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Monday 29 - Wednesday 31 of July 2019

Free of charge / Free accommodation (bed) in Marine Academy of Hydra

Language: English


FROM IDEA TO SCREENPLAY: A 3-day Practical Script-Writing Workshop



Two to two and a half hour workshops with focus on class exercises

20% theory, 80% practice

Class exercises within every class, meant to engage the student in the writing process on the spot, rather than ‘take home exercises’ which often have a low priority in the day-to-day student life.



Understanding the fundamentals of script-writing

Acquiring the practical tools to start writing: script-writing programs and resources

Writing 1 short film script, including pitch, theme, synopsis and step outline.



3 sessions, 2 to 2-2,5 hours


4. TYPICAL STRUCTURE OF A LECTURE – 50 minutes + break 10 - 15 minutes + 50 minutes

First half

Quick recap of last lectures – bringing new students up to date

Theory I – screen-writing (for example: Aristotle’s “Poetics” or “The hero’s journey”. Power point presentation with movie clips, played on screen)

Watching a short film or a portion of a feature film.

Practical exercise regarding the short film or a class discussion

Break 15 minutes – vital to the students socializing

Second half

On-the-spot class exercise: in groups, freestyle writing upon a given theme – approx. 30 minutes

Presentation of the exercise

Questions and answers.




1st DAY - Monday 29 of July 2019


Subject 1:

Introduction to script-writing and methods. Overview and purpose of the course.

Introduction myself. Teacher vs guide 

Presentation of the course – what will we be doing? When? How?

Screenplay formatting & available programs 

Introduction to Writer Duet and Celtx, FadeIn, Trelby, Final Draft


Subject 2:

Writer in the dark: why, when and how do we write?

Self-analyzing procedures. Habits related to writing. 

From exploring our own observations, triggers and depth to universality of our stories.


Subject 3:

The role of the screen-writer in the collaborative film-making crew.

What is a screenplay? What is expected of it?

Processes helping the screenplay: pitch, theme, synopsis ( short and expanded synopsis), treatment, step outline.


Subject 4:

Books, guides, theories and models about screen-writing. How to choose?        


2nd DAY - 30 of July 2019


Subject 5:

Location scouting and its importance for a writer.  

Research into dialogue and speech. Original voice vs. writer’s voice.

Short film: ‘La Jeteé’ 1962, C. Marker (clip, 5 minutes)


Subject 6:

The audience – who are they? 

We all write with an audience in mind. Identification of ‘the audience’. 

The audience’s emotional progression – connection to the narrative arc. 


Subject 7:

Types of narrative. 

The premise, the universe and the action. What is a premise and why is it useful? 

Class exercise: your favorite story, moment in a film or book, character, and why. 

Short film: The Wallet’ 2003 dir. V. Bierrewaerts ( clip 5-6 minutes)


3rd DAY - 31st of July 2017


Subject 8:

Character creation & theme

Character vs. theme vs. narrative vs. emotional journey

Class exercise: creating a story about a character based on a photograph.

Screen-writing exercise: developing the character of our exercise


Subject 9:

Disjointed, unconventional and non-linear narratives

The psychology of reading or seeing a story ‘out of order’.

The ‘fourth dimension’.

 Feature film: ‘Synechoche New York’ 2011, dir. C. Kaufman (clip, 5 minutes)


Subject 10:

Screenplay structures in short films

Linear structures. Following or not following a structure.

Watching various short films & discussion.

Short film: ‘Swimmer’ 2012 L. Ramsay (clip, 5 minutes)

Short film: ‘Last words’ 1976 dir. W. Herzog (clip, 5 minutes)


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