1. TeamPaul
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    TeamPaul Member

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    Calling all seasoned writers.

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by TeamPaul, Oct 28, 2015.

    Hello!

    My name is Paul, I'm 20 and this is first time here.

    This isn't an introduction, but I always feel more comfortable talking with someone I know a little bit about!

    So, I have many questions and since I see there are a lot of members, I hope to get a good response from the community.

    Now, I've done countless hours of research on screenplay writing, scriptwriting, the movie industry, ect. And I still have many questions that I believe can only be answered by a real community like this one.

    P.s, be gentle; I know I'm not as experienced as the people here, I'm just looking for guide nice and friendly advice. :)


    I have a idea that I want to develop into a script. After extensive research on the subject (which I'm very interested in, by the way) and also on how much attention this particular subject has recieved, i.e how many movies, ect have been made about it, I've found that nothing has been done in 10+ years about it and the thing I found was only very very loosely based on the subject. I feel confident writing it, but I fear that someone, somewhere probably has the same idea. What if they finish before me and make it successful? Do I abandon my script?

    How do I go about copywriting my projects, once I'm finished?

    Is a manager/agent essential for a career in scriptwriting?

    What is the best software for screenwriting, if you use any?

    Who would be the best person to read and critique my scripts? I don't know anyone who is a writer, or is interested, but of course I'd need some opinions?

    Should I write with an actor in mind, or hope someone will fit the role?

    I have other questions, but I can't remember all of them, but I'm sure I can ask here for future answers!

    Thanks in advance for your help!

    Paul.
     
  2. Shbooblie
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    Shbooblie Contributing Member

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    I'm not at all seasoned but just thought I'd say welcome to the forum!

    I'm pretty new to this too and I'm still learning, but I've learned so much just from being on here and I am feeling more confident for it. Try and engage with as many people as you can and I'm sure you'll be able to gain a few beta readers.And you can always post any questions on the forum

    I'f you ever need to bounce ideas off someone I'd be happy to help - not sure how helpful I'll actually be but sometimes just having another set of eyes is the most help.

    I'll hand over to someone who can answer your questions now haha....
     
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  3. Imaginarily
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    Imaginarily Disparu en Mer Contributor

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    For film, I can only speak from a viewer's standpoint, not a writer's.

    Most importantly, don't abandon your script. You seem to be passionate about it, so you better god damn write the thing, you hear me? *glares* I'ma come after you if you don't.

    There will always be an idea similar to yours. Movies resemble each other far more often than they stand alone. We're all human, we all express the same basic themes. A love story, some kind of apocalypse, wanderlust (including space), finding yourself, saving the world. It's all just different versions of the same underlying roots.

    Someone, somewhere, probably does have the same idea you do, and they may even be writing a screenplay about it right now. :bigeek:

    As long as you're not intentionally, blatantly copying some other existing work, I don't think copyright really applies. That's just my instinct, anyway. :agreed:



    PS - I have no clue about screenwriting software or "official" copyrights or any other behind-the-scenes stuff like that. I'm just a common consumer when it comes to film.
     
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  4. TeamPaul
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    TeamPaul Member

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    @Shbooblie, thank you for your response! I feel like this will be a great place to learn - it's always nice to have other new people around for the extra support too! I'd love to share some ideas for sure! In most things in life, you can never make it alone! :)

    @Imaginarily, I'll write it for sure now, you give me hope. :p thank you also for your advice, it's very refreshing from all the 'screenwriting gurus' telling you that you won't make it!
     
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  5. Imaginarily
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    Imaginarily Disparu en Mer Contributor

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    Those people sound like enormous jerks who could use a hearty slap in the face. How dare they stifle your dreams!

    I don't know if you plan to retire on your idea, or break the internet like how Gangnam Style broke YouTube, but it really doesn't matter. If you're passionate about telling this story, you (in my opinion) shouldn't give a crap about how many copies it sells. Write it in its truest form, and the audience for it will come. They'll respect you more for not selling out, for saying what you had to say.

