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55 Top Tips Bang2writers Already Know … Do You?

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Bang2writers this year have swarmed all over this website … With 35K+ hits per month this year,  they’ve absorbed its delicious writing-tip-goodness like the 1950s version of The Blob. Wow!

But this means NON-regular Bang2writers might be at a disadvantage. You see, this blog has been going for a looooong time now. So if you’ve not read the most popular articles on this site? You are literally missing out on the knowledge your competition already knows!!

But you know B2W will always have you covered. So I’ve rounded up the top 55 articles Bang2writers hit consistently this year, along with some thoughts on why. Just click any of the headlines to read the original article.

Give it a bookmark, have a good read and come back refreshed and ready to kick some writing ass in the new year.

Top Articles On B2W This Year

1) How To Write TV Series Bibles

With over 130K+ unique hits, this post has been number one on B2W for A DECADE! Bang2writers just can’t seem to get enough of this blog post. This year, I gave it a makeover. If you’ve not seen this one before, or recently, make sure you take a look.

2) What’s The Difference Between Thriller And Horror?

With my reputation on genre preceding me thanks to my Thriller Screenplays book, it shouldn’t be a surprise this is also a consistent favourite on the site. Using the 2007 Emily Blunt movie Wind Chill as a case study, it also provides linkage to the script and the multiple reasons why ‘Thriller/Horror’ in pitches simply doesn’t work from a script reader’s POV.

3) 6 Tips On Writing A One Page Pitch For Your Script Or Novel

Novelists have always sent synopses with their submissions, but there can be some issues in selling their stories ‘off the page’. In contrast, screenwriters would send scripts out ‘cold’, with no introduction. In recent years, thanks to events like London Screenwriters Festival, they now realise that sending out a one pager is a good idea too. Here’s how to write yours to pique the script reader’s interest in your screenplay or novel.

4) How To Write Outlines, Beat Sheets And Treatments

Once upon a time, writers would resist any kind of prep material. Thankfully, those days seem to be over. If you’re looking for tips on how to write yours, make sure you check this article out.

5) How To Put Together Your Writer’s Resumé For Submissions

Sending a writing resumé – or CV for British Bang2writers – can be a key part of submissions to agents, funding initiatives, competitions and so on. Don’t know what to put on yours? Then check out this article.

 6) 10 Quick Tips About Writing Thriller Screenplays

Thrillers need to thrill … but how? Find out here, in this short and to-the-point primer.

7) 6 Ways To Annoy The Crap Out Of People Online

NEWSFLASH: too many writers are screwing up their chances in the real world via their behaviour online. Check out the red flags to avoid, here.

8) How To Avoid Killer Errors In Your Screenplay’s Scenes

Structure is one of the main draws of B2W, but it’s not just the overview of your story you need to worry about. How are your scenes ADDING UP to that whole?

9) 5 Visual Representations of Storytelling Structure

Find structure difficult? Then why not ‘draw the story’. Check out how, here.

10) Top 5 Ways Writers Screw Up Their Characters

Characterisation can be hard … but is a whole lot harder when you do these 5 classic things!

11) 13 Questions On Cultural Appropriation You Need To Ask Right Now 

The first genuine surprise of the list … This is not a 2018 article, but came BACK TO LIFE zombie-style this year. If you are concerned about doing your due diligence when it comes to diverse characters, this article is a must-read.

12) 8 Mistakes That Will Kill Your Horror Screenplay DEAD

Horror has been a real draw this year for Bang2writers. I predict lots of new Horror scripts and films to come. Can’t wait!

13) The 2 Sentences Your Characters Should NEVER Say

The first article from 2018 to crash into the list. Published in January, this article goes viral every time I share it. Do you know what a ‘Signal From Fred’ is? YOU SHOULD. Click this link now.

14) The Truth About Success: 30 Top Creatives Who Broke In Late

Another zombie post, this one went absolutely bananas in October-November 2018. If you need a dose of inspiration to get you going for 2019, make sure you bookmark this one.

15) How To Plot TV Series: “Story Of The Week” Vs. Serial Element

My first ever viral post back in 2008, this one is still going strong a decade later. It’s had a makeover, so make sure you check it out. More to come on this subject in 2019.

16) 1 Word That Will Kill Your Female Characters DEAD

Female characters have always been a draw on B2W … So has the term ‘kill your X dead’. Combining the two was no-brainer! But what is that word?? Find out, quick cos I STILL see it all the time.

17) No, Your Female Characters Don’t Just Need More Dialogue

My second major viral post of 2018, this one gets BOTH the femcritters and the dudebros gnashing their teeth in tandem. Howzat for irony??

