Being Flexible When Building Your Blueprint

You begin to develop a solid foundation of your script by first developing your structure in an arbitrary manner, so you will be able and willing to give up parts of your story that don't work. It's important not to commit yourself to any particular idea or character in a rigid manner. You must build your structure carefully and slowly, letting it develop into a solid foundation step by step.

You'd be amazed at the resistance writers have against making changes in their writing, after they've written their script. In my workshops there are students who will argue, become defensive, and even a few who never finish what they start, because they can't be objective. You could say they have tunnel vision and can only see their story from a one-dimensional perspective. This is not a good trait to have when you are trying to structure your story. Writers who are successful shaping a solid structure are those willing to make changes over and over again.

In other words, you must be flexible. This trait is probably the most important one all writers should have. If you find yourself being rigid about your writing it's important that you learn to be able to give up those areas in your writing that don't work. To be flexible you also must be willing to add characters or scenes that you need to make your story work.

Being flexible allows you to create your work as an artist would create a piece of sculpture. The writer like the sculptor must be flexible. In sculpting, your medium may be clay, which is malleable. If you are sculpting a human figure, you look at the entire body to see the overall structure. You might begin with the face and move to the trunk or the arm, always sculpting the parts in relationship to their overall structure. When you make a change in one area it effects the entire work. Be aware of the relationship of the sum to all the parts when you are structuring your writing. After you begin your story, think of it as if you are working with clay and be flexible when you make changes to look at the over-all structure so it won't collapse.

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