Monday, 3 February 2020

4 Ways To Conquer First Draft Fear

We have ALL been there, stuck in a creative hole of which we're not totally sure on how to dig ourselves out of. No fear, Kevin Wilde is here!

Kevin is sharing his 4 ways on conquering first draft fear - yes, let's bring back to basics when it comes to starting any new project. The overwhelming sense of where to even begin is sometimes enough to put people off beginning at all - and with the right kind of preparation, there's no reason for that to happen!

So, let's begin our Monday with some serious motivation in the shape of some bite-size top tips that you can utilise within your own work today. 

Handing over to Kevin in 3...2...1...

Be prepared.

No matter how well you think you know the story you want to write in your head, I beg of you, do not just sit down and start writing. Preparation is absolutely imperative. There is not necessarily a right or wrong way to do it either. Make an outline, a scene sequence, character descriptions, whatever works for you. 

It may not be as fun as actually writing your script, but without this important step, you WILL get stuck at some point and become frustrated, and likely put your script on the shelf. I promise. I am speaking from experience. 

Just write.

As writers, it is in our nature to procrastinate. I have found a successful way to overcome the urge to put off writing is to make yourself a schedule for when you are going to write. And there is no need to set unrealistic goals for yourself, we all work differently. 

If you know that once you sit down and start, that you can crank out the pages for two hours, great! Write it down, set an alarm on your phone, whatever it takes. If your life schedule only allows you to write for thirty minutes a day, great! Schedule it. Sit your butt in the chair and write for thirty minutes. If you know you will need a break at some point, great! Schedule a day or two away from your script, then get back to it.

Do not edit as you go.

This was a hard one for me to break myself from, so believe me...I get it. It is okay to sit down and read the last couple of pages you have written, so that you can flow back into the story seamlessly. However do NOT start correcting typos and making changes as you read your previous pages. It is a waste of time and you will drive yourself mad. 

You will edit and rewrite your script several times after your first draft, and those typos and mistakes will still be there then, so just keep writing and worry about all that stuff later. I promise you will not be able to edit your way through a first draft and avoid having to edit and rewrite later.

Tell your story the way you want.

I see this so often on various writing groups on social media. A writer will tell the group about their idea before they have written a single word, or while they are still writing their first draft, and ask for everyone’s opinion. Stop. Nothing positive ever comes from this. It typically results in the writer having self doubt, or changing their story to appease a few hecklers before they have even finished their first draft. You are not writing anyone else’s script. You are writing YOURS. So write it the way YOU want to tell it. 

Now what?

Now you have finished your script (obviously by following all of my tips), so now what? Don’t take my last tip the wrong way, feedback is important and invaluable. However, throwing your idea out there on a social media writing group and letting everyone tell you that you shouldn’t write your story because of this reason or that reason, and getting actual credible feedback are two completely different things. 

Once you are finished, it is a good idea to have a few people that you trust, who are credible and will be honest with you, read your script and listen to their feedback. Then you can decide what makes sense to you as far as making alterations to your script.

Kevin  Wilde is a Feature Writer at Into The Script and a Screenwriter who has a passion for everything horror. 

Though he does currently have projects in the works in a wide range of genres. His horror short, Out of Body, was the winner of the Ink2screen screenwriting competition. 

It is safe to say you can expect big things in the near future from Kevin, many of which will have you sleeping with the lights on.

You can find Kevin on Instagram and Facebook.

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