Saturday, May 30, 2009

Just wondering

  I just wanted to throw this out there.  Do you guys ever write scenes out of order?  I'm not talking about writing a play with a different use of time, jut writing scenes when you feel like writing each one then going back and arranging them sequentially?  Does this bring up continuity issues or screw up the flow of the play?  


  1. I've done it both ways...there's an argument to be made, I think, for CAN mess with continuity, but if you're rewriting a lot anyway (ahem), you have time to rectify inconsistencies down the line. I'd say "better to write out of order than to NOT WRITE."

  2. In my experience, sort of. What I often do is have an idea for a bit of dialogue or a character, then come up with a situation that would fit it, which ends up being a scene. From that I think of other scenes, usually the beginning and the end of the story first, then I fill the gap in between with loose descriptions of the scenes -- only now in chronological order.

    I only write the actual scenes after that outline is done, but I cheat a little: as I write the outline, I start coming up with more specific ideas for the moments I'm more enthusiastic about, and more often than not by the time the outline is done I've already got one or two finished scenes, usually closer to the end.

    And of course, as I go back and start fleshing out the scenes from the outline, I find stuff that doesn't work and rearrange, re-imagine and rewrite them.

    And yes, I sometimes find continuity screw-ups of the basest nature, like dead characters reappearing and thirty-year-old parents with twenty-year-old children.