Scriptitude

The Mission Impossible Spoilercasts

The Mission Impossible Spoilercasts

Empire Magazine has a pretty terrific podcast, as I’ve just discovered. And one thing they’re making a habit of is long-form interviews with writer/director Christopher McQuarrie. You can listen to him discuss (at length) the making of Mission Impossible: Fallout for nearly 6 hours! Most of it is gold. These were two separate interviews, so I forgive him for repeating one or two stories. From a screenwriting point of view, it’s interesting to discover how much they back into, based…

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Your character’s voice

Your character’s voice

Each of your characters should have a unique way of talking. Writing a British character? Get the language right! Here in the USA, we might say elevator, apartment, and flashlight, but across the pond it’s lift, flat, and torch. This video from Vanity Fair gets into some other saucy slang:

The Process

The Process

Antony Johnston goes into detail on his writing process, from hand-written notes, to plot on paper, to notecarding in the Scrivener app. That may not be YOUR writing process, but like a lot of writers, I like to try out different approaches to see what works for me. Check it out here: http://www.antonyjohnston.com/forwriters/process.php

Plot Twists

Plot Twists

I’m not a fan of the plot twist gimmick just for gimmick’s sake. A story has to be good FIRST, and then twist can just add another layer to the fun. There are films that sacrifice logic and character to make the twist work, and that just burns me up. In any case, this article does a good job of listing all the ways you can write a twist: How to Write Plot Twists That Really Mess with People’s Heads…

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Raise The Stakes

Raise The Stakes

There’s a great article from Gideon’s Screenwriting Tips called “25 Ways to Raise the Stakes in Your Script.” See the full article here: https://gideonsway.wordpress.com/2017/03/07/25-ways-to-raise-the-stakes-in-your-script-writing-you-need-to-use/ Writers must explain how not achieving their goals will affect the characters, not only physically, but emotionally and spiritually too. It needs to be deeply personal.Some ways to raise the stakes for your main characters by examining the repercussions if they fail: They lose the respect of their close family and friends They lose respect for themselves…

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Just when you think you know first acts…

Just when you think you know first acts…

Personally, I believe the second act is the hardest part of a screenplay to write. So when a listener wrote in to Scriptnotes asking about his troubles with first acts, I was a bit perplexed. What’s the big deal? Then John and Craig went on to lay out what the first act can and should accomplish. Wow! Now I need to reevaluate some of what I’ve written. I have a new appreciation for screenplay structure after listening. Check out THE…

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Legal Agreements

Legal Agreements

Since we were discussing contracts at last meeting, there’s a good overview at LA Screenwriter. Why is it a good idea to be comfortable with contracts? As Ken Aguado says… Filmmaking is a business, and businesses run on contractual agreements. Contractual agreements help define the business relationship between people and/or companies. If you don’t define the business relationship with your collaborators or employers, they may not be your collaborators or employers for long. See the whole article at: 5 Legal…

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Script-A-Palooza 2017 winners

Script-A-Palooza 2017 winners

Congrats to our Script-A-Palooza Winners! We had a great time performing and seeing screenplays performed at the last general meeting of RAFAS (Rochester Association for Film Arts and Sciences). Overall, it’s always a great opportunity to share short subjects with the world and get actors, directors, and crew interested in your work. I’m looking forward to even more entries next year! Got a desire to see your writing put to screen? Get some feedback at a RWW meeting and let…

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A Note About the Writing Process & the Step Outline

A Note About the Writing Process & the Step Outline

As we go through the process, from idea & theme to script, questions have arisen regarding the step outline. If we think of the process as Most General (idea & theme) to Most Specific (script), the Step Outline falls somewhere in the middle.  The Step Outline is the blueprint you will follow when you get to the actual script writing. It needs to be specific in regards to the sequence of events starting with FADE IN and ending with FADE OUT. It…

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