Sunday, October 22, 2017

#Scriptchat Transcript: Advantages and "How To" of Turning a Screenplay Into a Novel October 22, 2017

Selling a screenplay gets harder and harder. Since Hollywood loves intellectual property, and you already have a story in screenplay form, why not adapt it to a novel?

Here's a list of books written by screenwriters - our own Jamie Lee Scott @authorjamie is a USA Today Best Seller!

Enjoy the discussion below, full of tips for November's National Novel Writing Month where you write a 50,000-word novel in 30 days. Links to resources, too! @jeannevb

Read the transcript below or on the Storify site.

#Scriptchat Transcript: Advantages and "how to" of turning a screenplay into a novel October 22, 2017

#Scriptchat Transcript: Advantages and "how to" of turning a screenplay into a novel October 22, 2017

Selling a screenplay gets harder & harder. Since Hollywood loves intellectual property & you already have a story, why not adapt it to a novel? Enjoy the discussion below, full of tips for #NaNoWriMo! Links to resources, too! @jeannevb

  1. IT’S #SCRIPTCHAT O’CLOCK: TOPIC - Hollywood loves intellectual property! Use #NaNoWriMo to turn your spec into a novel! Join in for tips!
    IT’S #SCRIPTCHAT O’CLOCK: TOPIC - Hollywood loves intellectual property! Use #NaNoWriMo to turn your spec into a novel! Join in for tips!
  2. Let's talk adapting backwards. I mean, you have a story in script form on your hard drive. Why not write it in another form? #scriptchat
  3. 1st, not all screenplays will make a decent novel. Don't bother adapting it unless it will. #scriptchat
  4. Would it still be considered a novelization if the movie got made later? #scriptchat
  5. Hollywood loves intellectual property. Best reason to turn your script into a novel. Let's talk advantages, then "how to." #scriptchat
  6. Big advantage is that you have fewer physical/budgetary constraints, that's a plus #scriptchat
  7. Another is that you can engage other senses that movies can't (smell, taste, etc) #scriptchat
  8. @jeannevb Curious--do you think it's harder to go from script to novel etc. or vice versa? IMO condensing = harder, but I'm wordy LOL. #scriptchat
  9. Advantage #1 - you've got (better than a) treatment ? #scriptchat
  10. Advantage: It doesn't take millions of dollars and dozens/hundreds of people to bring your story to life. #scriptchat
  11. Room to workout more of the background to characters and story. #scriptchat
  12. You get to wear other hats, like actor, director, production designer... #scriptchat
  13. Advantage: As you write your story in more detail, you'll rediscover your characters & possibly make your script richer. #scriptchat
  14. @jeannevb Are we talking via actual publishing company or self-publishing? #scriptchat
  15. I’ve done #NaNoWriMo for six years — and even wrote a free manual on my blog about how to write a novel in a month! #scriptchat
  16. Sign up for #NaNoWriMo here and find "buddys" to do #writingsprints with:
  17. It's coming closer. Need to limber up the brain and the typing muscles. #scriptchat
  18. I’ve loved writing novels, and it’s really helped me hone my craft. I’m working on a novella that I want to adapt into a pilot. #scriptchat
  19. What I found most liberating about novel writing is crawling in my characters head. Being able to write via ALL senses. #scriptchat
  20. And if you have a visual or funky SF idea, you can always adapt it into a graphic novel #scriptchat
  21. You can also turn your 1 screenplay into a series of novels to then adapt into a TV series. #scriptchat
  22. @jeannevb I turned the characters from at least 2 scripts into pilots #scriptchat
  23. How many of you have tried writing a novel? Or tried #NaNoWriMo challenge? #scriptchat
  24. I think the greatest advantage of adapting into prose is that you tend to find whole new layers of depth in the story. #scriptchat
  25. I often find that I'll do the adaptation and discover something that makes the screenplay better. #scriptchat
  26. @jeannevb I've done a few Nanos, but I've turned just about every one of my scripts into a novel of some form or another. #scriptchat
