Recently, during a table read of a screenplay, I found myself desperately struggling to stay focused on the story. The dialog grabbed me, but then it was followed by overly detailed description that in some cases filled entire pages before the next words of dialog were uttered. To escape the torture of this interminable glut of narrative, I allowed my mind to drift away into pleasant images of my upcoming weekend plans.
Sound harsh? Maybe so, but the truth remains that excessive description is a fairly common problem amongst new writers and writers who never bothered to educate themselves in the craft. Basically, you want to include only those details that will add something meaningful to your story. You want your writing to be tight. (more…)
Screenwriting is one tough gig! Not only does a writer need to understand screenwriting structure well enough to create a compelling storyline with interesting characters, but the writer must also weave all major critical decisions, plot points and twists into the story while staying within the confining page requirements of ninety and one hundred-twenty pages, depending on the story’s genre. In addition, once the masterpiece undergoes numerous edits and rewrites, then the writer needs to strategize a plan to get the screenplay read amongst the thousands of scripts that are stacked sky high in the offices of underpaid, overworked Hollywood readers. (more…)
As writers, we’ve heard the expression dozens of times: just show up at the page. But when our daily lives are crammed with job responsibilities, family obligations and holiday tasks, showing up at the page may be difficult to weave into our daily routines. Before we know it, one day morphs into one week, which then morphs into a month which then spirals into several before we realize, “Gee, I haven’t written anything in a while.”
Though it may appear nearly impossible, it is imperative that writers carve some time out each day to write despite the daily, unbridled events that life hurls at us. Even if it’s only for ten or fifteen minutes a day, these regular entries will not only serve to strengthen and improve our craft, but how else will those writing projects that we began with such passion and vigor see their final page? Indulge me as I illustrate the power of how necessary this slow and steady practice is. (more…)
Recently, I saw The Social Network, the movie about Mark Zuckerberg, founder of Facebook. If you haven’t seen it, then I urge you to go…immediately, especially if you’re a writer, film-maker or someone who just needs the motivation to keep working toward your goals.
I was blown away, not only by the superb acting, but also by the manner in which writer, Aaron Sorkin, captured the spirit and internal force that drove Zuckerberg to succeed. In the movie, he’s an animal, hungry for membership into exclusiveness, as if being a Harvard student isn’t quite exclusive enough. (more…)
When I launched this blog, I did so with the intention of posting something new and inspirational at least once per week. Something that would keep myself and my readers motivated to write on a daily basis. But if you look at the date of my first and only post thus far, and you do some second grade calculating, you’ll notice that I’m exactly a month and two days late. As a teacher, I would consider this unacceptable from any of my students, and for sure they’d end up with a zero for the assignment. (more…)
After three days of educating myself about blog hosting, domain names, and how to customize a blog’s theme, which I still haven’t mastered…by the way, I have finally moved this blog from Blogger to WordPress, and have it up and running after two years of dormancy.
Yaaaahoooo!!! Let’s get this blog started!
It only took three extremely long days of neglecting household chores and three endless nights of sifting through websites full of text, watching more than enough YouTube tutorials for a lifetime, and listening to a variety of semi-interesting podcasts, to have finally emerged from heaps and mounds of overwhelming information. Let’s just say, I’m glad it’s over and I can now start blogging! Oh, but wait, I have three other blogs to work on yet. Check’em out in my blogroll, and don’t forget to come back here soon for updates.