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Screenwriter's Compass by Guy Gallo

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7

GETTING READY AGAIN

PASSION AND PURPOSE

Be still when you have nothing to say; when genuine passion moves you, say what you’ve got to say, and say it hot.

—D. H. Lawrence

A student once reacted to my comments about her screenplay with, “But that was how my first draft was… people told me to change it.” She had added backstory, had started earlier in the fable, had added several characters for no apparent reason. All because the last semester’s teacher and workshop told her to.

I was dismayed. I was a bit angry both for her and at her.

You need to hold onto what you believe is right. You should not easily change it because someone else—a teacher, a friend, a producer—tells you to change it. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be open to criticism. ...

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