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Round Two results

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maxbjork View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote maxbjork Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15 Jul 2021 at 8:50am
Hey although I'm not competing -- I just wanted to say congrats to everyone that made it this far, even if you didn't make it to round 3. I've been reading some of the Round 2 scripts. Wow there's some stiff competition!
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Iressa View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Iressa Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 Jul 2021 at 9:40pm
I was wondering from the more experienced writers here how late the judges feedback typically comes.  I didn’t make it through to round 3 but I’m eager to learn what I needed to improve.  For round 1 got feedback pretty quickly but I want to be patient as I know those who are starting round 3 tonight need the feedback first. I don’t have anything in my spam/junk and my email works.  Anyone else still waiting?

A big congratulations to all in round 3 and break a leg (key? Pen?) tonight!!  I love reading all your amazing scripts. 
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swilki View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote swilki Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 Jul 2021 at 9:48pm
Not experienced here or anything but I got my feedback same days as results- might be worth a quick message to the feedback email? 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote nickwascreative Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17 Jul 2021 at 12:41am
I would send a follow up to NYCM. I received my feedback shortly after the results were announced. So, sounds like lines might be crossed for your feedback!
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Iressa View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Iressa Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17 Jul 2021 at 5:19am
@swilki & @nickwascreative

Thank you!  I sent an email and they quickly responded.   Yes, I guess wires got crossed. 😊
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote bobbyd Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19 Jul 2021 at 2:18pm
Honorable Mention #1 for mine. I found the "things to work on" feedback that I received rather puzzling: superficial, asking for "more information", asking for more "fleshed out" plot points (e.g. guy chained to a tree, why didn't I discuss what happens if he doesn't cut off his hand - um, he dies??), confusion that demonstrates the reviewer barely bothered to read through the script or understand it.

Look, I'm fine with feedback and criticism. Things I write for a living (tech and corp comms) routinely go through dozens of iterations and committee reviews before being published. Trust me, I'm no sensitive little wallflower. But feedback has to make sense. What I got back was largely nonsense, I hate to say it.

I did take advantage of the judge feedback form. Here are some excerpts I'm happy to share.

==================================
I'm really happy to see you had questions. That means you cared about the plot and the characters enough, and the mystery and suspense worked.

I'm not happy you thought the point of the exercise was to flesh out these answers, marking my work down for failure to convey information. Here I thought we were trying to write drama for the visual medium.

Mamet: THE JOB OF THE DRAMATIST IS TO MAKE THE AUDIENCE WONDER WHAT HAPPENS NEXT. *NOT* TO EXPLAIN TO THEM WHAT JUST HAPPENED, OR TO*SUGGEST* TO THEM WHAT HAPPENS NEXT.

Let me apply that model to your point about "getting distracted":

How did Alice get ouf of becoming Chase's roommate? Who cares. If you knew that, how would that have moved the plot forward or create any more suspense or an obstacle to overcome? The answer: not at all.

Now, if I had laid that all out explicitly, would that have made for better drama? Or would that have "conveyed more information"? I really feel like your feedback was superficial and contrary to the principles of dramatic development.

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I can tell you that other judges struggled, asking for more "clarity" in their feedback. I didn't realize we were here to convey information instead of thrilling the viewer, and I do stress "viewer".

There's exposition and there's spoonfeeding your audience to the point of insulting their intelligence. This is drama and mystery we were trying to write for this assignment, right? The ambiguity is the point. Let the audience figure it out for themselves - or let them wonder. The point is not to give them answers. The point is suspense.

Did the scene leave you wanting more? Good. Did that carry through all the scenes? Great. Did you leave your seat still wondering what happened after the final scene? Congratulations, you just saw a drama instead of a National Geographic documentary on the migratory patterns of the Patagonian dung beetle.

Again, let's not forget we're employing a visual medium. Things like a character who changes names are very easy to convey on screen (it's the same guy, duh!), while on the page it looks clunky (e.g. Chase/Patrick in my play).

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Let me address your feedback by each point:

1. I was a bit confused with the two names for the one character: Patrick and Chase. When they were both introduced at once on page 4, I had to go back and re-read that section because it didn't feel clear with the line before: "Patrick is the name they know him by here." I think that line could be clearer to the audience/reader. Maybe offer a reason behind it too so the reader can understand it better.

Are we writing drama or conveying information? We're working in the visual medium here. Imagine the character. It's the same actor playing the guy as the younger dude in the high school pictures. I'm sorry, but getting baffled by the complexities of a simple alias, which is amply explained, doesn't wash. Nobody had any issue understanding this plot point.

2. I thought the dialogue between Chase and Alice at the end could have been amped up a little more. I wasn't sure if "little makeout sessions in the basement" really conveyed the message of rape. It also implied that Chase did this more than once, possibly to other girls, but nothing was said about that. I felt Chase's reaction to Helen's suicide wasn't as surprised as I would have thought either. That was a loaded line but nothing really came of it. I would have liked to seen more tension in that moment between the two.

You completely took out the "little makeout sessions" line out of context. Alice is talking about Chase and Helen as a couple. The point of this line is that Alice was a young kid back then, which is an explanation for why he doesn't recognize her.

The rape scene has nothing to do with it. This is just lazy reading.

3. I was also curious about the Swiss army knife. What was the significance to Alice taking that out for Chase to see? Yes, it was engraved but did he use that on Helen? Did Helen have that made before she killed herself to possibly use it on Chase? It didn't quite fit for the end.

Ever read Mamet's Three Uses of the Knife? Literally applicable here.

Mamet:THE JOB OF THE DRAMATIST IS TO MAKE THE AUDIENCE WONDER WHAT HAPPENS NEXT. *NOT* TO EXPLAIN TO THEM WHAT JUST HAPPENED, OR TO*SUGGEST* TO THEM WHAT HAPPENS NEXT.

I'm glad you had those questions. That means the scene hooked you. Penalizing me for not "conveying sufficient information" to walk the dog for the audience on every possible explanation is (a) unrealistic and (b) literally not the point of the exercise.

The knife is signficiant. That is why it showed up in the scene. Helen wanted to give it to Chase as a graduation gift OR she wanted to stab him in the dick with it for letting her get gang-raped OR she used it to kill herself.

All are great possibilities. Why choose one and spoonfeed it to the audience when they can fill in the blanks for themselves? What DRAMATIC OBJECTIVE is achieved by conveying the information you claim is so sorely missing from this scene?

Drama, not information, is why the audience came. We're not writing industrials about forklift safety here. Are we?

"It didn't quite fit for the end." As opposed to what, a retrospective exposition on "the story of the knife"?

ALICE
This is the knife Helen had engraved because she was so angry at you and your bastard buddies for raping her, so she bought it on Amazon during Prime Day and took it to the mall to have it engraved, because you suck so much and now you'll use it to cut off your hand. HAHAHAH! (laughs maniacally)

Better now?

Again, this point is another piece of very superficial feedback and I don't agree with its premise.
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