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Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Working your Idea

As we discussed last week, an idea for an indie feature has to be special - it needs to have very few locations and characters. Why? Because time is money, which you'll have little of, and every new location is time, which is money. And the more characters you have, the more time it takes, plus more salaries.

So, when you have an idea, how do you work it? A very solid approach to developing your idea is by writing it out in one sentence, AKA, the ONE LINER. Keep in mind, the idea is really the foundation to everything, so it is here, in developing it, that you want to spend a lot of time. By writing it out in one sentence, this forces you to distill it down.

If you can't get your idea down to one sentence, this fact is telling you that you have a problem. It's a red flag which is saying your idea is too complicated. That's why this process of taking your idea and developing it in such a way that you can articulate it in one sentence is so important. Because if you can't, you still have a long way to go.

If you can't, more than likely the idea is too bloated. Too complicated. Simple on the outside, complicated on the inside. That's the approach you want to stick with. Any idea which is so complicated you can't explain in one or two sentences will be very difficult to write. So start by writing your idea as a paragraph or two, then several sentences, and finally, one sentence.

If you can do this, articulate your idea in one sentence, you will really be able to see your story, and totally understand it, and others will too.