Have you ever wanted to change the solitary writing experience to one of collaboration and teamwork?
The idea of working with a co-writer on a screenplay has been simmering with me for ages and recently bubbled to the surface. I’m ready to take the leap.
Screenwriting is my genre of choice to begin this adventure. Focusing on scenes and dialogue with a partner would, in my mind, expedite the creative process. Sharing short story or novel writing would not bode as well for me, I believe.
The benefits of collaboration are obvious; increased inspiration and shared joys and sorrows through the process, however, I’m sure the imagined perfect working relationship is based in fantasy more than reality.
But can you imagine along with me for a moment? Envision two writers working toward a shared goal, slogging through impasses together, celebrating successes along the way. It sounds like fun to me and has the potential to feel more like a party and less like an individual struggle.
The pitfalls and challenges of initiating a writing partnership will be considerable but it feels worth the risk. We’ll just need to begin the way we mean to continue by getting the ground rules right.
Deciding how to handle disagreements, nip resentments in the bud and how critiquing should happen would get us off to a good start. It would also be helpful to gauge our willingness to give up a little control and share full disclosure of where we are on the cantankerous scale.
If co-writers were successful in creating a complementary relationship that included mutual motivation, inspiration and support, what could possibly go wrong?
Lots could go wrong, of course and for those wishing to form agreements or formal contracts when contemplating such a partnership, resources are available. Guides and templates would be helpful for the business end of the work such as promotion, legal rights and potential income. But I’m not thinking that far ahead. I want to focus on the creative process and what we could accomplish together; the sum being greater than two parts.
So how does one go about finding a fearless, risk-taking co-writer? I haven’t figured that out yet but I know for sure it will take more than posting a help wanted ad in the classifieds.
History has many examples of artistic collaboration between spouses, including writers Sylvia Plath and Ted Hughes, Simone de Beauvoir and Jean Paul Sartre and Virginia and Leonard Woolf. Although it would seem to be a convenient partnership, hubby and I won’t be writing together any time soon.
A writing buddy would be a kindred spirit, I suppose, with a quirky sense of humour and just the right amount of contrariness. Maybe it’s time I bid providence to aid in the search.
She must be out there somewhere!
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