Script Frenzy – Winner!

Monday 2 May 2011

If you’ve been reading during the last month you might have wondered what all this “Script Frenzy” stuff is about, but, then again, you probably weren’t as you were too busy making little bunnies

Script Frenzy is an international writing event in which participants take on the challenge of writing 100 pages of scripted material in the month of April. It’s like NaNoWriMo (where your write a 50,000 novel in the month of November, an event I failed dismally when I first attempted) but you write a script instead. The counting system differs as while a novel writer could use a gamut of fonts or spacing sizes, meaning their 50,000 word novel could fill an unknowable number of pages, script writing is very precise and governed by formatting rules. How I’ve dumped my writing scraps sort of mimics the layout, but only just. The notion is that in true script formatting one page of script is equal to one minute of screen time, so a 100 page script is 100 minutes, the average length of most films.

Every writer who completes the goal of 100 pages wins, and – yay me! – I wrote 115 pages during the month. (Click on the icon on the right for more info on Script Frenzy.)

So what did I win? I win the bragging rights to say I wrote a script in a month. I also won this:

Pretty nifty, hey?

My script (which was also chosen as a 30 Posters, 30 Days entry) is still going. I’m only up to the morning of the Final Battle and, I must admit, am having a bit of trouble trying to work out what happens next. To keep the momentum going I’m sticking with the daily page requirements, writing at least three pages a day, until it’s finished. It might be all rubbish at the end but at least I will have it out of the head and on to the page, and in a few months time I’ll be able to go back and edit the hell out if it.

Ernest Hemingway wrote “The first draft of anything is shit.” Mark Haddon said “Crossing out was the secret of all good writing.” Justice Louis Brandeis remarked “There is no great writing, only great rewriting.” And Richard Back noted “A professional writer is an amateur who didn’t quit.”

Me, I’m with Winnie-the-Pooh:

For I am a bear of very little brain
and long words bother me.

Hope you keep enjoying.

Clyde


Script Frenzy – Scene: The First National Bank of Business City

Friday 29 April 2011

EXT. FIRST NATIONAL BANK – DAY

The Van pulls up in front of the First National Bank of Business City. Ultimate Bad jumps from the Van. The Henchmen all jump out, squinting in the sun light.

JIM

Where now?

LEX

Looks like Main Street.

JIM

But where on Main Street?

Lex turns to face the Bank.

LEX

The First National.

Sally is getting out of the Van. She freezes when she hears Lex’s line. He lifts her out of the Van.

SALLY

What did you say?

LEX

The First National Bank of Business City. I suppose we’re going to rob that.

SALLY

(shaking)

The First National?

She turns and sees that she’s out front of the Bank. She panics, taking a few steps away.

SALLY

I… I… can’t do this.

She backs into Lex who holds on to her more for comfort than for security.

LEX

Sally, what’s wrong?

SALLY

Please, I have to go!

LEX

Sally?

SALLY

Please!

She breaks from his grip and runs away down the street, disappearing into the crowd.

Lex watches puzzled. Jim and Thunderhead join him.

THUNDERHEAD

What’s with her?

LEX

Something about the Bank.

JIM

Hmph, probably didn’t give her a loan or something. Come on, we’re on duty.

Jim leads the concerned Lex away by the arm.

Ultimate Bad stands before his Henchmen.

ULTIMATE BAD

Are you ready Minions? Let’s make this one interesting: the Minion who brings me the largest bag of cash gets to keep it!

AUDACIOUS-BOY (O.S.)

You can all keep your hands to yourselves!

There are all the Sidekicks – Audacious-Boy, Spirit-Girl, Hardy-Boy, Net-Girl and Battle-Boy – all standing in the front of the Bank’s door.

NET-GIRL

Not one step closer you high collared villain, you’re under arrest!

Ultimate Bad rolls his eyes.

ULTIMATE BAD

I don’t have time for this.

From up his sleeve drops a small black orb, about the size of a grapefruit. He click-click-clicks its two halves against each other – it starts to flash and beep.

ULTIMATE BAD

Here, catch!

He tosses the orb at the Sidekicks. Battle-Boy catches it. He looks at the orb mystified.

HARDY-BOY

Umm, Battle-Boy, you might want to get rid of that.

Battle-Boy suddenly realises he’s holding a bomb. He throws it into the air and the Sidekicks scatter.

The orb falls and B-O-O-O-M!!

The door – and half the wall – have all been blown away. Rubble and fallen Henchmen lie everywhere.

Ultimate Bad, who had simply protected himself by holding up his sleeve, brushes the dust off his robe.

ULTIMATE BAD

Onward footman soldiers!

He strides off over the rubble and through where the doors used to be. He sticks his head back out and gestures at the Sidekicks.

ULTIMATE BAD

(to his Henchmen)

Deal with them first though, will you?

The Sidekicks and the Henchmen all get themselves up, aching all over.  Jim pants heavily.

JIM

Can’t we just call this one a draw?

A RANDOM HENCHMAN near him is suddenly swept away by one of Audacious-Boy’s bolos.

JIM

Obviously not.

