When one needs ideas, there is no scarcity of ideas. The question is, which one to choose? A screenplay demands a lot of effort and time. Often you cannot predict from your diary of ideas how one particular idea will turn out in the end. So which idea should you commit to?
One really effective way to choose is to sit on them. Don’t jump into writing a particular idea. Some idea crash lands into your mind and is about to explode into lines on a paper? Wait. Wait atleast for one month. If still you feel that you have a story worth telling, may be you have. And the waiting period also helps in developing some new perspectives.
Another issue is always check for influences. After seeing a particular movie you feel that you want to do something with similar tone or characters? Again wait. Most probably the urge will last only until you see your next movie.
Sometimes we work on developing concepts forcefully. Because we feel that it is relevant or because it has commercial potential. But some concepts appear like guilty pleasures. You enjoy exploring it without being aware that you are working on developing something. The work is less forced, more automatic. Developing it is not work. Its fun. That’s the concept to work on. Because writing a script takes time. You have to invest your energy and interests consistently on something for a stretch of time. Its common for writers to get disillusioned midway. But the more passionate you are, the less the likelihood of boredom.
And assess your strengths as a writer. You may enjoy dramas but you may be a very poor writer of one. It should not happen that you are working on a comedy for one year and suddenly realise that the thing that you are good at is horror. So develop concepts which are in sync with your talent.
And a last one. Don’t spend too much time in ambivalence. Don’t hang on it too long. The best way a writer can use his time is by writing. So if in doubt write a quick draft. Because all said and done, that’s the only foolproof way of finding out whether a concept is worth it or not.
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