Characters 2


1. Conflict

  • Set up your characters to be in conflict, not conversation. 

  • When you're tempted to write a "conversation", or "talk", or "visit", or anything similar, don't. 

  • Always remember the principle of Rising Conflict. That's conflict between characters. 

  • EG. You don't need to have screaming scenes to exhibit conflict. 

         A scene where a mother thinks the male coach she's talking to has seduced her 12 year old daughter -- is conflict. 

         She wants to go crazy but the struggle within her is to hold back as she might be wrong. 

         This can be an electric scene, even though on the surface, they're talking about the girl's batting average. 

  • You shouldn't write the dialogue. Let your characters write the dialogue. During the writing of your script, you will have your own multiple personalities. 

2. Playing Dialogue vs. Reading Dialogue

  • Remember that entertaining the reader of the scripts is not your primary mission. 

  • Always keep in mind that a script that reads well on paper might not necessarily play well. Conversely, scripts that seem merely adequate on paper, may explode on screen. 

  • This is because you, as a writer, have to take into account, that the script will be played out in a certain way by the actor, which can transform words that read OK on the script, into something explosive and dramatic on screen.

*It's helpful to develop your acting skills, which will help your writing skills, specifically, your character writing skills)


  • Whenever you're stuck in a corner during your writing process, always look to your characters to lead you out. They will show you the way. 

  • Good writers always look to their characters when they are in story trouble. The key to fixing your trouble or moving the story along will be through your characters. 


  • Both get equal billing. 

  • The plot must serve the character. The character must serve the plot.