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SimplyScripts Screenwriting Discussion Board    One Week Challenge    January 2014 - One Week Challenge  ›  Turn It Off - OWC Moderators: Mr. Blonde, dabrast
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  Author    Turn It Off - OWC  (currently 2875 views)
Posted: January 11th, 2014, 7:14pm Report to Moderator

So, what are you writing?

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Turn It Off by 0 - Short - Fantastic travellers from the future hunt down the inventor of the time machine to prevent him from destroying their kind. A cautionary tale of creation, sacrifice, and destruction. - pdf, format

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Posted: January 11th, 2014, 10:53pm Report to Moderator
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Cast Your Fate To The Wind

Upstate NY
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Hey Writer,

Good job getting this done.

I gotta say I felt half and half about this. Somewhere at the heart of this piece lies a pretty decent story, but I'll be damned if I can really figure out what it is. I got so lost while reading, and just couldn't go back to re-read as I felt it would only confuse me more!

If say you can trim this way down, at least two pages. I think you need to strip away all the unnecessary exposition and get right to it. Make it simpler.

Your use of slugs, wrylies, and FADE: ?  -- all inappropriate. Though I did read through it all I'm sorry to say it wasn't for me. But good job on entering. As some are saying, this seems to be a very difficult challenge!


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Posted: January 12th, 2014, 5:27am Report to Moderator
Of The Ancients

Action speaks louder...

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Instantly put off by the title page. The massive text. Almost makes me want to give up right now.

You also messed up on the FADE IN. I don't normally use those myself. But if you are going to use them, at least do it properly.



Indistinguishable is not a good choice here. Usually people just leave it blank when that is the case.


Cellular structures under extreme magnification. The images keep
dividing from the micro-world to the macro.

Apparently this is all happening in the laboratory? Are we not viewing things from under a microscope? What you should do here is make the correct slug. We are not actually in a laboratory right now, but right inside a microscope. It might be better here to intro the laboratory first and show the protag looking through the lens. Then move to what we can see through the scope.


Nano-machines are building a crystalline structure from
miniscule carbon tubing.

Nano-machines build a crystalline structure.

Got to page 5 on this one. Not really for me. Not feeling the author's voice and there is a lack of screenwriting talent on show. Still a ways to go for this writer.

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Posted: January 12th, 2014, 8:27am Report to Moderator
Of The Ancients

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on p4 you have "That's what I'm looking for". But the character reads "narration" - and I'm lost as I haven't seen the description of this narrator.
Better have a character as Narrator maybe.
on p6 you have a character repeat "It's... It's" - I think one It's is enough. Even if the actor will feel compelled to say it twice - the phrases would read better that way. I found out about this just lately, but started using this knowledge.

Why do you need quotation marks on "blows his mind" - you don't. As I read there are many repetitions like that.

Then Mallik and the Man talk a really long talk. It's not easy to understand what the Man is trying to say to Mallik in my opinion. I think you need to simplify their talk a great deal.

I liked quite a few visuals in this and I liked how you kept it to the minimum characters. But I think you need to start explaining what's going on from the very beginning to hold our attention.
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Posted: January 12th, 2014, 9:25pm Report to Moderator
January Project Group

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Ugh. Please ignore crappy comments like :

Quoted from Dustin
Not feeling the author's voice and there is a lack of screenwriting talent on show.

What a horrible thing to say. We all learn as we go. No one started out perfect...NO ONE. The OWC is a great writing exercises. I'm sure you'll learn plenty from this one and your next entry will be even better.

Anyway, this had some good moments. There was too much dialog though, and you need to break it up with some action. Better pacing is needed here. If you have conversations that last for more than two pages, it slows things down, like on pages 7 & 8. But don't sweat it, There are a few entries this month guilty of the same thing but even worse...Just learn from it.

Just keep writing and DON'T pay attention to ignorant comments. Congrats on completing something for this OWC.

