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4 Day Challenge: Day 1

David Gane
David Gane
1 min read

Today I started the 4-day challenge. My goal is to write the first draft of a 120-page script in 4 days. I ended at page 25 today.

When I originally planned this, it was to be a 3-day intense schedule because I thought the house was empty for the entire day. Once I found out that it wasn’t, I re-designed it for a four-day period or a total of 24 hours.

I seem to average 5 pages an hour, with a process of writing for 15 minutes, then taking a break for 5, and repeating this until I run out of time. Even when the juices are flowing, I force myself away from the keyboard after 15 minutes and find that when I return I have a fresh perspective on things. My 5-minute in-between time is spent cleaning, doing some quick exercises, or anything else that takes me physically and mentally away from the work.

The best thing about this is that I don’t burn out. I used to do a maximum of 2 hours and my first sprint lasted 3 hours until I had to take a break because my solitude was interrupted by lunchtime.

I realized in the process today that the purpose of a first draft for me is to get the idea of the scene down, defining it as best as I possibly can. When I come back for the rewrite, I shouldn’t read the surface of the scene but I must find the idea, draw it out, and revise it based on that.

I expect tomorrow to take me just over the 60-page hump.


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Co-writer of the Shepherd and Wolfe young adult mysteries, the internationally award-winning series, and teacher of storytelling and screenwriting.


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