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O.K. – so how did you get on with the exercise? Did you do it?

Yes? No?

Well, if you did – well done! You’re on the way!

If you didn’t, well… I’d strongly urge you to go back and complete it. Really. And here’s some of the reasons why. We’ll call this, for ease of reference, The School Of Bad Screenwriting.

Don’t make out you don’t know what I mean. You’ve seen them: at the cinema, on TV, at your friend’s house – those dreadful movies that make you want to yawn. Or weep. Or murder the director. Or writer.

Now, every school has rules. And, as a result of not doing the exercise, here’s three rules that will get you an A+ at The School Of Bad Screenwriting:-

  1. 20
  2. The Vomit Draft
  3. Don’t Feel The Heat

Let’s deal with the first rule: 20. Not One. Or Se&en. Or 10. Or 8 ½. Nope – 20.

Question: Why did I ask you to brainstorm 20 ideas?

Answer: So you don’t go off and write the first thing that comes into your head.

I’ve worked with so many students in further and higher education, as well as folks keen to learn how to write film and they all want to write the first thing that comes into their head.

Really, trust me: this is not a good idea. More often than not: it’s a pile of cack. Doo-doo. Pants.

About The Author

Profile photo of Larry Gouldbourne
Script Doctor

I have worked as a scriptwriter on TV sit-coms such as Desmond’s (C4) and Chef! (BBC1) received a BAFTA nomination for an episode of Desmond’s. I was script editor for the first series of the online sit-com, Meet The Adebanjos which has scooped a number of TV awards. i have won international screenwriting competitions and has taught screenwriting at various higher educational institutions.

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