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How to Determine Your Own Success as a Screenwriter, with Writer Ricky Roxburgh

How to Determine What Screenwriting Success Looks Like For You

The fastest way to ruin something special in yourself is by comparing it to someone else. Look, the entertainment industry is cutthroat. But the people who “make it” have one thing in common – they have something totally different to offer than everyone else. Their voice, look, story, angle, or talent set them apart from the people who are just trying to imitate someone else’s success. While they may be overcome with the curse of comparison at times, as I think happens to most of us, they know in their hearts what makes them stand out, and they embrace it. Are you embracing your own screenwriting journey ... Continue reading
  • Posted on
  • Courtney Meznarich
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Award-Worthy Advice from Award-Winning Screenwriter, Peter Dunne

Award-Worthy Advice From Award-Winning Screenwriter, Peter Dunne

Does your writing speak for you? If not, it’s time to let it get to talking. It is easy to get wrapped up in format, story structure, character arcs, and dialogue adjustments, and we can quickly lose sight of what the story is. What’s at the heart of your story? The answer, according to award-winning producer and writer Peter Dunne, is you. “We have to be aware as writers that writing is for us to discover who we are; not to tell everybody who we are as we know ourselves, but to allow the writing to tell us how we really feel about things,” he said during the SoCreate-sponsored Central Coast Writers’ ... Continue reading
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  • Alli Unger
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The Basics of How to Write and Structure a TV Show Script

The Basics of How to Write and Structure a TV Show Script

We're smack dab in the golden age of television, and thanks to the many streaming offerings and new ways we consume media, it shows no signs of stopping. As a screenwriter, it's become more common to write for both features and television. Maybe you've never written a TV script before? Where do you even start? This blog is for you! I'm covering the basics of how to write and structure a TV show script. TV Pilot Script vs. Spec Script: Are you writing an original television pilot? The pilot is the first episode, the introduction to the world of a television show. The idea is that it will set up the story and characters ... Continue reading
  • Posted on
  • Victoria Lucia
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Hey Screenwriters! Here's How to Go from Good to Great

How Good Amateur Writers Can Become Great Professional Writers

Every professional writer was once an amateur who didn’t quit. I’m sure you’ve heard that quote before, and at the heart of it is the notion that to go pro, you have to keep your sights set on being great (and not just at writing, but that’s for another blog post). Pros are not just considered so because they get paid. I don’t think payment should be a condition at all. Real writing pros are the people who don’t stop at good enough. So, how do you take your writing craft from good to great, amateur to professional? Practice makes perfect, says screenwriter, journalist, author, and podcaster Bryan Young ... Continue reading
  • Posted on
  • Courtney Meznarich
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Popular Character Names for Screenplays by Category

Popular Character Names for Screenplays by Category

I can’t even tell you how much time I’ve spent struggling to name characters. It can be tough sometimes! You want a character’s name to tell the audience something about them. You want a name to be unique and memorable. You want a name that fits—finding a name that does all of these things can be challenging. But fear not! If you struggle with naming characters as I do, I’ve come up with just the thing to help! I’ve compiled a list of popular character names, broken down into specific categories, for your next screenplay. Hopefully, these lists were helpful, but if you still find yourself struggling ... Continue reading
  • Posted on
  • Victoria Lucia
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On this day in history

The Celebration

screenplay by

  • Thomas Vinterberg
  • Mogens Rukov

This Month in Filmmaking History – May 2021 Roundup

The Danish black comedy film "Festen," known as "The Celebration" in English, premiered on this day in history in 1998. It is the first example of a Dogme 95 film, which was a Danish artistic movement that limited filmmakers to specific production and narrative rules as a challenge to traditionally expensive Hollywood films. The rules were meant to go back to basics, focusing on traditional values of a story such as acting, theme, plot, avoiding special effects, and even post-production sound editing. Screenwriter Mogens Rukov and director Thomas Vinterberg wrote the screenplay based on a story ... Continue reading
  • Posted on
  • Courtney Meznarich
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How to Come Up With New Story Ideas for Your Screenplay, with Disney Writer Ricky Roxburgh

How to Come Up With New Story Ideas for Your Screenplay

Coming up with one solid story idea is tough enough, but if you have professional writing aspirations, you’ll have to do it daily! So, where do we go to find that endless well of inspiration that pros seem to have found already? Look inward. That’s the advice we heard from DreamWorks Story Editor Ricky Roxburgh, who previously wrote for Walt Disney Animation Television series including “Rapunzel’s Tangled Adventure,” “The Wonderful World of Mickey Mouse,” “Big Hero 6: The Series,” and “Spy Kids: Mission Critical.” All of these gigs required Ricky to dream up storylines frequently, so he couldn’t let his well run dry ... Continue reading
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  • Courtney Meznarich
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4 Common Dialogue Problems in a Script

Screenplays are meant to be taut, precise, almost effortless reads. But there are common dialogue problems in a script that muddy a screenplay’s purity, leaving your reader trudging through page after page of gobbledygook. Luckily these issues are easy to spot during a rewrite of your script's dialogue. Take a read through four common script dialogue problems (with dialogue script examples) that you can probably find (and fix) right now. 1. Fluffy Dialogue. We recently wrapped the SoCreate “Get Writing” One-Page Screenplay Competition, and the results are fascinating. Where some writers complained that “it’s simply impossible” to fit a properly formatted scene on a... Continue reading
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  • Courtney Meznarich
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20 Short Story Ideas to Get You Writing Right Away

20 Short Story Ideas to Get You Writing Right Away

Sometimes you want to write just to exercise the muscle, but you don’t know what to write about. Maybe you want to write about something small to take your mind off of what you’re currently working on. Maybe you’re trying to get in the habit of writing every day, but you need help getting started. Today, I’ve come up with 20 short story ideas to help you get over the hump of trying to come up with new screenplay ideas! Everybody needs something to jumpstart their writing once in a while, and maybe one of these prompts will be just the thing to get your fingers typing ... Continue reading
  • Posted on
  • Victoria Lucia
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Veteran TV Writer Ross Brown: Here's How to Network with Other Screenwriters

How to Develop Relationships in the Entertainment Industry, With Veteran Producer Ross Brown

As an adult, I’ve learned it gets harder to make friends. And in Hollywood? Even harder. Without a playground and forced recess, where do you go to develop relationships, especially in a place as cliquey as the entertainment industry? The good news is that it’s getting easier. Hear me out … You no longer have to be in Los Angeles. Sure, it would make things easier for you on the relationship-building front, but it’s not a requirement in this remote era we’re now living in. And what’s more is that the entertainment industry has spread, and new screenwriting hubs are emerging around the world . You just need to know where to ... Continue reading
  • Posted on
  • Courtney Meznarich
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