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 "Story and Screenplay Structure" by Kal Bishop 
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Post "Story and Screenplay Structure" by Kal Bishop
Title: Story and Screenplay Structure

Author: Kal Bishop


Structure is beneficial to creative output in a number of ways.
There are at least two types of structure, work processes and

a) Work processes such as incremental production produce more
output than a "do your best" approach. Writing four pages a day
completes a words-on-paper first draft screenplay in one month.
A "do your best" or "waiting for inspiration" approach can take
months or years.

b) Work processes such as separating creative from critical
thinking allow the build up of large idea pools using creative
thinking and the reduction of those pools into feasible ideas
using critical thinking.

c) Frameworks reduce complex problems into their component
intellectual parts. For example, story structure can be reduced
to three or four acts or The Hero With A Thousand Faces
(Campbell, 1973). Frameworks increase output by reducing complex
problems into smaller, more manageable problem solving
exercises. In screenwriting, frameworks tell the writer where to
start, where to finish, what to write and what should be
happening at a particular stage of the story.

Additionally, a structured approach improves performance in a
number of ways, including:

a) Simply being prolific improves performance. The single best
creative product tends to appear at that point in the career
when creator is being most prolific. Experience refines
knowledge and methodology towards optimal levels.

b) Engagement in the tasks results in problem identification and
triggers the mind into working on those problems at various
cognitive levels. Problems incubate until answers become
apparent. Increasing the incidence and frequency of problem
identification increases the incidence and frequency of insight.
In other words, simply engaging in the project generates good
ideas, insights and inspiration, which is why screenwriters
often find that their best ideas come to them when they are in
the middle of writing a screenplay.

c) Increased problem identification (coupled with motivation)
increases the incidence of solution seeking, through active
search for stimuli and intellectual cross pollination through
networks and collaboration.

A range of Screenplay and Story Structure Templates can be found

You can also receive a regular, free newsletter by entering your
email address at this site.

Kal Bishop, MBA


About the author:
Kal Bishop is a management consultant based in London, UK. He
has consulted in the visual media and software industries and
for clients such as Toshiba and Transport for London. He has led
Improv, creativity and innovation workshops, exhibited artwork
in San Francisco, Los Angeles and London and written a number of
screenplays. He is a passionate traveller. He can be reached on

This article was re-posted by permission.

Tue Jul 10, 2007 7:20 pm
 [ 1 post ] 

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