John Truby on Why Most People Fail at Screenwriting
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Film Courage, the website and radio show dedicated to empowering independent filmmakers, interviewed at length screenwriting teacher John Truby on the art and craft of screenwriting, and released a total of 14 videos between August and now.
I have yet to watching the whole series but decided to share the latest video I’ve watched because I thought it had some interesting beats.
I don’t always agree on some very specific points* with Truby but overall he has a different discourse than the regular ‘Hollywood Screenwriting Teacher‘ that I found healthier and closer to reality.
If you’re driven by making money and becoming famous, you might be disappointed by Truby’s philosophy. The man believes in two things: work and time. Sounds very logical when it comes to writing a story but somehow, in most books and screenwriting classes they assure you they have found the miraculous recipe to write a pitch/outline/draft that will seduce all species and will propel you to stardom in 10 minutes/days/weeks.
Truby, however, emphasizes the importance of mastering the craft but also the difficulties attached to a job that means you will spend most of your time alone in front of a blank page listening to your darkest thoughts. (Ok, Truby didn’t really say anything about dark thoughts, but he should have, because it’s true.)
You know the drill, I embedded the video with chapters breakdown. There are only three of them for this 10 minute video, and they are all worth watching, but I always say that so do as you please, just try to enjoy:
- Chapter 1: Why Most People Fail at Screenwriting
- Chapter 2: What Being a Writer Means
- Chapter 3: The Key Quality for a Writer
*(i.e. in this video: ‘Screenwriting is the most difficult craft in the WORLD.’ Just that, really… Not a huge fan of the hyperbola tendency, unless Truby has practiced every single craft in the world. Then, of course, my apologies for doubting his words. Otherwise, saying it’s a difficult craft is enough I believe.)