The 26th Annual Writers Conference has wrapped and we’re still reveling in the four jam-packed days of panels and workshops that left us feeling inspired and energized to improve on our craft as storytellers. The Driskill halls may have cleared, but we’re looking back on a few highlights from this year’s Conference from the panelists who helped make the magic happen.
Here are 5 tips from a few of the writers and creators who joined us in Austin for the 2019 Writers Conference:
1. SELL YOURSELF AND YOUR SCRIPT
When it comes to pitching, the script is half of it and YOU are the other half.
Gary Whitta (writer Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, The Book of Eli, After Earth)
2. RECOGNIZE THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN DIVERSITY AND INCLUSION
Diversity is about who’s in a room. Inclusion is about who you’re listening to.
Ali LeRoi (director The Obituary of Tunde Johnson, writer/director/producer Everybody Hates Chris, Survivor’s Remorse, Are We There Yet? television series)
3. STRIVE TO UNDERSTAND YOUR CHARACTERS
The number one question I ask for my characters is “What am I scared of?” My characters really show who they are when I know of their fear.
Carly Wray (writer/producer Westworld, The Leftovers, Mindhunter, Mad Men)
4. MAKE SURE YOUR DIALOGUE IS SERVICING THE SCENE
Writing dialogue before structuring scenes is like putting up drapes while your house is still being built. Slow down. The dialogue is always in service of the scene.
Ed Solomon (writer HBO’s Mosaic, Men in Black, Untitled Steven Soderbergh feature; co-writer Bill & Ted Face the Music, Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure, Bill & Ted’s Bogus Journey, Now You See Me 1 & 2, It’s Garry Shandling’s Show, Untitled David O Russell feature)
5. ALLOW FOR IMPERFECTIONS
If you spend too much time worrying over something being perfect, it’ll never be out in the world. And if it’s not out in the world, it doesn’t do anything for anyone.
Bekah Brunstetter (writer/producer This is Us; playwright The Cake)
Interested in hearing more from this year’s Writers Conference? Stay tuned for the premiere of On Story Season 10 featuring conversations with many of our 2019 panelists.
Want to hear these tips firsthand? Get a jumpstart on 2020 and grab your Badge at our early bird prices! For more information on how to attend, click here.