Friday, August 26, 2011

The Screenwriter Think Tank Session of Brilliance

Some of the best advice I was ever given was by Will Akers.

He told me, "You're a good writer. Now start making short films. Learn every aspect. That way, you'll always have work."

I am passing that on to you today, dearest reader.   He was absolutely right!

Now, on to screenwriting stuff.


It was truly one of the most outstanding times I have had as a writer. Here's the back story:

I am working on a supernatural thriller script.  I had a vague outline of who and what would go on with the story, but I was stuck. I didn't know how to raise the stakes for our hero. I didn't know what occupation my villian should have.  I have a decent concept for a script, but this was driving me nuts. 

So I called the meeting.

I invited a group of friends.  All were from different backgrounds.  Since my story is about a hero paramedic, I had a paramedic there. I read them the outline from my script, and then for two hours picked their brains.  What a great time!

Folks had AMAZING insight. When all was said and done, I had a full fledged outline, and will get this written probably in a couple of weeks before I start the rewriting process.

The point is, DON'T keep your story to yourself. Pitch it to folks.  See if they'd be interested. I pitched the CONCEPT of this script for about two years to folks.  I would say, "Hey, would you see this movie if this happened?" 

With a group of folks who are from different backgrounds, you will be amazed at some of the ideas that will pop up.  Brilliance!  Even my 14 year old daughter contributed, and I am using her idea.

Now, don't get folks who won't speak the truth. If something doesn't make sense, you want to know BEFORE  you start fleshing it out.  Sometimes people will be 'nice' and not 'honest'.  Honesty is what you want. 'Nice' just wastes your time.

So, if you're ever stuck on writing, hold a meeting and pick brains!  We had a great time and got TONS accomplished!