He roars and runs at the Sidekicks. Other Henchmen follow.

INT. FIRST NATIONAL BANK – DAY

Alarms wail everywhere. Customers hide in the corners, cowering as Ultimate Bad strolls past and up to the inquiry counter. He D-I-N-G-S the bell.

No one comes to his assistance. After a moment he looks over the counter.

There crouching on the floor is the BANK MANAGER.

ULTIMATE BAD

Hello.

The Bank Manager looks up.

BANK MANAGER

Ca… ca… can I help you?

Ultimate beams a lovely wide smile.

ULTIMATE BAD

Yes. I’d like to withdraw all your money please.

EXT. FIRST NATIONAL BANK – DAY

Ultimate Bad steps back out through the door frame, in his hand he has a bank cheque which he is checking the details. As he walks along he folds the cheque in half and slips it into his pocket.

A Henchman flies past him. One of Net-Girl’s nets splats against the wall, narrowly missing Ultimate. The battle is still going, but all the Sidekicks and Henchmen are down to their final ounces of strength. Already some of the Henchmen, and Hardy-Boy, Battle-Boy and Spirit-Girl, are knocked out and lying about the ground.

As Ultimate Bad steps across the bodies more and more people fall. The closer Ultimate makes it to the Van all that is left standing is Audacious-Boy and Lex. They wearily throw punches at each other until Audacious completely misses Lex and he falls down zonked onto the ground.

LEX

Yay me.

Lex falls zonked onto the ground.

Ultimate is by the Van.

ULTIMATE BAD

Well come on, I haven’t got all day!

The Henchmen drag themselves, some carrying others, into the back of the Van. Battle-Boy pulls himself upright.

BATTLE-BOY

Quick! They’re getting away!

Battle-Boy hobbles over to the Henchmen to keep fighting. Thunderhead pushes Battle-Boy on his forehead and he falls back down.

As the Van drives away Audacious-Boy’s mobile phone rings. Then Net-Girl’s phone rings. Then Hardy-Boy’s. Then Battle-Boys. Then Spirit-Girl’s. They each look at their phone screens and grimace.

NET-GIRL

Who wants to go first?

INT. HERO HQ – DAY

The full wall monitor blares with the image of the Mayor. Not in his mayoral robes he wears a just as blaring suit.

MAYOR

What the hell is going on with you people?


Script Frenzy – Scene: Weapons Training

Tuesday 19 April 2011

EXT. QUADRANGLE – DAY

A large sunny high walled quadrangle. Half the Recruits are milling around the other end of the area. Gormenghast stands raised on a platform near a large painted “X” on the ground. Cronies still stand guard.

GORMENGHAST

Weapons are one of the most important tools of being a Henchman. Not only does it give you the opportunity to easily kill someone, it also means you have the ability to do it from quite some distance away. Now, you’ve all got your partners. Pair Number One!

SHOOTER #1 timidly approaches the “X”. He is holding a convoluted futuristic rifle.

Against the wall shuffles his partner TARGET #1. He is holding a large bull’s eye target, which he holds out at arm’s length to his side.

Shooter #1 takes aim, then reconsiders.

SHOOTER #1

(to Gormenghast)

Are you sure about this?

GORMENGHAST

Do you want to swap places?

Shooter #1 takes aim again.

Target #1 starts to wobble.

TARGET #1

I’m not feeling comfortable about this Sam!

SHOOTER #1

Just stop wiggling, will ya!

Target #1 hold out the target even further.

BANG! Shooter #1 shoots, completely missing the bull’s eye, but shooting Target #1 dead. Two Cronies come and drag the body away.

SHOOTER #1

Dean, are you all right? … Dean?

GORMENGHAST

Next!

(to Shooter #1)

Go practicing your aiming.

SHOOTER #2 enters and takes up her spot with a larger barrelled firearm than the previous one. TARGET #2 is pushed in place by a couple of Cronies.

TARGET #2

You’ve done this before, haven’t you Ruth?

SHOOTER #2

Once at the county fair.

TARGET #2

Did you win anything.

SHOOTER #2

… No.

GORMENGHAST

Just do your best.

Shooter #2 takes aim. She is shaking so much the gun barrel looks like it’s beating time.

BANG! Target #2 is now only hold half a smoking bull’s-eye. Target #2 looks over the top, terrified.

Shooter #2 is elated and jumps out in rapture.

SHOOTER #2

I hit it! I hit it! I hit it!

GORMENGHAST

Yes, very good. Next!

It’s Thunderhead. He’s got some sort of machine gun with the ammunition belt rapped over his shoulders like a sash. Against the wall shuffles Jim with his bull’s eye target.

Jim gulps and holds the target above his head. He shuts his eyes tight.

Thunderhead begins to take aim then looks up at Gormenghast.

THUNDERHEAD

Dude, I’m a pacifist!

GORMENGHAST

You’ll be a dead pacifist if you don’t aim at that target.

Thunderhead takes up aim again.

THUNDERHEAD

I’m sorry Jim Dude!

JIM

(eyes still clenched)

It’s all right Thunder, I believe in you!

