Second draft

Although rewriting the rough draft was has been a very challenging experience, it was a time in the screenwriting process when I saw myself as a ‘screen-wright’, crafting and shaping a script. I began to see the story take on a life and form of its own. It was also a time when I had to be sure to keep an open mind, and let the ideas come to me unhindered, as I read and re-read what I had written.

I started by printing off the script and looking at it as a separate object. As a text that exists outside my computer, away from the ease and temptation to delete lines and change words on the screen. I took time to sit down and read it, first as if I was the audience, then again making notes on the script, as I identified issues within the scenes that I felt needed addressing, such as scene headers, scene descriptions, characterisation, dialogue, scene structure, cinematic qualities, and so on.

I went back over the key plot points, and adjusted the end of act climaxes and turning points to create a stronger framework for the story. John Finnegan’s webinar on deep structure and the ‘Story Structure Masterclass’ handout were particularly helpful here.

There were times during redrafting when I couldn’t find satisfactory solutions to the problems I had identified within the script. The first act seemed to set up the world and tone of the story, and introduce the protagonist and the initial problem effectively, but the second and thirds acts were patchy and incomplete. I have also spent a lot of time this week worrying about fitting the plot points to a rigid structure. What seemed to work in both the treatment and the step outline has proven difficult to achieve while writing the actual screenplay.