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So it's not surprising I'm neurotic The Screenwriter and the Screen Idea Work Group

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The Screen Idea Work Group (SIWG) is a flexibly constructed group organized around the development and production of a screen idea; a hypothetical grouping of those professional workers involved in conceptualizing and developing fictional narrative work for any particular moving image screen idea. In this article, I use the notion of the SIWG to draw together the views of key workers about how the process of screen idea development works or doesn't. My findings are based on a small ethnographic study I undertook in 2004, in which, through in-depth semi-structured interviews with seven SIWG workers, I attempted to understand how they came to occupy their role, how they felt their judgements were made and received, and how far the SIWG's view of the screen idea accorded with the screenwriting doxa (characterized as how to do a good piece of work). As detailed below, their answers were concerned with status, a sense of self-worth and respect, points of tension, power, control, collaboration and trust, and the nature of the doxa itself.

Keywords: Screen Idea Work Group (SIWG); best practice; craft skills; doxa; interviews; production analysis; screenwriter

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: University of Leeds.

Publication date: January 1, 2010

More about this publication?
  • The Journal of Screenwriting aims to explore the nature of writing for the moving image in the broadest sense, highlighting current academic thinking around scriptwriting whilst also reflecting on this with a truly international perspective and outlook. The journal will encourage the investigation of a broad range of possible methodologies and approaches to studying the scriptwriting form, in particular: the history of the form, contextual analysis, the process of writing for the moving image, the relationship of scriptwriting to the production process and how the form can be considered in terms of culture and society. The journal also aims to encourage research in the field of screenwriting, the linking of scriptwriting practice to academic theory, and to support and promote conferences and networking events on this subject.
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