So the Festival of Writing at York is nearly here – Yippee! This time next week I’ll be at the gala dinner, schmoozing with all the other writerly types.
But before I go, I still need to polish up my pitch for the agent sessions. And it’s nearly ready.
As I practiced in front of the mirror – making sure I could remember the words without too many pauses – I remembered a filming session I took part in last summer. It was for a training film, and I had to deliver about ten lines to camera whilst walking along a pathway.
Sounds easy? Was it heck! Believe me, as a total rookie at talking to camera (not to mention having the director, camera person and sound person watching me!) it was so much harder than the professionals make it look.
Firstly I had to remember words. That was fine, until I had to say it to the camera. At that point I either talked too fast or walked too slowly. Or, just when I’d nearly got to the end of my lines, I’d forget a line. So it would be straight back to the beginning to try again. I think it took eleven takes in the end!
But the thing that I learnt from the whole experience – which was actually pretty exciting, even if rather nerve-racking – was that the script had to be ‘tight’. The words had to be pared down to the minimum. And that when we’d got the sentences polished down to the minimum, uncomplicated, straight-forward lines we could, then the piece had the maximum impact.
And so, as I’ve been polishing up my pitch, which is now only two sentences long, I remembered the three words that my colleague said in reflection of our whole filming experience:
Waffle is Bad!
- Preparing an Oscar-worthy Pitch (romancingforthrills.wordpress.com)
- Star Trek 2: Paramount Hasn’t Seen Script; Already Financing Pre-Production (screenrant.com)
- The Business of Screenwriting: Spec script aren’t just for aspiring screenwriters (gointothestory.com)
- Directing Workshop (diptheminthemilk.wordpress.com)