Dialogue: Subtext

A person cannot speak unless he or she has had a thought.  A person does not have a thought unless he or she has a need.  That is never more true than in all dramatic writing.  Characters in a script speak because they want something. Another way to think of it: the average person speaks … More Dialogue: Subtext

Dialogue: Exposition

Exposition is an essential party of good dialogue.  It is a necessary component of the how the story – not the plot – of a movie is communicated.  It helps the audience understand where character came from prior to the movie starting and how that past will affect how that character move through the story … More Dialogue: Exposition

Dialogue: Overview

Dialogue is the backbone of every movie. It needs to be believable.  It has to define a character without explicitly doing so.  It must advance the plot and be entertaining a well. Good dialogue is no easy task. Anyone can write what we call dialogue – the words that are spoken by a character.  The … More Dialogue: Overview

On Dialogue

Film is a visual medium.  But the ideas expressed in a movie come from the characters.  And characters are defined by what they do and what they say.  What a character says is the thing that gives his or her actions context. Know Who Your Characters Are Language and speech patterns are influenced by many … More On Dialogue

Make Your Audience and Your Actors Love Your Characters

The reason we write scripts is to see them made into movies.  The reason movies get made is because an actor or actress wants to be in your movie.  So how do we breathe  “life” into our characters to make them appealing to both actors and non-actors alike? Give your character signature traits As we … More Make Your Audience and Your Actors Love Your Characters

Make Your Characters Leap Off the Page

You’ve thought about your characters.  You’ve defined them.  You’ve written biographies and histories.  They’re 3-dimensional, living beings in your head.  All that’s left to do is introduce them to your reader by making them jump off the page.  How do we do that…? First impressions Just like real life, when we meet someone in a … More Make Your Characters Leap Off the Page