Character Creation and Development: Week One

I hope you are all doing Terrific today!

Well, I’m a little late posting this, but I started my third course in my graduate program a week ago. Character Creation and Development is centered on creating characters that are engaging and drive the story.  One of the goals at the end of the course is to have a short film screenplay. The Full Sail film department is having an open submission, so our professor would like us to submit our screenplay.

The strategy used to build characters is focused on-premise. In other mediums, the premise is similar to the theme. However, in this course, we will be diving deeper to prove the premise is correct and the driving force behind what and why the protagonist and antagonist do what they do.

We read several articles on writing premises. We also watched a sci-fi short film to give us a better idea of what to focus on when writing our own, no matter the genre. It is important to note that a short film is different from a feature film. We have to focus on the story, no subplots, no additional characters, only a few locations. The screenplay will only be 8 pages in length.

Another goal of this course is workshopping. We will be reading each others premises and scripts over the next few weeks. This is to get us to feel as if we are in the writing room of television studios, film, etc.  I see value in this, as it gives us the chance to become better editors and learn how to work with other writers.

Our assignment was to create a character dossier on a protagonist and antagonist from one of three premises we created during the week. I decided on a phone conversation between a couple who see time differently. After critiques, my premise and character motivations have changed.

I’m very excited about this course and can’t wait to finish my first film screenplay. Thank you for following me on this adventure.

Be Terrific!

My First 100 in a Class!!!

cropped-cropped-174381_8833067_6311046_n.jpgFor those of you who don’t know, I’m in graduate school. I’m pursuing a Masters of Fine Arts degree in Creative Writing. I finished my second class, Art of Visual Storytelling, with a 100! Now, I know most of you will say it’s a writing class, scoring a 100 should be easy. The class is more than writing, its about formatting, developing themes, using props, etc. This is my first 100 in a course since Basic Skills Math in 9th grade (and I’m not sure if that was a 100, to be honest.) I scored A+ grades in high school, college, community college, but this is my first time in many years where I earned a perfect score. Pretty exciting especially since I earned 95 in my first graduate course, Mastery.

I know I shouldn’t be sharing, but I felt like I should because I didn’t think I could do graduate school. So, for me, this is a huge accomplishment.

The Art of Visual Storytelling: Week 3


January 20-26, 2020

  1. Panel: Writing Comics: Finally, a format that I’m used too. We had to write a 3-5 page script formatted by comic book standards. I used one of my novel ideas, Blood Matters.
  2. Insert: Toys & Children’s Media: We discu
  3. CHYRON: Illustrating Time
  4. Dialogue
  5. Myths and Fairy Tales
  6. Muppetology

The Art of Visual Storytelling: Week 2

Inspirational Post: This can be sued for any profession, but I like it because often I want to give up.

January 13 – 19, 2020

Another fun week of writing. I did well in all the assignments. I scored a 90 on the Interior assignment. I scored a 100 on everything else, so I finished with an average of 96. My class G.P.A is 98.

  1. Exterior Locations: 
    1. We discussed how it’s better to show, rather than tell by watching a Pixar short, PIPER. We had to explain how the location affected the main character.
  2. Int.
    1. Using our characters from last week’s persona assignment, we scripted a scene using only interior slugline.
    2. TerrioJenkins_Week2_INT_Persona2nddraft
  3. Cliches Vs Tropes
    1. We discussed cliches and tropes. I scored low on the quiz because I didn’t realize how many cliches there is.
  4. Children’s Books
    1. We learned that scripting can go hand in hand with writing children’s books. This is another area of interest for me.
  5. Kids’ Shows
    1. Our lecture this week was on children’s television shows. We went over Sesame Street and how as a writer you have to hide the educational piece and violence in kids shows.
    2. Terrio_Jenkins_Week 2_Kids Shows_Muppet Description
    3. Terrio_Jenkins_Week 2_Kids Shows_muppet
  6. Games
    1. We listened to a clip on how video games make more money than film/animation/television. Writers are turning to games as another source of income and freedom.
  7. Second Chapter: A Stranger (Flash Fiction)
    1. Prose: FlashFictionChapter2_TheConception
    2. Audio: 

Art of Visual Storytelling: Week One

inspirational Post: Writers, we can make others feel a certain way. As humans, we need to remember that our actions affect feelings.

