Another lesson learned on Zoetrope

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  • AaronB
    replied
    Re: Another lesson learned on Zoetrope

    Anybody want any aluminum siding?

    Leave a comment:


  • Geevie
    replied
    Re: Another lesson learned on Zoetrope

    Originally posted by creativexec
    Take the screenwriting books out of your asses and write a script that enables the reader to see and feel the movie.


    Almost all of the parenthetical examples in my previous post could be deemed as the writer â€directing.†And most could be deemed as obvious and superfluous.
    I think this is unfair.

    I took the time to read this writer's script and I feel like the advice I gave him was warranted and advised. I'm not a neophyte writer who can only provide screenwriting advice on the use of tools. In fact, I believe I've developed quite the reputation of fighting against such cut and dried advice from people who haven't read the script.

    This, I'm guessing, is a first script from someone new at screenwriting. He made a common newbie writer mistake in thinking that he had to qualify every emotion tacked onto each piece of dialogue. These other reviewers on Zoetrope gave him legitimate advice in that it was poorly used and distracting. 99% of the time it did not help enhance the reading experience but rather worked against getting a reader involved.

    Along with extensive notes about other issues I had with the script, I gave him advice on when it was appropriate to use this tool and when it was wiser to avoid it.

    I don't think it helps someone to say, "Well Zoetrope writers really aren't qualified to critique screenplays because they don't read like industry readers." I, for one, read a screenplay and compare it to professional scripts - not other amateur scripts.

    Because that's what I aspire to. To be sold.

    I think it's as ill advised to say, "Dismiss these criticisms because professional writers do it" as saying "You can't do this because professional writers do it."

    There's nothing inherently wrong with wrylies.

    Like any other tool they must be used effectively.

    So learn how to use them.

    My guess is those high paying scripts had just a wee bit more knowledge on where and how to use these to direct the reader than just overdirecting the obvious.

    Final point. Your lists of parentheticals are helpful to a point. I'd rather see how they were used rather than that they were used.

    (How did I, the Queen of all Rule Busters, get onto this side of the debate in the first place to where I need to be busted by CE whom I normally champion? The planets are out of alignment.)

    Leave a comment:


  • mdb
    replied
    Re: Another lesson learned on Zoetrope

    Originally posted by creativexec
    As a final example, below are the parentheticals from DEJA VU â€" a 127-page spec script purportedly earning the highest payday in Hollywood history. (The figure is undisclosed.) The script is co-written by Terry Rossio.

    They are:

    (Snip 153 parentheticals)
    So what you are telling us is that if we use exactly 153 parentheticals we are guaranteed to sell for big money. Or is it the ratio of 1.20472441 parentheticals per page?

    Leave a comment:


  • AaronB
    replied
    Re: Another lesson learned on Zoetrope

    Originally posted by ComicBent
    AaronB, you are worrying about this stuff entirely too much.
    You know what's really ironic about that? It's that I wasn't worrying about it at all, until several people told me I needed to worry about it!

    LOL.

    I'm tempted to say a pox on the lot of 'em, and just write the story to suit myself.

    Leave a comment:


  • ComicBent
    replied
    Re: Another lesson learned on Zoetrope

    AaronB, you are worrying about this stuff entirely too much. There are no rules that you can live and work by that will make you an effective writer.

    The reason that I hate this topic of wrylies (forget the "we see" business) is that no matter what you say about it, no matter how flexible you try to be, you always end up being painted into a corner of contention.

    It is all about effective writing, so that anyone (reader, actor, director) will be drawn into the sweep of your story, into the flow of the moment.

    So don't worry about it. Just write, and make it sound natural. With a little practice (or a lot! ) you will develop a sense for what is appropriate and what is superfluous and distracting.

    Leave a comment:


  • joe9alt
    replied
    Re: Another lesson learned on Zoetrope

    Originally posted by creativexec

    Take the screenwriting books out of your asses and write a script that enables the reader to see and feel the movie.


    Fu(kin' A, right.

    Leave a comment:


  • Jordan Rivers
    replied
    Re: Another lesson learned on Zoetrope

    "Take the screenwriting books out of your asses and write a script that enables the reader to see and feel the movie."

    Yeah. But don't sniff it.

    I had the pleasure to read both scripts in Chris's Valley College class, and none of those issues made any impression on anyone. If you focus on such concerns, then you will miss those things that will shape your character and story in a way that will impress people.

    You should not waste one moment on format questions.

    Leave a comment:


  • AaronB
    replied
    Re: Another lesson learned on Zoetrope

    Hey, ce...

    Thanks for the post. I have much to consider.

    Leave a comment:


  • pooks
    replied
    Re: Another lesson learned on Zoetrope

    Thanks for all that, CE -- lots of typing there to try and convince the unconvinced!

    In the meantime -- how did one page of this get put in the FAQ -- and that page not have anything written by CE?!?

    Leave a comment:


  • AaronB
    replied
    Re: Another lesson learned on Zoetrope

    Trying to draw any kind of guidance from this discussion has almost convinced me to take up hawking aluminum siding in Poughkeepsie.

    [sigh]

    I have a lot of work to do on the script yet.

    Leave a comment:


  • idreamofoscar
    replied
    Re: Another lesson learned on Zoetrope

    Lets call it a moot point then.

    Leave a comment:


  • Geevie
    replied
    Re: Another lesson learned on Zoetrope

    Like any tool, wrylies or parantheticals can be used effectively and they can be used ineffectively. The only time that you get consistant criticism against it (more than one person, say) is when it's used ineffectively.

    So the argument for me is not so much NOT using wrylies, but using them correctly.

    For those of you saying don't worry about it, maybe you should find out for yourself if Aaron has indeed used them correctly first.

    Otherwise you're not helping him.

    Leave a comment:


  • TwoBrad Bradley
    replied
    Re: Another lesson learned on Zoetrope

    Okay, call me old-fashioned, but I think Dialogue is for dialogue and Action is for action.

    Any time you insert a parenthetical into Dialogue it raises a flag that maybe there's a better way to do it. Sweat the little stuff. Make it as "perfect" as you can.

    I will never understand the position that "something" is okay because nobody cares. I don't think that advice will get you into the top 1% (if you're not already there). You should care about every single word you write.

    Yes, I understand we're writing for the readers. They are not idiots.

    Leave a comment:


  • AaronB
    replied
    Re: Another lesson learned on Zoetrope

    Yeah, but you're a NoTalentAssClown. If you'll pardon my saying so.

    Leave a comment:


  • NoTalentAssClown
    replied
    Re: Another lesson learned on Zoetrope

    I think they are great for breaking up longer dialogue. They can read faster and smoother than an action line, and they don't use as much space considering the spacing above and below the action line.

    I've come to believe that as long as you don't take the reader out of the story, you can do whatever the hell you want.

    Leave a comment:

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