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Top 5 Tips for Writing Great Science Fiction

Great Science Fiction There’s a lot more to good science fiction than robots, spaceships and phasers-on-stun. For anyone thinking of writing science fiction screenplays, here’s five top tips to turn an average sci-fi movie into a great one:. Ready? Let’s go! 1) Know WHY you are writing science fiction Great science fiction asks big “What if..?” questions. This allows us to play with the day-to-day realities of our own world by exploring different realities in worlds we create. It examines big issues and asks difficult questions about things that concern us all. These might be pollution, technology, globalisation, genetic engineering,… Read More »Top 5 Tips for Writing Great Science Fiction

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What’s The Difference Between A Prologue & A Teaser?

Prologues and Teasers play a very big part in the spec screenplay pile – but all too often, scribes aren’t too sure of the difference. Here are my thoughts: Very **Generally** speaking: i) Movies will have prologues: think the arrival of the (unseen) velociraptor at JURASSIC PARK; the crash in PITCH BLACK; the shooting in THE SIXTH SENSE or the Barracuda attack in FINDING NEMO. These moments act as a catalyst for the characters to become embroiled in the story, but also an introduction to the characters and/or story world for the audience. (This latter point is especially important for… Read More »What’s The Difference Between A Prologue & A Teaser?

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Top 5 Ways Writers Screw Up Their Characters

Don’t Screw Up Your Characters Characters are the lifeblood of any great story, so we don’t want to screw up on this … BUT writers frequently do. There are multiple, multiple ways to screw up on characterisation, but here are the typical ways … Characters are ‘tropey’, ie. derivative of existing characters, so boring They are stereotypes or recycle toxic myths and ideas The characters feel inauthentic Readers feel they can’t invest in the character’s journey for a specific craft reason (as opposed to personal reason) So if we don’t want to screw up, we need to keep the above… Read More »Top 5 Ways Writers Screw Up Their Characters

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5 Important Elements of Writing a Romantic Comedy

Romantic Comedies Rock So, you want to write a romantic comedy … You’ve grabbed your pen or your laptop, and you’ve decided that it’s time to finally write. If only it were that simple! Not just anyone can sit down and spew out something funny, compelling and believable. At the very least, you need to keep some things in mind. Read on to find out more to find out what you need to make YOURS work … 1) Something Fresh One of the problems with romantic comedies these days is that they all seem to be exactly the same. Therefore,… Read More »5 Important Elements of Writing a Romantic Comedy

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3 Reasons Why “Show, Don’t Tell It” Is Bad Writing Advice

“Show it, don’t tell it” is probably the most frequently quoted screenwriting advice (though you’ll hear it for novels and short stories too). And at its heart, yes it’s good stuff: OF COURSE we want to “show” our viewers and readers things; OF COURSE we don’t want to be “on the nose”, but use subtext instead; and OF COURSE we want to be thought of as “good” writers. Durr. But on surface level, “Show it, don’t tell it” is NOT good advice, especially for those writers struggling. Here’s 3 reasons why: 1. … The phrase has become redundant and/or unhelpful.  Anyone… Read More »3 Reasons Why “Show, Don’t Tell It” Is Bad Writing Advice

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What’s The Difference Between Story & Plot?

I did a guest talk at The Bournemouth University Writers’ Society last night. It was a great turn out and hosted by the marvellous and enterprising Sam Hutchinson, so if you’re a student at the uni and interested in writing (you don’t have to be a Scriptwriting student to join, so I’m told) then you should definitely get down there. Join the Facebook group here. My talk was about the difference between story & plot with sidelines into central concept, theme, audience and structure. These are elements Bang2writers often struggle with, especially at first draft, pitching or rewriting stage (especially… Read More »What’s The Difference Between Story & Plot?

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Linda Seger Tweetcast – London, 10/07/10 @ UCL

For those of you who missed my live Tweetcast on Twitter and Facebook yesterday… Enjoy.—————————————-CHARACTER Dimensions of Characters: emotion, realisation, decision, action #fb #lindaseger Different characters hav different emotional ranges. #fb #lindaseger Characters’ philosophies come out in their attitudes, wot they do and (sometimes) wot they say. #fb #lindaseger A 3D character thinks, acts, feels. Character description shld not rely on physical traits. #fb #lindaseger CONFLICT It’s difficult cos We’re told to diffuse conflict in REAL LIFE – Yet hav to do opposite in screenwriting #lindaseger #fb So many writers shy away form CONFLICT – Yet it is the lifeblood… Read More »Linda Seger Tweetcast – London, 10/07/10 @ UCL

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