Posts Tagged ‘Script Anatomy’


Writing Log Week 34 – 28. August, 2017

So the big disappointment this week is that I didn’t script any pages.

I had started writing my pilot last week but, when I went back to my beat sheet, I realized that it wasn’t quite as thorough as I hoped. That’s why I’m taking some time to bang out a full outline (12-20 pages for a 60 page script). Still, I did do more great research for the feature I hope to write in Pilar Alessandra’s class and the pilot I’ll write in Hollie Overton’s Script Anatomy class.

While I’m here, I should mention that I have it on good authority that both Writers on the Verge and the WB Writers Workshop have called applicants for interviews and… and I didn’t get a call this year.

Frankly, I’m not as glum about it as I thought I’d be. There’s still NHMC but maybe I need to think about expanding my resume in other, more creative ways. Maybe it’s time to write that comic book or make a fiction podcast. Something, anything, to help me stand out.

But I digress. This week I completed what must be my 10th viewing of Edge of Tomorrow. Goddamn, I love this movie. It want to call it a perfect sci-fi movie — yeah, I like it that much. I also watched The Invitation. A lot was made about this slow burn of a chamber piece. It’s… it’s not for me but everything it’s about is for me.

Lastly, I read the Black List script Free Guy. It’s like a live action LEGO movie, and to say any more would spoil the read.

(hint, hint)

I will say that the writing is funny, fasting moving and surprisingly emotional. If they can properly visualize the main conceit, this has the potential to be awesome.

That’s all for this week. Me, I’m gonna keep tearing though this outline. You, be excellent to each other.

Posted in Writing

Mid 2017 Check-In – 8. July, 2017

Goddamn, it’s crazy hot. Seriously, this is how I’m gonna spend the rest of the summer.

Regardless, it’s time for a mid-year check-in. I’d say that, despite the ups and downs (and very down downs) of this year, I’ve done an alright job of keeping up with my goals and the required creative output.

Features – At the start of the year I said I wanted to write a contained thriller. I started breaking that story, but then a news item and a friend’s suggestion sent me working on a second, much bigger contained thriller — the first feels like an indie film, the second more like a mid-to-big budget movie. I need to pick one and write it this fall.

Comic Books – I had a script for a flawed short and it died on the vine. That’s fine. Mediocre ideas should die. Now I just need to find another short comic idea.

Pilot – I’ve done some work on my pilot but not nearly enough. That changes today. It will have my total focus until the end of the summer, when I should have a draft.

Spec – I wrote and submitted my Blindspot spec to the Austin Film Festival, the WB Writers Workshop, and the NBC/Universal Writers on the Verge program. In a couple of weeks I’ll submit to the NHMC fellowship.

Fiction Podcast – This wasn’t even on the radar at the start of the year but I just wrote a pilot episode and outlined the first season of a supernatural infused noir drama — and now I’m considering making this sucker (truly, I am a masochist).

I took a Script Anatomy class for my spec and it was great. I absolutely recommend them and I hope to take one more class this year. I am also looking at a couple of other classes (will let you know what I find).

Gotta renew my passport ASAP (otherwise, how will I ever find a Canadian honey?). Still need to do something to fill the music void. Still need to develop an exercise routine.

As if that weren’t enough, this year I also followed Scott Myers1, 2, 7, 14 advice. How am I doing in that respect? Well…

I’m supposed to read 1 script a week. By now I should have read 26 scripts. I’m behind, having only read 19: 8 feature scripts and 11 pilot scripts.

Feature Scripts
In The Deep (The Shallows)
The Wall
Hotel Artemis
Blonde Ambition
James Cameron’s Titanic
Let the Evil Go West

Pilot Scripts
Life Sentence
Killing Eve
El Jefe

I should be watching 2 movies a week, totaling 52 movies to date. Sadly, I’m only up to 39.

The Cabin in the Woods
The Shallows
John Wick
A Monster Calls
Postcards from the Edge
Resident Evil: The Final Chapter
Sleepwalk with Me
Man Up
The Lego Batman Movie
John Wick: Chapter 2
Get Out
Patriot’s Day
Ghost in the Shell (animated)
Kong: Skull Island
Ghost in the Shell (2017)
Phoenix Forgotten
Guardians of the Galaxy, Vol. 2
Alien: Covenant
T2: Trainspotting
Gone Girl
Wonder Woman
Cars 3
Rough Night
In Bruges
The Beguiled
Baby Driver
Men in Black

I should be writing 1 page per day, totaling 182 pages. I stand at 201 pages written to date, SO PUT THAT IN YOUR PIPE AND SMOKE IT!

