Monday, September 07, 2009

_Screenwriting 101_ by Neil D. Hicks, again

Finished and greatly enjoyed this book. I only skimmed the screenwriting business sections. I'm after the story structure stuff, which was good.

I read this book because it was recommended on the Mechanical Hamster blog.

I especially liked the chapter on elements of story. Here are my notes on that, for what they are worth:

10 elements of story
- back story...most stories include far too much
- internal need: to become fully alive, the char needs to come to grips with some personal attribute....something the char is not aware of.

The antagonist forces the char to deal with this internal need.

inciting is like no other day...unusual event that presents main char wihth a problem/challenge/adventure that he cannot ignore

external goal...something the char believes will solve the problem of the inciting incident...the char fixes on it...

preparation...devising a strategy...getting ready for the goal...must be dramatic: has a profound effect on the char

opposition...anyone with a goal that conflicts with the main chars
....'because the antag is more powerful than the main char, the main char's planning and preparation necessarily fails and he is apparently defeated....all the favorable options have been eliminated....the main char is left with no resources except himself.' the main char, at lowest point, comes to grips with the internal need, and therefore undergoes an internal significant change because of the pressures of the external dramatic conflict.
"A character never realizes. The audience realizes based on what the character does.", after revelation, the main char focuses even more intently on the external goal. External goal becomes even more import for main char and the antag, and unless the main char achieves the goal, a great deal will be lost compromise is imposs btw char and antag, so they must fight and only one can win....

resolution...the main char solves the conflict of the inciting incident and moves on to a new story...both main char and surrounding society have been significantly changed.

1 comment:

  1. That Mechanical Hamster is kind of interesting. Some good practical insights, for all that I can't see myself reading one of this guy's books.