misc Worth reading for screenwriters...

I, too, find it much more difficult to write a book than a screenplay.
Yeah well .... https://www.debate.org/opinions/is-a-screenplay-harder-to-write-than-a-novel

Anyone can right a novel. Not anyone can write a screenplay.​


Check out "The Martian" by Andy Weir. It's literally verbal diarhea for 300, He just started writing and made it up as he went along. But the structure of a screenplay requires tight planning and forethought. That being said, writing a good novel is harder, because of the poetic nature of language. A true writer is not only thing about the message, but the rhythym and the cadence, aliteration and meter. This is a true art that most writers never grasp. Or even recognize.
 
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I can't say EITHER (screenplay or novel) is more difficult than the other but it does make complete SENSE that one would be HARDER to write for SOME people (writers).

Screenwriting has a lot of rules [sic] one has to be willing to deal with. Not actually FOLLOW per se... But definitely HANDLE. LOL. A lot of that is even ILLUSION because personally? I look at spec scripts as a selling tool written for someone to READ and not necessarily a professional reader although that will be the case most of the time.

Based on having spent the last few years actually writing a couple of novels and currently writing one... To me? Yes, when I first sat down and tried writing a novel, it seemed difficult. I didn't FEEL competent doing it. I didn't think what I was writing was good enough. I knew my strength was in writing screenplays but based on how the industry keeps going? I felt it was best for me to STOP chasing the next deal and the next project because quite frankly? At least for me personally? LOL. I've had to go through at least 3 to 5 false starts on deals and projects just to FINALLY get to the actual deal and project that sold.

I think that's what I hate most about the business... In the beginning? I was totally UP for it. Probably a lot like being a brand new salesman in some aspects... LOL. You know your shit and you're ready to turn and burn and so what if a few deals fall through?

What I learned in this business is that one hell of a lot of people -- many with LOTS of experience -- JUMP THE GUN. And in fact? I've been in the middle of so many others who can actually get the BALL rolling who jumped the gun on a project that eventually? I just came to expect it. Yes, I got surprised a couple of time but most of the time? Everyone is jumping the gun. LOL. Meaning, they PAINT the picture of a greenlit project only to have something INTEGRAL within the project fall apart and everything goes back to ground zero.

Which is fine... It's a little disconcerting in the beginning when you just want to get it done and have to rely on all those other people to get the project UP over the hump so it can start rolling downhill on its own. But IT IS WHAT IT IS and if you're working on a path toward becoming a professional? Know that this is not the exception to the rule...

It's the rule. LOL.

But back to novel writing... I think for someone who definitely KNOWS how to write a good, professional-level screenplay? Writing a novel is just a different way of writing a story. Not easier IF you want it to also be good. I'll be honest... I thought it was EASY when I first began doing it. I turned an old spec into a novel. I took the very first draft of that spec with all the crap I had to CUT and literally TRANSCRIBED it into NOVEL FORM. Just so I had something to work with. Then I just went in and fleshed a lot more story elements into the overall story that I had certainly thought of before when I came up with the concept but could NO WAY NO HOW stick in a screenplay.

And? Only took me a month and a half to do it. I walked away from that project thinking... "That was easy." LOLOLOLOLOL.

Flash forward a few years later and now I know while what I wrote was READABLE and even somewhat entertaining? I read it NOW and I can plainly SEE where it needs a LOT of improvement.

Experience. Plain and simple. The more you write -- whether it's screenwriting or novel writing? The more you experience and the better you get.

The takeaway? What I thought was EASY? Turned out to be extremely difficult... I just didn't KNOW it yet. LOL.

Yeah... Anyone can write a book. Anyone can write a screenplay. But how good will they be? I am a professional screenwriter who no longer has to work for a living. To me? That's success. Books are being looked at NOW more than ever before when it comes to potential movies, series, and limited series.

BOOKS.

Not spec screenplays. No offense to anyone who's trying to carve out a path in professional screenwriting but I suspect at some point later on down the road? Specs will be kicked to the curb for the most part... Sure, they'll still need SOMEONE (a screenwriter) to adapt the book but to be honest? That's not for me. That's not what I want to do. I found out the hard way that most of the work I got as a professional screenwriter was WORKING on SOMEONE ELSE'S MATERIAL.

As hard as I tried -- and I tried really hard -- I never wanted to do that and did whatever I could NOT to have to do that but in the end? When you gotta pay bills and keep moving forward within the system? You pretty much gotta do it at some point or another. It's just too good to pass up when it comes to the money they pay you versus the time it takes to get it done.

I admit that I was naive thinking that I could just write my own stuff and sell it. I did that of course... More than a few times but eventually? The work for hire was just too difficult to pass up. There's so much downtime between my specs because I take so long with the concept that I figured, "Okay... Might as well make some money."

But? And I'm obviously speaking just for myself... That work was never satisfying. I don't like working on other writers' material -- plain and simple. It's not what I like to do when it comes to writing. It FEELS like WORK and for me personally? I don't want writing to feel like work. LOL.

So with seeing the way things are in fact changing? I went down the rabbit hole to learn how to write books just like I went down the rabbit hole to learn how to write screenplays. At first and with my first novel? I didn't do that. My ego allowed me to THINK that I was ready to write a book just because I knew structure and I knew how to write a decent screenplay. LOL.

That was an EXPERIENCE I probably HAD to GO THROUGH just to be able to step away from it now years later and realize HOW IGNORANT I really was. LOL.

Thank God.

Because now? After all these years and having read literally hundreds books of fiction -- both bestsellers and non-bestsellers? I can plainly see consistencies with both just like I see consistencies in newbie spec scripts and professional-level screenplays.

No offense? But to me? The apples and oranges exist MORE within the format itself than it does between novels and screenplays or screenwriters holding out on a sale in order to keep the rights to eventually write a book. In other words... Good scripts and bad scripts. Apples and Oranges. Good novels and bad novels... Apples and Oranges.

Bottom line? If it's something you've never done or have done very little of? It's gonna be harder for most writers. Doesn't matter if it's a screenplay OR a novel.
 
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It's a silly debate. Of course it depends on the person. Is a chalk drawing harder than oils? I mean come on. Is there a poll?
*Sigh* The poll was my attempt at sarcasm. In fact if you people looked close enough at that poll I pasted, you would have realized it was based on 12 entrants LOL.

Of course polls are ridiculous. I consider myself a contrarian so accepting anything on the basis of consensus is not how I operate. When I state that a good screenplay is more difficult than a novel, I say this because it is always more difficult to condense a difficult concept into few words than one that is ripe in descriptive narrative.

It is the same reason why creating a good logline is also pretty hard to do; the same reason why good software is written in fewer lines of code -- not more.

That fact that this is even debatable is pretty odd to me
 
*Sigh* The poll was my attempt at sarcasm. In fact if you people looked close enough at that poll I pasted, you would have realized it was based on 12 entrants LOL.

Of course polls are ridiculous. I consider myself a contrarian so accepting anything on the basis of consensus is not how I operate. When I state that a good screenplay is more difficult than a novel, I say this because it is always more difficult to condense a difficult concept into few words than one that is ripe in descriptive narrative.

It is the same reason why creating a good logline is also pretty hard to do; the same reason why good software is written in fewer lines of code -- not more.

That fact that this is even debatable is pretty odd to me
Uh... Pretty sure you were the ONE that STARTED the DEBATE.
 
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