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Advice > Best Writing Advice from Writing Experts

Soak up knowledge as writing experts divulge insider secrets and tips to help screenwriters, playwrights and filmmakers everywhere with expert writing advice needed to help hone the craft of writing. Whether it be novel writing advice, writer interviews, screenwriting advice articles, or general screenwriting help that is desired, these writing experts are focused on helping writers everywhere further their skills in every facet of writing.

Subtext Speaks

The dialogue scene you're struggling with? Take the page, crumple it into a paper ball and throw it into the trash can across the room. If you can make the shot, then you instinctively understand everything you need to know in order to write subte...

Read more... | Published: 03/01/10 | by Penny Penniston

Tales From the Script: 5 Things I Learned Interviewing Screenwriters

Sitting down for intimate conversations with dozens of Hollywood's best writers was a transformative experience. Although I've been a professional screenwriter for many years, most of my work has been in the independent realm, so collecting materi...

Read more... | Published: 03/01/10 | by Peter Hanson

Character Emotion Makes the Plot

Some writers excel at pithy banter. Others create dramatic action. The writers I most admire are the ones who in their own natural style convey a character's emotional personality in scene through active, non-verbal communication with just the rig...

Read more... | Published: 02/01/10 | by Martha Alderson, M.A.

How to Research Literary Agents

Read part one of this series here . The reason 99% of manuscripts get rejected is, simply, because authors approach the wrong agents to begin with. As writers, we know there is no comparison between a good word and the perfect word. Similarly...

Read more... | Published: 01/04/10 | by Noah Lukeman

The Top 10 Reasons to Write a Spec Pilot

Whether you're an established film/ TV writer or an aspiring one, you've heard it - everybody in town has said it - you should write a spec pilot. Didn't used to be that way. Up until about five years ago, it was considered crazy or just plain clu...

Read more... | Published: 01/04/10 | by Ellen Sandler

Writing to a Quota

Whenever I do interviews or seminars concerning my book, The New Comedy Writing Step by Step , interviewers and writers invariably ask "What's the first thing a person should do if he or she wants to become a comedy writer?" My response is a two-...

Read more... | Published: 11/30/09 | by Gene Perret

How to Evaluate a Literary Agent

When it comes time for you to research agents, you may find it difficult to determine whether any given agent is legitimate, effective, or the right one for you. Most authors are so eager to land an agent, that they will rarely stop and take the t...

Read more... | Published: 11/30/09 | by Noah Lukeman

Writing for Editing

"The humbling truth is that the film is made in the editing room." -David Mamet introducing the nominations for editing during the 2002 Academy Awards ceremony Editors are often called the last re-writers of the show. Another way to put this is ...

Read more... | Published: 11/02/09 | by Gael Chandler

Plot Depth through Thematic Significance

Plot involves at least three primary threads: Dramatic Action, Character Emotional Development, and Thematic Significance. Of these three elements, writers are equally divided between those who begin a project by concentrating on the Dramatic Act...

Read more... | Published: 11/02/09 | by Martha Alderson, M.A.

How to Sell a Screenplay with These 10, Must-Use Story Techniques

The key question that all screenwriters should ask themselves is: how do I write a script that Hollywood wants to buy? Most writers mistakenly think that success is all about connections and star power. Not so. The real trick to writing a script t...

Read more... | Published: 10/28/09 | by John Truby

Understanding Your Own Fear for Fun and Profit

Horror is transgressive art . It seeks to show the darker side of human nature in all its ugliness. Using the medium of film, we explore themes that are considered off-limits to other genres. Our explorations of the dark underbelly of life can gi...

Read more... | Published: 10/05/09 | by Devin Watson

Money Matters: Don't Just Make Your Points, Define Them!

Points? Points? What on earth are those things people keep promising me when I work on a film? A friend of mine said recently she ran into a name actor at Crate & Barrel. She's a bit new to producing and had actually been pursuing this actor thro...

Read more... | Published: 10/05/09 | by Jeremy Juuso

Conscious Media: Part 6

Read the rest of the series: Part 1 ; Part 2 ; Part 3 ; Part 4 ; Part 5 . A lot of people believe that "Art" just comes into being full blown and word perfect straight from the cosmos, the collective conscious or unconscious, spirit guides,...