  27. I do have to disagree on the "not every screenplay can be adapted" point though. Every great story can be told in both media. #scriptchat
  28. @jeannevb I tried, but I can't focus/think linearly like that for more than a few days, so I always fizzle out #scriptchat
  29. Rian Johnson on his site  shares his scripts Brick - Looper and also book form of Brick - eyeopening #SCRIPTCHAT
  30. @blueneumann @jeannevb It's not really about thinking linearly. I usually outline the week or so before Nano starts. #scriptchat
  31. @wcmartell We've told you so many times - if you actually wear some pants, they'll stop kicking you out! #scriptchat
  32. #scriptchat I’ve been obsessed with the differences between novels, novellas, short stories, features, tv seasons /episodes, & game stories
  33. @wcmartell jump in, Bill. We're talking adapting screenplays into novels. #scriptchat
  34. @the_invisible_a Easy answer? Word count. They all have three acts essentially, it's just the format and workload that changes. #scriptchat
  35. The trick with these adaptations is to use whichever format you're writing in to the best of its' abilities #scriptchat
  36. It shouldn't just be a matter of changing verb tenses and adding a little more detail #scriptchat
  37. @blueneumann It's also important to challenge those limitations. Art is nothing without experimentation. #scriptchat
  38. I wrote a bunch of (crappy) novels in my youth, adapted one into the script that got me to town... now looking at doing reverse #scriptchat
  39. @jeannevb @marlob59 This is actually why I contend that you can adapt any script to prose. Sometimes you just need a POV switch. #scriptchat
  40. I've done #NaNoWriMo a couple of times. 1st time vomited out 50K words of shit. 2nd time decided to take a diff't approach... #scriptchat
  41. @jeannevb - that's where I've "chocked" - I'm slick with the #GodVoice (Ala screenwriting)...but... #scriptchat
  42. 2nd time, I chose to just write every day of the 30 days. Focused on quality over quantity. Did 20K valuable words. #scriptchat
  43. Not doing NaNo, NaNo, though. Best thing about the shorts and novelettes I've written is - once done, they go to the audience. #scriptchat
  44. Publishing/self-publishing whole other discussion so let's focus on HOW to start novel process. #scriptchat
  45. Your script is already an outline. You can plug it right into Word or Scrivener and get started. #scriptchat
  46. My plan, though, is to write at least 30k a month when I do the novels. That's doable. Scripts are written - so I have "outline" #scriptchat
  47. @jeannevb I usually start the process from my treatment, rather than my script. #scriptchat
  48. @DevSeventyFive yes. That 1st NaNo I wrote w/ very limited outline & let characters decide. I consider it now a 50K word outline #scriptchat
  49. @blueneumann @jeannevb I find it frees me up a little to explore the world of the story more. #scriptchat
  50. .@scriptmag & @WritersDigest are merging Nov/Dec for exactly this reason. To bring ALL storytellers & resources together. #scriptchat
  51. Novels vs Scripts. It's a different animal. I find myself having to retrain my brain. #Scriptchat #NaNoWriMo
  52. What I find interesting is when you explore the scene in new ways, you get new ideas to put into the script itself #scriptchat
  53. @blueneumann Every. Single. Time. It's actually better than "putting it in a draw" and editing it sometimes. #scriptchat
  54. @MrGrahamClegg After #scriptchat, grab some food & get your ass in the writing chair... oh, and find your cat.
  55. Larger plan: Organized dead scripts into diff series. All mysteries in one, action in one, etc. Created protags for each. #scriptchat
  56. @jolenejahnke I think the same. I read novels but writing them is different for me. #scriptchat
  57. @jolenejahnke I know exactly what you mean. It takes a while to get used to the fact that you can use thoughts and emotions. #scriptchat
  58. Reason for the novelettes & short stories - retrain the brain. #scriptchat
  59. Re: #NaNoWriMo to hit 50K, it's just 1,666 words/day. Totally doable, esp w/ a script in hand. But don't worry about wordcount. #scriptchat
