The Campaign

The Campaign

On a plane ride a few days ago, I settled in to watch two of the funniest human beings on the planet (Will Farrell and Zach Galafianakis) in a movie directed by the awesomely talented Jay Roach (Austin Powers, Meet the Parents, HBO’s Game Change).  All I knew about...
Inciting Incident types

Inciting Incident types

  Lately I’ve been brainstorming what to write for my next feature script.  And I’ve been looking for questions to ask myself which might lead to good ideas. The goal is to stimulate the flow of possibilities through the use of some sort of  prompt, and...
Literary Fiction/Screenwriting

Literary Fiction/Screenwriting

Ben Fountain’s new novel Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk was recently named a (top five) finalist for the National Book Award for fiction, and boy, can I see why.  I found it a great example of what “literary fiction” can do so well, that...
True Stories webinar available online

True Stories webinar available online

The webinar I taught for The Writers Store on “Finding the ‘Story’ in True Stories” is now available from their online store, for $79.  It’s a ninety-minute powerpoint/audio program where I discuss all the key lessons I’ve learned...
The first 10 pages of a script

The first 10 pages of a script

Yes, it’s true that a writer might only get the opening pages of their script read — and that it will likely be put down right away if those pages don’t immediately engage the busy industry professional who has given it a chance by opening it. Most screenwriters...
BRIDESMAIDS: The Beat Sheet

BRIDESMAIDS: The Beat Sheet

I created a “beat sheet” for Bridesmaids for the folks at Save the Cat — it’s now up on their website. Which of Blake Snyder’s genres and subgenres do you think this hugely successful comedy fits?  Take a look to find...
SAVE THE CAT genres for recent movies

SAVE THE CAT genres for recent movies

I just saw trailers for five new movies which all fit clear “Save the Cat” subgenres – my favorite tool for developing viable script ideas.   I haven’t seen any of these films yet, as they haven’t been released, but these previews in each...

Blake Snyder’s “5-Step Finale”

For those of you who use the Blake Snyder Beat Sheet (which I highly recommend, and use in my script consulting), I recently came across an archived blog post from Blake himself, where he goes into greater detail on how he thinks the “Finale” section (that...
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