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Read All About It

So there you have it: two posts, two rowdy comments sections, readers vs. writers, new writers versus working writers. Some interesting stuff, the headline being: THERE ARE NO RULES. Except– Don’t be boring. Oh and– Believe in yourself. And pay some attention to formatting. But make your scene description as interesting as possible – whilst not loading it up with “fillers”. And don’t tell your story through dialogue. Plus develop your voice and what you’re trying to say. And last of all: make sure, if your script is in a bit of a mess, you have raw talent to back… Read More »Read All About It

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What’s In A Visual? NCI Pt 2

Well, quite a lively debate kicked off in the comments section of my last article: for those of you who don’t read the comments (and you really should, for moments like these if not the general threats, double entendres, paddies and frank admissions by various readers), the mysterious Dublin Dave proposed that all that was needed was engaging the Reader, not adherence to supposed rules like Thou Shalt Not Overuse Staring. He went on to post a link to an interesting example of where he thinks internal thought processes can aid the action, Ron Bass’ My Best Friend’s Wedding which… Read More »What’s In A Visual? NCI Pt 2

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What’s In a Look? NCI Pt 1

Quite a lot. Especially when your characters “look” at each other all the time in your scene description. Same goes for staring, gazing, glowering, eyeballing, scrutinising or any other synonym for the word “look”. Until I starting script reading on a regular basis, I had no idea how much my characters “looked” at each other and how much of a problem this *can* become for the Reader. Now let me get this straight: “looking” is not a problem per se – until you do it all the time. It’s easy to fall into this trap. You want some actions, you… Read More »What’s In a Look? NCI Pt 1

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Song Meme

I haven’t seen a meme doing the rounds for a while, so I thought I’d have a go at making one up. When I hear music I like I always imagine what kind of scene in a film it could go in, so that’s going to be the focus of this meme: you have to imagine you’re in a particular kind of movie as outlined below and what your soundtrack will be. The deal is, you have to come up with five types of film (or use these ones below if you can’t think of any) and tag five other… Read More »Song Meme

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Action Scripts Wanted

Well, I’m still trying to make sense of this mess and wondering where the hell ALL my clean washing could have gone (I think the husband is guilty of just shoving it back in the laundry basket again… Trouble is, where is the laundry basket???). But anyway, I know some of you out there can be described as “high octane” so figure you might be interested in the opportunity below that landed in my inbox this morning. Enjoy.——————————————————————————– From Jeff Gund at Info List: ACTION SCREENPLAYS WANTED —————Richard Brandes Films Inc. (male action)————— We are looking for high octane male… Read More »Action Scripts Wanted

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Please Leave A Message And I’ll Get Right Back To You

Many thanks to the peeps that emailed to wish me a happy birthday yesterday… 28. Yuk. I was supposed to be a squillionaire by now and have my own TV series like Lynda La Plante. But let’s brush over that bit and concentrate on the good bits – successful reading business, kids, husband, yeah that works for me. But I better be a squillionaire by next year else I’ll have to release said husband and kids back into the wild since they’re obviously the ones distracting me from greatness. Right, I’m off to sunny Bournemouth tomorrow… FOREVER! That’s right, the… Read More »Please Leave A Message And I’ll Get Right Back To You

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Character Sacrifice

WARNING: THIS POST CONTAINS SPOILERS!!! Mentioned – Aliens, Severance, Night People, Dog Soldiers, Devil’s Advocate, CSI:NY, Eastenders and Spooks. “Greater love hath no man than this,: that a man lay down his life for his friends.” (John, 15:13) David Bishop makes a good point this morning about Dr. Who and two characters that sacrifice themselves to fight a big scary monster while their friends get away. Unfortunately, those two characters don’t do it at the same time, but separately, one after the other, so ultimately the viewer is left bored at the repetition. Whether it’s scary monsters, a terrorist attack… Read More »Character Sacrifice

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More Contests

I think contests are great… Not because you’ve got a great chance of winning when so many people enter them (but there is that chance! Someone has to, after all), but because it motivates scribes to finish their work and gives them a deadline. Deadlines are really important to motivation I think: gives you a goal. So, since I’m busy-busy (moving to Bournemouth on Monday – argh!!!), here’s another few for you. Let me know if you enter them and what you think!—————————————————————————–The Pacific Northwest Screenwriters Contest 2007 sponsored by 928 Talent Management is now taking entries. 1st Place Winners… Read More »More Contests

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Kidz

Aaah, children. You never know when they’re going to embarrass you, like the time my son sang Prince’s “Sexy MF” to the whole of Monkeyworld in Dorset or another when he sang Nelly’s “Hot in Herre” to a Somerfield supermarket queue. He asked for gin once when my then-landlord came to inspect the state of my flat and is prone, even now, to mooning his grandparents, aunts and passing traffic whenever he gets the chance. Which is frequently. Best of all, he looks exactly like me, just a boy version, so I can’t even pretend he’s not with me even… Read More »Kidz

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The Ten Page Test, Part 2

So I told you that stating your intent was probably the most important part of The Ten Page Test: if a Reader doesn’t know where you’re going with your story by page ten, then chances are they won’t read on. Why? Well – would you? Think about it: you have a veritable stack on your desk, plenty more where that came from and chances are you’ll have plenty to take home with you too. What’s a decent “cut off” point, a place where you can say, “If I don’t know by now what this story is going, chances are I… Read More »The Ten Page Test, Part 2

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The Ten Page Test, Part 1

The BBC Writers’ Room does it. Red Planet will be doing it. The Film Council do it with initiatives like 25WOL. All the literary agents I have read for do it, so do some indie prodcos and screen agencies. What am I talking about? What I call The Ten Page Test: the presentation of ten short pages so intriguing, so well formatted, so full of sparkling dialogue that a Reader will forego the chance of another cinnamon swirl and read your script in full. Hooking a Reader, making them actively WANT to go beyond page 10 of your screenplay is… Read More »The Ten Page Test, Part 1

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I Love Spam

Just received this: A rabbit carcass in its stiffened fur.Gray the cloud-like oaksBetween the high and the low, in this night.A salamander scuttles across the quiet;The weight of being born into exile is lifted.XVI. Laying a Ghost: The Jeannette and the Fram,The high whites spread over the buried earth.Cascading snowflakes settle in the pines,(The face of a Quos’ ego),Now that you notice it — have just moved pastWhiteness, those pediments that riseAstonished that you have returned to go:Yes. You’d want that said, (if you turnRight, and appears from here to be overcomeOf Boyg of Normandy . . .)Swaying in unison… Read More »I Love Spam

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