Writing Your First Short Screenplay

Kasem Kharsa, Artist-Filmmaker

Play Speed
  • 0.5x
  • 1x (Normal)
  • 1.25x
  • 1.5x
  • 2x
11 Lessons (1h 38m)
    • 1. About this Class

      2:17
    • 2. Screenplay Style and Format

      9:25
    • 3. Screenwriting Tools

      4:51
    • 4. Plot, Concept and Poetry

      14:41
    • 5. First Stabs at the First Draft

      7:58
    • 6. Giving and Getting Feedback

      3:32
    • 7. Rewriting and Rethinking

      3:51
    • 8. Conclusion

      2:09
    • 9. Appendix: Adobe Story Screencast

      17:30
    • 10. Bonus: Beginner's Mindset , a simpler 'Project' and Multiple Lives

      14:20
    • 11. Bonus: The Russian Doll Exercise

      17:25
32 students are watching this class

Project Description

The class project is to write the first draft of your short screenplay. Yeah, I know, that sounds like a lot, but if you signed up for this class then I have faith in you. Remember the point of writing and sharing your first draft isn't to overwhelm us with your brilliance, in fact I can confidently say every first draft I've ever written has been crap, riddled with lots of problems. Rather, the objectives are much simpler and more attainable: 

  1. demonstrate you understand screenwriting format (or at least know how to use software that will do the formatting for you)
  2. demonstrate 'visual writing', showing the reader versus telling them everything
  3. make a decision about the type of short you want to work on (narrative, poetic, experimental), making a decision can help guide how you organize your images and what actually happens in your short (e.g. what is the logic of your 'story')

I'm sure you'll have questions along the way, so feel free to ask in the discussion forum, that's why it's there. 

If you never write your first draft, then there's really no way to make it better and better - writing it out is a way of making it into a real physical thing that you can reflect on and improve. So please do make that first step!

I recommend you upload your script as a PDF and host it to a service like Dropbox or Google Drive, it'll make it easier for me to leave comments and suggestions (if you don't know how let me know). 

------------------------

RESOURCES:

Go here for handouts mentioned in video lessons

Bonus material: In the second bonus class video I mention the 'Russian Doll' exercise, I've now made that into its own standalone class if you want to learn more about that unique technique.

Student Projects

project card
Kasem Kharsa
31 comments
project card
15 comments
project card
George Paiva
4 comments
project card
Cecile Noldus
8 comments
project card
Sarah Dokes
32 comments
project card
Jacob Chadwick
15 comments
project card
Ron B.
10 comments
project card
Tashara Mundell
12 comments
project card
Jaclyn Edmonson
3 comments
project card
Skyler Schain
20 comments
project card
Alan Dunne
26 comments
project card
Ann Snuggs
19 comments
project card
Sarah Gleason
26 comments
project card
4 comments
A Quiet Evening
Elizabeth Nash
18 comments
project card
11 comments