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SimplyScripts Screenwriting Discussion Board    Unproduced Screenplay Discussion    Short Horror  ›  The Anniversary
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  Author    The Anniversary  (currently 217 views)
Posted: January 12th, 2020, 11:10am Report to Moderator

So, what are you writing?

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The Anniversary by Yuvraj Rajwanshi - Short, Horror - A husband and a wife in a room. 2 pages - pdf format

New writer interested in feedback on this work, please be nice

Visit for what is new on the site.

You will miss 100% of the shots you don't take.
- Wayne Gretzky
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Posted: January 12th, 2020, 11:34am Report to Moderator
OWC Moderator

Don't get it right. Get it written.

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Hey Yuvraj, gave this a read.


Not a bad little short story. There is some potential here.

Couple of issues...

In the first line after the initial slug, no need to mention the room. That was accomplished with the slug. Just say... A small lamp illuminates the space.

Some of the dialog is pretty stiff. Maybe English isn't your first language?

I've got no problem with camera directions in a screenplay, but I do think you use them wrong here. First, don't mention the camera at all. Keep it simple. For the big reveal at the end, do something like this...

ANGLE ON the back of the Man's head to reveal a fork stabbed into his neck.

This would be pretty easy to film. Clean this up a bit and I could see this getting picked up quickly.


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Revision History (1 edits)
Zack  -  January 23rd, 2020, 11:57am
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Posted: January 13th, 2020, 3:36am Report to Moderator

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Hey zack

Thanks for your feedback. But can you elaborate on the dialog a little bit please? It will be really helpful for me.

And please do read my other script (COOKIES) if possible.

Thank you.
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Matthew Taylor
Posted: January 13th, 2020, 6:58am Report to Moderator
Old Timer

Shakespeare's county
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Hi Yuvraj

I obviously can't speak for Zack - But here's my take on the dialogue.

Generally, when someone says your dialogue is stiff, it's because it comes across as a bit robotic - I.E doesn't sound natural.
This could be because it is expositional - I.E you are giving the viewer important exposition through dialogue which (apart from being lazy) creates unnatural dialogue - When talking to someone, how often do you A) say exactly what you mean? and B) reiterate what the other person already knows?

You have a lot of exposition in your dialogue - But this is not your issue since this is actually a monologue of a wife telling her dead husband the things she couldn't when he was alive - Only now after she kills him, does she have the confidence.

The positive with your dialogue is that it is conflict - So well done on that.

The problem with your dialogue, IMHO, is that it lacks emotion - Given the situation, the adrenaline that must be pumping through her body, the fact that she is now spilling out what she had kept bottled up - She talks calmly in complete sentences, with no show of emotion (Doesn't matter the emotion - Sad/Angry/Happy/Relief) - maybe you want her to be an emotionless sociopath, but I don't think it works. From the context of what she is saying, it seems she has been pushed to the brink and snapped, so the emotion and tone of the dialogue should compliment that.
Interject the dialogue with action to further highlight the emotion in play.

Let's use an example

Quoted Text
Today was our tenth wedding
anniversary. I had cooked our
favourite dinner for this special
day. But you ruined it. Yet again
as you always have been doing. You
ruined everything.

and inject some emotion...

Quoted Text
Ten years...

With a shaky hand, Lady takes a gulp from a
half-empty wine glass.

Ten years of marriage and you still
didn't remember.

Lady gestures to the two full plates of food
On the table in front of them.

Even made your favourite. It's cold now,
Ruined. You ruined it, you ruin everything!

Lady hurls the wine glass against the wall,
shattering it. She takes a deep breath, then
another. Struggles to keep control.

My example is quick - I'm sure you can do better.

Hope my point makes sense though.

P.S nice short you have here - Hard to tell a story in just over a page so well done to you.

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Max Ruddock
Posted: January 13th, 2020, 2:28pm Report to Moderator
Been around a while

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Hi Yuvraj,

I won't echo what the other guys have said (I agree with them btw) but I do think you've got a lovely little short here. Tidy it up a bit and you're onto something.

Good luck with it!
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Posted: January 14th, 2020, 12:36am Report to Moderator

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Well guys thanks for your feedback.

Some things for me to clarify.

1) Since this is a script I can't go all nitty gritty on the details on the background of the main character aka the LADY.

2) As the lady is suffering from her husband's deeds for long time so she has developed a mental condition called Schizoid disorder because of which she is not able express herself clearly. That is the reason I purposely wrote the dialog stiff.

3) As for the camera direction I do think it is somewhat not proper. I will work on it.

4) Also I kept the writing very subtle as to not give away anything.

I think now you can read the script with a new angle and understand the subtlety.

Thank you once again to all.
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Posted: January 16th, 2020, 9:46am Report to Moderator
Been around a while

Giving up is not an option....

Kiwi in Ohio
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Hi Yuvraj,

I liked this.... very cool.

I think you could do this with or without the camera directions due to it being so short. But if you do yes they need fixing.

If she has a disorder it might be a good idea to show us this by having a pill bottle on the table with a closeup on the prescription or have her do something that makes it obvious she clearly has some kind of Schizoid disorder. I think her dialogue alone might not cut it enough for the reader to know what's up. I do get that this is hard, but there are ways to show an audience there is something wrong. It's just figuring out what it is.

A character I wrote about had anxiety problems, so every time he entered a stressful situation I made him scratch at the back of his neck...

But anyways great little short.. hopefully it gets snapped up...

Cheers k

"Turn that off, our friend has just been killed in a fatal sunlight accident!"....

'What we do in the Shadows.'
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Posted: January 22nd, 2020, 12:24pm Report to Moderator

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Thank you Kirsten. That will be helpful.
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