Tips For Writing A Screenplay

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  • Tips For Writing A Screenplay

    (According to "The Onion" -- 4-11-17)

    Every great writer must start somewhere. Begin by pouring $156,000 into an undergraduate degree.

    Your screenplay should address a central unifying question, such as "How do we as humans transcend the tragedy of loss?- or "What have those Smurfs been up to lately?-

    Shatter the conventional expectations for female leads by developing a protagonist who is both intelligent and attractive-but who knows how to crack a joke, too.

    Consider including at least one character named Big Jeff.

    Anytime you use "FADE OUT- at the end of a scene, remember that the audience can't see anything that's happening until you fade back in.

    Indicate clearly at the beginning of each scene how VFX will make it worth watching.

    Take an occasional step back to review your script and double-check that a sense of artistic validation isn't obstructing its commercial viability.

    Once your first draft is finished, scan for spelling errors, then crack open a pack of brass fasteners.
    "I just couldn't live in a world without me."

  • #2
    Re: Tips For Writing A Screenplay

    Originally posted by StoryWriter View Post
    (According to "The Onion" -- 4-11-17)


    Once your first draft is finished, scan for spelling errors, then crack open a pack of brass fasteners.
    And replace all facial piercings, nose especially, with the brass fasteners right before any meetings with studio execs for some extra credit.
    Until I can find a quote from Pope Francis regarding one licking one's butt in the Vatican I'll post this:
    Halloween Writing Contest 2021.
    Halloween contest 2021 - Done Deal Pro

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    • #3
      Re: Tips For Writing A Screenplay

      When adhering to the hero's journey, try starting on "refuse of the call" and show your protagonist blubbering like an infant. Have your hero pull himself together after receiving a food reward.

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      • #4
        Re: Tips For Writing A Screenplay

        Learn the difference between "to" and "too." Use appropriately.
        We're making a movie here, not a film! - Kit Ramsey

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        • #5
          Re: Tips For Writing A Screenplay

          Originally posted by billmarq View Post
          Learn the difference between "to" and "too." Use appropriately.
          Grammar is an artifice designed to fetter free expression. It is a tether that chains writers to the mundane and deprives them of the wings on which they could soar to new heights of creativity. It is the crutch the inadequate mind grasps in a vain attempt to totter through the fearful minefield of original thought. It's real purpose is to obfuscate, not elucidate.

          And it's a word that should be spelt with an "a" and an "e" instead of two "a's."
          If these forums don't "liven up" pretty quickly I'm fully prepared to write some really, really stupid stuff and post it here. And those who know me, know that I'm quite capable of backing up my threat. Stupidity is as natural as breathing for me!
          STANDARD DISCLAIMER: I'm a wannabe, take whatever I write with a huge grain of salt.

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          • #6
            Re: Tips For Writing A Screenplay

            Originally posted by billmarq View Post
            Learn the difference between "to" and "too." Use appropriately.
            Say what?
            "I just couldn't live in a world without me."

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            • #7
              Re: Tips For Writing A Screenplay

              Sorry. I felt compelled to point out the most common mistake I see every day in screenplays and social media posts. Feel free to ignore.
              We're making a movie here, not a film! - Kit Ramsey

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              • #8
                Re: Tips For Writing A Screenplay

                Originally posted by billmarq View Post
                Sorry. I felt compelled to point out the most common mistake I see every day in screenplays and social media posts. Feel free to ignore.
                Care to point out the specific mistake in the actual post? (Or did you just mean that people make that mistake in screenplays and social media, in general?)

                I'm not sure if you're aware, but the source of the post is "The Onion", a satirical magazine. I think the "tips" were intended as comedy and not as advice to be taken seriously.

                I probably should have pointed that out.

                Please, feel free to ignore.
                "I just couldn't live in a world without me."

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                • #9
                  Re: Tips For Writing A Screenplay

                  The Onion: Shatter the conventional expectations for female leads by developing a protagonist who is both intelligent and attractive-but who knows how to crack a joke, too.
                  Intelligent and attractive ...
                  No problem. Lots of hot babes out there who are smart.
                  Intelligent, attractive, and a good sense of humor ...
                  Oooh ... This is gonna be tough.
                  Bill M: Sorry. I felt compelled to point out the most common mistake I see every day in screenplays and social media posts. Feel free to ignore.
                  Bill, I do not know if it is the most common, but it is certainly one that you will see very often, along with many others.

