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SimplyScripts Screenwriting Discussion Board    Discussion of...    Getting to know you, getting to know all about you...  ›  Newbie. Seeking advice. Moderators: Administrator
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  Author    Newbie. Seeking advice.  (currently 1369 views)
LindaC
Posted: December 13th, 2016, 1:04am Report to Moderator
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Hello there,

Have been studying script techniques for a few years now, dithering between that and prose. After feedback on my latest book proposal, it was suggested that my writing skills were better directed towards film scripts. So have decided to put all my efforts into this.

Want to write serious scripts with universal themes, so am looking for some advice from you guys here. Looking forward to sharing some ideas here and growing in my understanding of how to relate and connect to this industry that I wish to thrive within...

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AnthonyCawood
Posted: December 13th, 2016, 6:59am Report to Moderator
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Welcome Linda

Suggest reading scripts to get a view of format and the current standards.

Use appropriate screenwriting software, it'll make life easier for you.

Then crack on with it and write, remember that scripts are visual so what you write should be intended to be on screen, unlike prose where a lot of what is written is not seen or heard.

If you want to get feedback then on here is a great place to get some from fellow writers.

Best

Anthony


Anthony Cawood - Award winning screenwriter
Available Short screenplays - http://www.anthonycawood.co.uk/short-scripts
Available Feature screenplays - http://www.anthonycawood.co.uk/feature-film-scripts/
Screenwriting articles - http://www.anthonycawood.co.uk/articles
IMDB Link - http://www.imdb.com/name/nm6495672/?ref_=fn_al_nm_1
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AlsoBen
Posted: December 13th, 2016, 7:09am Report to Moderator
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Hey!


Quoted Text
So have decided to put all my efforts into this.


Don't do that off one feedback. Screenwriting is great, but if you love prose, write prose.

The suggestion to use screenwriting software is a legit one. It's difficult to achieve much this day and age without using software. A lot of if is free. I use writerduet.com.

The software won't make much sense without understanding how a screenplay works. The best way to do this is finding the script for a movie you've already seen, and know well, and reading it. Learning from instructions is much harder.


MY SCRIPTS:

I Don't Even Think About You Anymore (Short) 5 pages

Hera (Mystery/Drama) 83 Pages

What A Good Boy Does (Short/Drama) 10 Pages
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LindaC
Posted: December 13th, 2016, 10:39am Report to Moderator
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Seems to be the best advice. Read as many scripts as I can to get to understand the process of developing them. That way I can note what works and what doesn't and, hopefully, apply that to my own endeavour. And, indeed, there is a difference between prose and scripts with regard to writing techniques, so thanks for the reminder. Show, don't tell. Always...

And Ido like prose writing, but there is much more of it involved in prose, but, definitely, I might swing between the two styles, prose and script, to see which one works best. I will check out writerduet.com. I believe I understand the principles behind how a screenplay works. It is 'coming up with the goods' with regards to an acceptable screenplay that is the crucial, critical matter to conjure up. Thanks for all the advice given here in these two posts...
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eldave1
Posted: December 13th, 2016, 11:17am Report to Moderator
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Linda, I would echo what others have said. There is also tons of info on the internet for free. I would add this:

1. Learn all of the tedious screenwriting rules.

2. Break them when you think it will result in a better script.  


My Scripts can all be seen here:

http://dlambertson.wix.com/scripts
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LindaC
Posted: December 13th, 2016, 12:01pm Report to Moderator
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Yep. ''Tis definitely the things to do as someone trying out this genre. To see how others do things and try to emulate. Recognise that it is extremely difficult to break into this industry, so maybe combining it with my prose might be a suggestion? Rules ARE meant to be broken. True, but from within the accepted formula. Best to get on with the writing and do some reviews here and put up some scenes of my own for feedback, the only way to really gauge any real insight...
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Penoyer79
Posted: December 13th, 2016, 7:42pm Report to Moderator
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learn and practice all the rules first. Then break them
Don't overwrite. Very easy mistake for non-screenwriting writers. Keep it lean.
Don't use camera angles. You're the writer, not the director. Don't use "We see..."

