Stage 6 Drama – Scriptwriting – Fort Street High School – Student interview

[MUSIC PLAYING] ROSIE HEARNE: My name is Rosie Hearne and I choose scriptwriting as my option for my individual project. So in Year 11 we had a task that was specifically designed to prepare us for our IP in Year 12. So we had to do a sort of mini version of our IP. So it was a scaled-down script that we had to do within a shorter space of time.

And that really helped me learn about the process of scriptwriting, how I would develop that in Year 12. Because I tried script for that, it made it a lot easier for me to continue with that choice in Year 12. And I learned more about the different forms of drama as well as the process of scriptwriting as a whole.

So I just kept writing for a couple of reasons. First of all, my teacher had advised me that I was a stronger writer than I was a performer, which I agreed with. And because I wanted to do something with writing, you know, my options were slightly limited there. And then I chose scriptwriting because I felt like it was a more creative option out of the writing options, and that would make it kind of different from what I was doing in all my other subjects at school. So yeah, I wanted to do scriptwriting because it would allow me to use my writing skills, but also allow me to use my creative muscles.

My script aimed to explore the idea that humans derive enjoyment from watching the suffering of others. So I did this by drawing during a comparison between the versions of that today within things such as reality TV by creating a falsified reality TV set with the audience acting as a studio audience and comparing that to historical versions– so with executions and torture being public and used for public entertainment. So I wanted to use sort of post-modern elements to make the audience think about how they’re complicit in encouraging the suffering of others for their own entertainment.

My option choice didn’t change over time. I chose scriptwriting and stuck with it throughout. But I developed. The form of my script changed throughout. So I started thinking slightly more straight absurdist, but I changed to using postmodern elements and using multimedia elements, because I felt like they added to the message of my script that I was trying to convey.

I’ve used my IP log book in the planning and developing of my ideas by doing a lot of brainstorming. For me, that involved a lot of mind maps, a lot of inspiration collages, a lot of designing characters and designing sets and getting it all in the one place. It helped me to write down things that perhaps wouldn’t work, but to track the progress of my IP throughout. And once I started drafting my script, I used it to stick in my drafts, write notes all over them, figure out what needed to change, reflect on feedback, as well as reflecting on where I wanted it to go in the future.

I faced a number of challenges through creating my IP, one of which was I really struggled with finding inspiration and motivation in general when I was starting with my IP. So to sort of try to overcome that, I did a lot of talking to people about my ideas, talking to friends, talking to teachers, getting feedback. And even when I wasn’t feeling my most inspired or motivated, I was able to kind of overcome that by setting really specific goals for myself. So that might be going to the library for a couple hours and dedicating myself to finishing one scene within that time, or having a due date that I had to meet and making sure that I had a full draft by then. So it basically involved doing the work, even when you don’t feel like it’s your best work, but still completing something. And then you’re able to improve from there.

We had a number of structures in place that helped me manage my IP’s development. So one of these was our IP Fridays. So every Friday, we’d be working specifically on our IP. And that would allow us time to talk with our teacher, to get specific feedback, for her to assess where we were at. We also had assessments that involved submitting drafts for it.

And for me, specifically, I found that probably the most helpful structure was our showcase night, in which we had to have a reading of a part of our script. And that was, like, a week before the final version was due, so that really forced me to create something that I knew I would be happy with other people seeing. Whereas before, I’d maybe created drafts but wouldn’t let people look at them, this time, I was absolutely forced to create something that I was going to be happy with my parents and my friends and the staff seeing and judging. So I thought that was really helpful.

Advice I would give to students starting out now would probably be, most obviously, time management and starting early, getting drafts done early, even if they don’t seem so good. But also, I think for me specifically, what I wished I had done more in the beginning would be getting feedback from people, being more happy with other people seeing your work, because you have resources around you who are going to help you develop your script. But if you won’t use them, then they’re not going to help you. But having discussions with other students in your class and getting the feedback from your teachers is really important and will help you have new perspectives on your script as well.

I really enjoyed studying drama in Year 12. And I felt like it really helped me develop my skills, not only as a scriptwriter, but as a performer. It helped me develop my creative skills and also helped me develop an appreciation for theater and for drama in general. I thought it was a really valuable experience, and I’m really glad to have done it.


End of transcript

Content updated 22/9/2020

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