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Wishful DragonCon by Kerri Shannon - Comedy, Fantasy - Going to a convention? Have plenty of wishes? Well, Dragon*Con is the right convention for you, especially when you come across a nutty sorceress and her djinn. Now all you need is a sorcerer, three mortals and another genie to stop them from causing trouble. 120 pages - pdf, format
Sounds like something I would have written as a budding 12-year-old writer. Made me feel all nostalgic now. Strange to think my first serious pieces of writing were comedy fantasy in the vein of Terry Pratchett, Tom Holt and Piers Anthony et al.
Good luck... especially if you're a budding 12-year-old writer.
You should take the 'CUT TOs' out; it's redundant, and it will bring the script down from its current 130 pages. Ideally it should be 119 or under. I'll let you know my thoughts when I get a chance to read it.
I started reading this while waiting for a dentist appointment, up to Pg. 18. I got quite hooked into the characters, this is intriguing. The relationships are interesting and I want to see where this is going. Charles seems an intriguing villain?’ hero? And the relationship with Hannah, and the genies. This is an elaborate world you have created, hope the remaining 112 pages are as good.
Boy, that's a really depressing ending! I suppose it leaves it open to be explored in sequels. I don’t see myself as a good judge of over people’s scripts, but I have received brutal coverage reports on my scripts. These are just my opinions.
Putting the format problems and typos aside. I found this story quite interesting in the beginning; but for me it lost its way around page 30, when the time travel element is introduced, and kind of found its way back in the latter 90s. There is clearly a good story in here, but one has to really have to dig for those nuggets.
What I liked: I liked that the story is mostly set inside the hotel, makes it feel contained. There is no long intro scene into this world, you are right in there from the get go, and that intrigued me to keep reading. The character of Charles is by far the strongest and the most original. The unusual love story angle with young Hannah and middle aged balding Charles. Felt Charles was the most developed character by far. He starts as an asshole and then grows on you. He remind me of a character that Woody Allen would come up with, or Larry David in ‘Curb Your Enthusiasm’. Hannah is my second favourite character. Her innocence and shock at her own feelings and decisions was very relatable, so it comes as a shock what happens to her at the end of the story. The story really feels written from a female point of view. They suffer the most from the dialogue revealing everything, but brothers Rynias and Ermias where quite enjoyable, fun characters. This is called Dragon*Con – but I feel the title of the story should be about the two genies, Rynias and Ermias. They seem to be the central focus, the Dragon Convention seems an inconsequential backdrop. I liked the ‘genie science’, the various rules that they have to abide by but keep breaking, the way Sarah and Todd manipulate the 'wishes' rule. This at times felt like a ‘Twilight’ with genies instead of vampires, the writer(s) clearly have an elaborate imagination.
What I didn’t like so much:
There is formatting issues throughout, incorrect slug lines (Slug line issues throughout INT. HARD ROCK CAFE - AFTERNOON - ATLANTA GA should be INT. HARD ROCK CAFE – DAY). There is an awful lot of Cut Tos/ passing of time in the same location. Many of the action paragraphs are not set as they should be. The time travel element felt confusing, and it was not really delved into, made me think that the story could work better without it. Most of the story, most of the plot is revealed through dialogue, almost like an audio play. A lot of times you describe something in action and then have the character immediately say it , which is redundant i.e. pg. 16 ‘Billy, in the room too, asks about Hannah. – BILLY Where do you think Hannah went?’ You should use the other tools in the screenwriter’s toolbox to do this. I like the idea that the antagonist of this story is some angelic looking inexperienced girl, but some of her dialogue is woeful; she actually suffers more than Rynias and Ernias on her emotions, her thinking being revealed through that dialogue. Even in a supernatural story like this, some of the actions of the characters seem unnatural and unrealistic. Like Phil going to bed in the hotel and not even sure if his daughter is safe, that seemed like a real stretch. How a character is feeling, or what he wants to do is conveyed in dialogue, long stretches of dialogue, none of it is hidden, it is like they are reading out the speech bubbles in their head. I don’t know if you need such a special effects heavy ending, with giant dragons, as the effects throughout the piece seem slight. The story is long for 120 pages, but that may be hypocritical of me to say, as I have yet to complete a feature script that is under 124 pages.
I’m pretty sure I missed a lot of things, not being so familiar with this genre. I’m sure there are lots of nods in this genre that I have missed (The only genie movie I can remember seeing is Seventh Voyage of Sinbad. I have not even seen Aladdin). It was a slog, but I did enjoy reading this.