Screenwriting

From structure to content to representation to industry trends, this is the place to discuss, share content and offer tips and advice on the craft and business of screenwriting

Natalia Alyukova
Looking for screenplays to cover

Hi everyone!

I want to apply for freelance script reader jobs (as we all know, the more scripts you read, the better - and if it starts paying even a little bit, well...), but for that I need a couple of coverage samples.

So, I am looking for scripts to read and do free coverage for! Please message...

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Molly Capobianco

I just finished one today. I would love for someone to read it! Please let me know how I can send it to you. Thanks!

Anne H Furlong

I would like to share my work

Stefano Pavone

I wish to share my work with you. How do I do so?

C. D-Broughton

Free feedback?

Prepare to be mail-bombed!

Ihekuna Chimezie Benedict

I am interested. mail me at mrbenisreal@gmail.com

Claude Gagne
Pitch Fests

Caveat Emptor ~ Buyer Beware

From "pitch fests" to online script coaches, an entire cottage industry has sprung up to help aspiring scribes crack the movie business, and while some offerings are legit, many are schemes desig...

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Claude Gagne

They are a waste of time and money, Doug. To me, all they are is a get-together for screenwriters. It'll be a while before things get back to reality. By then, who knows! I'll keep writing and maybe the old 80's/90's style will come back.

Keep your hard-earned money, Andrew.

Craig D Griffiths

I didn’t read the entire post (sorry on my phone - I will later). But the entire support industry is a scam. The best scam is the Pass, Consider, Recommend. Everyone gets a pass on their work, but a r...

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Dan Guardino

I tried everything that didn't involve me spending money.

Doug Nelson

Claude - they are not get-togethers for screenwriters; they are get-togethers for WANNABE screenwriters who are naive and gullible enough to pony-up a few dollars (mostly to get their ego stroked). Screenwriting is a business and as such it plays by a uniqueness all its very own.

Claude Gagne

An elusive dream.

I bet every aspiring screenwriter (WANNABE - sounds native, lol) was grasped by the saying, "I can write a better movie than that," and throws out some ideas and begins to write, res...

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Audrey Wells (April 29, 1960 - October 4, 2018)

Audrey Wells passed away last week.  

Professionally, she is a really great writer, a friend of writers, a lover of cinema, and a great filmmaker.  She is what I call the best of the best of the best.   Personally, she is an amazing woman who supports social justice causes for all: from animals to pe...

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Julius Weil

What a beautiful tribute. Her legacy will last for years to come. May her memory be a blessing to her family. Even though much time has past she is still missed and mourned by an entire community.

Donn Swaby

Beautifully said.

Michael Savage Aka Sirtony

Dear Bill...I have not been using STAGE 32 for a year....been very busy...and so today I got a update email...from Stage 32 ...and read your message inviting me to write some special words...on your T...

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Michael Savage Aka Sirtony

Just got an update from NICHOLAS in SEATTLE on STAGE 32 sharing the reality he didn't know till now...about Angel Audrey Wells....and then I saw my post from 7 months ago to honor the moment and no LI...

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Liliana Angela Angeleri

Yes, I continue to write human stories in order to remember always Audrey Wells

Michael Khamis
Story goal vs the protagonist’s want

Are these two the same or is the protagonist’s want more of a symptom of the protagonist’s “Lie”?

Doug Nelson

Personally, I think the character's 'want' ought to be defined in the first scene or very shortly thereafter. The 'need' will become evident as the story unfolds before the audience's eyes.

Opal Morningstar

Introduce the character early and the conflict they must resolve.

Craig D Griffiths

That’s the problem Micheal. You are trying understand someone else’s concepts. Whoever tells you art is formula and engineering is selling you something. Have faith in your own ability to tell story....

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Michael Khamis

Thank you Craig. That’s very encouraging. Everyone’s comments here are making things clearer.

Dan Guardino

You should probably throw the book away instead of letting it throw you off. Most of them are written by self-proclaimed experts who couldn't make a living writing screenplays.

Bob Reynolds
Director of NEW Screenplay Competition at Sedona Int. Film Festival

Anyone interested in going to a great festival, consider the risk v. reward of entering this one!?

It's the kind of festival I'd like to enter... (if I could!)

bob reynolds - writer/director/producer...

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Screenplay Competition - Sedona International Film Festival
Screenplay Competition - Sedona International Film Festival
The Sedona International Film Festival - now in its 27th year - provides a unique natural backdrop and an enlightening festival experience for our three SCREENPLAY COMPETITION winners. Meeting filmmak…
Doug Nelson

I vaguely recall attending the SIFF over a decade ago. I was impressed then; but now they are limiting the audience to only 30 folk (per Covid).

Opal Morningstar

Only go if they are enforcing CDC guidelines --- wear a mask and social distance to protect yourself and others.

Maggie VIale

We screened Eleven Eleven ( writer/director Chris Redish, a Sedona resident) there in 2019. We also filmed in Sedona. What a wonderful festival! Can’t say enough good about it. I have a screenplay or 2 I’d like to enter. Thanks!

Martin Reese
American Film Market

Is there a benefit to screenwriters attending the American Film Market? It's virtual this year, and much more affordable, but it seems to really be more for people with finished films.

Christiane Lange

I was wondering same, and thinking same.

Doug Nelson

Martin - you are correct.

Martin Reese

Thanks, Doug. I was intrigued, but didn't want to spend money that doesn't move the needle.

Neal Howard

If you think there is something to be gained information/education/observation wise you can consider. It never hurts to know as much about the industry and its various aspects as possible, but yes, it is a market for finished films.

