Alan Donegan: PopUp Business School Co-Founder, Entrepreneur, Financially Independent Pizza Lover, Marvel Movie fan and soon to be Script Writer
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This is my week 3 report sharing with you what I have written, created and learnt in the last week! Thanks for sharing this journey with me and thank you so much for your feedback and ideas. I REALLY appreciate you reading and writing to me.
Graphs, word count and pages!
So this is the section where we see if Alan has made any progress this week! Let's have a look at the numbers and where we are.
Total words written.
This week I wrote a total of 6841 words across the two screen plays. That is 300 words less than last week! The reason for this is editing. In the screen writing process you get to a stage where you aren't writing you are re-writing! I reached that with the romcom this week although it did continue to grow!
A screen play is anywhere between 15,000 words and 25,000 words so as you can see we are making progress and on track! yay
I created 31 new pages of content this week down from 49 last week. Most of these new pages were for the romcom as I focused heavily on getting that nearer completion.
A screen play is anywhere between 90 and 120 pages long so my movie is a little light but I feel as I develop and grow it, it will mature to about the right length. I have sent it out to a few people for feedback and commenting this weekend and my aim is to edit it and get to the fourth draft this week coming! Making progress and if I keep going like this there is a chance I will get 2 movies completed in my time here!
Editing versus Writing.
One of the things I have loved about the movie writing process and this process of writing blogs is just getting into the flow and writing. Letting the words flow from my finger tips onto the page. When it is flowing it is an incredible feeling. As you can probably tell by the number of spelling mistakes and grammar mistakes in my blog I don't so much like the editing and re-writing of the material.
This causes me a problem as I need to write a script and then work on it and develop it by editing it and improving it. Reducing the word count, improving dialogue and enhancing it. This is a skill I am going to have to improve! I have two main options here
25 words or less
I learned about creating a 25 word or less synopsis of your movie to help sell it this week. I worked on that creating 4 versions and sharing them for feedback. If you didn't see them you can find them here Movie Pitch: 25 words. I will share with you the feedback at the end of the post.
Big successes of the week
It has been an incredible week and a lot has happened. Here are some of the highlights. Monday was written off helping Katie prepare for her trip to Raleigh for cycling and getting things straight at our flat in Santa Monica. Tuesday was a day for meetings. The writing progress above has been achieved in 3 days so I am so happy with the progress given how little time I actually had.
Tuesday was a phenomenal day. I met with a director of a recent Arnold Schwarzenegger movie and had an incredible 45 minute chat about the industry, how it works and more. He also asked me to pitch my movie to him! I was SO UNPREPARED!
I knew this would happen but even so I wasn't ready for it. I was still writing the script and thought I would write the pitch afterwards. I think I should have taken my own advice and written the pitch before the movie!
I can now officially say I have pitched a movie idea to a Hollywood Director! And it was an experience. He asked awesome questions, probed and helped me to see my script from different angles. I wrote out his questions after the meeting and used them to enhance, improve and develop version 3 of my script! This in no way means we are working together (I am learning the industry lingo) but it was fun to get the experience to pitch my movie to a real life Director!
Version 3 of the Romantic Comedy is completed. I got some early feedback from my friend Jamie and I worked through that on Wednesday to get the script to the next level. I added in a new scene on Thursday morning and send it out again for the next round of feedback. I have got one email back and I am going to use that to start next week off and develop the script further. I am feeling very happy that I have a script that I can now enhance.
I have also done some character work for the vigilante/superhero movie, cycled 20 miles, read a book and managed to chill out a little bit.
Even though all this happened I still catch my self saying "come on Alan, why haven't you finished it yet?" Remember it is a process and if you keep working at it you will get a result!
Swinger's Breakfast Burrito
I ate a breakfast burrito at a diner called Swingers in Santa Monica.
I found the most incredible morning writing perch at Shutters Hotel in Santa Monica. They have a quiet deck that looks out over the beach and I can sit there in the morning with a coffee and it is only me and 1 other person!
I sat on the beach and read the Rain Dance Writer's Lab book. Write and Sell the Hot Script. This was the booked that inspired my "explain your movie in 25 words or less experiment." More on that shortly! The more I learn about the movie industry and writing screen plays the more I see similarities with all the other industries I have worked in!
The BIG pitch - 25 words or less
One of the reccomendations from the Raindance book was to write a 25 word or less pitch for the movie. This proved to be quite a tough task to get it down to just 25 words! You can find the 4 versions I created here
59 of you left me comments, feedback and ideas yesterday and all told me which one you preferred. The results are in and here they are in order:
and the winner is version 1 with 22 votes. This is not the end so if you want to still give your opinion you can here. I am going to come back and update this as more people tell me what they think!
Here is the winning version:
David, a single, chubby twenty something is trapped in a job he hates, living at home and is trying to escape corporate purgatory to create a life he wants to live and get the girl of his dreams
But that is not the end of it! I can take the bits from Version 3 that you loved and put them into version 1 and make it far stronger and you gave me lots of ideas. Here are the top things that I took out of your comments:
Thank you so much for giving me feedback and helping me to improve my pitch and develop my ideas! I really appreciate you taking the time to read my blog and help me make on my journey to making my dreams come true! I’m going to have to come up with a way of thanking you for helping me. If I ever get this made I am absolutely going to invite you to a screening! Or some of you might see that as a punishment!?! I will come up with something. Thank you
I will publish the next version of the 25 word pitch next week in the weekly update.
What have I learned?
It has been a fun week working away at this stuff and as always the week has taught me lots of different things. Here's a summary of my learnings from the week:
Last week I committed to 4 things. Review the feedback on the Romcom, get a next version developed and ask for more feedback. Continue to develop the superhero movie and then get it out for feedback.
I achieved 3 out of 4 of my goals! Version 3 of the romcom is done and out for feedback which I then need to edit next week! The Superhero movie made progress but it is not ready for feedback yet!
What am i planning on doing this week? Here are my goals
I think that is going to keep me busy!
Thanks so much for being on this journey with me and I hope it is giving you ideas, inspiring you to work on your own projects and giving you the energy to get going.
I am lucky to have you all as friends. Thanks for reading.
Any more ideas for me send them! Thank you!