The second assignment for Screenwriting is due on Tuesday afternoon. It is a table play and that more or less means a story with two people talking. It reminds me of having a conversation with your mum at the kitchen table. The biggest challenge with this project is making the story interesting. There is a limited amount of stories that can be written that are set in one location with two people just talking.
After doing a class exercise of creating a character and putting them in the table play situation, I thought I had a good story for my screenplay. I wrote the step outline (a course of action for your screenplay) for this story and sent it to my tutor. I wanted to have a slight comedy element running through the story, but when I talked about it with Patrick, it became clear to me that it just didn’t make sense.
As I tried to rework the story so it made sense, I started to really hate the story. It was becoming incredibly dull and that’s not the kind of work I want to hand in.
Eventually I came to a much simpler idea – two children having a play date, bickering about what to play and, at the end, getting along.
The criteria for the table play:
- Two characters. (A third is permitted with prior tutor approval)
- One indoor setting
- A clearly established main character/protagonist
- Character goals
- Evident structure
- Dilemma and/or conflict
- At least three status changes
- Character arc(s) are developed and resolved.
During the process of my new table play I focused mostly on ensuring I had clear status changes. The way I incorporated these changes of power between the characters was to have them almost bully each other at times, as children do.
I do have a third character, the girl’s mother, appear briefly in the story, I haven’t yet received approval from Patrick on this. Hopefully he will give me the all clear before I’m rushing to hand it in!