Archive for the ‘Inspiration’ Category

October, the end of Oktoberfest, Christmas items begin to appear in the stores, and the kids get ready for Halloween.

October

Halloween

For screenwriters, it’s time for the Austin Film Festival. With the festival only a couple of days away I thought I would share my thoughts on pitching. I pitched last year, and for a introvert it can be nerve-racking. For anyone pitching this year, I’ve created a list to help you prepare.

  • Write out your logline and main story points. This is the information you need to convey during your pitch.
  • If you have friends who do presentations, run through it with them, get feedback.
  • Practice with a stopwatch, you only have 90 seconds. I saw many people go overtime last year.
  • Practice until you don’t need your paper/cards. Practice on the plane, on the bus, in the hotel room. People may think you are crazy talking to yourself, screw them, practice!
  • Double check your timing. Stopwatch!! 90 seconds only.
  • Be kind to the festival people running the pitching event.
  • On your pitch day, dress up a bit, I wore a suit jacket with jeans and a polo shirt.
  • Deep breaths, calm, channel any nervous energy into the pitch. If your script is a comedy, be funny.
  • Support the other pitchees, they might be able to help you at some point in the future.
  • If you don’t get picked for the finals you can sign up for another pitch session, if they have extra space. My pitch session last year was full of people who nailed their pitches. One of the other pitchees who did not win my session pitched at another one and ended up in the finals.
  • Thank the judges.
  • Smile.
  • TRY to have fun.
  • Remember – PRACTICE!!!!

Copyright © 2015  J. Power

Homemade Chain Calendar

My Chain Calendar

As you may know I am a part time writer, which means I have a day job that pays the rent, a family, and I also try to make time to write. Many nights I read, watch TV, play games, or scan the internet instead of writing. All of those activities are fine, but if you want to get something done you need to work on a consistent basis.

I was not doing that, hence I did not get much done. I have unfinished outlines, screenplays, short stories, and ideas strewn about the house. Without consistent work any project can take forever.

In early March Diane Beck, a twitter friend, tweeted a link to this blog post: How to Stop Procrastinating on Your Goals by Using the “Seinfeld Strategy”. She then challenged me to begin chain writing with her. I accepted and we began our journey writing and supporting each other. I’ve been able to write two short stories, and sections of my screenplay as well as working on some outlining for a new project in the two weeks I have been writing. I usually write for 30 minutes to an hour a day, some days less some more, but I write. It’s given me a sense of accomplishment to be able to cross off a day and continue the chain.

I’ve seen plenty of posts that say you need to write every day to improve. I’m not saying you need to write every day to improve, but you should if you want to complete your book, screenplay, story, or anything else you want to finish. Get some progress in every day, achieve your goals.

If you would like to join Diane and I in our chain writing adventure follow and contact us on twitter Diane Beck and jimmytwiz. We use the hashtag #chainwriting.

If you need a calendar run search for chain writing calendar. They are all over the web.

Copyright © 2014

All rights reserved.

Words Matter

Posted: March 22, 2013 in Inspiration, Writing
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Words Matter. That’s the nice title for this.

WORDS FUCKING MATTER!! (The real title)

If someone is walking they are not running, if they are strolling, they are moving at a different pace than if they are jogging. When you are a writer you need to pick your words carefully, making sure you are getting the proper feel for your story.

I ride the metro every day and every day I hear them say, “We must stop momentarily to wait for the train ahead of us to leave the station.” These stops are usually 3-10 minutes, they are almost never a momentary stop. I’m sure “momentarily” is used because they did some kind of survey and found that people felt better if you used the word “momentarily” instead of a more accurate word, like shortly, soon, or I don’t fucking know how long. It annoys me, because words mean things, they matter.

So the next time you begin to edit your work pay special attention to your choice of words. Is the character intellectual, would he know or use complex words to describe his situation? Is he trying to impress someone and uses the words incorrectly? Is the heroine running from a shuffling or a staggering zombie? Did the victim guzzle from the poison cup or just sip from it?

You are a writer, choose your words carefully, they matter.

The Idea

Posted: March 28, 2011 in Inspiration, Writing
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The Idea.

That’s where it all starts, one little thought bouncing around in my head, inspired by music, an event, a sight, a taste, or an emotion. It can bounce between the walls in my head for weeks and even months before crashing into my frontal lobe, cracking my skull and spilling onto the page as just another unfinished THING to add to my growing list of unfinished THINGS. THING 2300 or 2400, I’ve lost many ideas over the years because I did not write them down. I have a tendency to let a THING germinate in my head until I think they are fully formed, but not all of them get that far and so they end up being lost in the mushy brain matter that floats inside my skull.

Orchid

FIRST RULE OF WRITING: Write!! Get the idea down on paper, then let it germinate and grow and bloom.