Writing

Gonzo Fear And Loathing In Las Vegas
Writing

Gonzo Blogging

There was some discussion on Twitter the other day, about how a blog differed from a journal; that many blogs were in fact mere journals, filled with the personal thoughts and observations, and that there should be a different nomenclature for them. I’d say though, that the differentiation is at best paper-thin. Unless you’re writing a commercial listicle of dry facts, a blogpost is no different from a journal entry. At the end of the day, it’s gonzo self-published article, and that’s a good thing. Gonzo journalism, popularised by Hunter S. Thompson, puts paid to the fallacy that any writing can

Arrival Whiteboard Human Amy Adams
MoviesWriting

Story of a Script: Arrival

Story of Your Life is a science fiction novella by American writer Ted Chiang, first published in Starlight 2 in 1998, and in 2002 in Chiang’s collection of short stories, Stories of Your Life and Others. It took 18 years from first publication for the novella to be highly acclaimed as the Denis Villeneuve’s movie Arrival. And in between those two events? In that space we had screenwriter Eric Heisserer, writing feverishly away. I loved Arrival, from the direction, to the theme, to the acting; but especially the screenplay. And in that regard we are very lucky that we have available

calendar
Writing

Screenwriting Opportunities and Contests September 2018

Planning out the year’s submission strategy for screenplays can be tough, there are so many of them, with dates scattered throughout the year. Time it wrong, and you can end up slipping into late submission windows, often significantly more expensive than the early bird option. So, to make that all a little easier, here’s the deadlines for the rest of the year, and I’ll be posting every month with updates. I’ve probably missed a few, but I’ll keep it updated as much as I can! DateDescriptionRequirementPrice7th SeptemberChannel 4 Screenwriting Course 2019 Applications OpenC & one writing sample; must be free

Blaise-Pascal-Shorter-Letter-Quote
OtherWriting

Project Carnaby – Loglines

Chances are if you see a screenwriter crying and/or banging their head against the desk, possibly whilst wailing about the injustice of the world, it’s probably because they’ve been asked to write a logline. If writing a screenplay is finding the conflict and the drama and exploring that over 60 to 120 minutes, loglines are taking all that nuance and throwing it out of the window. Depending on who you ask, loglines are between 20 and 50 words long, they’re an elevator pitch. A tiny sales document, selling sizzle more than steak. And they’re really hard to write well. Case

Final Draft 10
Writing

Recovering Corrupted Final Draft Files

Considering how often I’ve heard reports of Final Draft crashing or corrupting files, it’s astonishing to me that people still recommend it. Sure, it had it’s heyday as the de facto screenwriting software, but there are now so many better solutions, my favourite of which is Fade In. But, if you are still in the Final Draft paradigm, what to do if you suffer disaster and you end up with a corrupted file? That’s what happened to Helen Shang, writer on TV shows like Hawai Five-0 and Hannibal. Luckily, she managed to find an automatic backup generated by Final Draft, and

Writing

Project Carnaby – Research

Write what you know. Such a misunderstood phrase, and it’s why you get so many terrible scripts about writers with writer’s block. (Everyone has a pet peeve, that one’s mine). ‘Write what you know’ is so much more about emotional situations, it’s about theme and mindset. For example, the life of a being with supernatural immortallity is utterly unknowable, but loneliness and ennui, that’s something many of us know, and understand. I’ll get to the theme of Project Carnaby in a subsequent post, and it definitely falls into the remit of ‘write what you know’. But what I didn’t know about,

Writing

Project Carnaby – A Writer’s Saga

No, I’m not breaking my golden rule of not writing about writers with writer’s block. There are lots of motivational groups and programs for screenwriters, such as WRAC and Zero Draft 30. However, for my own motivation, and by way of illumination, I wanted to chronicle my path from hair-brained idea to complete feature film screenplay. Unvarnished, and including all the process missteps and crises of faith. Project Carnaby I’d reached the point of saturation with my last project, a TV pilot called Breached. It had been submitted almost everywhere it could, it was complete if imperfect and it was

Monica Beletsky
TVWriting

Monica Beletsky on Writing a One-Hour TV Drama Script

There’s no denying that Twitter is an imperfect medium for communicating longford thoughts. There’s also no denying that people do so anyway, including kind people willing to share their industry experiences with anyone interested. A recent thread or “tweetstorm” was by writer/producer Monica Beletsky, known for Fargo and The Leftovers, writing about her process for writing TV scripts. This insight is invaluable! Update: There’s now a PDF version of this, thanks to EdithD! Download it here.   I didn’t go to film school. One thing that’s hard for me as a writer, is every time I write, i feel like I’m

MoviesWriting

Gone Girl – A Screenwriter’s Analysis

The news came down this week that an amateur screenwriter is attempting to sue Gillian Flynn for taking the idea from her unsigned screenplay, and turning it into the bestselling novel Gone Girl and its subsequent screen adaptation. Now, I’m not saying it’s impossible that preternatural writing talent Flynn stole… No. Wait. Yeah, I am saying that. You only have to read her work, whether the novel or the astonishingly written screenplay to see that she’s in a league of her own. But I thought this would be a good opportunity to bring together a few resources and talk about Gone Girl. Storywise,

Emmy Statuette
FilmmakingOtherWriting

Scripts for 2017 Award Winnie TV Shows

Say what you will about awards shows, not only do they get everyone talking about great television, they also mean that a lot of great resources get released. Scripts, or even if we’re lucky series bibles, start getting released from around now to help build the case for the nominees. And this has been also true of the Emmy’s this year; a year where in our opinion The Handmaids Tale and Big Litttle Lies deservedly did well. We’re just sad that the excellent Westworld didn’t get more recognition. So, here are some scripts from some of this year’s winners and

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