Rethinking strategies for 2010

It’s end of 2009. It makes sense in going through my targets for year 2009 which I posted here one year back. Also it would be interesting to retrospect regarding what I did wrong all these years in terms of my scriptwriting aspirations. Where do I stand? What all things did I crack? What all things cracked me?
First of all regarding my targets. One major target was a draft and redraft of heist script. I did the draft but couldn’t do the redraft. The reason is that I spend too much words on the first draft. I need a lot of time to do a redraft. And also something that did not figure in all the plans was the thriller script I co wrote with my friend which hopefully is getting produced next year. So sometimes you have to break your own rules for some random opportunities.
Another target for this year was developing some other treatments and another screenplay. I did do some work on a treatment but not much. The second screenplay didn’t take off mainly because of the thriller script and its treatment. Also one major hindrance for me this year was the fact that I had to give exams in December because of which second half of the year was very hectic.
Now what did I learn in terms of writing this year? It is that one should not spend too much time writing spec scripts. Rather we should concentrate more on treatments and synopsis. The situation in Indian film industry is a little different from that of Hollywood where the quality of the spec script is the bench mark by which you are judged as a writer. BUT HERE NO ONE READS THE FULL SCRIPT. None who matters. They will ask for the script to see how serious you are regarding the writing but actually none has the patience to read the script through. The scenario may be a little different if you are submitting your script to studios where the executives really do go through it but I don’t know how fruitful that approach is in the end, unless some star or director backs your script.
I also realised that a lot depends on your networking. If some writer out there thinks that making up a good story is enough for success, you are mistaken. It is just the inevitable first step of your journey. Some one’s objective assessment of your story is always clouded by your source of referral to him, his initial assessment regarding you, and your past credentials. So it’s a vicious circle.
Another important thing is the networking. I cant stress on this factor too much. A novelist can afford to sit in his room and punch his keys, oblivious of the outside world. But scriptwriting is an entirely different ball game. A movie is a team work. Naturally your social skills should be good enough to get that opportunity in the first place. Some one can say that if one guy is a true genius the world will come after him. But I think that at least in terms of script writing, it’s a myth. Because the person who makes an assessment of your script and opens the door is in the end is the producer. And in film industry, they come in all shapes.
Another thing that I have realised is the importance of luck. To be right person in the right time at the right place, it’s something. Some times it just happens. But what can we do about it? The important thing is to be prepared when the dice falls your way. Make as many stories/treatments as possible. One common pitfall is putting all your eggs in one basket. We all have some favorite stories of our own. But they need not be our best story or the story that others like best. So shoot as many arrows. One of them will find the target.

So roughly following are my targets for 2010:
1-To make as many as 20 treatments for the various ideas I have with me.
Do a redraft of the heist script.
2-Complete the second draft of the thriller script with my friend by mid January (this would be my priority right now)
3-Do a first draft of a drama script tentatively titled ‘river bends.’
4-To start the real field work. Until now I was tied to Delhi due to my course. Now hopefully I have more freedom. So now starts the phase of actually trying to set up contact with the players of the industry.                                                            5-And finally -Networking. Networking. Networking.

Photo by by <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/people/ancientartizen/”>ancientartizen</a>

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5 thoughts on “Rethinking strategies for 2010

  1. Hmm..interesting stuff about what happens in Indian film industry. Thanks for sharing.
    I think you had a pretty productive year.
    Btw, I was wondering that arent 20 treatments bit too ambitious in one year? Of course I dont mean that people dont do it or cant do it..just wondering..
    I mean especially if each idea is quite different from another and each treatment takes some minimum amount of time..
    Anyways, good luck and hopefully this year we will see your script on screen. 🙂

    1. Hi Dev,
      In my experience a basic treatment takes anywhere between 1-3 weeks of hard work. But the good thing is that we dont have to sit in front of the monitor while making up a treatment. You can fit the thinking into all those bits and pieces of waiting and boredom in our mundane lives. So it is atleast theoretically possible. Still I think I overshot in planning 20 treatments. The problem is not only of time. I have to find 20 ideas that is satisfying to myself.
      Regarding seeing my script on screen, I am even happy if one of it gets made for release in 2011:)

    1. nice and some parts is like hearing to myself ..inspirational and informative ..share something about writing treatment( your way)

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