Michael Hauge's Writing Misdemeanors
These crimes may not get your screenplay or
manuscript rejected, but you should be definitely
punished for them...
SUMMARIZING. When writing an outline or treatment, don’t just summarize the action with broad, vague statements like “she’s a loner”, or “he kills someone” or “they want children”. You must state how we know that she’s a loner, who he kills and how, and how their desire for children is revealed through action and dialogue. Even the most condensed stories require specific action and description.
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“… one of the few authentically good teachers out there. Every time I revisit my notes, I learn something new or reinforce something that I need to remember.”
- Jeff Arch, Screenwriter: Sleepless In Seattle, Iron Will, Saving Milly, Writer/Director: Dave Barry's Complete Guide To Guys
- YOU ARE READING THIS MISDEMEANOR
- HOW ABOUT A ROLL IN THE HAY?
- THIS ONE’S HILARIOUS
- LET’S SIT THIS ONE OUT
- I FEEL VERY UPSET ABOUT THIS ONE
- YOU'LL FEEL ECSTATIC WHEN YOU READ THIS
- THIS ONE MAKES ME ROLL MY EYES
- SHOE LEATHER
- GOING INCOGNITO
- NO DESCRIPTION
- JOHN, DON’T DO THIS
- THEIR THEIR, NOW.... ITS GOING TO BE FINE
- PUTTING DETAIL AND DESCRIPTION IN THE SCENE HEADING...
- SPEL CHEK
- OVERLAPPING DIALOGUE
- HAVE WE MET?
- CREDIT WHERE CREDIT IS DUE
- TELLING US WHAT WE’RE WATCHING
- WHERE ARE WE?
- REPEATEDLY REPEATING WHAT YOU'VE REPEATED