Assembling the Team

Hey I just wanted to bounce an idea off of this forum.
Would it be a good idea to assemble a small team of 3-4 writers with genre in mind to come up with story ideas, characters, themes etc? These writers would not be friends but aquaintances. I would think that over a weekend one idea worked over by 3 brains would make the story richer and more powerful.
Throw out some pros, cons and advice.
I think it would all come down to how well you work together. It could be very productive, or very frustrating and counterproductive.


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I'll put it this way. Brainstorming with others works much better than brainstorming by yourself. Never did the group thing professionally though.


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For some writers two or three other people with their own ideas, characters
and themes created arguments and one "winner". For others this can be an
exciting, creative opportunity.

SitComs are often written that way - a room filled with writers throwing out
ideas, jokes, characters and themes. But even then one writer leaves the
room and write the script. I was on staff on a TV drama. We would meet twice
a day for a story session to talk about the arc of the entire season. Ideas,
themes, situations and characters would be brainstormed, but each writer would
write their own script.

So it seems you idea of assembling three or four writers for a weekend the
brainstorm could work. If I was in the that room my questions would be; once
the weekend is over, who writes the script? And if an idea I loved wasn't chosen
could I go off and write that idea on my own or do all ideas belong to the collective?
i have a group of friends that i throw ideas off all the time and my idea will almost always come back funnier(i manly deal with comedies) after giving them a chance to throw some of there ideas into the pot. but i might suggest using friends whom you have similar stlye's to this way you may avoid confrontation.
I've done this a couple of times, and all it really comes down to is the focus of the talent. If they're there to work then something will most likely come together regardless of conflicting interests/ideas.

I also think you need to have a strong personality to keep the whole thing facing its end-result goal.

I've been in a couple of situations like this, and it's always been a strange combination of weird fun, maddening frustration and the excitement of potentially tapping into previously unused facets of your creativity.

Being involved in something like that again would be a hell of a lot of fun.

For me, anyway.
It all depends

I was in a screenwriting group for a while and it was beneficial to all involved. We didn't work on the same script though. The group would read someone's script out loud in a table reading and then critique it after. We didn't hold back the punches. We tore each other's scripts apart. You learn a lot from these groups.

And it's definitely better if you don't include friends so there are no hard feelings.

I doubt it would work if you were all working on the same script. Screenwriters usually love their own ideas. You'd just end up bumping heads. TV writers do brainstorm as a group but there is always a head writer.

(*shameless plug* I actually just wrote an article on this specific topic on my blog yesterday. :D)