What cinema taught me about fiction writing
How cinema helped me write better.
I attended Concordia University here in Montreal. I got a BfA (Bachelor of Fine Arts) in Cinema, Animation Option.
I was a cartoonist, drawing motion for film. Other people created motion using clay- or plastic puppets, or drew with paint.
At the NFB (National Film Board) of CanadaNorman McLarendesigned some very inventive animated films.
Filmationwere one of the companies that I grew up with. You may know them for creating Scooby-Doo.
They created a limited form of animation where they constantly re-used movement segments over and over, often with just a different background painting.
At first I looked down on this, until I did the same thing to save money. Plus, I used frequent re-cycles for repetitive movements, and even when I just changed mouth movements on a character. For me to keep criticizing a company for what I also did would be hypocritical.
What does this have to do with writing?
As I told one of my nieces last Sunday (she’s learning Animation now), I learned the mechanics of it the first year. The others were really just to experiment with other kinds and styles, other approaches to storytelling.
I was okay with other animation styles (other folks were better), but my biggest strength was screenplays — the writing of them. That`s the angle that I focused on.
From my screenwriting (and decades of comicbook reading), I’ve developed a telegraphing style of both writing scripts and fiction. All actions and dialogue are in a 1:1 ratio.
I have to work out more varied storytelling styles.
Many times writer for RPGs, 4-time NaNoWriMo winner, 3-time Camp NaNoWriMo winner, got a 2009 Aurora-Boreal award. Rumor is he sleeps sometimes.