• Rule #6: You Need To Make Writing a Full Time Job

    December 28, 2011

    If you’re a writer, at some point you’ve probably heard yourself say some version of the following sentence…

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  • Should You Write An Ensemble Piece?

    December 17, 2011

    What do most of Robert Altman’s films, and screenplays like Crash and The Tree of Life have in common?

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  • The Inciting Incident

    November 5, 2011

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  • What if Someone Steals Your Idea?

    October 27, 2011

    It’s a constant fear among young writers: finally coming up with that million dollar idea, only to have it…

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  • FLASHBACKS, Part 3: Making The Past Present

    October 19, 2011

    What do Blue Valentine, Memento, and Sophie’s Choice have in common? They’re all chock full of flashbacks.

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  • Flashbacks, Part 2: Dancing With The Devil

    October 10, 2011

    While that will definitely keep you out of trouble, it probably won’t bring out your best writing either.

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  • Flashbacks: 100 Rules and How To Break Them

    October 5, 2011

    As any screenwriting teacher will tell you, flashbacks almost always mean big trouble for young writers.

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  • Got an issue with Robert McKee? Me too.

    November 13, 2009

    Got an issue with Robert McKee?  Me too.

    By Jacob Krueger

    Don’t throw away the baby with the bath-water. As with any screenwriting book, there are some good things to be discovered in Robert McKee’s “Story”. But there’s also a lot that can be misleading, confusing or even just plain wrong. And for young writers who take his words as gospel, McKee can pose a real danger to finding your voice, truly understanding your character, and discovering the organic structure of your screenplay. I believe that a big part of that is because McKee teaches screenwriting from a critic’s perspective, rather than that of a writer. He teaches rules (he’d call them “principles”) extrapolated from finished screenplays, rather than the process that the writer uses to get there. In McKee’s bluster, it’s easy to forget that screenwriting is a complex art, not a simple A-Z process to which he holds the lock and key. Here’s a Vanity Fair article that points out some of his flaws, particularly related to his discussion of the horror genre: Read the Vanity Fair article. Thanks to Joshua Dysart for sending this article my way! Photo Credit: Genaro Molina / Los Angeles Times
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