John Truby on Why Most People Fail at Screenwriting
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.)