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Old 10-17-2014, 07:00 AM   #1
Steven Forbes
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TPG Week 199: Not Enough Peanut Butter



Welcome back, one and all, to another installment of The Proving Grounds! This week, we have a new Brave One in Jason Bonine. We also have Samantha LeBas in purple, I'm in the festive red, and we'll all see how Jason does with



CHANCER#1



Le sigh... Okay. Right off the bat, this is at a font size of 10. I've saved all of your eyes, while my sanity is already beginning to crumble, and we just started. You're welcome.



ONE



Panel 1: (splash page)

INT. CHARLIEíS APARTMENT. KITCHEN. DAY.

Close up Charlie (late 20s, bespectacled nerd.) lying on the checkered linoleum floor. We only see the Torso up, his eyes cloudy and uncomprehending. Syringe nearby on the floor. Arm tied off. He reaches for his dead motherís hand. (Sheís off camera, you only see her hand.) You could either go the spectral route, where itís translucent and ethereal, or the more physical route, whereís slimy and covered in pustules. Itís your choice, of course. Captions should sort of float above his head.(Where is he looking? Out into space or toward his motherís hand? We need to know if she is standing or lying on the ground beside him, as that will change everything about the way this page is composed.)



Caption1: I ODíed once.

Caption2: It was an accident. I wasnít trying to kill myself.

Caption3: Thatís what I tell people, anyway.



(Your formatting has already made me not want to read this, and thatís a shame because the little bit or dialogue on this page is engaging. Lying, suicide, drugs, supernatural elements, relatable narrator. Whatís here is good, but you are making me fight for it. I donít want to fight for it. Hand it over.



What I mean by that is these descriptions should be organized and thorough. The font and underlining as a means of setting dialogue apart from the rest of the text were poor decisions, the small font size is not helping matters. Also you have neglected page breaks. There are a million ways this could have been done better with the tools you had, none of them required a great deal of effort, just some planning. Writing is planning.)


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Old 10-20-2014, 11:05 AM   #2
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The common issues do seem to be:

a) Formatting. Okay, I was guilty of this on my first submission and I only spotted this when Steven was raging about this on other submissions. In this case, would it be worth including the thread for TPG submissions as a link at the bottom of the page? It's becoming such a problem lately, it might help?

b) Time and care taken. We seem to be rushing our submissions in our effort to tell the story that we want to tell. The dialogue is extremely good and the panel descriptions much less so. It's almost skipping important information in order for the artist to get to the "good" part. The thing is, it's also causing the conflict and tension to be lost.

c) Masturbating skeletons. It is a horrible mental image and likely a nightmare for an artist to depict (I foresee a lot of time spent on it, in any case).

d) Getting Steven to slip in a further "angle" joke, almost without notice (Tangentially - I feel proud for finding that one).

5) Consistency. See what I did? That can be really annoying to a lot of people and, if the consistency is shot to pieces just for a reader, it will cause editors to throw a script straight into the bin. If your name starts to become synomynous with crap, just seeing your name will be enough for the rejection pile. This is definitely not good.


The dialogue is certainly a strength and I think it was picked up that this was a movie script at some point. It really shows though. Saying that, this was an interesting read.
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Old 10-20-2014, 09:01 PM   #3
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Not coming to a theatre near you

I really don't get the comments stating Chancer was *obviously* a screenplay at one point. No. Never. Not even for a minute.Why do people think that? Is it all the high ANGLE shots?


No, but for real. Why do people think that? Does too many moving panels=unsold screenplay?

Thanks for the praise for the characterization/dialouge. More time spent on that than nything else. (Obviosly less time spent formatting.)

Thanks for the time. The attention. Whatnot.
-Jason.
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Old 10-20-2014, 09:44 PM   #4
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Opps. Should read: Do too many panels = unsold screenplay. My bad. My perpetual bad.
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Old 10-21-2014, 05:13 AM   #5
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It's not the moving panels that make people think that this is a screenplay, it's more to do with how the script itself is formatted.

What you've got is a mix of a plot-style script and a formalised "traditional" script, which makes it harder to visualise and edit. I think this is why that the traditional format is preferred as it removes any ambiguity for thinking that any script was originally for some kind of unfilmed movie.

In fairness though, from what we can read, Chancer would actually make for a pretty decent movie, I'd definitely watch it.

I'd definitely like to see how this will look as a resubmission as well.
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