Writing a novel from a script



No announcement yet.
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Writing a novel from a script

    Has anyone tried this venture? If so, I'm curious to hear your thoughts on the pitfalls and problems of adaptation.

  • #2
    Wish I could help. That sounds like a truly interesting experiment - filling in the blanks, maybe adding the backstory. Good luck!

    I've had feedback that my scripts turn in to novels, epic novels, but that's another story.


    • #3
      Are you talking about your own script, or somebody else's? I have one of my own scripts in novel form, and the fact that the script was written first was a huge convenience. You can just alter the format and then you pretty much have the shell of the story already written. All you have to do is expand from there. This also ensures the integrity of the material. Of course I wrote another novel from scratch and both are still unpublished, so maybe I'm not your best resource...


      • #4
        Been there, Done that

        The transition is fairly smooth in a lot of ways, as long as you take into account a total new mindset.

        The biggest advantages to having the screenplay done first is that you have a great outline to work from. Since scripts tend to rely on action, you have the action part of a novel down pat.

        The biggest disadvantage to writing from the screenplay is that you have a great outline to work from. It's really hard(or it was for me) to grow from something you've already refined.

        And the screenplay has to grow in order to be a novel. More subplots, more interweaving, more character development--all are necessary.

        The other real advantage to having a script done is your dialogue actually sounds like something people would say instead of the torturous renditions that often show up in novels.

        Along with the dialogue idea is the idea that you may have had the sh*t knocked out of the show me don't tell me issue, esp. long blocks of exposition.

        Don't forget to change everything from present to past tense!

        And that movie in your head? Make every word count, b/c you're gonna be describing in detail.

        Good Luck!


        "Writing a book is a long, exhausting struggle, like a long bout of some painful illness. One would never undertake such a thing if one were not driven by some demon one can neither resist nor understand."-- George Orwell


        • #5
          Re: Been there, Done that

          Thanks for the comments. I've found it fairly easy so far because of exactly what everyone is saying: the script is a fairly detailed outline. There's a wide range of detail you can get into though in a novel. For example, I wouldn't want to write hundreds of pages about a few hours, like Joyce.

          My biggest worry is transitioning over long time periods, if anyone has any thoughts on that. Thanks in advance, Z


          • #6
            Long periods of time

            Explore them! Or say simply, Six months later...

            Don't forget, you theoretically have infinite pages and infinite words within a novel to cover everything. Use the freedom! Books are cheap compared to film, and there's not a page limit.


            "Remember: Plot is no more than footprints left in the snow after your characters have run by on their way to incredible destinations." -- Ray Bradbury


            • #7
              LynnBz, I know what you mean about dialogue in some novels. Some of my favourite authors write terrible dialogue.

              I'd like to take a stab at writing a novel from one of my scripts someday. Just think... I'll be able to write what's inside people's heads for once.



              • #8
                Z, see my email for what was written here.

                Best of Luck


                • #9
                  I know it's an old post...but...

                  I know it's a forgotten subject but i haven't posted in ages and ages, i barely recognise anybody here these days.

                  Anyways...the first script i wrote i was told lacked weight, realism, atmos, and that the characters page long monologues were better suited to a psycology textbook or to a novel.

                  The film was only set primarily in one location and had only a handful of characters, so upon deciding on adapting it i chose a principal character and decided upon 1st person perspective. This meant i'd to scrap or rewrite scenes which my character couldn't have possibly seen, however i did get to explore the characters far deeper. Flashbacks, fractured narrative etc..and i stumbled upon a more fitting ending/resolution ...and... the whole piece took on it's tone, far more claustrophobic and darkly sarcastic than an intended 15-rated movie.

                  My opinion. Novels are generically deeper and complex than films, and adapting your work is like retelling the SAME story to a bunch of DIFFERENT people.

                  Seeya! P.S Hi to anyone who remebers I or my accosted Vampyre alter-ego :[