Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Double Duty

I set myself a pretty challenging goal yesterday. Enter Exterminating Angel in a screenplay contest. Deadline? May 31.

Yeah, pretty audacious. If nothing else, it forces me to work on a self-imposed deadline. That's the problem when you don't have any books under contract. It's easy to put revising or writing off, thinking, well, I don't have to worry about a deadline. And those days can pass into weeks, months, etc. You get the idea.

Do I expect to win this contest? No. Although the last screenplay contest I entered, I made it to the second round, but no farther. Must be doing something right.

My interest in screenplay writing started in college, when I met a fellow screenplay writer, who has gone on to option and sell several screenplays. But I didn't start writing one until a few years after graduating with a BA degree in English. Poetry and short stories dominated my writing, and while I still write short stories, I rarely write poems.

Granted, my early screenwriting endeavors suck. I have to admit I think the screenplay adaptations of Death Sword and Exterminating Angel are better than my first three efforts. Of course, I had the material available so I didn't have to come up with settings or dialogue. But one of the things about adapting a screenplay lies in understanding what should and should not be included. For example, no interior thoughts. Sure, one could use voice overs, but a general rule is if you can't see or hear it, it doesn't belong on the screen.

Meantime, I should hear about another screenplay contest I entered, although I doubt I'll move on to the next level in that one.

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