As I just finished a solid first draft of A Falling Rock – a thriller by SABI (my latest screenplay) I was surprised when I realized (after thinking back) just how many feature scripts I’ve written over the years. This led to an article I called “The No-Discipline Screenwriter (Almost)” written for The Script Lab — which is a very useful resource for new and upcoming writers with several topics around screenwriting. They tweeted “Writing is a Lifestyle, not a Diet” not too long after my post, which is certainly valid for writers of all kinds & I totally agree. For my circumstance, I would amend it to ‘Storytelling is a lifestyle, not a Diet’ to make room for directors and producers (or all 3) as well. The full article I wrote called “The No-Discipline Screenwriter” can be found here, and it’s not really screenwriting on a diet, but it is a very unconventional approach to an art which does certainly require discipline.
Re: No-Discipline — I have offered the caveat: *I should preface the above with the notion that ‘discipline’ of some degree is needed when writing an outline and a script. Even if it was one word every 2 months, writing that one word, thought or idea down – would still require the slightest discipline. (i.e. there is no such thing as a no-discipline screenwriter…;)
Somehow, one way or another — one must continue pushing forward. Below is just a quick roll call of the feature film scripts I’ve written over the years: including genre & collaborators, some with discipline — some without. If you have a list, I’d be interested in seeing yours too. I’m proud of them all except for Call it a Night which was grossly underdeveloped. A Sort of Homecoming won the Institute of Mental Health Initiatives Scholarship at USC, and Lone Tree Hill got me honors and a Master’s Degree from there and a film I would love to make if I had around 60 Million… Richard, Patrick and Peter are all terrific writers that I met in the Graduate Screenwriting Program and our collaborations yielded highly original stories. Snowblind, written with Zak Forsman was my first feature screenplay — which we adapted from an incredible book by Robert Sabbag with the same name.
A Falling Rock – Thriller White Knuckles – Psychological Drama Chasing Tail – Action/Adventure – with Richard Shepherd Cheryl, Otis & Guy – Comedy – with Patrick Meighan Shadows – Drama – with Peter Murray Lone Tree Hill – Period Survival story A Sort of Homecoming – Family Drama Call it a Night – College Dramedy Snowblind – Smuggler, Action/Drama – with Zak Forsman