ZERO tolerance for RUDE people.

Revision History (3 edits; 1 reasons shown)
mmmarnie  -  January 13th, 2014, 7:28am
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Posted: January 12th, 2014, 9:39pm Report to Moderator

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Was kind of caught of guard by "indistinguishable". As far as I know, night and day are the only things you should use here cause it has to be one or the other, eg: lights on for night, sunshine for day.

I like your descriptions to follow, but as stated above - your slug still needs to be proper.

I guessing you're fairly new at this as you haven't capped the technician and narration should be MALE (V.O.) or whatever the name of the character is and the (V.O.) needs to stay there unless we are seeing the character speak. Then again, your descriptions seem clean, so I don't know about the newbie thing.  

Page numbers at top right, not bottom with a line across - this was distracting. Slugs don't seem to be spaced right either.


The blonde cracked desert of the Australian Outback.

SUPER-IMPOSED TITLE types out one letter at a time:  [SUPERIMPOSE - one word, or SUPER]


The TITLE disappears via back-spacing, THEN:

TODAY.  [this made no sense - why state 87 years ago and then no show anything, then go and change it to today]

I think you gave this a good try, you've put a lot of effort into it and there is a good story in here, but it needs a lot of work. Keep at it.

As it is, this wasn't for me, sorry.

Good effort

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Posted: January 12th, 2014, 10:14pm Report to Moderator
Been Around

Some travelling Circus...
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Quoted from mmmarnie
Ugh. Please ignore crappy comments like "lack of screenwriting talent". What a horrible thing to say. We all learn as we go. No one started out perfect...NO ONE. The OWC is a great writing exercises. I'm sure you'll learn plenty from this one and your next entry will be even better.

I'd say "love you, man" if it wasn't so grossly inappropriate...

My scripts and templates: Obfuscation
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Posted: January 13th, 2014, 2:47am Report to Moderator
Been Around

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Straight up, your formatting looks very off.

'Strange something' is a pretty poor description in context to the technical writing before. And then you use it a second time. Not the best way to shift a reader into the script by showing them random scientific mumbo jumbo. Have to be concise then skip directly to the android.

Too many descriptions with Man, I literally have no clue who's who.

The Suit (still don't know who that is) faints or does his mind literally blow up? I don't think I've ever seen a man faint from being surprised.

So he gets up then falls down again? Gave me a good laugh.

Okay, another guy introed as Man? Who's who now?

Well, I have no clue what happened here. Shame too since the idea sounded cool but everything was lost in the cryptic narration and random characters that popped in every where. Nothing was clear and that's always a big problem that a lot of writers face when they write hard sci-fi. Needs work.
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Posted: January 13th, 2014, 9:34am Report to Moderator
January Project Group

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INT. LABORATORY-INDISTINGUISHABLE Ė (No Fire Extinguishers here. Thatís got to be a safety hazard)

What is the difference between micro-world and micro? A lot of the techno babble in the action I donít understand but strangely it works at the beginning and a lot of thought/research has gone into thi.s

Not sure why some colours are in caps and others are not, what does that signify?

The scene headings are confusing. What is a LABORATORY / CABIN ?  Iím getting lost quickly now and The Narrator isnít helping me understand at all.


ďThe TITLE disappears via back-spacing ď

You donít need to put in camera shots or FX. It detracts from what the script is supposed to deliver which is the story. Anything else can be cut and added later once the blueprint is done.

I did read it all but I couldnít follow what was going on. This was very sci-fi and reminded me a lot of old sci-fi movies in a good way, like Collosus: The Forbin Project. I think you have a knack for writing Sci-Fi but this reads more like a short story than short screenplay and you just need to read up on more scripts and keep on writing!

Good effort and well done for getting this one done.

