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READ GUIDELINES CAREFULLY, CAREFULLY.

This will help you, and will help you to ask me about any questions you have.

I’ve suggested that you look over these guidelines early, in order to get a glimpse and to ask questions.

Script Format:

Use either format shown in the Script Format document.

USE TIMES NEW ROMAN, 12-inch font

NO MORE THAN 1-inch margins, top, bottom, left, right

NOTE THE SPACING on the script formats. SINGLE SPACING is used when one character speaks.

Number of characters

: Use ONLY two characters that you and I have agreed upon.

Number of Pages

: 4 FULL pages if using publishing format; 3 and 1/2 pages if using actor’s format.

You may go beyond the minimum number of pages if you wish.

Setting:

Be sure that you are using a thoughtful setting for the STAGE.

First, look at my responses to you regarding your list of settings, characters, conflict, etc. that you emailed.

Then, choose the direction you most prefer — take a direction that will be fun and will g

ive you a solid sense of

discovery and exploration.

Hone your ideas about your direction to create a

solid relationship with your two characters

, and use a

strong conflict that they are confronting

. Think of ONE of the characters as taking the most important

journey, one who has the most to gain or to lose.

IMPORTANT Guidelines and Aspects

A.

• Each scene will involve both characters throughout the scene in one, constant setting with no exits

• All action will be sustained in the selected setting in a single time period (no shifts in time)

• Be sure to review the Information Station comments given on Friday, Week 1

B.

Create a dialogue between the two characters that clearly shows the following:

• solid traits distinguishable with each character

• traits contrast from one character to another

• character voices are clear and distinctive

• a solid relationship is seen between the characters

• a strong conflict is clearly seen, BOTH external conflict AND internal conflict

• we get a sense of inner characteristics and deeper levels of characters

• rising tension is clearly seen: VERY IMPORTANT aspect to use

• some strong actions are included; devise some significant actions

(these can be simple, such as tearing petals off of a flower, or more complex, such as throwing a

chair across the room)

• we get a sense that one of the characters has more “at stake”

Notes on stage directions and spacing


Use stage directions only where needed to show more about the character, or to notate essential blocking.

Use single-spacing for each separate character’s voice.

Place stage directions in parentheses. (Also

italicize

IF

you are using a publishing format.)

Use only one space to separate the end of one character’s dialogue and the next character’s dialogue (see below)

Here is an example, using a publishing format:

CARLA: I cannot see that this is any concern of yours. I have satisfactorily completed all necessary set-up

arrangements. You need not have any concerns beyond that.

(Carla stomps over to the cabinet and slams the

cabinet door.)

SAMUEL: You sound like a computer. What’s up with that? Where’s the box? You know that’s all I want.

Give me the box, and then I scram.

CARLA: We’ve been over this. There is no box.

SAMUEL: Well, doll, I’m staying here

(sits on table)

until there IS a box. In my hands. These hands.

(raises

hands in a threatening manner).

Do you see what I mean?

(AND THE SCENE WOULD CONTINUE, SHOWING MORE ABOUT CHARACTER TRAITS,

RELATIONSHIP, CONFLICT, RISING TENSION, ETC.)

CLASS NOTE for your scene: Look at the way these two character “voices” are very distinct from each other.

You immediately assume traits about Carla and Samuel by the way they phrase their sentences, etc., and by the

“attitudes” we are assuming about them. SO, think about how your characters are distinct from each other, with

individual wants, needs, different backgrounds and contrasts, etc.

REMEMBER THAT YOU ARE WRITING A SLICE OF A SCENE.

USE BULLETED GUIDELINES ABOVE TO HELP YOU

MOVE YOUR SCENE and PROPEL THE

ACTION.

USE SIGNIFICANT ACTION and RISING TENSION.

Play, focus, have fun, see where it takes you. On the other hand, don’t be too lax about your writing.

Take it seriously, but have fun getting to know your characters’ voices and reacti

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