Friday, June 02, 2006

Take Chances With Your Writing, Maybe A Screenwriting Contest?

Through Tobias I found Kelly Link's advice to writers posted here.
There are too many good writers, she says. Writers have to learn to stand out by taking chances. Not by writing an eccentric prose style, but by writing different and surprising stories. Good read.

And to the screenwriters out there who have been completely neglected on this blog even though it is about all kinds of writing, here's your equivalent of NaNoWriMo: The 14 Day Screenplay Challenge starting tonight at midnight.
Via Crafty

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redchurch said...

Mel said:

"Not by writing an eccentric prose style, but by writing different and surprising stories."

Hah! YES! This is what I'm talkin' about. :)

Nice link Mel!

rdl said...

You are just a wealth of information! :D

Jennifer said...

Screenwriting is hard :D But so much fun. I have to totally put myself in a different frame of mind.

I love it though cause it's (almost) purely dialogue that you rely on to portray/tell the story--and I love dialogue.

I find it good practice too. Scriptwriting your dialogue has to be real, not drag on, be believable...sometimes it helps sharpen my prose dialogue.

By that I mean for example I have to uses words and tempo and actions to get emotion across when I script write. I can't fall back on the...Angry, Adam yelled, "Get out."
Instead I have to portray it with short actions and words: i.e. "Adam shoved the door open sending it into the wall. "Get the Hell out of here."

Did that make sense? I guess the whole point of what I'm trying to say is I find scriptwriting a great exercise in sharpening my dialogue in prose writing. And that scriptwriting fascinates me in general.


Jennifer said...

Or screenwriting (as most people call it...I perpetually refer to it as 'script' 'prose' 'poetry' writing...)

Melly said...

Thanks Eric :)

rdl, I'm here to serve ;)

Jennifer #1+#2 ;)
It made so much sense the way you descrived it. I actually think I like the second example for novel writing as well, maybe toned down, but I love the showing part.
I have no clue what's the correct/cool way of saying it - script or screen writing, so you're safe here :)

Jennifer said...

Yeah that's what I was getting at. The second way though taken from script format would actually work better than the previous prose example. That's why I find when working script/screen writing (:D) actually can help with prose.

Say you start with this prose: Angry, Adam yelled, "Get out."

You can't use emotions to describe/get points across with scriptwriting so you have to think of another way to say it:

(shoves door open, sending crahsing into wall)
Get the Hell out of here.

then convert to PROSE:
Adam shoved the door open sending it into the wall. "Get the Hell out of here."

So much better than what you started with.

Melly said...

No doubt, it's much much better!

Pat Kirby said...

Given my experience with Link's stories, it seems that "different and surprising" might get the attention of critics, but...honestly, I only got through a few of her "stories."

To each his own, I 'spose, but I like tedious, conventional stuff like a plot and story resolution.

Melly said...

Sometimes I can do without a plot per se, you know, like those stories that are more events than plot. I actually like these, but some stuff is also too much out there for me too.