Screenwriter John August made a short video to explain when and how to use elipses, dashes, and parentheticals for interrupting characters’ speech. If you’ve ever been confused, check this out!
The “Go Into the Story” blog is doing a series on writing characters, including advice from numerous Black List writers. There’s plenty of good ideas to be mined here.
For example, from Brian Duffield: “I find that by starting with theme, you instantly gravitate towards a character who is almost at an opposite place to deal with that theme, and then throw them into the movie and see what happens. Just by doing that, you have an interesting character who has a big obstacle to overcome, and it becomes really fun fleshing them out and figuring out the nuts and bolts of why they’d be the way they are. Lately I’ve been really drawn towards pushing character as far as it can go, to the point where they’re barely recognizable as human, and figuring out how to relate and understand that character. I think I’m just hungrier as a writer to see what I can do, especially with character.”
Follow the links below:
If you have HBO and haven’t watched Chernobyl yet, what are you waiting for? It’s astoundingly good.
Meanwhile, if you have seen it, and want to delve into the making of the show, Peter Sagal of NPR hosts a five episode podcast with writer/producer Craig Mazin. Yes, I’ve been listening to Mazin for years as co-host of Scriptnotes, so it’s rewarding to see him have creative and critical success with Chernobyl.
The podcast is available in a variety of places. Here’s an article about how it came to be and where to find it:
Listeners of the Scriptnotes podcast know that co-host Craig Mazin is not a fan of “how-to” books on screenwriting. So it’s interesting to hear his general theory on the subject, with emphasis on building from nothing, not trying to disect others’ films.
We get asked all the time about good, cheap software for writing screenplays. While Final Draft has its advantages, but if you’re just starting out, Trelby is a great free app for Windows and Linux users. And it’s FREE!
Check it out at:
The key? Have a master copy of your script you pass back and forth — if you and your partner have competing drafts, it’s a major pain to merge them later.
Find out more in the latest episode of Write Along.
One of my favorite internet shows is STILL UNTITLED: THE ADAM SAVAGE PODCAST, which is available as a podcast and also Youtube video. Last week’s episode featured Michael Green, the co-writer of Blade Runner 2049. Adam’s love for Blade Runner goes deep, so it was a good interview. Michael talked about meetings with Ridley Scott and Hampton Fancher (who wrote the first Blade Runner), as well as how to address some aspects of the story which remain mysterious on purpose.
Check it out here:
Thanks to everyone who attended our 2019 Scriptitude table read event at RIT! We had great performances and some valuable Q&A time with our winning screenwriters.
Photos by Noel Bastien
The short screenplays read were the following:
“The Frame-Up”by Patrick Harney
A wizened, young detective gets herself pulled into a dangerous squeeze-play while trying to locate her client’s lover.
“Homefulness”by Dan LaTourette
A father takes his ailing mother and spitfire son for a drive down memory lane… in a 1963 Studebaker.
“Someone”by Brian VanDenBergh (co-written by Nick Pasquarella)
After his appendix bursts, a young man is held hostage by the software technology employed to run his home.
Congratulations to Patrick, Dan, Brian, and Nick for their amazing scripts!
The Rochester Association for Film Arts and Sciences presents a short script competition open to all residents of upstate NY. Enter to win one of three copies of FINAL DRAFT, as well as a table reading of your script by experienced actors before a live audience.
This is a great opportunity to hear your work and the scripts of other writers performed by dedicated actors!
Write something new, or fix up a screenplay you’ve had in the drawer. But don’t delay! Deadline for entry is February 28. Table reading will be scheduled for an evening in April.
AWARDS AND PRIZES
Each screenplay submitted will receive a written critique of their work. First, second, and third place winners will have their screenplays presented at a public table read at the Wegmans Magic Spell Theater at the Rochester Institute of Technology. In addition, the three winners will receive a copy of Final Draft 11.
The cost for each entry is $25. Proceeds go to Rochester Association for Film Arts and Sciences, a not for profit educational corporation run entirely by volunteers.
For full rules, see our listing at https://filmfreeway.com/scriptitude
For more about the Rochester Association for Film Arts and Sciences, visit http://rafasny.org
RAFAS is an educational organization, and we believe in sharing our knowledge with those interested in all aspects of filmmaking. Through the Rochester Writers Workshop, we meet with writers and discuss screenwriting in depth. If you are in the Rochester area, come to one of our Wednesday night meetings! Details are at http://rwwny.org
Deadline for Entries is February 28, 2019
Submit your screenplay PDF at https://filmfreeway.com/scriptitude
This video from Film Courage features screenwriters talking about story, character, conflict, and more.
See the video below: