While we’re on the topic of characters, here are a few more random thoughts about movie characters for you to chew on: Everyone Loves a Hero Heroes come in all shapes and sizes. They face all kinds of challenges. What all heroes have in common is that, for one reason or another, we admire … More Random Thoughts on Main Characters
In Act One, your reader meets your main character. They form an opinion of who that characters is. Watching your character make decisions, face obstacles and takes actions — no matter how small and seemingly insignificant — enables your reader to hone and refine that first impression. Then what…? How do you keep your reader … More 5 More Tips for Creating Characters
While plots most be original and compelling, characters are the key to every great movie. Your characters are the emotional core of your story. It is through them that your audience engages and experiences the world you have created. To write great characters you must know them and understand them. They must live in your … More 3 Steps to Introducing Characters
When writing a screenplay, a “beat sheet” is an invaluable tool. After you’ve come up with your concept; characters; beginning, middle and end of your story, a beat sheet enables you to put it all together and take a 30,000-ft view of your story. A beat sheet allows you to check your work. It allows … More Constructing A Beatsheet
Plotlines vs Loglines As we discussed last week, plotlines and loglines are different. Loglines are selling tools designed to excite an audience. Plotlines are designed to help you, the writer, clearly understand the beginning, middle and end of your script. A good plotline will distill the essential dramatic elements of your script down to their … More Plotline Essentials: “The 8 C’s”
From the Nitty Gritty to the 30,000-ft View Let’s take a break from dissecting the inner working of a scene. Let’s step back and examine the process from back to front. When you’re script is done and even before, when you’re in the middle of writing, if you tell someone that you’re working on a script, … More Loglines vs. Plotlines
Beginning, Middles and Ends In a screenplay, just like your plot, a well-structured scene will have a beginning, middle and end. Beginnings You must establish who the protagonist of the scene is and what they want. Except for the first time we meet a character, this is done BEFORE the scene starts. This is what … More The Well Written Scene, Part 2
One Good Scene Deserves Another While we’re on the topic of scene work, let’s examine what makes a scene pop in a screenplay. What are the essential tasks of a scene in a screenplay? They must do two essential things. Move the story forward and keep the audience engaged. One Job at a Time A … More The Well Written Scene, Part 1
The end of punctuation: full stop. This will complete our examination of how to use punctuation to create vivid imagery in your narrative description and how to imply camera angles and pacing edits without revealing that’s what you are doing. If there’s anything I’ve missed, send me a note. I’ll be happy to answer your … More Directing Through Punctuation, Part 4.
Backwards and forwards. As we continue our exploration of how to use punctuation in the narrative description of a screenplay, don’t forget the example we’re looking using. It’s from the first page of Shane Black’s 2005 directorial debut, Kiss Kiss Bang Bang: The girl starts to SCREAM. SHRIEKING. Writhing in agony. Tears streaming. Harold stares … More Directing Through Punctuation, Part 3.