I’m so excited about my SVA class, The Business and Craft of Writing for Television, where I’ll be teaching Juniors how to understand the TV business so that they can use the information to develop a career plan and to create an original TV concept, which they flesh out into a pilot in the second semester.
I was thrilled that three of my best second year screenwriting students, Anastasia, Conor, and Joe are taking the class. Although they are only Juniors, these three driven students completed two drafts of a feature length screenplay last year!
My NYU class starts on Monday! There are one or two places left.
Last night, we tried to find a bar on the Upper Westside that was showing the NFL Kick Off Game but all of our favorite joints were showing the US Open Tennis match. I thought about how to use this real-life dilemma as an exercise to put my characters into a situational conflict.
Here’s the exercise: Set a timer for 15 minutes.
The scene should be about two characters who are trying to decide where to go and which event to watch minutes away from both events starting. Decide which character prefers Tennis, and who prefers Football.
Write the scene using both action and dialogue. The discussion and final decision will reveal much about their character, and will really help develop the core conflicts between them. Making each of them passionate about their sport will raise the stakes, and let them talk freely, not worrying about format or keeping the speeches short.
When your timer or alarm goes off, give yourself a minute longer to wrap up the scene, and then put it away for an hour. Then reread, pretending you are a reader, not a writer and analyze the material.
September 11 is on Monday, and it would be remiss not mention this tragedy. The 911 Memorial is worth visiting. I didn’t lose anyone, but I know many who did. Going to the Memorial can give comfort and also peace. It’s important as writers that we are involved in the world around us. Sometimes, it’s where we get out best material!
Here’s to your successful writing!
Professor Marilyn Horowitz