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Old 03-19-2020, 10:16 AM   #1
Cyfress
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Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 1,324
Default Getting Frozen Because You Try To Do It Perfect The First Time

Don't worry about doing anything perfect early, whether it be writing or outlining. It's not gonna be perfect the first time through. So, don't let "not knowing where to go next" stop you from writing. It's ok. Still write or outline. Come up with something knowing it is flawed or not perfect. Move on, go on. Don't stop at the flaw and wait for that perfect scene or perfect twist. It's not always there early on.

I started an outline on March 3rd for a script I am attempting to write. The first time through it was in sequential order like:

1 - Scene 1

2- Scene 2

3 - Scene 3

and so on. I came up with the first version in one day. 65 scenes, but now after going through the outline over the last two weeks the outline now looks like this:

1 - Scene 1

2 - Scene 2

2a - Scene 3

2b - Scene 4

6 - Scene 5

6a - Scene 6

9 - Scene 7

I've been cutting and creating and enriching and it is really coming together. I also estimate how many pages I envision each scene taking up. I'd like to stay at 110 or under. I have moved past some things "I loved" early on and some things I loved still remain. There's also have been some nice turns that showed themselves to me during the third and fourth pass through the outline. I'm understanding characters better and I am seeing my hero's activity and understanding why he's doing what he's doing. I really like the first two thirds of the story. If you divide the story into four parts(which is kinda how I look at things to start). I am really struggling with the second half of part 3. That is still a mess. But once I get that a little more formed, I'll be ready to write the first draft.

Point is. Things will never be perfect for a long time so just write. BUT DO NOT FALL IN LOVE WITH ANYTHING. There's better, more impactful scenes on the horizon. Just keep combing over it again and again and again and when you come up with that scene that gives you the tingles. I love when that happens. GO WITH IT. I don't care how much rewriting work it creates in order to make it work.

Too many amateurs are sending out premature material whether it be an outline or a script. Stuff that is not thought through completely. It has more holes than a piece of swiss cheese but your enthusiasm over it has you wanting to test the waters and see what people think of it. Instead, take that enthusiasm and put it into the material. That's why 99% of amateur stuff is pure crap. I've placed into the semis and the quarters at the Nichol back when I was writing everyday. I look back at those scripts now and they are pure sh!t. Crap. So you know what that tells me? There's mounds and mounds of sh!t out there and if you should so happen put some real work into a script, and I mean real work. Not an outline and a draft then querying. I mean real work. Taking the story to the next level several times during an intense development period. You came up with stuff even you didn't see coming your first and second time through. If you do that, you immediately move to the front of that 99% because amateurs are not doing that. You can argue talent and yes talent does matter, but I'm talking work ethic only. If you improve your work ethic 5 fold, I would think you can expect a jump in quality 5 fold.

If crap makes the semis at the Nichol and I know all about the rare cases the outliers. The scripts that didn't place at all and sold or got someone an agent. I know the stories and there will be outliers in ever study. An amateur with a talent of 5/10 but a work ethic of 10/10 can easily win the Nichol, IMO.
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