Thursday, January 31, 2013

January Writing Tally

One of my New Year's Resolutions was to compile a tally of my writing achievements at the end of every month; what I worked on and how much I wrote. This way, I hope to monitor myself a little and see the progress I make. 

So, for the January 2013 summary:

- At least 50% of my writing time is spent on my screenwriting studies. Of course, that's a lot of reading and studying and not so much writing (yet), except for the assignments. This month, I finished two, which come down to about 1,000 words in total.

- 1 writers group exercise for the February Meet of Writers in Stuttgart. 444 words. 

- Blog posts: 3, which total 663 words. 

- Paranormal Romance novel: approx. 10,000 words.

- Pilot of a TV-series: 32 pages (7,550 words, just to keep to that measure of counting, though in TV I hear it's all about the number of pages. A script for a 1-hour show is usually somewhere between 40 and 50 pages)

All in all, I'm satisfied. It could have been a bit more, I suppose, but it's not a low count, by any means. Aside from the studies, I spent most of my writing time on the pilot for the TV series. If I keep up this pace, I should have it finished by March. *knocks on wood*

Monday, January 28, 2013

Insight on The Avengers Movie

Over on The (Comic) Beat, screenwriter Todd Alcott shared his very detailed and interesting insight on The Avengers in his post

Everything you EVER wanted to know about THE AVENGERS movie

The Oscar nominations were announced the other day. To no one’s surprise, the screenplay for The Avengers was not among them. That’s a shame, because the screenplay for The Avengers is a startling model of precision, density and propulsion. It manages to juggle no fewer than ten wildly disparate main characters in its ensemble cast and give each of them weight, clarity and purpose. Dear readers, I’ve worked on many a comic-book movie, none of which ever got near production. To get one superhero narrative to work is damn near impossible; The Avengers soars with seven.
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It's amazing how much thought goes into every little scene, action or dialogue. That's why screenwriting is so difficult: you have to show, insinuate, create unconscious impressions in the viewer. 

Friday, January 25, 2013

Sources For Free Screenplays and The Brilliance Of Easy Access

My novel-writing has taken a step back to accommodate my current "literary" fling: screenwriting.

Not only am I taking an online course in that very subject, but I've been perusing the Interwebz for examples and - boy-oh-boy - is that an amazing hunting ground. There are a lot of sites that offer scripts for free: TV Writing and The Internet Movie Script Database being just two of them. 

Having such easy access to my "study material" is very helpful. Writing a screenplay is quite different from literary writing, which I've been doing for many years now, while screenplays are very new to me. They are far more simplistic in style and prose, yet that brings its own challenges and doesn't make them easier to write. The "show don't tell" issue takes on a whole other meaning in screenwriting, since nobody wants to watch a character monologue his way through his emotions. 

But I'm getting off-topic. My point is that having this easy access to all these scripts, to be able to compare them to the finished movie and see how it translated... well, basically it's every student's dream. 

Not to mention: it's fun!