When I first started thinking about penning a script, I found it quite daunting. I mean you see examples of scripts in movies and they always look so polished and bulky, my first thoughts were how are my simplistic ideas going to fill a hundred odd pages?
Surely one idea can’t spawn a literary revolution… Well maybe in Shakespeare’s day… But alas maybe those days are well and truly gone? Maybe we’re just waiting for one of you…
Initially my thoughts were to write a screenplay, writing a novel is on my agenda but il save that for another blog.
Anyway, scouring the net I found many a page detailing the layouts of screenplays the what to dos’ and what to avoid. As with everything on the net the do’s and don’t’s seem to vary vastly. So I stuck closely to the most common do’s… have I got it right? Maybe, I think I haven’t wandered too far outside the rules of writing a screenplay. I do think I tend to approach it a little too much like a novel than a screen play.. But I think I get my message across.
There are a whole host of sites out there ready to help you and give you examples of screenplays, for me one of the sites that helped me enormously was a site sitting with the bbc known as the writers room. It’s full of helpful hints and tips and also allows you to download scripts of dramas and soaps currently being aired on the BBC. I’ve included the link below.. Do go check it out.
Once you do get your head around the different aspects of a screenplay, it does start falling into place. I do think as with anything the more you write the more it all comes together.
Anyhow, as I sit on my commute to work on a packed train. Sitting opposite a lady who seems to have taken up 3 seats with her coat, bag and shopping. Daring someone to ask her to move them so she can give the old eye roll and annoyed sigh of ‘ you’ve got to be kidding me’ . I think back to what I’ve been watching lately. A new comedy drama on Netflix called ‘Orange is the new black’ (here’s the synopsis from good old imdb)
The story of Piper Chapman (Taylor Schilling), a woman in her thirties who is sentenced to 15 months in prison after she is convicted of a decade old crime of transporting money for her drug dealing girlfriend (Laura Prepon). — IMDb Plot: Orange Is the New Black (2013)
You know I didn’t think I would enjoy this, being an avid fan of prison dramas like OZ. I did think ‘ha.. Prison drama? That age old formula! It’s been done!’ But thought hey it’s raining, the brats are in their rooms watching a collection of peppa pig and top gear… Why not?
So I started watching.. Willing myself not to like it. To expect to sit there and mutter to myself ‘ hmph! It’s been done..’ But to my surprise I actually enjoyed it. So much so I watched two in a row, well one and a half .. It was at that point the mentalist made her grand entrance demanding I watch Hotel Transylvania with her for the billionth time. ( which I have to admit, despite the poor box office sales is quite a good watch)
So yes… Orange is the new black .. Brilliantly cast and quite funny. It does put a good spin on the whole prison drama scene, piper our protagonist hands herself in. Immediately she’s thrown into the world of prison, and it’s not at all what she was expecting to her surprise the books she read regarding the subject don’t seem to be as accurate. Then we have the usual eclectic collection of inmates and the different groups and cliques that you would expect. I won’t delve into it too much as I’m only a couple of episodes in, but still worth the watch.
Oh and before I leave you to collect your thoughts and finally put you to sleep after droning on and on. A piece of software I used in order to write my screenplay (and let me tell you there are thousands out there) is called Celtx. A free piece of software which actually manages to format your script for you, so your not endlessly messing around with the margins. The only drawback I would say, to this piece of software would be the lack of a training guide or Instruction set.
Stay tuned for more updates…
This is Mr J signing out
Links and all that jazz: