Early in my screenwriting career, I was insecure, combative, and a pain to work with. Here is how I turned that around.
The Mental Battle
Screenwriting is difficult. But, once we accept this — that it is difficult — and we abandon the idea that if it is difficult, something must be wrong… well, then we just… go on.
I want to talk about perhaps our greatest weapon in the creative and emotional battle we call screenwriting. I happen to think it's our greatest weapon in any endeavor...
The first page of Todd Field’s screenplay for Tár made the rounds on Twitter over the weekend. It has the look and feel of a 30-year-old script. Confident and masterful, but tough to read. You have to be patient with it. It demands your concentration.
I have seen it repeatedly over the years. Newer writers have an idea for a screenplay that they love, and they write the damn thing. This is huge. Finishing a screenplay is a big deal. Knowing that you can complete one of these things pays tremendous dividends later.
You know the advice about writing something down to make sure you remember it later. Don’t trust yourself, they say. You will forget it. So keep a pen and paper or that notes app on your phone handy.
It is tempting to give script coverage more validity than it deserves. After all, someone read your script and wrote their reaction down. It feels formal. Official almost. A proclamation!