By Ed Sum (The Vintage Tempest)
MCM (Michael Milligan) is a prolific and progressive-thinking author, screenwriter, computer programmer making waves with his mobile app, Get Dirt. It redefines how a story can be told. Instead of reading a book, the tale is told through a different kind of “found footage.” Unlike the cinema approach which locks viewers to a sequentially edited product, all the information is at the user’s disposal and he or she has to shift through it to discover the tale. There’s also a comparison to a Victorian-age book, but more on that later.
Part of his approach comes from a condition he has. Aphantasia is a rare problem where folks are unable to mentally visualize images. “I can’t see things in my mind’s eye,” said MCM, “It’s actually a brilliant thing, I think, for script writing especially because a scene or any event is built out of key components that you need to focus on for its execution to make sense, and everything else is extraneous because I don’t know what it looks like.”
When writing for animation, especially at the preschool level, the formula is simple: educate the viewer. Often, the piece involves teaching a lesson the youth can take to apply in everyday life as they grow up. As with many programs developed in this television entertainment medium, they are done in a boardroom in a roundtable discussion. Ideas are pitched and in what’s developed, it’s made into a 23-minute show. This writer’s task is to develop a focused script that gets to the point. Continue reading “In Conversation with MCM, Redefining Storytelling with the multi-narrative “Dirt””