I should have done 364 hours of research and I… I’m too tired to calculate that.

But see, I’m doing pretty well. Hooray for me!

Posted in Writing

Writing Log Week 20 – 22. May, 2017

Besides writing, I saw Alien: Covenant this week. Jesus, when did the humans in this series get so dumb?

The rest of the week I received notes, rewrote my Blindspot Spec, read my Script Anatomy classmates’ scripts (so good), worked on my applications for Writers on the Verge and the WB Writers Workshop.

No rest, right?

Posted in Writing

Writing Log Week 18 – 8. May, 2017

How is my writing going?

This week I stopped by Target to buy underwear. Then I went back to buy socks. Then back again for more underwear. Then again for more socks. Tonight I’m going back for yet more underwear. Why? My options are either that or this…

Why don’t I have time to hit the Laundromat?

Because I wrote 65 pages this week. 65 MOTHERF**KIN’ PAGES!

My script is (over) due for my Script Anatomy class this Friday. The AFF deadline is Monday. When your true work calls, you must answer.

But I did manage to squeeze in time for Guardians of the Galaxy, Vol 2. At the movie, I saw trailers for both Spider-Man: Homecoming and Thor: Ragnarok, the one with the Led Zeppelin song that made everyone go, “gaga.” Yeah, it’s a nice use of the song, but did everyone forget how Fincher and Karen O crushed it with that The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo trailer?

Remember your history, cinephiles. Thor is a puny girly-man by comparison.


Time to rewrite.

Posted in Writing

Writing Log Week 17 – 1. May, 2017

This week I focused on my Blindspot spec script. The finished script (60 pages) is due for my Script Anatomy class in 10 days. The final Austin deadline is in 15 days. WB Writers Workshop and NBC/Universal’s Writers on the Verge are both due in 31 days.

So I tore down my outline. I tore it “down to the studs” (stole that from Meg LeFauve) and then I built it back up. I put my butt in the writer’s seat, put my nose to the grind stone, and I did the work. It wasn’t pretty. Honestly, I probably looked like this…

But I did some honest work.

Now I just have to write 6-10 pages a day.


No sweat.


Posted in Writing

Writing Log Week 13 – 11. April, 2017

Lucky week 13, right?

Well, sorta. Not really.

I did work on my Blindspot spec, which is shaping up nicely (big thanks to my Script Anatomy class).

Why wasn’t I more productive? Because I still haven’t beaten Ghost Recon: Wildlands (stupid video game addiction).

Did you watch the new Ghost in the Shell movie? Yeah… let’s just leave that there. What about Trucker & Dale vs. Evil? It’s a fun premise… let’s move on to the scripts.

The Snowpiercer pilot is the most wonderful sort of insanity I’ve ever seen committed to the printed page. I cannot wait to watch the pilot. El Jefe is the Paul Attanasio CBS pilot and it’s a masterclass in deftly combining character with action. Goddamn, that guy can write!

That’s all for now. See y’all next week.

Posted in Writing

Writing Log Week 12 – 27. March, 2017

What makes this week different from all the past weeks I’ve done this log? I didn’t watch any movies.

Check it.

Why? One, I started a Script Anatomy spec writing class and had to read everyone else’s homework. Two, my writing group met and everyone submitted, so I had A LOT of reading this week.

Also, I played the hell out of Ghost Recon: Wildlands because I have an addiction.

Still, I did read CATHERINE THE GREAT, the top Blacklist script from 2014. It’s pretty… great.

Oh, and obviously I worked on my spec.

Expect more from me next week.

Posted in Writing

Writing Log Week 08 – 27. February, 2017

Who’s a good boy?

… okay, not him.

I’m referring to me!

So this Feature Thriller has leapt to the front of my queue because I’m having a blast writing it. For the record, I decided to break the story using the eight sequence method. Basically, you think of your script as having eight sequences, each 10 to 15 pages. Each sequence has a beginning, middle and a cliff-hanger ending. For this particular project it’s working for me (so far).

This week I read two pilots. The first was Killing Eve, a comic thriller from Phoebe Waller-Bridge. Name doesn’t ring a bell? She’s the creator/star of Fleabag.

