Writing a Screenplay

I am currently half way through a creative writing course and as a continuous task, as well as weekly assignments, we are to write a 30 minute screenplay. As I have never thought at all about writing screenplays this is a big ask.

It is proving a really great way to learn about some sides of writing. For me the most fascinating aspects are

  • Can’t get inside a characters head at all
  • Really have to stay to the point – just action / dialogue / action / dialogue
  • Allowing myself to leave some space for the viewer – so not repeating things just to make sure they didn’t miss it
  • Having 20% of what I write – at least – deleted by the teacher. And seeing that the piece is better for it.

Conveniently it transpires that a minute of screenplay is a page – so the target is clear – I need to write 30 pages. Currently I am on page 13, so a bit behind. And in true amateur writers procrastination fashion I have done just about everything today – including blogging about writing – rather than actually write.

When in doubt, make a fool of yourself. There is a microscopically thin line between being brilliantly creative and acting like the most gigantic idiot on earth. So what the hell, leap.

Cynthia Heimel.

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