Your questions answered by a  Hollywood professional

A bit of Hollywood humor 

Screenwriting Help E-Mail Blog (previous)

Please send your questions to: Script Advisor.  You may also wish to visit our Screenwriting Help E-Mail blogs - The Archives.

This week's question

Doug/script advisor, how do you come up with a good story?

At a loss

This week's Answer: 

A Story about a Story

Should I tell you a story about how one comes up with a good story? Nah. It's a great question, At a loss, and there are many books and information out there about how to do just that: come up with a good story. (Probably good stories, too.) 

I'll toss a few questions at you that might help get the wheels moving. (Wheels moving! That's a great idea for a good story, all about somebody who has wheels and he has to get them moving! -- and he's up against somebody who doesn't want that to happen! Title: Wheels!)

Here are some of those questions:

1. What story would you like to see in a movie that would truly intrigue you?

2. What movie would you like to see in a story that would truly intrigue you? (No. Skip that.)

3. Right now, at this moment, what do you really care about?

4. What kind of person/character would you like to see win overcome obstacles and strong forces set against him/her/it (if it's an animal or spirit or a monster or creature with a heart).

5. What do you feel or know you are devoted to?

6. If you had to give a lot of your time to get some message, some theme, some idea across, what would it be? (Because that's what you will do if you write a screenplay about it.)

7. Have you ever wanted to write a script about something that you've referred to as "Hey, nobody has ever written about that"?

8. What story idea (no matter how unusual or crazy or outlandish) could you get passionately excited writing about?

9. What movie stories are you so tired of and that make you think or say, "Something different needs to be on the screen!" (if you shout it, wait until you leave the theatre.) Then immediately ask yourself without thinking too much, "What could that something different be?" (Don't worry if nothing comes to you. Just go back in the theatre and shout some more until it does -- or an usher escorts you out.)

10. What or who do you love?

11.  If you could be anybody in this world, who would you be?

12.  If you were a superhero, what would be your super power?

13.  What would be your super weakness?

14.  If you only had 24 hours to live, what would you do?

And, if all of the above fails miserably...

... you can always write a screenplay about a writer who is trying to come up with a good story.

Doug Herman

Script Advisor


Script Advisor Home | About Us | Contact | Links | Samples | Help | Services | Weekly
Copyright 2003/2019 ... All Rights Reserved