I blogged earlier about how I am writing my next screenplay, and I’ve decided to bring interested readers along for the ride in the form of this online diary.
It usually takes me 2-3 weeks to nail down the exact screenplay idea I want to write next, and also write up an outline. In terms of the outline, I write up a three-page (or so) synopsis. Once that’s done, I turn the outline into a series of individual sequences, which I write out on 5X7 cards — rearranging scenes as necessary.
Then, interestingly, I basically never look at the outline or those 5X7 cards ever again. It’s all stored in my subconscious, and the way I remember it is usually better than the actual outline anyway.
I finished all that last week. Then I started writing. I began on Tuesday, and I’m up to page 40. Most of my screenplays are between 95 and 105 pages, so I’m almost halfway done with my (very rough!) first draft. I’m hoping to have that initial draft done in about two weeks, then (before anyone else sees it) I’ll do a couple of intense rewrites.
So what is the screenplay about?
Ahhhh, unfortunately, because I haven’t registered the idea anywhere, I’m not going to post the actual logline just yet. I think it’s a great idea, but I’m not quite ready to put it out into the world.
But I can say two interesting things:
(1) I blogged before about how I was torn between writing something “high-concept” that can be produced relatively cheaply (like, say, Bound), or something “authentic” and intensely personal (like, say, Moonlight). I went with the first category. It’s a dark, sci-fi-ish thriller.
(2) In addition to writing a screenplay, I also pitched the idea as a potential YA novel (with a few changes) to one of my publishers. So if the screenplay never gets produced as a movie, maybe I’ll get to write it up and publish it as a novel! I’ve never done this before — simultaneously conceiving of one idea for two different mediums — and I was tickled it seemed to work out so well.
And now, back to writing! In a few weeks, I’ll check back in.