Guest Post by Eric Beltran
So, you are ready to start working on a new script for your next film or video production. You have several ideas in mind, but there is one problem, one big problem, none of your ideas seem to be clicking.
They all seem tired, boring, or just simply have no real meaning or tangible purpose. So, what is it then, that you could do in order to help your story or script get on the right track?
First of all, let me say that there is never one thing that is going to magically solve your problems. I am not here trying to sell you some magic beans. These are just ideas that you can use to help develop your story structure and hopefully expand your creativity.
That being said, let’s look over some things we could all do to help us out in our future creative endeavors.
Read to get away from all those words…wait, what?
The first thing you can do, and this is probably the one thing most people would be least likely to want to hear while working in film or video production, is to read more. How can reading possibly help when working on a film script?
Well, for starters, reading is going to help develop, not just your vocabulary, but also your imagination. By reading more, you open yourself up to different perspectives. This will help expand on your own ideas about what it is that you want to say with your work.
It will also help you develop a visual side. The more you read, the more your mind will work to create a visual space for the story that you are reading. This is something that will give you a better handle on the world that you are developing for your story.
There are plenty of characters right around the corner.
One problem that many people have when working on their story is that they do not have any well-developed characters. Often, characters are placed in a scene in the same way that the furniture is.
There is no thought put into who, exactly, the character is or why it is they do what they do in a scene. They exist there only as props. They might as well be cardboard cutouts.
It is extremely important to think about who it is, internally, that you are placing in the scene. Even the most obsolete character in your story should be given some kind of background.
Every character should be treated in the same fashion that the main character is treated, in that way.
One good exercise to do, in order to help develop your characters, is to go people watching. Yes, this may sound a bit voyeuristic, but the goal is to try to create a background and story for the people that you see on the street.
If you are out having lunch, waiting on a line, or even stuck in traffic, don’t be afraid to look at the people around you and try to develop a backstory for them.
Study what the person wears, how they behave, and even, if possible, their speech patterns. These are all things that will help you to bring the characters in your story to life in a way that you may have never thought of before.
Also, don’t be afraid to mix and match parts of the different people that you come across with other people in your life. Be the Victor Frankenstein of the film or video production world.
Try looking through a bigger lens.
Another thing to keep in mind while writing your script, and something that will help you create a more well-rounded story, is the theme.
Every story told, or at least any story worth telling, has a well-developed theme, or themes. The bottom line is, if your script has nothing to say, then there is no reason for anybody to listen.
Therefore, it is important to consider what it is your script is trying to say. This is also something that the characters of the story will reflect. These are the ties that will bind together each of the separate scenes in your script.
The theme will be the glue of your screenplay, and the decisions that you make in your script will, or should, reflect the theme that you have established.
This is not to say that your message should be overbearing and relentless, but it should, instead, be something that you are trying to relate to with an audience. Perhaps it is something that you feel strongly about in your personal life or something that you have firsthand experience with.
Regardless of what it is, make sure that the story you are trying to tell has something of its own to say, on a somewhat grander scale.
There’s a reason you hear, “Write what you know,” a lot.
This leads into what will be the writer’s greatest muse, their own life experiences. The greatest and most daunting requirement for being a writer, not just in film or video production but in any forum, is that you have a willingness to be open.
You can’t be afraid or hesitant to take something away from your own life experience and use that to help tell your story. It doesn’t have to be an exact replica, but, instead, try to find ways to cleverly implement what has happened to you in your life into the world of your script.
Most importantly, remember to have fun on the script you are working on for your next film or video production. If you do not enjoy what you’re writing, then it will reflect in the story you are telling, and the audience probably won’t have too much fun or interest in it either.
KVibe Productions is a full-service video production company. Whether it’s a product video production, a corporate video, or a commercial production, KVibe offers the total package of multimedia services from development through distribution.