Just a quick note to say that I have no idea why I picked this image. I just thought it was funny!
I knew that, of course, why I felt I had to read it, I dunno. But anyway, I have this scriptwriting, well, it’s a script review group that I’m in, and I got to tell you, I picked this one, too. We get to choose somebody. We vote on what script will be read. That sort of thing. Anyway, mine won. And wow, I got to tell you, one thing I forgot was how thoroughly obnoxious these characters were. Boy, were they obnoxious! What an obnoxious group of hangers on and whatever. Assholes, I think somebody called them.
Yeah. Wow. And it’s really interesting to tear this screenplay apart and really look at its constituent parts because really, as Benoit keeps saying throughout, the answer is quite simple, but it … it’s not as simple. What makes it unsimple is the way this story is told.
That’s the thing. So one of the things I was thinking of doing was when I do these screenplay things, which I’m always reading a screenplay at some point. I’ve tried to make a habit, once a week habit of it, but that has not yet panned out. I hope to do that, but well, maybe, maybe not. Point being that this, reading screenplays will teach you a lot about how to write them. And a lot of screenplays out there that are available to be read have been written in a way that the screenwriting classes will not teach you. But some of those techniques can possibly work for you.
You don’t want to go crazy with it, but you have to know how far you’re going without going too far. And the only way to know that is to get involved in screenplay writing, get to know the rules, know when to break them, that kind of thing, and get to know the people in the business because they need to … screenwriting combines a couple of qualities in a person. You have to be willing to go places that make you uncomfortable sometimes when you’re writing. And you also have to be willing to do it boldly in a way that says, here I am telling you this. And it kind of places the reader right in that situation, gives them the feeling of being there.
And this requires a lot of guts, to be honest. Sometimes I’m not sure people really appreciate how much of a writer’s … simply their passion goes into this. So you need to know that right up front before you go into screenwriting. I think it’s a warning. It’s like the warning that they give all writers, except this one’s for screenwriters. It’s going to take a lot more than just writing skill to do this. That’s what it comes down to.
You need to be willing to overcome certain inhibitions, and that comes not only with the writing itself, but with dealing with other people. You have to be willing to put yourself out there to be criticized, to take the criticism for what it’s worth, and work with it and sit with it and be okay with it, and be willing to cut out those precious words that you think are so valuable. So that’s one of the things I hope to offer along the way as I’m doing this. In the meantime, I’ll talk to you later. That’s it for me for now. That’s where I’m at. Be seeing you.
PS: This seems almost obligatory! 🙂
I could almost weep! 🙂 Thanks, Paul!