“Slow story openings are one of the things I see over and over — and over. A story seems interesting. But, “seems” is the key word. No story takes shape until page 40. This is the death knell of scripts.”
~ Max Adams
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COURSE DURATION: This is a 6 week accelerated online master screenwriting class.
COURSE EMPHASIS: Course emphasis is on opening a story that kicks it out of the gate on page 10 instead of limping to page 40 before a real story launches in a screenplay.
COURSE EXPECTATIONS: In this course you’ll discover and work with writing tools and techniques you can apply to fiction, nonfiction, screenplays, teleplays, and stage plays. Through lectures, script analysis, and in-class exercises, you will work with and learn techniques to launch script sequences that are compelling, learn how to open a story in 15 pages or less that introduce characters and a primary story dilemma that will drive concept, character, and a plot — and will work with ways to escalate that story dilemma and reveal it so that by page 30 or earlier? A story is launched, NOT still waiting to appear.
During the course of the class, Max Adams will work with you on your script’s opening, will share samples of successful scripts and films that share and implement similar story and plot launch techniques and mechanisms, and will provide feedback and support to help you achieve a strong story launch for your script.
WEEK ONE: What the First 30 Pages Do || Lecture: Set Up, Illuminate, Launch — or Perish
WEEK TWO: Images & Expectations || Lecture: Speed Demons & the First 10 Pages
WEEK THREE: Premature Ejaculation || Lecture: Why Opening on a Climax Usually Fails
WEEK FOUR: The Lies You Were Told About Characters|| Lecture: Character Does Not Equal Résumé
WEEK FIVE: Heavy Reading || Lecture: Thirty Pages Under the Microscope
WEEK SIX: Resurrection || Lecture: Reevaluating Repetition & Pacing & How to Remove — Repetition
WEEK SEVEN: Grace Period || No Lecture |
TIME LINES: Classes roll open online in the forum at approximately 12 AM EST Tuesday morning. Students have until 11 PM EST Tuesday night to read the initial weekly lecture and complete and post an initial short written assignment. There is additional reading and viewing material during the week. There are weekly one hour chats on Thursday nights. Chat times start at 7 PM EST, 8 PM EST, and 9 PM EST, depending on your class’s chat schedule.
INSTRUCTOR: Max Adams
DURATION: 6 Weeks + 1 Week Grace Week
LOCATION: Online: AFW FORUM [classroom forums are private]
CLASS SIZE: There is a 10 person cap on this course.
MATERIALS: Lectures, reading materials and most viewing materials are supplied in class or online.
WRITING SAMPLE: A writing sample is required.
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