Sunday, March 27, 2011

About Finishing Act I and Creating a Great Screenplay

I had a crazy adventure this month with my working on Act I.  I will admit it was a bit frightening staring at a blank page for what seemed like hours with my: trying to figure out what should come first, whether I needed to begin my story with Voice Over (V.O) or a flashback.

Yes, they might be minor things to worry about, but at the beginning of the month they were very important to me, and made me feel like I was a complete and total wreck!

This is when I started to remember how many had recommended writing warm-ups before focusing on any project. Yeah, I've done warm-ups before but not on a daily basis. So what I ended up doing was used these warm-ups as a daily road map, to help me get to my goal, which of course I would come up with as I wrote for ten minutes.

Once Act I was completed, I couldn't help but feel proud of myself for I had accomplished something very important.

On Monday we will begin writing Act II and I'm really anxious. Everyone knows Act II is what keeps and truly makes the story.

A great screenplay has a great beginning. An AWESOME middle. And a memorable ending.

In fact as I'm writing this, my heart is raising. I'm nervous, excited, and ready for this new challenge.

Till Next Time

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Want to Donate?

Hello everyone. Because of the situation that is taking place in Japan at the moment I have decided to share some links (among other things) where you can donate, if you haven't done so.


Japan Earthquake Donation Fund

The American Humane Association

The American National Red Cross


Australian Red Cross

British Red Cross

Canadian Red Cross

Charity Navigator

Convoy of Hope

Doctors without Borders


International Medical Corps

International Rescue Committee

Japan Society of New York




1,000 Cranes for Tsunami Relief

Via Texting

American Nation Red Cross: Text REDCROSS to 90999 to donate 10 USD

Canadian Red Cross: Text ASIA to 30333 to donate 5 USD

Convoy of Hope: Text TSUNAMI to 50555 to donate 10 USD

International Medical Corps: Text MED to 80888 to donate 10 USD

Operating Blessing International: Text BLESS to 50555

Salvation Army: Text JAPAN or QUAKE to 80888 to donate 10 USD

World Vision: Text 4JAPAN to 20222 to donate 10 USD

And remember, at the moment it shouldn't matter if you donate to a religious charity or not, at least not now...

Till next time

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

I'm Finally Getting it, you Know Writing....

Today I decided to watch a movie from Netflix, and I've been meaning to watch Revenge of the Bridesmaid, so that's what I did. Mine you, I wanted to just watch a movie and not think about the writing format, you know, what a script should have: inciting incident, key incident, plot point I, midpoint, plot point II.

Yeah, I didn't want to think about that. All I wanted to do was watch a movie and enjoy it. But something happened. Something exciting!

I enjoyed the movie. Frankly I would see it again, but that's not the point...

What's truly important is that as I watched the movie, I was able to spot all the small scenes, and dialogue, that made the movie flow, that made it transition from one point to another. I knew where the inciting and key incident where. I also figured out what plot point 1&2 dealt with, and of course what scene made the midpoint.

By the end of the movie I was all giddy!

I finally can spot these important things without really thinking about them.

Hard work does pay off! And also reading a bunch of scripts.

Till next time

My Thoughts on Bunny Drop v.1

 Yen Press
So first of all, let's begin with the synopsis:

Going home for his grandfather’s funeral, thirty-year-old bachelor Daikichi is floored to discover that the old man had an illegitimate child with a younger lover! The rest of his family is equally shocked and embarrassed by this surprise development, and not one of them wants anything to do with the silent little girl, Rin. In a fit of angry spontaneity, Daikichi decides to take her in himself! But will living with this overgrown teenager of man help Rin come out of her shell? And hang on, won’t this turn of events spell doom for Daikichi’s love life?!

That and the movie preview is what got me interested in the series. So let's break it down.

Main Characters:

The story revolves around Daikichi who apparently thinks that the opposite sex is his enemy. Who works in a 9-5 job with lots and lots of overtime. Who has been carefree and lacks responsibility (which of course is hinted by his family members). And who, as volume one progresses, begins to slowly become an adult. But truth be told, I just think he's misunderstood.

Rin is the oddball; the six-year-old that is to tall for her age and too shy to speak. Well that's how the family sees her. But as she begins to live with Daikichi, not only he, but us, were able to see that she is a lot more responsible then Daikichi is. In a way, she balances him. I guess she is the adult and Daikichi is the little kid. A role reversal.

There isn't much at the moment. I know, he's dead, but I feel like there might be more... like if he is surrounded by mystery, so definitely something to look forward to!

Other Characters
I don't want to go on detail about them (for now), but Daikichi's family is definitely in the loop. At the beginning of the novel, you can't help but feel annoyed by them, but by the end, they are, kind of, okay...

The story is amazing and truly touching. The fact that Yumi Unita touches on topics about death, divorce, parenthood, and responsibility in a serious manner while throwing some silliness at the side is amazing! (and I used amazing twice here). 

Definitely something worth buying. Its refreshing while touching familiar topics. The art style is very different from other mangas I've read, which would explain why this is a lot taller then most of my mangas. And the fact that we see how a child, who acts as an adult, and an adult who acts like a child begin take their respected roles; makes us ask for more.
So, thank you Yen Press for bringing this to the U.S.

Till next time

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Writing Warm-Ups are Actually Helpful, so I've Heard...

So this week we had to start working on the first 8-10 pages of Act I. Now remember, a script should be 120 pages, that is 120 minutes, but now, most are less than 120, and the few that are over 120 are exceptions i.e Lord of the Rings. Remember this when you write your script...

Hey, that's just how Hollywood rolls.

I will admit, I was a bit hesitant, nervous, and of course, I plainly stared at the screen for the first few days. You know, the usual.

But the one thing that I would constantly do was think: How am I going to start this? Do I want a flashback? Do I want to start with v.o? How do I want to start my story?! [insert pulling hair here.]

A complete headache!

Then I remembered...

A few months back I read Plot and Structure by Scott Bell, and he said that one should always start the day with a 10-minute writing warm-up, you know, to get things going.   Now his warm-up seems generic(to me), so what I did was changed it a bit to fit around my 8-10 pages with something like:

Today I want to start with....

and the following day:

Today I want to describe this scene with_____________ because _________

And the day after with:

Today for this particular scene I want to express __________ and want Emma to be seen as _______

Believe me, this warm-up helped me when an hour or two later, I had to sit down and start typing my script.

It's like I knew what I wanted and all I had to do was fill the pages with words.

So far I think this was a good start. Now, I just hope it gets better.

Oh, and try morning, afternoon, or evening writing warm-ups before writing your story, or continuing where you left off. Who knows what might it help you with... and remember tweak it a bit to fit your needs.

Till next time.
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