#WritingAdviceWednesday – Writing Exercises: Losing Control

Writing Advice Wednesday

I hope you’ve been enjoying Writing Advice Wednesday for the last few months, It’s exercises like this that form part of my One Hour Screenwriter course, which will help you write an entire feature film script in 22 weeks. You can purchase it at the shop here. You can also read testimonies here that show my methods have worked for a variety of writers.

This week, it’s time to really let loose…

Describe what makes you explode

Write about something that makes you furious. It can be a work situation, a political issue, a personal dispute with someone, an aggravating annoyance of modern life, an unreasonable demand made upon you, an infuriating relationship or anything else that raises your blood pressure and makes you want to scream!

Take seven minutes and describe as completely as you can the source of your ire and outrage.

Is your anger generated by a specific person? What does he or she look like? What exactly does the person say or do to drive you mad? Describe the physical circumstances of the dispute or bad blood between you. Be as specific as you can.

Is your anger generated by an issue, situation, or annoyance of modern life? What is it about those circumstances that is so

unfair, unreasonable, outrageous or personally offensive?

How does your anger about this make you feel? Does some kind of fear trigger your anger? Be as florid and passionate as you can.

Now take seven minutes to argue and rage from the opposite point of view. Put yourself in the other person’s shoes or on the other side of the issue.

Describe yourself or the situation from the opposing perspective. Be as detailed and cutting as you can.

Make just as strong a case why you are totally wrong, misguided, insensitive or uncomprehending of their position or situation.

Discuss in detail why you are deluded, naïve, selfish, stubborn, shallow or ungrateful. Be as passionate and as convincing as you can.

Great writers argue just as ardently for their villains as they do for their heroes. Even though the villain may be wrong, destructive or deluded, he or she must have a strong personal rationale for all actions and choices.

Explore what fear might be driving the antagonist’s behavior or position. Be zealous on his or her behalf. Suspend your judgment and personal opinion and really try to see the world from your antagonist’s point of view.

Write down all the reasons why your antagonist believes he or she is justified in taking action against your character.

Outline in as much detail as possible your antagonist’s rationale. Describe why your antagonist truly believes he or she is right.

Video Essay of the Week

Speaking of antagonists, Lessons from the Screenplay reminds us of one of the best examples in recent memory:

Let me know what you think of this week’s writing exercise by emailing me at ETBHelp@gmail.com. I’d love to hear from you as we go forward with more of these writing exercises. Next week, you’ll find out just how much a simple conversation can reveal…

Until then, remember- all you need to do is Get Started and Keep Going!

– Laurie


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