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writing exercises

Please Hold …

… As of tomorrow, I am at London Screenwriters Festival 2012! If you want updates live from the event, follow me on Twitter, or join the Facebook page, here. Please note I will respond to emails when I get back – thanks! If you’re  at the fest right now on Pitching Thursday, good luck! This year I am running The LSWF’s Script Labs Scheme again, so say Hi if you see me! I will also be moderating the session Why You Need To Embrace Social Media, on the Saturday. If it’s your usual daily dose of writery goodness you’re looking… Read More »Please Hold …

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#scriptchat @Londonswf 50 Kisses Comp #4: Dialogue

Most writers write more dialogue in their script than they will EVER need. That’s not to say their dialogue is poor, it’s just extraneous. But how do you recognise what you need and what you don’t? Well in the very short film, it’s kind of obvious – dialogue takes up A LOT of space, a minimum of three lines, so you want to use dialogue as sparingly as possible, maybe even not use it at all. (It’s no accident short films with no dialogue often do very well in contests and film festivals, though I would not go so far… Read More »#scriptchat @Londonswf 50 Kisses Comp #4: Dialogue

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#scriptchat @Londonswf 50 Kisses Comp #3: Character

It’s oft-said that’s ALL about character. I actually disagree with this totally – if it’s all about character, then it has to be all about his/her goal too which means plot has to come into play at least HALF as much again – but that’s an argument for another time. In the VERY short film of 1-2 pages, you have to give us your characters in a SNAPSHOT. Literally, the first time we see them, we have to know WHO they are and WHAT they want/are facing, whilst avoiding lazy stereotypes or stock characters. No mean feat. First impressions count… Read More »#scriptchat @Londonswf 50 Kisses Comp #3: Character

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#scriptchat @Londonswf 50 Kisses Comp #1: Concept

So this is the first of my posts on the brilliant London Screenwriters Festival “50 Kisses” competition, a FREE opportunity which asks writers to come up with a 2 page script, including a kiss. From there, placing scripts will be made available to filmmakers to make, meaning writers’ screenplays *could* become the first CROWD-SOURCED feature film with distribution at the cinema from Valentine’s Day 2013. For full details and how to enter, CLICK HERE. So, number one – CONCEPT. From my time as a script reader (ten years + now) I would venture concept is one of the most UNDER-VALUED… Read More »#scriptchat @Londonswf 50 Kisses Comp #1: Concept

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Guest Post: Want To Write Better Screenplays? Read A Picture Book by Ezra Paris

A GREAT guest post from Bang2writer Ezra here, with some fab advice and writing exercises for screenwriters… Let the other Bang2writers know how you go if you give any of them a shot. Thanks Ezra! ————————-Picture books, you say? I am writing a Lynchian take on the Western. I’ve completed character biographies, a beat sheet and a coloured coded layout of my three act structure. Surely there is nothing for me to learn from plucky little steam engines, children who do not wish to sleep and an array of cute baby animals who are unable to locate their mother? Think… Read More »Guest Post: Want To Write Better Screenplays? Read A Picture Book by Ezra Paris

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Guest Post: Beating Writers’ Block by Lucy Pilkington

If you’re feeling “blocked”, Bang2writer Lucy Pilkington has some exercises she learnt on her screenwriting MA… Enjoy!——————————Many writers suffer from this affliction from time to time. As a student I find this happens more often than I wish to admit and it always strikes at the worst times, usually before a deadline. Then panic ensues and I always end up writing drivel. Every time I do this I swear (like many of us do) to myself that next time I will section off more time to write and this time I will stop blaming writers block. These are some of… Read More »Guest Post: Beating Writers’ Block by Lucy Pilkington

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How Free Writing Can Help You Get Started

Updated  You can’t fix a blank page I’d say the most important step in any writing related endeavour is the actual starting. But, like many writers, I often find this step to be the hardest. There’s something about staring at a blank page that makes doing something – anything – else seem suddenly compelling. After doing the laundry, washing the dishes and vacuuming every flat surface in the house, my self-promised ‘five hour writing session’ has dwindled to about 30 minutes. I was talking about this fear of the blank page with some fellow writers recently, and the topic of free… Read More »How Free Writing Can Help You Get Started

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Avoiding Writers’ Block

This one’s from the old blog too – many thanks to the mysterious Script Ninja and the even more mysterious Wordinator for recommending this one! Remember, the old blog disappears next Friday (Oct 31st), so take a look and see if there’s any posts you want saving and tell me which ones!——————————————————————————As writers, we’re warned a lot that we can get “blocked” at any time, like there are plugholes inside our brains that can get clogged with the neccessary debris of life like chunks of smelly hair down the drain. People email me and complain there is blank space inside… Read More »Avoiding Writers’ Block

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Bluecat # 2: 5 Exercises To Get Inspired

Writers often contact me to ask if I have solutions to the problem of so-called Writer’s Block – that supposed condition where you *can’t* write. I’ve always been of the opinion that it’s not that you can’t, it’s that you FEEL you can’t, so addressing whatever problem is in the way of your creativity is your first stop. However I’m a script reader, not a psychologist, so I can’t very well write back and say, “Do you have a problem with your childhood/parents/siblings/some bizarre phobia??” Instead I usually recommend they take time AWAY from writing, stop obsessing on it, stop… Read More »Bluecat # 2: 5 Exercises To Get Inspired

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