Rabbi Hillel was asked to sum up the Torah while standing on one foot. "That which is hateful to you, don't do it to your neighbor," he said. "The rest is commentary."
Apropos yesterday's post, someone asked what the three most important things I teach are:
- The Hook
You need a hook. See chapter one of CRAFTY SCREENWRITING, "The Hook."
- The Five Elements of Story
According to page 43 of CRAFTY TV WRITING, a good story is:
- a hero we care about
- who has a compelling problem, an opportunity or goal
- who faces difficult obstacles and/or an antagonist
- if they succeed, they (or their world) will have something they didn't have (stakes)
- if they fail, they'll lose something precious to them (jeopardy)
(Some stories have multiple heroes. Some stories have only jeopardy without stakes. YMMV.)
A good screen story has these five elements, and can be told externally, through action and dialog,
- Pitch your story.
So now you know. Go forth, and don't irritate the neighbors.
Labels: blog fu, story
And for the record, I own both Crafty books, I read them both the day I got them. They are great. But any time I can get someone to send me their crib notes, I'm all over it! Thanks again!
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