Visible/ invisible writing


I’m writing a pilot for a period drama and I’m wrestling with the problem of whether I as a writer should be visible, or invisible.   By which I mean – should I write in such a way that the audience is made more aware of the writing itself, or should I slip into the background and disappear, and the drama transcends the script.  As an example …

A scene with a swordsman, plunging a sword into a pig carcass, smash cut to a dainty supper scene with a woman carving a side of ham. Ah ha … the two are linked, not just in storyline but in what they’re doing at that moment with the ex pig: sword and knife, stab and slice, anger and calm.  It hints at a deeper connection, it’s a dash of humour, it shows I’ve thought about the script but also … it shows me. The writing has taken the forefront.  I have asked for recognition.

…and what writer doesn’t what a whole pile of that …

But, after much thought and considerable pacing, I think it’s probably not going to work in this particular piece. It’s all fine and dandy in other scripts but here I want the reader to be transported – lost – in a different world.  And if I play too ‘clever’ then I’m at risk of taking them out of that world, if only for a moment. So I’ll disappear, drop the smart script points.


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