The second was the new pilot from The 100 creator, Jason Rothenberg. It’s called Searchers and it seems pretty cool. Boom. Out.

As for my movies, I watched a disquieting double feature about marginalization and micro-aggressions. I’m sure you’ve heard the buzz about Get Out but I would beseech you to watch Elle.

Despite the excitement about about my feature, I really need to keep cracking on my Blindspot spec because I start a Script Anatomy class mid March.

Wish me luck with keeping pace this week because I’ll be at Emerald City Comicon! Who else is going?

Posted in Writing

Looking Ahead to 2017 – 1. January, 2017

After the vulgar confusion that was 2016…

I need to refocus. I need to reset.

My number one priority is to get back on top of my writing. I have to set ambitious goals.

Feature – I’ve started brainstorming a contained thriller.
Comic Books – I have a problematic script for a 5-page comic that’ll be irrelevant in 20 days. Pretty sure I need to bury the idea and move on, but…
Pilot – I need to finish a rewrite that I cracked last month.
Spec – I’ve started working on a Blindspot spec for the fellowships.

I really want to take a Script Anatomy class to help me with one of the above but their “weekend only” class schedule is problematic for me. We’ll see what I can do.

On the non-writing front, I need to renew my passport so I can get out of this country for a little bit, even if it’s just Canada. And I really do miss music in my life. I’m not going to SXSW this year but I need something else to feed the need. Have any of you tried Jukely? Lastly, I need to start exercising regularly again.

Regardless, I’ve been overwhelmed and beat up but I can’t stay down.

Time to get back into the fight.

Posted in General

I’m Gonna Git Edumacated – 10. December, 2015

I’ve been an absolute demon when it comes to writing this year — more on that in a later post. Still, sometimes I feel like a total slack jawed yokel.


Why? I suffer from a near fatal case of “Impostor Syndrome“. This is why I’m always pushing myself. This is why I’m in four writing groups. And this is why I’m looking for a screenwriting class in 2016.

Here’s what I am considering:

UCLA Extension – I took two of their classes earlier this year. One was great. The other was okay. I might take another but I feel like I need to branch out, find something that will push me to the next level even faster.

Script Anatomy – I know two people that have taken their classes and both gave glowing reviews. To boot, one did the NBC/Universal Writers on the Verge program and the other is currently in the WB Writers Workshop, so their recommendations have weight. I also dig that S.A. is almost exclusively geared towards those seeking a television career and those applying to the popular spring fellowships.

Writing Pad – I have one friend that’s currently taking their TV Comedy Pilot class and so far she finds it valuable. The classes offered cover both features and television, as well as other formats like publishing and memoir writing.

Corey Mandell – One guy in my writing group took one of Corey’s classes and he couldn’t stop raving. Corey seem to offer only a couple of classes, but maybe his strength lies in teaching the basics, laying a rock solid foundation, instead of diving into specific topics.

Pilar Alessandra – I’ve been listening to her podcast after meeting a writer that was devoted to her (I should note that this writer then went on to attend the WB Writers Workshop and is currently staffed on The 100). I think Pilar has a lot to offer feature writers but I know she’s new to teaching television. Then again, like I said, my acquaintance got into a popular writing program and got staffed, so Pilar must be pertinent when it television.

Jen Grisanti – I first heard of Jen at the Austin Film Festival where writers from Los Angeles, Seattle and Austin extolled her virtues. I’ve met a few people that have taken her teleseminars — she doesn’t really offer classes, per se — and they’ve had good things to say.

So, have you taken classes from any of the above? If so, did you love it? Hate it? Indifferent? Maybe you could offer me better advice if I told you what I’m looking to get out of a class.

One, I’m looking for a class, not another degree, or an ongoing sequence of learning, or a cult. At best, I might take two classes this year. It all depends on time and budget.

Two, I’m looking to concentrate on television. I’m looking to jump into television either by getting into a fellowship or by begging my friends for a job. Yes, I want to write features and develop comic book ideas but the tip of the spear is TV writing.

Three, I want an in-person class. I want people that will judge me for being tardy and guilt me about deadlines.

Four, I’m looking to write a new pilot or rewrite one of the two pilots I wrote this year… but I might take a class to nail a spec script — yes, I’m that serious about getting into one of big fellowships.

So, do you have a suggestion for me?


Posted in Writing