week, and clear-headed dor a change, I came up with an alternate ending for this. My emotions get the best of me sometimes when writing, hence the ending I have now. But I have something more devious in store for this one. Cheers.

Steve



Fair's Fare
An unsavory mechanic takes a shortcut that may not cost him his life but, by golly, he just might wish it had.
http://www.dropbox.com/s/3o0108q746tld5q/FAIRSFARE.pdf?dl=0
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