Warning... Do Not Read

Collapse

Announcement

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

  • #31
    Re: Warning... Do Not Read

    Originally posted by Centos View Post
    Not to be a monotonous drip, but I don't agree. The best structure in the world won't sell a flawed story. But I agree with SC111, I would like to see your elaboration or an example.
    Before anything else, I'm not saying that story isn't important in screenwriting. What I'm saying that compared to other forms of writing, structure is far more important in writing films.

    In novels and even plays, you can be much more playful with time and space. Film and TV audiences are trained for things to be much more chronological. If you're going to start going out of sequence and back and forth in time, you'd better be Quentin Tarantino, or you're going to lose your audience in no time.

    Also screenwriting much more about the build and release of tension. Set up and pay off. In the overall script but also in smaller sequences and even the scenes themselves. You'd better give us all your major characters before page 30 and a strong feeling what the central question of your script, or it doesn't matter how good your story is. It's going to fall flat.

    Comment


    • #32
      Re: Warning... Do Not Read

      Originally posted by UnequalProductions View Post
      Before anything else, I'm not saying that story isn't important in screenwriting. What I'm saying that compared to other forms of writing, structure is far more important in writing films.
      Okay, I guess I misunderstood you a bit there. But I still think structure is very important, to short stories especially. It's just different than screenplay structure which, to me, is a kind of shorthand.

      In novels and even plays, you can be much more playful with time and space. Film and TV audiences are trained for things to be much more chronological. If you're going to start going out of sequence and back and forth in time, you'd better be Quentin Tarantino, or you're going to lose your audience in no time.

      Also screenwriting much more about the build and release of tension. Set up and pay off. In the overall script but also in smaller sequences and even the scenes themselves. You'd better give us all your major characters before page 30 and a strong feeling what the central question of your script, or it doesn't matter how good your story is. It's going to fall flat.
      You'e still losing me a little here. There are tons of self-published, crap short stories and novels. No argument there. But *good* short stories and *good* novels require a lot of skill -- just different than some of the skills required in screenplay writing. I still think you're undestimating the skill required to write good short stories (especially) -- since everything you say about screenplay building tension, etc., is required in a good short story. As a matter of fact I see screenplays and short stories as being much more similar than screenplays and novels.
      STANDARD DISCLAIMER: I'm a wannabe, take whatever I write with a huge grain of salt.

      Comment


      • #33
        Re: Warning... Do Not Read

        Originally posted by Centos View Post
        You'e still losing me a little here. There are tons of self-published, crap short stories and novels. No argument there. But *good* short stories and *good* novels require a lot of skill -- just different than some of the skills required in screenplay writing. I still think you're undestimating the skill required to write good short stories (especially) -- since everything you say about screenplay building tension, etc., is required in a good short story. As a matter of fact I see screenplays and short stories as being much more similar than screenplays and novels.
        I guess I'm having a problem getting my point across here.

        I'm not saying that screenwriting requires more or less talent than writing short stories. I'm saying that the structure and elements of a screenplay are much more defined than that of a short story. Grammar, character, story. They're all needed in both, but when you're writing a screenplay, there are more rules that you need to know that you wouldn't necessarily pick up by watching movies or reading other scripts.

        Short stories don't necessarily need the same tension and release. If they do have it, that's great, but I've read beautiful short stories that are just descriptions of people walking through wheat fields. Could that make an interesting short film? Possibly. A feature? No.

        Comment


        • #34
          Re: Warning... Do Not Read

          Originally posted by UnequalProductions View Post
          I guess I'm having a problem getting my point across here.

          I'm not saying that screenwriting requires more or less talent than writing short stories. I'm saying that the structure and elements of a screenplay are much more defined than that of a short story. Grammar, character, story. They're all needed in both, but when you're writing a screenplay, there are more rules that you need to know that you wouldn't necessarily pick up by watching movies or reading other scripts.

          Short stories don't necessarily need the same tension and release. If they do have it, that's great, but I've read beautiful short stories that are just descriptions of people walking through wheat fields. Could that make an interesting short film? Possibly. A feature? No.
          Larry McMurtry said that during the recovery from an illness, he found it nigh near impossible to write a screenplay. A novel, no problem 'cause he said he could let the writing flow, but a screenplay was like a puzzle and needed a certain amount of discipline and problem solving that novel-writing didn't necessarily require.

          I think he's right.

          HH

          Comment


          • #35
            Re: Warning... Do Not Read

            All good stuff here. I'd agree that screenplays are more like puzzles.

            Structure is essential to screenwriting, but a strict fealty to templates at a certain point could possibly result in forcing pieces of the story to fit a puzzle that represents a traditional perspective. So I create a puzzle much like all the rest of the puzzles in that genre. (Yes, there's the "Hollywood wants the different but same" paradox.) That's another thread in itself.

            Writing screenplays is tough enough in many regards. There is no reason to reinvent the wheel. The rules are there, the templates are there. They do give me comfort. Maybe too much at times. Maybe I'm sticking to puzzles that are easy to solve, easy to put together.

            Zach Helm created a "manifesto" about sticking to his own vision before he wrote Stranger Than Fiction. Granted, he had been a working writer prior so he wasn't trying to break in. Not everyone needs to create a manifesto. But it is an example of a writer making a conscious decision to stick to a vision and it possibly opened up his writing. Stranger Than Fiction had a fresh, less than traditional perspective. Still imo, it's a brilliant puzzle.
            Last edited by Ire; 03-14-2012, 01:52 PM.
            #writinginaStarbucks #re-thinkingmyexistence #notanotherweaklogline #thinkingwhatwouldWilldo

            Comment


            • #36
              Re: Warning... Do Not Read

              Originally posted by Signal30 View Post
              Just write the goddamned thing while the fire is hot. Worry about the so-called rules during the revision process. Anything else is procrastination.
              Warrants repeating.

              Comment

              Working...
              X