screenwriter's toolkit creative screenwriting exercises (Get the book for all 101 exercises)

A Brave New World

05.13.2005 · Posted in Genre

Science fiction movies create new worlds for audiences to partake in. Identifying and showing the rules for these worlds are important tasks when explaining the plot. The Exercise Write a three-page science fiction script. Before you begin, identify two rules for your new world. For example, is there gravity? Make up the rules and write ...

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Editing for Character Consistency

12.28.2005 · Posted in Rewriting/Editing

Sometimes we get so into the challenge of finishing our screenplays that we forget to go back and make sure our characters have a consistent voice. Your Task: Read a screenplay that you or someone else wrote. Get into the mindset of one character and read it thinking of them. While you read, consider what’s ...

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Character Descriptions

05.13.2005 · Posted in Characters

Here’s a test on creating effective character descriptions. The Exercise Pick ten characters you’ve seen in movies. Write a 1-sentence description for each of them. Make it as accurate as possible. Bring these descriptions to friends who have seen these movies. Can they guess who you’re referring to? ...

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What Do You Like?

05.23.2005 · Posted in As A Writer

You can learn a thing or two about the way you write by delving into what you like. The Exercise Identify your favorite scene of all time. Get that movie and watch the scene. Journal Let go and write for 10 minutes about the scene. Why do you like it so much? What does it ...

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From My Life

01.22.2007 · Posted in Outline/Structure

Use transformational moments in your life to explore screenwriting structure. The Exercise List three transformational moments in your life. Pick one incident and answer these questions: What was your life like before the transformation? What took place during the transformation? What were the obstacles to transforming (both internal and external)? How did you face these ...

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Being The Writer I Want To Be

05.06.2005 · Posted in As A Writer

What internal or external forces impede your ability to write? Our capacity to understand and permeate these forces can build our power as a writer. The Exercise List 10 things that stop you from being the writer you want to be. Brainstorm three possible solutions for overcoming each obstacle on your list. Plan a date ...

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Random Acts of Weirdness

01.23.2007 · Posted in Action

Relieve writer’s block by finding new stories to tell. If you’re not planning your own adventure, check out weird stories from around the world. The Exercise Navigate to an online search engine and query “weird news”. Pick a site, then a story. Imagine the actions and dialogue that make this story a reality. Write a ...

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The 3-Act Structure

10.01.2005 · Posted in Outline/Structure

The three-act structure has been one of the most influential tools for screenplay development. An understanding of its history and applicability is essential to the burgeoning screenwriter. The Exercise Write a four-page essay on the three-act structure. Where did it come from? What is it and how is it used? What are some of the ...

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Happily Ever After

12.28.2006 · Posted in Scenes

Let’s use the ending of a film to practice creating scenes. Your Task: Pick a movie – any movie. After watching it, jot down 4 alternate possibilities for an ending. Now, pick one of your 4 new finales and use standard screenplay format to write out one of these endings. ...

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The Producer Calls

05.06.2005 · Posted in Timed Writing

A producer calls you. He wants to see you work on the fly. He wants to see how creative and sharp you can be. Your task: Come up with 25 original movie titles in 10 minutes. ...

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