How To Write Everyday
Do you know how to write everyday? All you have to do is write to be a screenwriter, but many struggle to do that on a consistent basis.
Many screenwriters just need to put it to paper when they have a perfect idea. In some cases, a few pages or the first act may have already been written. Completing a screenplay can feel like an impossible task, but some advice, anybody can get over that finish line to complete their first draft. That’s the first step to making a movie. Committing to the project fully and learning how to write everyday is what you need to do.
Finishing Your Spec Script
Few people writing screenplays are lucky to make a living doing it. Many people write screenplays without being assigned, which are called spec screenplays. A spec is supposed to be a writing sample or example of their work in case directors or producers become interested in producing it.
If you were hired to write a script, congrats! Otherwise, you’re most likely still trying to complete your spec script.
Because there’s no deadline, specs can be difficult to write. It’s just a script you write in the off chance that you get it into the right hands.
Since you have other things to do in your day, learning how to write everyday can be tough. Between paying rent and family commitments, finding time to write your screenplay can be hard. Several screenwriters make the mistake of delaying their spec because they think they can get back to it any time.
You need to incorporate many successful writing habits into your daily life. You can finish that screenplay even if you have a day job by using these steps. You can created a great collection of screenplays after you finish one.
I recommend writing everyday and it’s possible. Don’t want to take my word for it? Then take Stephen King’s; he discusses writing being a form of hypnosis and that to finish anything, you have to make a routine.
It’s a tremendous help learning the writing habits of great writers. Now, without any further ado, here’s a couple techniques for learning how to write everyday.
Outline, Outline, Outline
Many screenwriters find it hard beginning their script because they have no idea where to go after that. Download a story outline to plan your key beats before your screenwriting software. Also, try using this free Save the Cat Beatsheet and movie synopsis template.
Then use a precise script outline for plotting or try downloading this film treatment template and start writing.
Some writers say outlining is overrated and some other swear by it. To write a good screenplay, you don’t have to outline. However, if you’re having difficulty writing everyday, implementing it can be a good habit.
So you know exactly what to write next, an outline can guide you through your script. Don’t feel like doing the outline is mandatory. A better idea may come up later. That’s great! An outline just helps you get the wheel in your head moving.
Set A Deadline
With a spec, there’s no one looking over your shoulder to ensure that your write all the time. Instead, you need accountability and that requires having a deadline for yourself.
If you need additional time, it could be one month or three months. Without moving it around, set a firm date and stick to it.
You know how much you have to work each day when a deadline is in place. You only need to write three pages every day if you set your deadline to 30 days to write your 90 page script. That’s easier to manage than writing 90 pages all at once.
Even when you don’t have a lot of time, you can write three pages either in the morning or evening. If you happen to end up exceeding your daily limit, that’s just a cherry on top of the cake.
Just Write (Even If It Sucks)
Nobody writes Oscar worthy material on their first draft. You might come up blank when you try to come up with snappy dialogue and cool action packed set pieces.
It’s better to be productive writing than to not be at all and have nothing to show for it. You might not like the dialogue you write, but you shouldn’t be trying to come up with something better, wasting hours staring at the screen. Just write what you can and keep it moving.
The words become tangible once the words are on the page. Come back to the section later after you move on. You can come up with something better on your second, third, and fourth drafts after you spent a lot of time pondering it. More importantly, writing something as opposed to nothing is the first key to successful writing.
Know When You Need To Step Away
Sometimes life gets in the way. It’s day 31 and you still have 20 pages to go when you planned to finish on day 30. Don’t beat yourself up for not meeting the deadline you set for yourself. You’re human like the rest of us. Finish those 20 pages in the near future after picking yourself back up.
Writers write all day. It’s what they do. Writers have many other projects. Since writers may have errands to run or family obligations to tend to, they don’t have all the time in the world to devote to writing. You don’t need to hold yourself to an unimaginable standard.
Chuck Palahniuk, who wrote the novel Fight Club and had it adapted to a screenplay, has a great view on the writing process. He basically compares writing to going to the bathroom. Get in, get out, and proceed with the rest of your day.
If you don’t feel like writing, you don’t need to force yourself to sit at your computer. Having a daily writing habit is good, but so is having a life. You don’t want to take months off from writing your spec, but taking a day off every now and then is not only healthy, but necessary.
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