Thunderhead shoot – POW POW POW POW POW POW POW! – the bullets go everywhere, eventually running out of ammo. He looks across through the smoke to the wall.

THUNDERHEAD

Jim!?

As the smoke clears, there is Jim with his bull’s eye target intact, but all around him in the wall is dotted row of bullet holes.

He falls FLUMP! face down onto the ground, stiff as a board, leaving the perfect bullet outline in full view.

Thunderhead rushes to help his friend.

THUNDERHEAD

Dude, you all right?

The shell-shocked Jim looks at the wall.

JIM

You see Thunder, I told you I believed in you!

GORMENGHAST

Next!

Thunderhead helps his friend away as Sally, carrying an enormous weapon, and Lex, with a bull’s eye target take their places.

Sally can barely carry her weapon.

SALLY

I’m sorry but you don’t think that this… thing might just be the wrong size for me?

GORMENGHAST

Hmmm, perhaps you’re right.

Gormenghast clicks his fingers and Cronies surround Sally. When they disappear she now has a bazooka cannon strapped to her shoulder.

GORMENGHAST

Try that instead.

LEX

(calls out)

Come on Sally, you can do it!

SALLY

But I’ll kill you!

LEX

No you won’t! I’ll just hold the target out really far like this.

He holds out the weapon at arm’s length in front of him and spreads his legs to get a better balance.

LEX

See, I’m all protected now!

SALLY

Lex, are you kidding? If I push this button you’ll be –

She accidentally pushes the button. The force of the recoil of the cannon throws Sally back into a pile of garbage bins and old boxes by the Kitchen entrance at the far end of the Quadrangle. Meanwhile Lex has been blown through the wall. He lies there amongst a bunch of school desks, still holding the target in front of him.

He rubs his head trying to sit up. Likewise, so does Sally.

GORMENGHAST

(about Sally)

Ooooo, that’s gonna hurt.

INT. SLEEPING QUARTERS – NIGHT

Sally in a singlet top is examining her bruise – her entire shoulder is an alarming purply red. It looks extremely painful.


Script Frenzy – Scene: Ultimate Bad and the Cookie Jar

Sunday 10 April 2011

EXT. THE QUADRANGLE – DAY

All the trainees are lined up military style. Ultimate Bad is out the front finishing his pep talk.

ULTIMATE BAD

By the end of your training you will be my perfectly trained and able army of lackeys… you’re lucky to be my lackeys, give yourself a pat on the back, you’ve earned it. Feel the love, feel the love. Now, is there any questions?

A THUGGY FELLOW slowly puts up his hand. Ultimate smiles like the cat about to get the cream.

ULTIMATE BAD

Yes? You there!

He waves to Thuggy who moves to the front of the crowd.

ULTIMATE BAD

You have something you wish to say?

Thuggy puffs out his chest.

THUGGY FELLOW

Yeah. What if I don’t want to join your army of lackeys?

A murmur runs through the trainees.

ULTIMATE BAD

You don’t want to be one of my self effacing servants and help me overtake the world?

THUGGY FELLOW

Nah!

Ultimate considers this.

ULTIMATE BAD

Is there anything else?

Thuggy tries his luck.

THUGGY FELLOW

Yeah. I’m hungry.

ULTIMATE BAD

Hungry?

THUGGY FELLOW

Yeah. I haven’t had a bite since you dragged me from that bar.

Ultimate nods to Gormenghast, who clicks his fingers to a SERVANT, who clicks his fingers to ANOTHER SERVANT. This happens down the line till from the main building saunters a RAVISHING SLAVE GIRL carrying an ordinary cookie jar as if it was a Ming vase.

The Slave Girl passes the jar to Gormenghast who delivers it to Ultimate.

ULTIMATE BAD

Then perhaps you’ll like …. a cookie?

Another murmur mutters through the crowd. Thuggy looks around him for support but receives none.

He puffs out his chest even further, sets his jaw.

THUGGY FELLOW

(brazen)

Sure. Why not.

He swaggers closer to Ultimate and takes the lid off the jar. He looks into the jar to get his cookie. SWOOSH! A VENOMOUS COBRA springs out and attaches itself to his face.

Thuggy tumbles to the ground and writhes, screaming in pain, until the Snake has finished him off. Thuggy lies there dead, the snake curls itself up on its new kill.

Ultimate addresses the masses.

ULTIMATE BAD

What we have just witnessed there are two very important lessons. One: Never disobey me or I will kill you! And the second: Never takes candy from strangers, didn’t your parents teach you anything?!

Ultimate hands back the jar to Gormenghast.

ULTIMATE BAD

And now, I leave you in the capable hands of my Number Two. Gormenghast, they’re all yours.

Gormenghast salutes his master and Ultimate strides back to the main building.

ULTIMATE BAD

(to Slave Girl)

Come Annabelle. I’m in desperate need of a hard rub down.

Ultimate and the Slave Girl return to the main building.

Gormenghast is still holding the cookie jar. He suddenly feels foolish, so drops the jar and steps away.

GORMENGHAST

Right!