    And isn't that a better way to make a name for yourself and get noticed? :bigwink:

    At least, that's been my experience. :whistle:
     
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  6. TeamPaul
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    TeamPaul Member

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    I always feel like most of them are just the backend of Holywood, like the ones who never made it, so they go on to blog and make everyone else feel bad because they had bad experiences, lol.

    I plan to go ahead with stacking a few scripts before I even bother showing any real producers, just so I don't look like a complete beginner, or look like I stole someone's script because I only have one lol. After that, in many years, I hope to direct. That's the big dream! :)

    I don't think I'm too bothered about how much money can be made; of course it would be a bonus getting g more money than I do now, but I'm fine ad I am. I work a very crap retail job - times are hard for work around here, but I'm perfectly fine. I'm happy as long as I can provide for my fiancee and my two lovley dogs. :)

    You have such a great prospect of life, I love how you say things! Haha.
     
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  7. cutecat22
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    cutecat22 The Strange One Contributor

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    I am by no means an expert or 'seasoned' but, I do sometimes love to waffle and chat:

    How do I go about copywriting my projects, once I'm finished?
    You can probably find out about copyrighting (copyRight, r not w) by doing a simple search on Google. There are different ways to copyright different things. The main thing about copyright, is to be able to prove in a court of law (should you need to) that you came up with the idea before anyone else did. One way to do this, is to take your idea/notes/script, print a copy, put it in a sealed (with sellotape) envelope and post it back to yourself by special delivery. When you receive it, don't open it. Leave it sealed and in a safe place. Not only will it be date stamped, it will also be traceable through the post office system. If someone out there does copy your work, you have a sealed copy, date-stamped previous to theirs.

    Is a manager/agent essential for a career in scriptwriting?
    Short answer, I don't know. Again, you could probably search online for production/film companies and email them to ask if they are ever open to unsolicited submissions. Be prepared to be rejected or ignored - nothing personal, just business.

    What is the best software for screenwriting, if you use any?

    Again, I don't know but a Google search will provide you with links to pages which show how to set out and format a script. Just like authors have guidelines for submissions to agents and publishers, (usually font size/page size/page numbers/font/line spacing/etc) there will be a set format for scriptwriters.

    Who would be the best person to read and critique my scripts? I don't know anyone who is a writer, or is interested, but of course I'd need some opinions?
    For critiquing the format, any scriptwriter, for everything else, anyone who will read it. I think there might be a section for scripts on here where (once you've hit the criteria) you will be able to post excerpts for critique. @Wreybies would be a better person to tell you about that.

    Should I write with an actor in mind, or hope someone will fit the role?
    That's a personal choice but one I would advise you keep to yourself. There's nothing wrong with having a particular actor/actress in mind while you are writing the script (I do it all the time with my fiction) but if it does go so far as to being picked up and put into production, the choice of who fills the role might not be yours to make.

    Good Luck!
    x
     
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  8. RevGeo
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    RevGeo Member

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    Have you read many screen plays/scripts? Knowing what a pro job looks like can be a big help. Also you might watch some re-runs 0f the TV show Californication. Its about a screen writer.
    As far as copyright goes, I wouldn't worry about that quite yet. Concentrate on getting the damn thing written. Business stuff comes later. If any industry types show interest you don't need an agent, you need a lawyer. Don't sign anything without a lawyer looking over your shoulder. I learned that while working in the music business.
    Never give up your dream, man. Don't worry about somebody ripping off your idea. Just go for it.
     
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  9. TeamPaul
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    Another really nice response! Thank you!

    I had heard before that you can email it to yourself, I'm not sure if that would work, but it sounds about the same. :)

    I wasn't sure if I had to get legal papers, ect to actually do it.

    I'm for sure prepared for rejection, in my way of thinking, even the best writers still have bad scripts and rejections.

    I was going to write some short pieces and post them on the forums, to see what everyone thought, I may work on that tomorrow!

