Tales from the Script this week looks at a lesson learned from the script I gave notes on. The descriptions - scene and action - really popped. I mean seriously. I noticed it, and my wife noticed it. She then was supportive enough to draw a direct comparison to my writing. That's no kidding around; her feedback is honest and extremely helpful - devoid of most sugar coating.
The point made was that my scripts still read like novels. I am very
descriptive, but in a wordy way. This author accomplished in a line what
I struggle to cram into four. A script is like those sketches that are
just a couple strokes and then your mind fills the rest in. A novel is
more like a mural - never ending splashes of color with [often] excruciating
detail. The key is to pick the most important element of the scene - the
one with the most VISUAL impact, and use that to describe everything.
It's something I have to practice or my scripts will always be slow
reading and tedious. It makes me wonder if I should just stick to novel
writing. But then I look at the unfinished novels and think,
"Probably not a good plan. I've actually finished screenplays."
I made startling connection this morning between stories and life. In my
mind I specifically used the word
So what does the typical family vacation script look like? Let's just say
that I think each of us, deep down or close to surface, can admit that there's
a bit of Clark Griswold inside that would take as many hostages as necessary to
make everything perfect.