So I did the outline as per the post http://www.deadredeyes.com/how-to-write-a-screenplay-in-one-day – practicing what I preach of course – and it technically took a month, but also took only a day if not less when going by time. Over the past month I had an hour here and an hour there at best, and so this added into the time I took to do an outline. Overall, I spent about 10-12 hours on it total, which I think is a decent day’s worth if you can pull it off.
I’m happy with the story, its a light hearted comedy, so quite flexible too and probably comes in at a relatively short 90 minutes. Originally I wanted to use a more dramatic and semi-personal idea, but it got the best of me and added negative vibes to an already stressful schedule. So I reverted to comedy to relieve me in this case.
I ended up with just about 80 scenes laid out in an Excel Spreadsheet, with the columns of :
– Scene Number (which explains itself, though for some continuous sequences I would do 1a, 1b, etc)
– Outline (whats the scene doing, whos’ what, etc)
– Location (slugline in some ways, INT, EXT, that sort of thing)
– Main characters (who’s this scene focusing on)
– Estimated duration (when acted out in my head at least, rounded to the nearest 10 or 15 seconds, many scenes would be 30 to 90 seconds for instance, while faster sequences 15)
– Notes (more for me to notate in the scene if relevant)
So now is the next part. How does this transition into a full length screenplay? Will it be something I can easily churn out pages from and not worry about the outline, because I have already connected the loose ends? Any guesses on how long it could take? Hopefully equal to or less than this stage.
And I made sure it answered the common questions for writing a screenplay… such as:
– Do you characters have a reason to be there?
– Does each scene / line have meaning or relevance to moving the story? Hmm, maybe not “meaning” if its a comedy, but you get the idea.
– Is there the right level of background and transition (not every scene has to lead through and onto the next for instance)?
– Did you come up with an idea for storyline (including the end) before you started writing it?
– Would you watch it?
Anyway, a bit of an interim post, but figured I’d document how its progressing, whether anyone is listening or not. Hopefully will have an update soon.