For more of my scripts, stories, produced movies and the ocassional blog, check out my new website. CLICK
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irish eyes
Posted: January 13th, 2014, 9:31pm Report to Moderator
Old Timer

There`s too much blood in my alcohol

Upstate New York
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Page 5

Cool sound effects


wrong use of FADE throughout the script, in fact you had quite a few technical issues. They can be easily fixed.

Your story on the other hand was quite confusing, was the MAN actually MALLICK and why not give him a name like MALLICK FUTURE.

It was hard to grasp, but not as bad as some made out IMO

good job on entering


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Posted: January 13th, 2014, 10:04pm Report to Moderator
Of The Ancients

Yes, that is my real hair...

Cave Creek, AZ
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OK, listen...I'm not going to go into any detail, rant, or negativity.

It's clear you don't know how to write for the screen, but you definitely know how to write.  You get me?

Hopefully, you're reading and reviewing other OWC entries, and hopefully, you're seeing how scripts differ and what works and what doesn't work.

As others have said, there are many, MANY issue on display here, but you honestly come off as a writer and you have a platform on which to build.

Ask questions, get involved in discussions, introduce yourself.  SS is without doubt...THE BEST PLACE ON THIS LONELY PLANET TO LEARN THE INS AND OUTS OF OWC can be a harsh and  hard place to start.

Don't ever give up and kudos for entering this difficult OWC challenge.

To ski or not to ski...that's not even a question.
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Posted: January 14th, 2014, 8:20pm Report to Moderator
Been Around

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You definitely can write but I feel you got a little ahead of yourself with this, especially towards the end or maybe I missed something because the story became less clear as I read on.

There was quite a bit of dialogue going on which took from the story as well but I feel a rewrite could reduce it by a page or two and you could still get your point across. Not a bad effort by any means but it just needs some clarity.

Great job and congrats on completing the OWC.
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Posted: January 15th, 2014, 4:56pm Report to Moderator

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Your title page is screaming at me  

Writing needs work. A lot of condensing that could be done to make it smoother.

Having the Suit pass out only to wake up less than a minute later is just goofy. Just have him dumbstruck if you donít want him speakingÖÖ..and now heís out again.

Whatís with the fixation on peopleís shoes?

The seed of this idea is appealing to me. I like the idea of someone turning on a time machine for the first time, only to receive an urgent message to turn it off. Thereís a lot of mystery inherent in it. But this completely lacked drama for me. It was just one person after another delivering exposition. First the Suit, then he gets knocked out and the Man delivers exposition, then he gets shot and itís the Technicianís turn. And for all that talking I still didnít understand much. Itís disappointing because something about your title (and title page) gave me the feeling that this story was going to be filled with urgency. Sadly it wasnít, and it wasnít for me.

But if you could go back to that seed of an idea and develop something propulsive from it, boy would I like to read it.

Anyway, congrats on completing the challenge.
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Posted: January 16th, 2014, 4:40am Report to Moderator
Old Timer


Over there.
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By now the writer will be aware their formatting is a little off so we'll take that as read.

I tried to plough on through this but it got more difficult as it went along. I reread a few pages and kept going but it's too confusing to get a clear idea of.

There is probably a good story in here. I'm all for mystery and leaving the odd the loose end dangling but this wasn't one I could make out. I do sense this could be good.

Out Of Character - updated

New Used Car


Right Back

The Deuce - OWC - now on STS

Other scripts here
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Posted: January 16th, 2014, 5:14am Report to Moderator
Of The Ancients

Action speaks louder...

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Quoted from mmmarnie

What a horrible thing to say.

Yes, especially when taken out of context. I said the writer still has a ways to go which is the same as saying...

Quoted from mmmarnie
We all learn as we go. No one started out perfect...NO ONE. The OWC is a great writing exercises. I'm sure you'll learn plenty from this one and your next entry will be even better.

My writing style is simply more succinct than yours. I can't be arsed frilling things over. It is what it is. I gave the writer added clues on how to improve. The way I see it, I gave the writer three ways to improve their future writing to your one.

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