  60. I actually always find that writing the prose versions makes me more relaxed about the business side of a script (1/2) #scriptchat
  61. When I feel like both script and prose are "ready" I can release the prose as a test balloon and see what the reaction is (2/2) #scriptchat
  62. Hey - tip: When I read kindle books the first line either grabs me or doesn't. If it doesn't, first paragraph has to win me. #scriptchat
  63. #scriptchat After writing three readable but tedious novels, I stopped, studied commercial entertainment, and concocted my own story theory.
  64. Because I care about opening sentence (and that Poe quote) I work on opening sentences. #scriptchat
  65. @wcmartell That's why I always open with "It was a dark and stormy Quinceañera" #scriptchat
  66. See great pro screenwriters who have written novels ...
  67. As screenwriters, you already know how to write cinematically. Use that skill. #scriptchat
  68. @jeannevb This. Best tip. The best novels are about imagery as much as story. If you can't create imagery, film isn't for you. #scriptchat
  69. Read a book a few weeks ago, 1st sentence was protag in bar drinking ginger ale and *hating* every sip. Mystery and character. #scriptchat
  70. Actually, for those who write screenplays using paradigms, you're already a leg up on the rest of us on this without knowing it. #scriptchat
  71. Doesn't have to open with explosion. I wondered why this person was in bar remaining sober when they didn't want to be. #scriptchat
  72. Are we convincing any of you to try adapting a script? #scriptchat
  73. @wcmartell Agreed. One of the best I ever read was "It was midnight. The sun was shining and I couldn't find my pocketknife." #scriptchat
  74. @jeannevb I like the idea of it but I want to focus on one style of writing/ideas until I've got more under my belt. #scriptchat
  75. @jeannevb I hope so. It was the best decision I ever made in honing the craft of writing in general. #scriptchat
  76. @jeannevb I tried, thought that’s what I was to do, then I was introduced to scripts. Haven’t went back. #scriptchat
  77. @wcmartell “It was the best of crimes. It was the worst of crimes.” #scriptchat
  78. @chasinglamely agreed. Glad I started w/ screenwriting 1st though. Learning all the tricks to make something a fast read helps. #scriptchat
  79. Hey all. A little late tonight. Putting finishing touches on my latest screenplay to send for coverage. #scriptchat
  80. @jeannevb This is a valuable tip for TV piloteers. You may never get to write episode two, but you can always write book two. #scriptchat
  81. My favs are the Richard Stark novels. "When the phone rang, Parker was in the garage, killing a man.” #scriptchat
  82. #scriptchat I like features that work as features. My favorite movies would not make great novels. But feature world building is still neat!
  83. The Disney animated “Meet the Robinsons” used only a tiny bit of the source book material before going all rogue with it... #scriptchat
  84. @jeannevb I'm actually glad I started out with poetry and lyrics before screenwriting for the same reason. Taught me a so much. #scriptchat
  85. @the_invisible_a definitely shouldn't adapt script to novel unless it would work well as a book. Some do not. At all. #scriptchat
  86. @the_invisible_a I'd be very surprised if they couldn't be adapted. Everything can be adapted by the right craftsman. #scriptchat
  87. @chasinglamely every medium has so much to teach a writer. That's why I always say writers should do more than one. #scriptchat
  88. @jeannevb That's why I do lyrics, poetry, screen, prose, journalism, comics and video games. I've learned so much from it. #scriptchat
  89. Fave open "I did two things on my 75th birthday. I visited my wife's grave. Then I joined the army." Old Man's War: John Scalzi #scriptchat
  90. @DevSeventyFive Indeed. I feel like it’s good, but curious what some industry voices will have to say about it 🎬 #scriptchat
  91. @FlutterFerret I'm reading Scalzi's "Redshirts" now but don't recall the 1st line. Loving it otherwise. #scriptchat
  92. @DevSeventyFive @jeannevb sometimes. You can be equally cursed and blessed, though, in my experience. #scriptchat
