Somewhat related to this series of posts is this post by Ryan K Lindsay over at Loser City. Here he talks about the importance of writing shorts, keeping those writing muscles warm and the whole ThoughtBalloons endeavour.
Go check it out. It’s definitely something I’m subcribing too with these shorts. They’re here for two reasons:
- To break down the idea of perfection and just posting something and getting it out there.
- Improving my writing game.
Talking of the second point, I think my weakness is my dialogue. So, from here on in, a lot of these strips will have an emphasis on that aspect of writing. I’ll mix it up from time to time, but I thought I best get some deliberate practice out of this too.
PANEL 1: CLOSE UP on a WOMAN’s face. She’s wearing swimwear and vacantly looking out towards the horizon, her face set in a stony smile. Around her we can see we’re in a cheap-looking department store. Yeah, it’s a mannequin folks.
JO (OFF): She’s a stony one. CAL (OFF): You mean stoic.
PANEL 2: We CUT TO two GREEN ALIENS looking up at the mannequin. The one on the left is tall and lean, like a mucus covered runner bean with tiny eyes and a mouth. This is CAL. The one on the right is small and rotund - anthropomorphised snot basically. This is JO. CAL, as much as his expressions allow him, looks annoyed.
JO: That’s what I said. CAL: Ugh. You find them? JO: FInd what?
PANEL 3: CAL holds a crumpled LEAFLET out towards us/JO. The leaflet shows us various diamond rings, necklaces and brooches as advertised by “HUCKERBYS DEPARTMENT STORE”. The leaflet is advertising a half price sale on jewelry promising “OUT OF THIS WORLD DISCOUNTS”.
CAL: The diamonds, Jo. For the warp -- SFX: Clunk...clunk… CAL: Castor’s taint! What is it now?
PANEL 4: We CUT TO outside the department store, looking towards the front of the building. We can see that a POLICE CAR has pulled up and TWO POLICEMAN have got out of the vehicle and are approaching the front doors.
POLICEMAN: Dispatch, we’re at that possible 459 in progress, over. RADIO: Copy that.
PANEL 5: CUT TO CAL looking down at the new arrivals from the shop windows up high.The lights of the siren reflect off the glass. He’s drawn a LASER PISTOL from somewhere and clutches it tightly.
CAL: Father is not going to like this. JO (OFF): Don’t worry, Cal.
PANEL 6: CUT TO JO armed with a LASER PISTOL. Under his right arm he is carrying the MANNEQUIN from the first panel. He is incredibly pleased with himself.
JO: We got ourselves a hostage.