Craig D Griffiths

I would love to attend the physical market. I think the virtual one would be good if you have some product to take with you. I have found virtual things not as productive for networking and making connections, that could just be me.

G Robert Frazier
Logline webcast???

So when is the webcast on the logline contest and how do we access it??? Is the first one this Friday???

Ricki Linksman

Hi Martha, Thanks for the email, but the link only came back to this page and there was no red box that says Learn More. Can you try it again? I rewrote all my loglines after hearing the webinar and would like to submit. So kind of you to reach out.

Ricki Linksman

Aha! It took all night but I found it. Go to Stage 32 Facebook, and click on the "That's a Movie" Contest at the lowest posting towards the bottom, and that takes you to the write up with the "Enter Here" button in the middle of the write-up page. Thanks Martha for hanging in there with me!

Martha Caprarotta

Oh, sorry my link didn't appear in my comment. It's https://www.stage32.com/blog/Announcing-the-Stage-32-Thats-a-Movie-Logli... But I'm glad you found another way to it!...

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Jim Boston

Martha, thanks so very much for putting up the link!

I watched last Friday's webcast (only because I signed up to take last week off from my factory job). Glad for the chance to watch...and as a result...

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Ricki Linksman

Thanks Martha for reaching out.

Vanshdeep Singh
A Question about Screenwriting Books

Has anyone out there read, John Truby's 'The Anatomy of Story'? And if yes, how did it help you in your screenwriting?

I just wanted to get some insight about this book before buying.

And could anyone can suggest some other books regarding Storytelling Techniques or how to improve them (not specifical...

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Nick Assunto - Stage32 Script Services Coordinator

I really enjoy HOW TO WRITE MOVIES FOR FUN AND PROFIT.

Zorrawa Emily Ann Jefferson

I have that book. It's helpful but so far it honestly hasn't improved my writinng. Which sucks but that's life

Vanshdeep Singh

Thank You so much everyone for all of your suggestions. Till now I've only read Save The Cat, but I felt it focused more on the 'selling' part of the development process. Guess I've got a lot of readi...

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Opal Morningstar

John Truby is excellent! I have used his Blockbuster and it helps you structure your story.

Craig D Griffiths

Poetics.

It’s free if you search.

Have you ever read a script that made you cry?

I just got done reading American beauty and honestly I'm actually in tears because I feel so bad for Janie and her boyfriend Ricky. It's such a tragic story.  The mother is a heartless monster. I've never read a script that made me cry. Maybe I'm just a big baby or something?

Felix Agyeman Boahen

Yh... "12years a slave" got my eyes wet... I hated how blacks "were" and "are" treated outside Africa... IT'S SO SAD.

Claude Gagne

Let's change the question to watch a "Movie." Some movies reach down so deep, that it's impossible to not shed a tear. But what makes it worse is if you're a man at the cinema house. When I was younge...

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Doug Nelson

Yeah - some of my own scripts are so badly written that they make cry.

Steve Cleary
Fade in, fade out

Are these no longer necessary (or fashionable) in a spec script? Technically, they are editing directions.

Itayi Chitauro Junior

I always fade in... It's a bit therapeutic lol ! But I have refrained from using fade out until I get to the polished draft

Dan Guardino

Steve Cleary. Some things here never fade out:)

Doug Nelson

Some of us old screenwriters do eventually FADE OUT.

Steve Cleary

Yeah, I've pretty much given up on trying to "break in" to Hollywood as a screenwriter. Anyone interested in watching my action movie parody series? Most episodes are under a minute: https://youtu.be/...

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Tony Ginn

I have a Horror Film Script (Draft) titled " Ghost Train"!

Joe Thayer
Thoughts on Development and Media company

Hello All,

I am wondering if anyone has any experience with opengatenow.com or a similar organization. They offer script development and media services, i.e. creating a slide/pitch deck, treatment, poster art, etc... They offer a package deal for these services and in the end, they circulate to their...

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Joe Thayer

Stephen DiLauro thanks for the insights and experience. Graphic designer sounds like a good route too.

Joe Thayer

Rutger Oosterhoff not sure it's that simple, but I get your meaning in this context. Thanks for your input ☺️

Nick Assunto - Stage32 Script Services Coordinator

Packaging is a weird business I still haven't grasped, but I've seen some successes with it from other companies like Ramo Law. It's not the kind of thing you want to do unless you have the money to d...

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Joe Thayer

Nick Assunto - Stage32 Script Services Coordinator Hello Nick, thanks for the input. I believe in the script or I would throw a dime in to it. As far as affordability, well it depends on if it is wort...

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John Ellis

Hey, Joe, I hear you. However, the Ridley Scott way costs little to no money, yet captures all the important points. He cuts and pastes bit from other films that match the style and characters of his...

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Matthew Faye Terry
Literary Agents

Can anyone recommend when to begin scouting for literary agents? I've completed one published book, and three screenplays with ratings in the 'consider' and 'recommend' range.

Doug Nelson

I never actively looked for an Agent but one found me anyway. Frankly they need you more than you need them.

Bill Albert

Eventually you'll get asked "What else have you got?" Sounds like you're ready.

Dan Guardino

Bill. Yes especially when it comes to agents. They only want to rep screenwriters that can write good screenplays on a regular bases and one or two would not prove that.

Nick Assunto - Stage32 Script Services Coordinator

Probably now. If you've got three strong samples, sounds like you're all set.

Dan Guardino

Mathew. Good luck! I hope you find one to rep you.

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