Ever tried scriptwriting? I’ve dabbled, but not seriously lol
Last week, writer, Linda James came to our Writing Group to do a talk/workshop on scriptwriting. But a lot of what she said would be valuable advice to all writers, regardless of their genre or medium
I made lots of notes, but here are the best 10 things I wrote down (IMO obviously)
1. Transform your story into pictures/images – i.e., when you think about a setting or a character, visualise them in your mind. Your reader needs to be able to see these things, from the words that you use.
2. Include body language – When describing what a character is doing, include body language, don’t tell your reader your character is depressed, show them.
3. Open your story in the most interesting visual way possible, introducing key characters right at the start. – You need to hook your reader from the very first page.
4. Make sure you have clues on the first page (Linda calls them seeds) – Throughout a novel the writer must drop clues for the reader. Make sure you start this on the very first page. The reader needs to have questions that they want answered.
5. Practice writing monologues, to get inside your characters head – The more you know your character, the better they will come across in your work.
6. Every scene must have a telling detail – Each scene needs to reveal something about the character or plot.
7. Use symbolism – If there is a crucifix on the wall it will tell your reader your characters religious beliefs. like wise if there is a Buddha statue on a coffee table.
8. Use local dialect sparingly – Your reader doesn’t need to know exactly how a person with a broad accent sounds, too much and they won’t understand it.
9. Use work by authors who were writing fiction at the time your story was set for research – If you’re writing historical fiction (even if it’s set in the 1950′s!) read fiction by authors who were publishing work in that era. You will get a feel for the time and be able to see what words and phrases were common.
10. Research the way film directors use “mood” to convey a scene – You wouldn’t have a severely depressed man skipping through a field of daisies would you?
I’m a bit of a film addict, and sometimes I will sit with my note book as I watch a film, so a lot of what Linda said made perfect sense. Obviously, I just had to buy her books
That’s 2 more to add to the collection *snigger*
Our homework for next months meeting is to turn a short story into a script, which should be interesting, I’ll stick mine up on my blog when it’s done
So have you ever tried your hand at scriptwriting?