It is July 1, 2010 and I'm staring at a blank page.
During all this staring, while the cursor on my screen disappeared and reappeared in one second intervals, inducing a mild state of hypnosis, I realized that I'm about to start my 20th feature length screenplay.
In my humble opinion, twenty is when things really start to count. Who wouldn't search every pair of discarded jeans for a missing twenty spot? Twenty is also around the time when you can collect your pages, smack them on the desk and produce an impressive thump.
When I write "Fade Out" the very next time I will be there. Twenty scripts. Five of which have been made into actual movies. Not a bad batting average.
To commemorate this event, I've decided to blog about my process. I have two objectives in mind: 1) Share what I've learned and 2) Vent. No, just kidding. (Although, any writer that tells you writing isn't a miserable, tedious, horrible process which includes many hours of head bashing into neighboring wall, has never written anything. So, yes, there will be venting.) For real, 2) I want to motivate myself to keep growing as well. How will a blog do this? I'm not sure, to be honest. But, I'm willing to see how it goes. So here it is: writingforhollywood.blogspot.com How To Write A Screenplay
And so it begins. Day One of script number 20.
The page is still blank.
I wish I could tell you it gets easier. I wish I didn't have to go through the histrionics of convincing myself each and everytime, whether writing on assignment or on spec, that I didn't kill the braincells that knew how I did this the last time. Well, I can't tell you that because as I type this, the page is still blank, and instead of getting down to the business of writing my 20th script, I am blogging about writing my 20th script. I have officially entered a new level of procrastination. I'm kind of proud about that.
The Plan: First Draft (the vomit draft*) to be completed by August 13th. (Six weeks. Gasp. Gnash. Grind.)
Step One: Outline*
*Vomit Draft. The first rough draft of a script that you write fast, without thinking, throwing everything in that gets you to the next scene, even if it makes you want to puke.
*Outline - this is not actually the first step of my writing process. It is what I am launching into today. To read about the preliminary steps - read the next post - Project Backstory.