Read more... | Published: 10/05/09 | by Pamela Jaye Smith

Conscious Media: Part 5

Read the rest of the series: Part 1 ; Part 2 ; Part 3 ; Part 4 ; Part 6 Some historians and anthropologists believe that the earliest art was created while under the influence of mind-altering substances. Well, duh. Artists, by their ver...

Read more... | Published: 08/31/09 | by Pamela Jaye Smith

The 11 Laws of Great Storytelling

Throughout my 18 years of screenwriting I have read and analyzed thousands of scripts from writers of all levels, including screenplays from my students at Buffalo State College, Cornell University, Syracuse University's Newhouse School, and R.I.T...

Read more... | Published: 08/31/09 | by Jeffrey Hirschberg

Conscious Media: Part 4

Read the rest of the series: Part 1 ; Part 2 ; Part 3 ; Part 5 ; Part 6 Archetypes are very in, very cool, very now. That's great. There are lots of fine books, seminars, and consultants to help you understand the various and sundry arche...

Read more... | Published: 08/03/09 | by Pamela Jaye Smith

The Curse of Quirky Parentheticals

When I was a young aspiring writer, I had a strong aversion to the use of "said" in a story. My justification was that it was blah. It was uninspired. It was pedestrian. Why use "said," I rationalized, when there were so many other words in the En...

Read more... | Published: 08/03/09 | by Christina Hamlett

Hidden Structures in Great Stories and Their Enormous Power

When I speak of a great story, I mean stories or films that are critically acclaimed and generally acknowledged to be classics. I also mean bestsellers, box office successes, and stories that have lived for hundreds or even thousands of years. So ...

Read more... | Published: 07/06/09 | by James Bonnet

Conscious Media: Part 3

Read the rest of the series: Part 1 ; Part 2 ; Part 4 ; Part 5 ; Part 6 Metaphysics is not for amateurs. And that's on purpose. Everything you think you know about Conscious Media, spirituality, or metaphysics is probably wrong, half-wro...

Read more... | Published: 07/06/09 | by Pamela Jaye Smith

Your Rewrite: 3 Angles of Attack

"The first draft of everything is shit." -Ernest Hemingway Hemingway, charming as ever, was correct. Everybody's first draft is shit. Even his. Yours too! You have to rewrite and rewrite and rewrite until you nail it. Then you stop. The good news...

Read more... | Published: 06/01/09 | by William M Akers

Conscious Media: Part 2

Read the rest of the series: Part 1 ; Part 3 ; Part 4 ; Part 5 ; Part 6 Conscious Media is Transformative Media. What is that? How can you create it? Writers schooled in the ageless Wisdom have been consciously creating transformative myt...

Read more... | Published: 06/01/09 | by Pamela Jaye Smith

Conscious Media: Part 1

Read the rest of the series: Part 2 ; Part 3 ; Part 4 ; Part 5 ; Part 6 Conscious Media is nothing new. Initiates of the ancient and modern Mystery Schools have always crafted stories that carry universal truths dressed up in a particular...

Read more... | Published: 05/04/09 | by Pamela Jaye Smith

15 DIY Book Promotion Tools You Need to Know | WritersStore.com

You're not a New York Times bestselling author. You don't have a publicist. And your Amazon sales numbers are awful. Should you quit writing books? Absolutely not. No matter what kind of book you've written (or plan to write) there are ma...

Read more... | Published: 05/04/09 | by Tony Levelle

Animation and the Art of Action-Based Storytelling

You're considering a move into writing for animation. After all, you've always liked animation; you have a feel for fantasy - talking animals, stuff that flies - and maybe you already have a background in live-action writing which should give you ...

Read more... | Published: 04/06/09 | by Ellen Besen

How to Win a Film Grant

I read thousands of proposals a year for my Roy W. Dean film grants. I know what wins grants and what turns judges off quickly. Getting it right can be a piece of cake. Documentary film funding starts with a well-written, organized proposal. It o...

Read more... | Published: 04/06/09 | by Carole Lee Dean