WHAT THE SCRIPT FACTORY SAYS ABOUT SCRIPT ADVICE:
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Find out if I can help you with your current project@https://scriptadvice-co-uk.stackstaging.com offering writers mentoring, training and script editing services in order to develop their work and talent. Please pass on this link to your fellow writers. Or you can join SCRIPT ADVICE WRITERS ROOM@https://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=237330119115&ref=mf
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* DIALOGUE – THE MAGIC ELEMENT
* USEFUL LINKS
Spring came for a bit, kicked a few crocus bulbs out of her muddy bed, shined wanly over the rooftops and buggered off again. It’s raining here at Script Advice Towers as I type this, the Spring Edition of my Newsletter. It’s the sort of rain that lands daintily on your hair and makes a natural curly haired sort like myself, opt for a coat with a hood – better, in my world, to look like a Hobbit than a woman with pubic hair on her head.
It’s been busy at Script Advice since January. I have been head-bent over your scripts, helped some of you towards stronger next drafts and as Spring rolls on, I hope to help more of you get the most of your current project.
I am also currently writing a book. And it is because of this undertaking, that this Newsletter is a slighter sister to the usual, beefier missives I produced quarterly.
I hope to be announcing the availability of ‘Television Writing – What You Need To Know’ (catchy it’s not, but essential to say what it does on the tin, I am told) in the near future. I decided I needed to write a book because although I blog about television writing, give lectures about the various disciplines it involves, and generally make a nuisance of myself on Twitter and on the Script Advice Writers’ Room page on Facebook, where I post links and information about writing in general, I always seem to have something more to say on the subject of crafting drama for a wide audience.
So a book it is then, and one that had to be written. I write from the point of view of a Script Editor, Producer and Executive Producer of tv drama that has rather been around the block and worn out a few t shirts in the process. So you will find it more ‘chatty’ than the usual fair of information heavy books on the market. Watch this space for further info.
DIALOGUE – THE MAGIC ELEMENT
The Dead Poets’ Society
Visual imagery, music, lighting, camera craft, they all add up to a great script if used properly. The story needs all of these components in order to really leap off the page (not so much music in television, but it does, if used sparingly, add a certain frisson to scripts.) But without a steady, confident, relevant, textured, real, dose of dialogue the script will ultimately fail. Film relies less heavily on dialogue, but the best film scripts in my view, are those that take the theatrical premise that all story begins with character, and all character is lit from within by dialogue.
Here is a beautifully crafted, dialogue-led film script which has the perfect balance of visuals and dialogue. The dialogue is aided by the visual – there is a symbiosis between these two vital screen writing elements. The script is parred down to the essential dialogue; that which exposes subtext at it’s most economical and it is all the more powerful for this. The characters are informed by their subtext, which is in turn, reflected in their dialogue. There is no over-laden emphasis on text here, no ‘on the nose’ observations, the viewer is allowed to put together a picture of each character’s personality and personal drives, by what they say and what they do. Perfect story telling. Perfect dialogue. Screen magic.
THE DEAD POETS’ SOCIETY https://www.dailyscript.com/scripts/dead_poets_final.html
Last Tango In Halifax
Television now. Episode one of the highly engaging, beautifully crafted serial Last Tango in Halifax. The first scene, as in all television scripts worth their salt, draws you in by the sheer clarity of character observation. Not much is actually said, but the subtext is so solid, so there in the scene, sat under the table as it where, that the merest line spoken by Celia, in reference to her dead husband, drags to the surface decades of resentment and long-buried disappointment. The way the dialogue is paced too, in this small, domestic, but highly portentous scene alerts the audience to the fact that Celia and her daughter Caroline, do not see eye to eye and again, through subtle, but non the less powerful dialogue, we understand in this first, vital scene, that Caroline really does not now, nor ever has, really understood her mother.
All this knowledge is given to the viewer because of the layers of intrinsic understanding the writer clearly has for her characters. This knowledge the writer shares via her skill in writing just what needs to be said, and marrying this with a deft control of pace, and of attention to small, characterful nuances. So in a 3 minute scene, we can not only see, but also can understand how a frustrated professional mother and daughter (Caroline) relates to her rather meandering, unfocussed, elderly mother (Celia). Dialogue perfection. Magic on the small screen.
LAST TANGO IN HALIFAX:
In my last Newsletter; link here: https://scriptadvice.wordpress.com/2013/01/04/newsletter-15/, I talked about the need to be clear, structured and coherent in your planning of a television drama. I covered treatment writing, plotting your story using an episode outline and also using a beat-sheet or a step by step outline to really nail the dramatic narrative of your script. I do not mention television Bible writing. I am leaving that to Mike Jones.
Originally from Danny Stack’s marvellous blog site, dannystack.blogspot.com/ I have taken this article by Mike Jones who writes here all about how to put together a series bible for television. If you follow this, you won’t go far wrong.
I found this link recently and just love it. Here you can download and read a healthy selection of tv and film scripts. Some have been removed from the site (Casablanca, I was disappointed to realise has been taken down) but most are still there for you to read and study.
Join me on Facebook at the Script Advice Writers’ Room; https://www.facebook.com/groups/237330119115/ here’s what Phil Gladwin of www.screenwritinggoldmine says about it:
‘It’s run by Yvonne Grace, a seasoned BBC producer, and her … incredible energy, passion, and dedication (in true, old school BBC style) means new links, new resources, and a very nice community of like minds on a daily basis.’
I hope I can help you with your writing; be it a television script, short or full length film or screen play, treatment or outline, novel or radio play, I read and script edit them all and can definitely help improve yours. Drop me an email@
Yvonne.email@example.com and let’s get working!
BYE FOR NOW AND HAPPY WRITING.
March 2013 – Script Advice. www.scriptadvice.co.uk