Writing, Bravery, and Charlie Kaufman

“Your writing will be a record of your time. It can’t help but be that. But more importantly, if you’re honest about who you are, you’ll help that person be less lonely in their world because that person will recognize him or herself in you and that will give them hope.” – Charlie Kaufman (BAFTA Lecture)

I know a lot of you are not screenwriters, but recently I read/listened to the lecture on screenwriting that Charlie Kaufman gave to the British Academy of Film and Television Arts. (Charlie Kaufman wrote the films Being John Malkovich, Adaptation, and Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind). I think his lecture will resonate with all writers, regardless of media and format. It was vulnerable, honest, and brave. Above all, it really hit on the struggle of being honest  in our writing, and how to keep that honesty when our current culture wants stories that sell, sell, sell. A lot of what he had to say really struck a chord with me, and I suggest the lecture to all of you.

An audio version of this lecture is available for download at: http://guru.bafta.org/charlie-kaufman-screenwriters-lecture-video

Please note: the large image is a 3 minute snippet, but the whole lecture is available under that image. There is also a transcript button on the same page (on the middle/right under the image of Mr. Kaufman), if you would prefer to read the lecture.

I highly, highly, highly suggest this!

Here’s another quote from the lecture to wet your appetite:

“A screenplay is an exploration. It’s about the thing you don’t know. It’s a step into the abyss. It necessarily starts somewhere, anywhere; there is a starting point but the rest is undetermined. It is a secret, even from you. There’s no template for a screenplay, or there shouldn’t be. There are at least as many screenplay possibilities as there are people who write them.” – Charlie Kaufman (BAFTA Lecture)

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