1. Aeroflot
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    Aeroflot Senior Member

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    Okay, I think I got a good idea

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by Aeroflot, Mar 3, 2009.

    Why not write stories initially as a movie script and then add details in later? I think it's a great idea, because the time and location are at the top of the page so you don't forget, the dialogue is there, and the character actions are all planned out. After you're done, add in the details like internal monologue and elaborate description. It's a set outline.
     
  2. Banzai
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    Banzai One-time Mod, but on the road to recovery Contributor

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    Because scripts and prose are very different things, written with very different techniques, and very different aims. Maybe it works for you, but I'm not convinced it has general applicability.
     
  3. Nilfiry
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    Nilfiry Contributing Member

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    The use would vary among people. People who write well in both types of writing can probably do it, but a person more specialized in either one may not do so well.
     
  4. Arrow
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    Arrow Member

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    In response to your idea about writing a screenplay then inserting the narrative, I'd have to disagree. Remember the old adage, "Know your audience"? I believe it's aptly applicable here. Writing for a film that will be viewed with all of its production details is quite different than writing a story. The writer of prose must bring a great deal of clarifying detail to the writing and the reader. The reader must also have enough literary material to be able to visualize events, characters, relationships being depicted.

    Write a screen play or write a narrative.
     
  5. Aeroflot
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    Aeroflot Senior Member

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    You got it all wrong. The screenplay would be an outline for the story to keep track of everything going on. It makes total sense to want to know exactly what every person in a scene is going to do. You're already doing the same thing writing the 'normal' way, but this way you write all the scenes quickly ahead of time so you know everything is making sense.
     
  6. Vayda
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    Vayda Senior Member

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    Why not just write an outline? Why should i bother with the picky-icky formatting of a screenplay for something that would make a craptastic movie anyway when what I really want to write is a novel? Why not just outline in whatever fashion i'm comfortable with and then write, or god forbid, why not just start writing? Why must there be prep work and knowing what's going to be down to the minutia before writing in the narrative? And what if your characters change? What if my MC can fall in love with the princess in outline form, until i start writing his personality and find out he'd rather be with the warrior woman?

    I think you're just adding work to avoid the task at hand.
     
  7. Gone Wishing
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    Gone Wishing Contributing Member

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    I think that the crux of the suggestion is to write a more elaborate outline, rather than the traditional plot outline - include scene and setting, possibly simplified dialogue and perhaps other details that are commonly found in scripts (what the characters are wearing etc). In that sense, what I thing the point of it is, is to create a more visual outline of the story to be written in an attempt to subsequently be more immersed in the story when you actually start to write/translate it?

    I have done this a couple of times, and find it useful with certain types of stories.
     
  8. Aeroflot
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    Aeroflot Senior Member

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    I'm well aware of the fact that writing can be done spontaneously, thanks--that's how I do it. What I'm saying is that you can write a simple outline that doesn't have to have to be formatted like a screenplay, just set in separate paragraphs if you want. And I'm not saying you have to do it, I was just making an observation that maybe someone else might want to try. I heard about a similar technique from a blog I read the other day, except I thought adding in basic stage directions would help keep track of actions.
     
  9. Vayda
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    Vayda Senior Member

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    Then why say movie script if you don't mean movie script?! Sheesh!!
     
  10. tehuti88
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    tehuti88 Contributing Member

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    Because that's not how I write, and I know if I tried it that way it would fail miserably. I write in ORDER--the story as it happens, this follows this follows this. I don't want to have to go back and fill in parts I was too lazy to fill in the first time. My mind doesn't work that way. Later chapters of my story build off of earlier ones, so filling in the details later would completely mess up the continuity. Not to mention that, knowing my memory, I'd probably forget most of the stuff I was supposed to fill in in the first place. Plus I just enjoy writing the story in order, all fleshed out, and seeing it fully developed on the page, not some fleshless skeleton like a script. It'd be unbearably tedious to have to go back and fix it all up when I should have done it right the first time.

    I'm not a script writer, so that's why I don't write scripts. Simple as that.

    Some of us don't outline, and really don't WANT everything all laid out ahead of time. Some of us enjoy the mystery and surprise of creation. Some of us keep track just fine without having to do all this. Some of us don't want to "write all the scenes quickly ahead of time" because we ENJOY the writing process, how slow and methodical it can be--we relish it and don't want to just "get all the basics out of the way first." That makes it sound like you find the process of writing in detail to be a tedious chore. Many of us don't. We actually like it.

    It's fine if you're suggesting this as an idea for people who are interested in it, but the way you phrase your posts makes it seem like you're tossing it out there as a good idea for everybody, when it's not. Plus, some beginning writers might take it to heart and learn the hard way that this method won't necessarily make them write a coherent story. Learn to write a story the old-fashioned way first, THEN experiment with scriptwriting to see if it helps. If you want to, which many of us don't.
     
  11. Gone Wishing
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    Gone Wishing Contributing Member

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    I think this suggestion might be getting shot down a little too prematurely, (suggestion being the operative word, not dictation).

    Perhaps, also, the use of the word script is throwing people off. (If you actually think about what a script is, it's a story, on paper, that clearly puts you in a certain place - scene - and allows dialogue to lead the action. After the story is written in that form, it then takes whole teams of people to translate it into the experience you have at a cinema - director, set designers, costume designers, make-up teams and so on. That's not what's going to be required in this instance, however).

    Personally, I see this as a blending of plot outline and first draft, particularly useful when one might require a real sense of placement and visualisation when writing the story proper - people who write fantasy often map the world they're writing about (placement), so I would view this method as the written equivalent.

    I said that I have used it myself, which is true. It's also true that haven't used it for several years, since with the stories I write now I no longer require that direct sense of placement - but as a suggestion for a method that some might find useful, I believe it's entirely valid.
     
  12. Aeroflot
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    Aeroflot Senior Member

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    I'm not against all that, like I've said before. I actually prefer your way. But perhaps you're a bit too biased, because you're saying it's tedious to go back and fix it all up, but maybe I feel (and I'm playing devil's advocate here) that it's tedious to write everything only to find out that it sounds really cool, but doesn't make logical sense. Just saying that to point out another angle.



    Well now you're just completely biased =P The "hard way" is totally subjective and it's not for you to determine what the best course of action for writing is, and to blame me for deterring beginning writers is odd to say the least. I'd agree with you if 100% of writers who write "old-fashioned" like were published, widely read, and bringing in the big bucks. However, as we know, only a handful actually make any significant sums of cash. So for me it's funny that you're standing by the 'traditional' methods when in all actually it doesn't work as well as you might think. In fact, you're sounding more like you're throwing your views upon everyone else than I am, because while I'm just suggesting a different route, you're telling. To tell someone to write a certain way is to restrict creativity and stunt the growth of art. Nobody tells a painter he has to use the paintbrush only because everybody does it that way. We'd have no variety if we all used a paintbrush. As a painter myself, I use paper towels to create new textures.
     
  13. EyezForYou
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    EyezForYou Active Member

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    Whatever floats your boat, brother. Whatever works for you.

    In the end, the readers read the stories, not the process of how it came to be.
     

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