Thoughts on the Writing Process – Swapping Screen for Ink

I read this Quentin Tarantino interview the other day. The interviewer asked him if he still wrote his scripts by hand and Tarantino replied, Let me ask you a question: If you were going to try to write a poem, would you do it on a computer? You don’t need technology for poetry.

It got me thinking. I write a lot of stuff by hand – my journal, writing exercises, notes – but all my scriptwriting is done on my computer or iPad. So, I began writing the short film script I’m working on with good ol’ pen and paper.

I started with dialogue and instead of the (I’m assuming) 2-3 pages I’d get when typing it by computer, I ended up with nine. Cool. It was quite fluid too, for a first go. Usually I need to rewrite and edit some stuff, but this all came out pretty well. I continued with the action lines and also got several pages more than usual. It’s a much more expressive way to work and I find the output a lot more natural, and I get a much more satisfying feeling when done.

For some reason Last Train Home played in my head when I finished.

I walked away and came to write today’s blog entry. I realise now that writing by pen and paper opens up channels and doors that a computer just cannot access. Give it a go.



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