Writing the first scene

My first homework for January 17th, 2011 at the screenwriting course was:

Homework: 1 scene, 2 people having 1 conflict, written on 2 pages.
Purpose: to become familiar with the format and style
Time used: Ok, that can’t be that difficult I thought. I had 4 hours. And 1 hour to go over it, shorten and rewrite some parts.
Tipps used: sit down and stay there, otherwise you won’t write anything. In the end you bring the dialog into the story and you might need to shorten it.

I had 1 week time and I had no idea what to write about. So the last evening (January 16) I sat before my laptop and thought the same again, what should I write, where should I start?

Then I’ve looked at my partner, sitting in front of the television and thought about our relationship, conflicts we had I thought about similar situations other couples might have too. I’ve choosed a simple subject, just for the training purpose and just started with something quite familiar to me and where other could identify themselves. When handing the finished paper to my partner to read it, he said: “Are you writing about us?” – “Our relationship is my inspiration,” I’ve stated. In fact, the conflict situation is pretty similar, the rest is imagination and the couple looks way different then we do.

Lesson learned: sit down and sit, sit, sit and write, write, write, and think about something you know, when you just start with screenwriting. It’s easier to have a basis and built up the story later. The more you go over it, the more you will change.

Feedback from teacher:
Great scene, you really have an unmistakeable sense for the elements of successful storytelling: danger, sensuality, love, family, the effort to overcome obstacles, visual thinking. Rises interest and creates suspense. The unexpect twist at the end (…). Also your dialogues are short. Perhaps you might want to give your dialogues more life, one or the other unfinished sentence, more individuality for the characters. Also your english is good (I wrote the scene in German and English). Keep it up! He also corrected in the scene one line: No direction at the end of the dialog, rather greate a scene direction.

=> Do you agree? I think to remember to have seen some screenplays, where the direction was at the end of the dialog (so called: direction while speaking).

Now you might want to know what my scene was. I’ll tell you another time, when the movie is made, if you don’t mind ;).

Lesson learned II: individuality in dialogues and not only the story but the right format is important too when writing a screenplay, (well, some people have to work with this).


The Dream Of Your Life

Did you had a dream as a child to become a pilot or dancer or hairdresser but you are a laywer, bar keeper or dentist?

I want to become a filmmaker. Yes, I know what you might say, isn’t that the dream of many people? It is. And because it WAS the dream of many out there before me and others, these people do movies of different tastes. Yes of cause, a lot of bad ones too. I am happy, that so many filmmakers are out there, that you and me have such a great choice. For example, the  Apple TV gallery. (Well, on the other hand, my partner and I are arguing a lot more, than with the few new DVDs or Blu-Rays we usually snatched on good days.)

October 2002, I’ve finished my final project for the Multimedia Producer diploma at sae.edu in Zurich, Switzerland (the Multimedia Producer course doesn’t exist anymore). The aim was to use all the tools learned (from Adobe softwares, scripting, authoring etc.) and create an authoring project on a DVD or CD and a website contributing to the project. I’ve created a 3D Hitchcock museum with Cinema 4D and a website about Hitchcock and his work. The examination with Hitchcock, who is one of my favorite filmmakers, drew me to the following conclusion: becoming a filmmaker, would combine all the things I love to do:

I love working in a team with a bunch of creative people,
using all kinds of technology,
to express an idea or message VISUALLY,
to motivate and stimulate negotiations and debates.

And, my passion for watching movies.

To reach that target I joined last year an online course at http://www.gnomonschool.com “Introduction to 3D with Maya” and another online course at cgsociety.com “Character Creation for Games with ZBrush”. Last year in November I went for 4 days to Cologne, Germany (was 6 hours drive with two stops from Zurich) and joined a Documentary Masterclass. Currently I do a screenwriting course here in Zurich.

Even I might not reach my dream, at least, I did something for myself. At a certain time in life you tend to function and neglect the dreams you had. So remember again what your dreams are and don’t forget to do something for yourself once in awhile!

What is your dream (professionally)?