Signs Of An Oscar-Winning Screenwriter

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Motivational Dream

Over the years I’ve read and been told of the importance of seeing one’s goals – motivation.  Last night in my dream, I inadvertently “saw” one of mine – I was negotiating the sale of my screenplays with Jerry Bruckheimer! Not the optioning, but the actual sale of them – because their productions were to begin shortly. It was so real…and right. I was in my element. It was AMAZING!!

Now that is what I call motivation. I can’t wait to write a post about how I actually did negotiate with and sell my screenplays to him – that’s going to be one AWESOME day!!!  Now I just need to finish my screenplays…… 🙂

 

 

Outlining and Medicine

I would equate outlining with taking bad-tasting medicine: it’s a pain in the beginning, but in the end you’re better off with it.

I would describe my attitude toward outlining as a whiny kid asking, “Mom, do I have to take this bleeeeeeh medicine? Do I have to?” 

Then I tell myself, “No, you don’t have to outline, but your story won’t go anywhere.”

End of discussion.

I came across an article from Scribe Meets World  and my attitude toward outlining is greatly improved as I can see my story much more clearly and don’t find the task of completing a screenplay so daunting.

Late Night Quandaries Of A Storyteller

When hit with important ideas at 1 am, I’m in a bit of a quandary: If I get up and write them down, I lose sleep. If I don’t want to get up and write them down, I’ll tell myself I’ll remember them, then in the morning, I end up kicking myself for not remembering.

So last night I was plagued by this very quandary:  I had a tiny idea for this drama I’ve put on the back burner and got out of bed at 1 am. It was, at first a tiny idea. I ended up spending an hour sitting on the bathroom floor, typing away in the dark. (Where did the time go?!)

After being satisfied with the progress of this particular drama, I was glad to crawl back into bed and get some sleep. Or so I thought. A sequence played out so clearly in my mind I knew  had to write it out – everything – the setting, dialogue, characters, it was perfect – one of those pivotal scenes every movie has that this screenplay was missing. I decided to forego the laptop and instead wrote out my ideas in a notebook. My mind seemed to (thankfully!) leave me alone afterwards and I went back to sleep.

(Btw, I had to get up at 6:41 am. )

Years ago I learned the hard way of losing priceless ideas just because I was too lazy to write them down. So one of my personal rules for writing is:

When inspiration strikes, write!

I know within myself losing sleep and whatever else (within reason) over doing something I love is completely worth it in the end when I see my name up on the silver screen, and ultimately next to “Academy Award Winner”  🙂

Favorite Quote

One of the things that keeps me motivated is seeing myself as that success I wish to be – that screenwriter who writes those mega box office blockbusters. And as I see that, I’m reminded of one of my favorite quotes from Syd Field:

“A lot of people contribute to the making of a movie, but the writer is the only person who sits down and faces the blank sheet of paper.”

Taking A Break

Yesterday, as I was trying to make more progress on Action Screenplay #1, I felt a little frusterated I couldn’t further my story. Like maybe feeling a bit burn out by it – as I research, there’s so many ways I could take the story and so many ramifications that go with each one. So, I took a break, read a couple of scripts online from www.imsdb.com, and was inspired to start putting Action Screenplay #2 in Final Draft. It was SO COOL seeing just the first few pages in REAL script format!!! I know like I know like I know that this is going to be one AWESOME movie!!!

I also began outlining my book with Dramatica – but man alive do I have a long way to go!

Research

I find research to be one of the most fun parts of my creative process. I learn so much and  it’s what makes my story a screenplay.

But at first, I feel a little bit…..torn. That tiny voice in the back of my mind causes a slight internal cringe.  I mean, I’m a good girl. What in the world is a good girl doing researching illegal crimes and their inner workings?!  (I have to admit, though, I find the psychology/ mindset and motivation of criminals’ activities fascinating. It definitely broadens my perspective.)

In the end, I know I’m doing nothing wrong, and any misgivings I may posses immediately vanish at the thought of my excitement and joy of seeing my ideas come to visual life. 😀