Back by popular demand! This intermediate screenwriting seminar, taught by professors from Vanderbilt University’s cinema and media arts program, is a hands-on opportunity to sharpen your screenwriting skills in a collaborative environment. What do we mean by "intermediate"? You’re familiar with the screenwriting format (or are a quick learner). You’re prepared to participate in a lively discussion and to give feedback thoughtfully and generously. You’re ready to work collaboratively. You’re interested in working on skills, not simply your individual idea.
This seminar builds on February’s Screenwriting Jump Start Seminar, but attendance at that seminar is not a prerequisite.
All sessions are held in the Belcourt’s 2nd floor Jackson Education and Engagement Space.
Full seminar pass*: $95 / $80 Belcourt members | SOLD OUT
Please note: Tickets for single sessions are not available. Capacity is limited to 20 people.
Session 1: Visual Storytelling
Tue, Jun 19 | 6:30-9pm | SOLD OUT
You’ve hammered out your plot. Your dialogue jumps off the page. But have you written a film worth watching? A screenplay is a blueprint for a visual experience, so what we see shapes the story just as much (if not more) than what we hear. What techniques can you employ to make a scene visually compelling? To create conflict between what we’re told and what we’re shown? To tell a story with no dialogue at all?
Session 2: Consequential Writing / Mastering Cause & Effect
Tue, Jun 26 | 6:30-9pm | SOLD OUT
Jean-Paul Sartre said, “We are our choices.” This is the engine inside all dramatic writing—human beings making choices (usually mistakes) and living with the consequences (or trying desperately to avoid them). This workshop will focus on the chain of cause and effect at the heart of screenwriting. How does your first move lead to your last? Is your story grounded in character, or coincidence? And can you find a way for your story to surprise even yourself?
Session 3: Developing Multi-Dimensional Characters
Tue, Jul 3 | 6:30-9pm | SOLD OUT
What is character? Is it someone’s attitudes and opinions? Their most deeply held beliefs? Or is it what someone does that defines who they are? How do we create characters who feel real, even as we need them to tell our story? This workshop will focus on techniques to get to the core of your characters, in all their glorious details and contradictions—and how to find a way for story and character to support each other.
This seminar is led by Diana Grisanti and Steve Moulds, writers-in-residence in Vanderbilt’s cinema and media arts program, where they co-teach courses in screenwriting and playwriting. Diana Grisanti (B.A., Theatre Arts, University of Iowa, 2006; M.F.A., Writing, Michener Center for Writers, University of Texas at Austin, 2012). Primarily a playwright, Grisanti’s work has been developed or produced at Actors Theatre of Louisville, Kentucky Shakespeare, Actor’s Theatre of Charlotte, Actors Bridge Ensemble (Nashville), the Phoenix Theatre (Indianapolis), Borderlands Theater (Tucson), Voices of the South (Memphis), The Lark (NYC), The Alliance Theatre (Atlanta), and more. She has also written multiple plays and television pilots with her spouse and collaborator, Steve Moulds. Currently, she’s working on The Class of ’94, a play about a scandal at an all-girls Catholic high school. Steve Moulds (B.A., English and Theatre, Vanderbilt University, 2000; M.F.A., Writing, Michener Center for Writers, the University of Texas at Austin, 2011). Moulds’s work has been produced by Actors Theatre of Louisville, the Humana Festival of New American Plays, The Hypocrites, the Illusion Theater, the Kentucky Shakespeare festival, Walden Theatre, Walking Shadow Theatre Company, Santa Fe Playhouse, Dominican University, Middle Tennessee State University, the University of Texas at Austin, and Theatre . In addition to his individual work, Steve has written three plays and multiple television specs with his collaborator and spouse, Diana Grisanti.