I'd track down the OWC (One Week Challenge) short scripts of the past that were voted on as the best and check those out. Maybe someone can post the links for you. That would be a great starting place, I think.
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LindaC
Posted: December 13th, 2016, 8:20pm Report to Moderator
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Well, you've certainly given me food for thought here, to which I will take great heed and seek out writing on here from which I might be able to learn from. Thanks for that...
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eldave1
Posted: December 13th, 2016, 8:32pm Report to Moderator
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I don't believe in all of these - but the article has some good points:

http://la-screenwriter.com/2012/08/02/50-dead-giveaways-that-youre-an-amateur-writer/


My Scripts can all be seen here:

http://dlambertson.wix.com/scripts
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LindaC
Posted: December 14th, 2016, 2:36am Report to Moderator
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Those are great points to dwell upon and quite a few I have committed, but then it is still early in drafting. I shall print out that article and highlight all the relevant details, to scan my script for these faults with the intention of correcting them... so thanks for sharing that. It will give me some edge when it comes to building up each scenes momentum..
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AnthonyCawood
Posted: December 14th, 2016, 5:45am Report to Moderator
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When I started out I specifically started by writing Short scripts so that I could get up to speed with format and the way screenplays are written.

My first few were overwritten, formatting was off etc... but by reading and getting feedback on them (primarily on here) I learnt and improved... I'm learning and improving (hopefully).

The reason I mention this, and it was a conscious decision on my part to start with Shorts, was that I wasn't committing to a few months and a 100 page script before I was in a position to show people and get feedback. I feel this accelerated my learning somewhat.

Of course, a purely personal experience but you may wish to consider similar.

Anthony


Anthony Cawood - Award winning screenwriter
Available Short screenplays - http://www.anthonycawood.co.uk/short-scripts
Available Feature screenplays - http://www.anthonycawood.co.uk/feature-film-scripts/
Screenwriting articles - http://www.anthonycawood.co.uk/articles
IMDB Link - http://www.imdb.com/name/nm6495672/?ref_=fn_al_nm_1
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LindaC
Posted: December 14th, 2016, 7:23am Report to Moderator
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Thanks for that suggestion. My script is actually fully drafted, but needs to be worked on. And you are definitely right, being on this forum should help my progress with this script, even if it is just for my own pleasure of being creative. Thinking on shorts, maybe creating a few short stories and uploading them onto Amazon might be a way of expressing creatively, being seen and making the odd bit of money? Everything done in moderation, perhaps!
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Angry Bear
Posted: December 14th, 2016, 12:23pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from AnthonyCawood
When I started out I specifically started by writing Short scripts so that I could get up to speed with format and the way screenplays are written.

The reason I mention this, and it was a conscious decision on my part to start with Shorts, was that I wasn't committing to a few months and a 100 page script before I was in a position to show people and get feedback. I feel this accelerated my learning somewhat.


I started with shorts as well. I LOVE short stories and short films. However, don't do what I did and write almost only shorts. After I became a member at MoviePoet, that was almost all I did. I got pretty good at them too. The shorter the better. Even won and placed several times, but once I started to write features, I struggled to make longer stories. I still do. Spending a few years with shorts only really hindered my progress as a feature writer.  


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LindaC
Posted: December 14th, 2016, 12:55pm Report to Moderator
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Been struggling to write this film script for quite some time now. Getting to think that now it is just a way for me to express my creativity only, which is great, but obviously when you first realise you have a bit of talent your mind boggles with the possibilities, till reality seeps in. Not sure about short films? Don't know much about them? Whether there is a market for them. And, also, the difficulty in all this is that I am disabled, so cannot travel. This would obviously hamper and possibility of a contract should I write a reasonably decent script. So don't even know if I would need to cowrite to make that even a possibility. Quite the ingenue...!
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AnthonyCawood
Posted: December 14th, 2016, 5:13pm Report to Moderator
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Hey Linda

Pia (Angry Bear) is great at shorts, and features so don't think the shorts harmed her too much

I got comfortable with them and then moved to features with no issue over length and now I swap between them but mostly write features now... of course these are all personal experiences, so there's no right or wrong answer.

In terms of a market for them, yep there certainly is, plenty of the writers on here have had shorts produced, some of which they even got paid for. You can find the scripts on here and the banner for the movies rotates at the top of most of these very pages.

Sorry to her you cannot travel but in terms of contracts and the like, these days it's usually done by email.

Anthony


Anthony Cawood - Award winning screenwriter
Available Short screenplays - http://www.anthonycawood.co.uk/short-scripts
Available Feature screenplays - http://www.anthonycawood.co.uk/feature-film-scripts/
Screenwriting articles - http://www.anthonycawood.co.uk/articles
IMDB Link - http://www.imdb.com/name/nm6495672/?ref_=fn_al_nm_1
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LindaC
Posted: December 14th, 2016, 6:07pm Report to Moderator
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Thanks for the info, Anthony! I'll look into some of those shorts. Seeing myself as an amateur here. Not expecting to get any of my scripts filmed. Just the sheer beauty of being creative. And maybe creating a short story out of the premise for Amazon? It's an idea...
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