    Thanks! :)
     
  10. cutecat22
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    cutecat22 The Strange One Contributor

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    Anytime!

    I'm not sure about the email thing - I'm not very technical but I do know that the post thing is a tried and tested method.

    There are copyright lawyers out there who would be able to give you more sound advice but most will probably charge you for it. Although you may be thinking along the lines of patenting - where you need legal forms to fill in. However, that's the difference between patenting and copyright - copyright is more for intellectual property rather than inventions.

    Have fun! x
     
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  11. cutecat22
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    cutecat22 The Strange One Contributor

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    Do look up the copyright page in books you have on your shelf. I'm guessing the wording on a script's copyright page would be very similar!
     
  12. TeamPaul
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    TeamPaul Member

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    I read some of the script to wolf of wall street, I plan to finish later and a few others, but not many! I've been trying to find some based on the same genre, (history type action) so maybe wolf of wall Street isn't the best choice to relate to! :p

    I'm always watching movies and tv and try and focus on the writing style as well as actually enjoying what it is, so I'll probably give that a watch! I'll let you know if I like it. :p

    That's unfortunate, may I asked what happened to you? I'll take your advice into account for sure, so thanks for that too.

    Dream big. :)
     
  13. TeamPaul
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    TeamPaul Member

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    Sounds like this is pretty solid advice, I may follow the route of mailing it to myself! :)

    Just out of curiosity, do you write of any sort? x
     
  14. RevGeo
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    RevGeo Member

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    What happened to me? Well, first of all I got fucked up while in the US Air Force during the Viet Nam war and I'm a 100% disabled war veteran, so I have my pension, which doesn't hurt. I retired as a professional musician last year. I was a newspaper reporter and columnist for several years, off and on. I worked in the music business in L.A. for a while until I discovered what a snake pit it is and became a road musician - back up guy for several acts; some you've probably heard of and some you haven't. I taught music for several years (like most pro musicians) and, in my dotage, have taken up writing full time.
    So, I've been in the entertainment biz in one way or another for 40+ years. I never was a huge success, but I haven't had a day job since 1982, so I'm good.
    Like I said, don't give up your dreams. Don't listen to nay-sayers. Don't get married, and if you do, don't come crying to me. Good luck buddy.
     
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  15. BrianIff
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    BrianIff I'm so piano, a bad punctuator. Contributor

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    What if you're not just seasoned but burnt out?

    Disclaimer: In political writing, not fiction.

    ;)
     
  16. Jack Asher
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    Jack Asher Wildly experimental Contributor

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    Final Draft is the industry standard and it'll export to any studio specifics you want. Every production house has their own set of formats that they want, but with Final Draft you just choose "MGM" and the script is formatted for you.
    http://store.finaldraft.com/all-final-draft-products.html
     
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  17. Midge23
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    Midge23 Member

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    I thought that this was a myth; you can post an empty envelope to yourself and put something in it and seal it anytime you like, so it would have little strength in court.

    I claim no expertise in these matters - another random thing I read on the internet.
     
  18. Aaron Smith
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    Aaron Smith Contributing Member Contributor

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    I'm just salty.
     
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  19. Chinspinner
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    Chinspinner Contributing Member Contributor

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    Well, we all take you with a pinch of salt.
     
  20. Aaron Smith
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    Aaron Smith Contributing Member Contributor

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    That's cannibalism.
     
  21. Chinspinner
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    Chinspinner Contributing Member Contributor

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    I get the legs.
     
  22. Aaron Smith
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    Aaron Smith Contributing Member Contributor

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    Jokes on you. I skip leg day.
     
  23. Chinspinner
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    Chinspinner Contributing Member Contributor

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    Oh come on, we all know you enjoy a bit of stocking action on a Friday night.
     
  24. Aaron Smith
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    Aaron Smith Contributing Member Contributor

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  25. Chinspinner
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    Chinspinner Contributing Member Contributor

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    Your legs are comparable with Julia Robert's? Post a picture.
     

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