  93. #scriptchat My subjective view — genre should govern medium choice. Anything thoughtful (sci fi, psych, philos.) is better suited to novels.
  94. Even if you don't want to adapt script to novel, you can still use #NaNoWriMo energy to do #writingsprints & write every day #scriptchat
  95. I have taken some printed screenplays made a line every 2.5 pages. That's my proposed "day" to finish in 2 mos. Usually a scene. #scriptchat
  96. As much as changing media is great for a writer's education, perfect them privately. People are still too hung up on "branding." #scriptchat
  97. @jeannevb Also, there's nothing to say you can't hit your goal in screenplay format. #scriptchat
  98. @chasinglamely the brand concept is changing. SO many writers write more than one style now. Trend is to expand. #scriptchat
  99. @DevSeventyFive @jeannevb I'm in first. I decided to train as a lawyer in case this writing gig doesn't work out... #scriptchat
  100. @jeannevb Can you tell that to the people who keep asking me why a stand-up comedian is writing drama? #scriptchat
  101. I know people who still use a different name for every style or genre. #scriptchat
  102. so of those of you who have adapted from screenplay to novel - voice, please xo #scriptchat
  103. @jeannevb @chasinglamely I was under the impression producers still wanted people who specialized. Not true? #scriptchat
  104. Intrigued by this idea of adapting backwards being discussed on #scriptchat tonight. My wheels are now spinning...
  105. @collinlieberg @jeannevb In my experience, absolutely. They think a comedian should write comedy, and it kills me. #scriptchat
  106. @jeannevb Yes, the idea is just to make more progress than you normally would, develop lasting habits. Work, but don't beat yourself up. #scriptchat
  107. @chasinglamely @DevSeventyFive @jeannevb Teaching was my plan A, but that has now turned to writing. Plan Aa is something else. #scriptchat
  108. If you aren't ready for NaNoWrMo - come up with short story idea, write it, make a cover, put it up on Amazon. #scriptchat
  109. @collinlieberg @DevSeventyFive @jeannevb Just because writing is plan A, doesn't mean your writing can't also be your teaching. #scriptchat
  110. @chasinglamely @jeannevb Writing started as my plan A, but that changed. After everything else flopped, I decided to give writing another go. #ScriptChat
  111. @wcmartell Is anyone ever ready for NaNoWriMo? I feel like it sneaks up on me every year! #scriptchat
  112. There's a cool program called WRITE OR DIE. It literally blares a horn at you if you slow down. #NaNoWriMo #scriptchat
  113. @chasinglamely @wcmartell And November is a terrible month for Nano, we all got holidays and shit to do #scriptchat
  114. January would be a great month for Nano, 31 days and you don't want to go anywhere or spend ANY money #scriptchat
  115. No!!! That's supposed to be automatic! Something is wrong at Hootsuite! #scriptchat
  116. @wcmartell Or write several short stories that equal 50K in total. Publish them together as an anthology. #ScriptChat
  117. "Goodnight you Princes of Maine, you Kings of New England!" #scriptchat @jeannevb et al...
  118. @blueneumann yeah, I'm not a fan of NaNo being in November. Wish it was January or March. #scriptchat
  119. It's the bewitching hour! Thanks for another great chat! I'll grab the transcript and maybe throw some resources in it. #scriptchat
  120. @jeannevb @blueneumann Remember when they tried NaScriWriMo? That would be great in January. #scriptchat
  121. For those who are diving into #NaNoWriMo, use the #scriptchat hashtag to find each other & call out #writingsprints
  122. @chasinglamely I don't know if you can create a group on NaNo site but you can "buddy" other people #scriptchat
  123. @jeannevb maybe there's a way to rig something? Like maybe bang a temporary forum on the scriptchat site that we can meet in? #scriptchat
  124. #scriptchat Nice meeting everyone. Keep creating. There’s no wrong way in the arts.
  125. Racing to finish script before @austinfilmfest; 70+ pages done in past week. Hands tired, but brain happy. #scriptchat #amwriting #aff2017