I Finished My New Feature Length Screenplay!

November 7, 2012 at 9:58 am

I Finished My New Feature Length Screenplay!

July 12, 2012

YOU DON’T FINISH THE FIRST DRAFT OF A NEW SCREENPLAY EVERYDAY.

Today is a good day.

On May 29th, I published this post.  It was about putting this blog on hold for a little over three months.  I wanted to finish my newest screenplay and hopefully develop another.  It’s been 45 days.

I finished my screenplay! 

What an incredible feeling it is to type FADE OUT and smile.  Obviously my work is far from over as it’s just a first draft but it’s important to appreciate the moment.  I write a lot about ‘moments’ in movies and I feel like my new script has some great ones.  I’m proud of what I accomplished today.  Not just because I finished a screenplay but because I decided to focus and challenged myself.

Had I not taken a step back and reorganized my priorities, I could very well still be sitting on page 11.  It feels a lot better now that I’ve pounded out 105 pages.  Today, my little experiment was a success.  I still care deeply about screenplays.

WAS MY PASSION FOR SCREENWRITING LOST?

I ask that question because I feel like I could have accomplished so much more if I had focused years ago.  It feels so amazing to finish something new and unique.  So why didn’t I write more?  Why didn’t I write!?

Today represents a big leap forward for me.  I doubted myself.  I was beginning to question my passion.  I debated the difference between the love I have for the craft and the dedication needed to finish a new script.  I’ve learned there is a big difference between writing about screenplays and WRITING screenplays.  Who was I kidding?

I’ve earned the write to call myself a screenwriter again.  However, this new found enthusiasm can only live if I continue feeding it with new ideas.  I just reignited my passion and now I have to keep the fire going.  That’s my new mission.  I’ve proved to myself that I can write a feature length script if I commit 100%.

Now I have to prove that I can continue exploring new ideas.  When I wrote about taking a break from blogging, I mentioned very clear goals.  I wanted to finish a script and develop a new one before September 15th, 2012.  I’ve finished the first draft.  My list of rewrite notes is lengthy but manageable.  I should have a draft worth passing along to close family and friends within a few weeks.

Beyond that, I already know the next story I want to tell.  The seeds been planted and I feel like I’ve challenged myself again.  My new script is infinitely more complex than the one I just finished.  I’ve created a main character that has a long road to travel before redemption is attained.  Now it’s up to me to develop something worth while.  Something I care about.

– Long ago, I wrote a screenplay about a high school basketball star struggling to decide what to do with his life.

– Last year, I finished a screenplay about three college roommates who stand on the brink of adulthood.

– My new script is all about dealing with stress and anxiety as an adult.

Next up, I plan to write about responsibility and courage.  A drama that mirrors my own journey with a wedding around the corner.  (Actually, I suppose by the time you read this, I’ll be married!)  But I don’t want to think too much about my next project when there is still work to do.  I’ve got a second draft to tackle tomorrow!  A second draft of a screenplay I’ve decided to call: Strangers

HAVE YOU QUESTIONED YOUR SCREENWRITING?

I’ve never claimed to be an expert when it comes to screenwriting.  I can only talk about my own adventures between FADE IN and FADE OUT.  But if there is anything I’ve learned over the last year it’s this: 

You only get out of screenwriting what you put into. 

It sounds corny and horrifically obvious but a story isn’t told until you tell it.  Write it down!  Challenge yourself.

Today, I feel like a giant weight has been lifted off my shoulders and I can breathe again.  I don’t doubt myself anymore.  To think, all I had to do was sit down, shut up and write screenplays.  It’s a simple lesson but I’m happy to report that I’m a screenwriter again because I made a choice.

WHAT ABOUT THE BLOG?

All these screenwriting lessons have led to an inevitable question:

If putting the blog on hold led to so many breakthroughs, what will happen in September when I start posting again?

First of all, the blog isn’t going anywhere but I am going to make some changes.  (Again, these will all be announced by the time you read this.)  When I created The Athletic Nerd, I posted 7 days a week.  In year two I gave myself Saturdays off.  Towards the end of year three I began posting Monday-Thursday only.

I love movies, screenwriting and independent film.  I can’t wait to start posting new articles again.  I’m looking forward to featuring more of your work in the next evolution of THE POST.  But I owe it to myself to keep writing screenplays as well.  When the blog returns, I’ll be writing three posts a week.  Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.  That’s just a minimum.  I’ll probably still have week’s with 5 or more posts but I won’t feel like I HAVE to come up with that much original content.

I’ll save the rest of the announcements for a separate post.

SCREENWRITING!!!

Back to the new screenplay!  I’m done!  I finished it!

There’s nothing better than setting a goal and reaching it!  The only thing left to do is set more ambitious goals and work my ass off.

Thanks for reading!

The Summer of Screenwriting: Looking Back

Well, that day was nearly 4 months ago now and the passion is still there.  The blog has been back since September 15th and October traffic nearly tripled the numbers I got in August.  Posting 3 days a week instead of 6 gave me a lot more free time to develop my new screenplay and I finally started writing pages.  It’s a little later than I had hoped but those first 10 pages are always exciting to tackle early on.

Interestingly enough, I’ve also lined up the script I want to write AFTER I finish my latest.  I’ve decided 4 straight dramas is quite enough and I’m going to attempt a horror film next.  Until then, I can’t wait for another day like July 12, 2012.  The day I typed FADE OUT and completed a project I’m extremely proud of.

That was a good day.

I Finished My New Feature Length Screenplay! | Screenwriting Blog