ZEN IN THE ART OF SCREENWRITING: To Fade In or Not To Fade In?

Jose Prendes has written multiple films and novels, including his latest film The Divine Tragedies and novel, Sharcano, which is as awesome as it sounds and can be found here with his other books. Current whereabouts are unknown… Follow Jose on Twitter: @JosePrendes.

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In the beginning, there is a blank page. This page is waiting for your furtive imagine and frantic fingers to fill it with wonders and sorrows and laughs and highs and lows and good guys and bad guys. It is waiting to come to life. It is a battlefield in search of alphabet soldiers.

El_Alamein_1942_-_British_infantryBut that grand word-slinging war begins with the simple and infinitely daunting phrase: ‘FADE IN’.

I’ve spoken with so many folks who dream of becoming writers, have ideas bursting out of their seams, but are hampered by the ungodly fear of starting.

“How do I begin it?” They ask.

“How do I go from point A to B to C?” They wonder.

“Once you write ‘FADE IN’, what happens next?” They agonize.

The answer I give them is simple: you must bust your ass to get to ‘FADE OUT’ and make it worth the journey. Agatha Christie once said: “The secret of getting ahead is getting started.” So you want to sell that script? Make that film? Then get started! Write, damn it, write! What is the ‘FADE IN’ but a call to arms to begin!

Fear not a thing in your domain, friend writer. Be mad with joy and glee and possibilities and greatness! Don’t see ‘FADE IN’ as a hurdle; as a great, fat Smaug barring your way to grand, rich universes. That’s defeatist, fearful thinking.

See it as the friendly hello from your sexy muse!

To write is to shape and change the world around you, to become a paper God. If the need to throw down words against the blank page burns in your very guts; if you are absolutely, heart-poundingly mad for it, then for the love of sanity, do it! ‘FADE IN’ is just another thrown word, it won’t eat you. Quite the opposite, it will greet you joyfully.

See it as a welcome mat to rub your brain on!

Fear is useless. Throw it out, exorcise it. ‘FADE IN’ is the key to your personal forever. It’s yours and yours alone. With it, you cry “charge!” and jump boldly into the blankness, armed with your weaponized story, full-blooded and ready to conquer the never-was.

so-you-want-to-be-a-screenwriter-sara-caldwelll-marie-eve-kielson_small Get more help on facing your writing fears with
So You Want to Be a Screenwriter: How to Face the Fears and Take the Risks

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