Writing Plays/Screenwriting/Imagination


I wanted to ask you how you form an imagination on a screenplay. For example:

Ian takes out of a plastic bag a gun and aims his friend in the face, but the gun is replaced by an ice cream and his friend starts eating it.

In Ian's eyes the ice cream was a gun but in reality was an ice cream. How can I put that into a script?

Ian is walking down the road while he sees a car. Ian imagines that the car explodes and there is chaos everywere but when his phone rings everything comes back to normal and the car is just fine.

Looking very forward to your respons.
Thanks in advance.

Hi, Nas.

I'm sorry for the extreme lateness (and I mean extreme lateness) of this response.  It's almost been Hell on Earth for me since last Septemeber.  Anyway, here it goes.

I assume you know how to write a screenplay.  So, I won't belittle your intelligence in that department, but I will advise you on how to write each example to give the director an idea of how you visualize the script to look on screen (albeit the director will have his own ideas which will screw all the work you have done in the screenplay which is why I don't bother writing them, but don't mind helping others write them who don't care how much the director butchers their work).

The first example:

[(FULL SHOT) IAN holds a plastic bag in his left hand.  He pulls out a gun from the plastic bag with his right hand.  (TWO SHOT) IAN points the gun at FRIENDS'S face. (CLOSE UP) gun (DISSOLVE/CLOSE UP) ice cream cone (SIDE SHOT) IAN putting the ice cream cone into his mouth and licking it.]

The second example:

[IAN, with his cell phone visible, walks down a street with various extras going about various bits of business. (CLOSE UP) IAN's eyes shifting direction toward the location of the car where it was in regards to IAN before the CLOSE UP.  (WIDE SHOT) The car with various extras calmly going about their bits of business.  The car explodes.  The extras react in terror to the explosion in various ways.  (CLOSE UP) IAN's cell phone (SOUND: cell phone ringing).  (CLOSE UP) The car is intact with the same extras calmly going about the same business as they did before the explosion.  (WIDE SHOT) IAN walks past the car with the extras calmly going about the same business as they did in the beginning of the scene.]

Again, sorry for the two and a half months you had to wait for this.  I hope the rest of the year will go better for me and I hope you have great new year yourself.

James Edward Kelley  

Writing Plays/Screenwriting

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James Edward Kelley


I cannot answer questions about writing screenplays. I can, however, answer questions about playwriting.


I won the Henry Fonda Young Playwright's Award for the first play I ever wrote. Faculty at Brown University allowed me to take free writing courses, resulting in two play commissions. I was an actor-in-residence at Brown University's Rites & Reason Theatre. I was a member of a comedy troupe called Daydream Theatre. I was a professional stage actor for a spell. I got into Mensa through my score on the Miller's Analogy Test, a verbal skills test you can take after receiving your Bachelor's Degree.


On-line literary journal, "Slurve"; "The Mensa Bulletin"

I was allowed to take free writing courses at Brown University. I'm currently enrolled in The Gotham Writers Workshop.

Awards and Honors
Henry Fonda Young Playwright's Award, nominated for Expert of the Month

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