I am now one week into Term 2 at VFS. The majority of my classes this term focus on developing stories so that I can write a strong first draft. In one of my classes I am developing a feature film that I pitched last term. It is a romantic comedy about two quirky English majors in their final year of university. Feature development class involves discussing a one-sheet synopsis and then writing and workshopping two drafts of a beat sheet, which is a break down of every major story beat. (A beat is one character trying to get something from another character. Different than a scene, because a scene can have more than one beat and a beat can stretch over more than one scene).
I also have a TV Spec course, which involves developing a script for a TV Spec. Basically, this means writing an episode of an existing TV series. Development for this script will include watching episodes of the show and reading teleplays of previous episodes to learn the format that the show follows. TV Specs are helpful for screenwriting portfolios because they show your writing ability and can come in handy when applying for TV writing jobs.
In terms of development, I am also collaborating with some writing classmates and some students from the Film Production program to write two episodes for a web series. They will be filmed next term.
My other classes include Dialogue, which focuses on–you guessed it–dialogue, and Crime Genre, which consists of reading and analyzing well-known screenplays in the genre of–you guessed it again–crime.
But as I said, the main focus of Term 2 is developing our ideas in preparation for Term 3, when the real writing begins.
And never ends.