                  One of the golden oldies is the use of the apostrophe to form a plural:
                  He pulls several book's off the shelf
                  should be
                  He pulls several books off the shelf
                  Alas, as someone prominent once said, "Is our children learning?"

                  "The fact that you have seen professionals write poorly is no reason for you to imitate them." - ComicBent.

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                  • #10
                    Re: Tips For Writing A Screenplay

                    Originally posted by StoryWriter View Post
                    Care to point out the specific mistake in the actual post? (Or did you just mean that people make that mistake in screenplays and social media, in general?)
                    It was no jab at you, but a general comment. I have many intelligent friends who make that particular mistake on almost a daily basis.

                    Back when I frequently critiqued screenplays, I observed that mistake all too often. Or is it to often?
                    We're making a movie here, not a film! - Kit Ramsey

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                    • #11
                      Re: Tips For Writing A Screenplay

                      Originally posted by billmarq View Post
                      Sorry. I felt compelled to point out the most common mistake I see every day in screenplays and social media posts. Feel free to ignore.
                      What was I writing? I haven't got a clue. I was "emoting" -- letting my words outstrip the arbitrary shackles of the mundane dictates of grammar. It's not what I write that matters, but how I *feel* about what I write that counts. Does this scene result in feelings of positive self-worth? Does it,ultimately, lend itself to true self-actualization? These are the questions the enlightened writer asks -- not the pedestrian inquiries of the mindless automaton hack, such as... Does my writing conform to the norms of formatting? Does it communicate, tell a story? Will someone want to read it? Can I *sell* this story? "Grammatic" belly crawlers, such as these, will never reach the next stage in development. True, they may attain financial success and a false sense of self-worth in the adulation of a fawning public -- but, sadly, they remain, and always will remain, mere hacks -- those who put "communication" over self-expression. Pity them.
                      I warned you.
                      STANDARD DISCLAIMER: I'm a wannabe, take whatever I write with a huge grain of salt.

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                      • #12
                        Re: Tips For Writing A Screenplay

                        I believe that I have unintentionally set this thread onto a tack not intended by the O.P. I apologize for that. I was merely making a quip suggesting that one might want to avoid making gross errors in grammar when presenting his or her work for others to read and evaluate. Perhaps the humor was much too subtle to be recognized.

                        You see, when I read something filled with grammatical mistakes, not simply typographical errors, I am led to believe that the author is incompetent. Unless the writing is otherwise compelling, I will probably not want to continue reading.

                        I shall not revive previous rants of mine about sentences such as "When an umpire's vision becomes impaired they should retire."
                        We're making a movie here, not a film! - Kit Ramsey

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Tips For Writing A Screenplay

                          Originally posted by billmarq View Post
                          I believe that I have unintentionally set this thread onto a tack not intended by the O.P. I apologize for that. I was merely making a quip suggesting that one might want to avoid making gross errors in grammar when presenting his or her work for others to read and evaluate. Perhaps the humor was much too subtle to be recognized. ...
                          I'm just trying to go along with the humorous intent of the original post - and doing that with (hopefully) ironic humor. I agree with you about the importance of grammar.
                          STANDARD DISCLAIMER: I'm a wannabe, take whatever I write with a huge grain of salt.

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                          • #14
                            Re: Tips For Writing A Screenplay

                            Originally posted by StoryWriter View Post
                            (According to "The Onion" -- 4-11-17)

                            then crack open a pack of brass fasteners.
                            I find it better to hole punch each page individually, centering the holes by eye as the page is cranked from the dot matrix printer. I believe the staggered "ragged"look of the pages once held by the brads and the increasingly faded text as the ribbon wears will appeal to producers looking for a "Hemingway of film".

                            I heard the starting gun


                            sigpic

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                            • #15
                              Re: Tips For Writing A Screenplay

                              Or do like Kurt Vonnegut and scribble it on napkins or scraps of paper. Then they will know you are an edgy writer worth the time to read. Worked for him. (In his case a novel, not a screenplay, but what the heck?)
                              We're making a movie here, not a film! - Kit Ramsey

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