Break your story in prep

January 7th, 2014 by

A message from my friend and colleague Tom Benedek:

Happy New Year, Writers! My new year’s resolution: Pay attention to the emotional components of film genres. Look at what I’m writing in terms of its originality, quality of character and story AND how it fits into its own specific genre niche. No matter how unique a script project may be, once we send it out into the world it has to fit into a category. It may be unique in all ways yet it will not defy some categorization. So benefit from that — push the limits AND stay aware of the kind of film you are writing.

Giving birth to a new script idea is exciting, painful, vibrant. By nature, creativity is a wild beast. Of course, we are always striving for perfection. But that wild beast-creative energy often has rough ways. That is what we want.

Once in it is placed in that genre niche, it must fulfill the requirements there AND be perfect AND be wildly original. It can’t just be another one of THOSE. It has to be special, unique while having the balance which satisfies the requirements of its genre. EXAMPLE: If I am writing a gritty original TV pilot — it must be thrilling, go where no show of its kind has gone before, fit into the family of its kind of show and yet have its own vision. Clear with the script’s commercial niche, must test my own passion for the story I am working on to understand what it really means to my characters and to me. Never easy. Important to ask myself many questions and provide solid answers before I start writing.

My first Screenwritingmasterclass.com class of 2014: Prep – Starting January 13. Prep class is a great place to have some fun playing with your own inner wild beast as you develop an outline for your script project. It is a way to test story and character notions and fit things together into a cohesive whole. With the writing assignments in Prep, the story and character elements may be rolled out of your brain onto the page in solid story formation. It is a place to be wildly creative and yet strive for your own kind of perfection. We will address those genre concerns and push through those creative depths within each of us.

The official title of the class is Prep: From Concept to Outline which sums up the primary goal of this 6-week workshop: Break your story before you type FADE IN. Prep was the first course we offered through SMC and has proved to be especially popular. Why? Because if you do the work, it works.

Moreover you come away with an approach to prep-writing you can adopt and adapt for use with all your future writing projects.

We offer Prep throughout the year about every 6-7 weeks, alternating between Tom and myself. The schedule:

January 13: Tom

March 3: Scott

April 21: Tom

June 9: Scott

Go here for more information.

One thought on “Break your story in prep

  1. […] Happy New Year, Writers! My new year’s resolution: Pay attention to the emotional components of film genres. Look at what I’m writing in terms of its originality, quality of character and story AND how it fits into its own specific genre niche. No matter how unique a script project may be, once we send it out into the world it has to fit into a category. It may be unique in all ways yet it will not defy some categorization. So benefit from that — push the limits AND stay aware of …read more […]

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