ArticlesPatrick Ness' screenwriting tips

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Patrick Ness' screenwriting tips

Class creator Patrick Ness shares some great screenwriting advice at a BAFTA Cymru event.

Patrick's top tips:

Write anyway 

You never know how well your writing will turn out. Even if you don't think it's going to work, write anyway. That way there's a chance your work will be picked up.

Write for yourself

Whenever I have tried to guess for a market it hasn't worked. It's best to write for joy. If I am excited about a scene or story, then there's good chance it will connect with an audience.

Adapt to screenwriting

Remember screenwriting is a collaborative process. I write down my take on how a scene should be shot,  but it's up to rest of the team to really bring it to life.

Give your characters agency

When you are writing YA, the young people have to be the ones who are pushing the story forward. They shouldn't be just sitting around watching adults make decisions.

Take a chance

You have to risk failure in order to be a success - be afraid, but write it anyway.