January 6 to January 12: This was a fun week. I learned about scripting and wrote my first formatted screenplay scene. We discuss elements such as voice, shots, and introductions.  I scored a 100 on each assignment, bear in mind that each assignment was only a rough draft.

1.Over Black (Sound assignment)


A slow CLAP repeats followed by excited GASPS. Water SPLASHES and loud CLAPPING drowns the slow clap and gasps.  Piano PLAYS upbeat song as FOOTSTEPS on OLD WOOD. Focus on SLOW CLAP, then a heavy SIGH.

2. Flash Fiction (Voice assignment)

3. Radio (Formatted Dialogue)

4. Punctum & Stadium (Shots)

  1. The SHOT element is no longer used in “spec scripts” (the only kinds of scripts we’re learning how to write.) Do not put specific SHOTs into your screenplays.
  2. stadium (the general idea of a picture
  3. punctum (which is a single element that punctures the frame and draws the eye. It’s often said the punctum is what turns a snapshot into a photograph.)
  4. Not every photograph has a punctum. Sometimes it appears by accident, sometimes by design, but if one turns up in your own album, it’ll be more special to you than the others.

5. Persona (Character Description)

6. Character (Script Introductions)

Mastery Journal: Week 4

Mastery: Personal Development & Leadership Week 4

wee1.4Inspirational Quote: One of the first quotes I remember from being a kid was from Coach Jim Valvano. He was fighting cancer and before his death, reminded us to live, laugh, and don’t give up. This applies to me and my creative journey because there have been many times I wanted to stop, but there is a primal force that keeps me going. 

Mastery Journey Timeline Slideshow:

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Mastery Journal: Week 3

Mastery: Personal Development & Leadership Week 3

This week, my classmates and I are working on building our own personal learning networks (PLN). A list of resources and inspiration to help stay current and network in our fields.

My field, creative writing, covers several media types. Episodic & Serial Writing which is television and comic book writing, Writing for Film & Animation and Writing for Games. My goal is to break into animation writing, but I will continue to work on novels and comic book writing. My dream is to be part of a film writing team.

Week 3 Inspirational Quote

I love this quote because I decided to go after my dreams and be a comic book writer, even if it means being independent. After years of learning on my own, it’s nice to have a structured, challenging framework that Full Sail University is providing.

This week we had to update or create Linkedin profiles. I updated mine to reflect pursuing my masters and the career focus in my headline. This is part of crafting the appropriate persona. It is not generally acknowledged or discussed, but the personality we project to the world plays a substantial role in our success and in our ascension to mastery (Greene, 2012).

Screen Shot 2019-12-12 at 11.47.12 AM
Updated LinkedIn Profile

Most of my knowledge is in the comic book industry, but in recent years I have not been keeping up with the trends. I have some knowledge of animation because I used to be a computer animation student at Rutgers University. Again, I don’t keep up with either field, unless it pertains to a project I like. Failure to present yourself in a clear manner will result in failure. Understand: your work is the single greatest means at your disposal for expressing your social intelligence (Green 2012). I will be updating my profile with each class to reflect on the new topics and strategies that I will be mastering.

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Feedly Profile

Feedly will help me keep up to date with trends and help me develop as a professional creative writer.  The importance of staying current is crucial so that one does not become stagnant.  In addition, most of these resources will serve as inspiration. As you can see, most of the resources I picked are in the comic book and video game industries. I stated in a previous article that another personal goal of mine is to adapt my stories and scripts into as many different types of media as possible. For now, comic book writing (episodic & serial writing) is where my interest and passion are, thus the comic book resources. I follow Marvel and DC Comics on my Twitter. 


Greene, R. (2013). Mastery. New York: Penguin Books.



Mastery Journal, Week 2: Inspiration Post

I love this quote and it helped me with pushing through my fourth novel, Genesis. One of the roadblocks that stop me from completing novels, scripts, etc is that I want them to be as close to perfect as possible. I know, logically, that even masters don’t get it right the first time which is why they complete thumbnails and rough drafts. This quote helps remind me that I need to start with something in order to polish it and grow. Image result for write crap it makes good fertilizers