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Can Movies/TV Help You Become a Better Writer?

The short answer, yes!

The long answer, still yes! But we'll go into detail.

This will be you by the end of this blog post :)


Odds are, you're one of the MANY people who watch TV shows or movies. And if that's the case, keep it up because they can actually help you with your writing. Next time you put something on your TV, make sure to pay attention to the way characters act, the detail of the settings, and even way the characters speak.

It's helpful to watch the gestures characters do and in your mind think of how you would describe them. That way your writing will flow easier and you'll be able to visualize the words on the paper (laptop?). Do you like the way a character on screen looks or how they dress? Write down their appearance in a separate note and have a whole list of characters to be able to pull out and use in your writing at any time. This cuts down time on creating the look of your character and gives you a template if you ever wanted to customize them but still want that base.

Learn writing structure and next time you watch a movie, pay extra attention. You'll see that it follows some kind of three act structure. Movies will hit key scenes that are needed for its genre and you will be able to write out that scene and get the same impact that the movie did. If you watch Disney movies, they follow the hero's journey almost identically. If you want to start somewhere, start there!

I find myself describing things in my head while watching stuff on screen. I think to myself, Hm, how would I write that? Then in my writing, I visualize how I want it to look on screen and write it exactly. I'm sure many people do this, but you'll run into someone who doesn't. My writing plays like a mini movie in my head, and that's all thanks to the above mentioned.

If you find yourself stuck on writing characters or you feel like they're all the same, then study your favorite characters on screen. How do they talk? What's their body language like? Does their appearance fit their personality? What is there personality? In order to write, you must do some basic level research. And this my friends counts as researching.

If you want, do this writing exercise: Watch one scene from a movie or tv show. Either during or after the scene, write it out in one (or everyone's) POV. Try to write out the action and dialogue as it was in the scene, but make sure it flows in your writing and it isn't choppy like a step by step of what happened. You'll find this is helpful and when you're writing on your own, there will be muscle memory of how you describe things because you've seen it played out in front of you already.

And there you have it! You're already consuming something on the TV, might as well pay even closer attention to it. If you do the writing exercise, let us know what scene you choose!

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