 18) How To Use Plot Devices – Voiceover, Flashback, Montage, Intercut and Dream Sequence

I used this post for a series of videos on the all-new B2W Youtube Channel, using new examples like Bladerunner 2049 and The Handmaid’s Tale.

19) 10 Ways To Conquer Your Scene Description

Despite hating script consultants and quibbling on camera angles in UK spec scripts with me (!), Craig Mazin called this a ‘pretty good list’ on Twitter once. I am honoured. Find out why.

20)  How To Write TV Series Bibles – The Infographic!

Given the runaway success of number 1 on this list, an infographic version had to be done … And yup, it has been consistently popular.

21) How To Get Past ‘No Unsolicited Material’

Bang2writers find this blog all the time by Googling this term. I was only too happy to provide my thoughts on this.

22) 15 Cheesy Writing Fails To Avoid In The First 10 Pages

B2W points out all the time that sameness in stories is cheesy and boring … So it made sense to round up the top fails I see regularly as a script reader. Are you writing any of these?

23) Loglines Are Not Taglines … Here’s Why

Confusing loglines and taglines is probably one of the most common mistakes writers make. I break down the difference and why you shouldn’t, here.

24) 9 Steps To Get Your Spec TV Pilot Written, Edited & Sent Out

So many Bang2writers are writing TV pilots that I kept getting asked for an overview of the process, from writing to submission. So here it is!

25) 12 Amazing Authors Share Their First Draft Top Tips

The most recent 2018 article on B2W to go viral. Expert panels are always popular, but given B2W’s screenwriting bias and the fact ‘author’ was in the headline, I was surprised by this one.  That said, more and more Bang2writers are interested in novel writing, plus a lot of the advice is universal.

 26) How Do I Format An Interruption In My Screenplay Dialogue?

Format can be a real challenge in screenwriting, so often it’s the ‘little things’ that confuse. This article has been massively popular this year.

27) 10 Awesome Writing Tips From Robert McKee

After number 13 on this list, this was the second genuine surprise. Robert McKee’s Story is probably the Bang2writers’ least favourite screenwriting book. But maybe they’re reading this article to avoid it!

28) How Do I Format A Quote At The Beginning Of A Script?

Another Format article, nuff sed!

29) 1 Simple Tip To Help You Get More Writing Done

Productivity tips on B2W are always popular, so are articles on time management.

30) 5 Openers That Make Readers GROAN

Another article from a script reading POV to help writers avoid sameness. Remember, human beings love novelty! Why would you begin your story like everyone else?

31) How To Become A Script Reader

An unintended consequence of this blog was that people became VERY interested in becoming script readers themselves! This is why I ended up created my Breaking Into Script Reading class. More details on script reading in the article.

32) 29 Ways NOT To Submit To An Agent

The late, great Carole Blake of The Blake Friedmann Literary Agency was a legend who took no nonsense on submissions. Avoid all 29 of these, for God’s sake!

33) How To Avoid Plotting Hell And Save Writing Hours

Structural advice is always popular on B2W, as is productivity. So combine these two to get more done – here’s how.

 34) 38 Good Reasons Your Script Might Get Rejected

I revisited an old infographic about script reading … And discovered we might not have progressed as writers as much as we should have. Eeek!

35) Which Screenwriting Software Is The Best? (Paid For & Free)

Every screenwriter needs software. Here’s some of the most popular, according to the Bang2writers.

36) Screenplay Format – The B2W One Stop Shop

So you have screenwriting software, but did you know there’s still lots of format niggles to avoid? Bookmark my epic rundown of all the reader pet peeves I see. You can also download a PDF Reference Guide from the B2W Resources.

37) Infographic: 6 Tips For Writing A Great One Pager

You guys love infographics! Here’s the infographic version of number 3 on this list.

38) 2 Things ALL Writers Get Wrong In Early Drafts

Just because you’re a pro doesn’t mean you’re immune to getting these things wrong … Check this out.

39) How to write better LGBT characters

There’s been a huge increase in searches for LGBT characters on 2018 this year. Some great pointers in this to get you started.

40) How To Write Killer Ideas Like Netflix’s Stranger Things

Erik Bork’s 2018 article set reddit on fire while they all tried to ‘prove’ Stranger Things was no good. Sure it was, guys! Arf.

41) Top 10 Words That Will Kill Your Writing DEAD

Need a checklist of those niggly, pet peeve words that can spoil your description in your spec screenplay or unpublished novel? No problem, here you go.

42) How Do I Get Work As A Script Reader?

If you’re interested in number 31 on this list, you’ll need to check this one out too. See you at my next script reading class at Ealing studios, too?

43) 2 Simple Tips To Spot Structural Problems In Your Writing

Mentoring writers, I find the one writing craft element they ALWAYS find toughest is structure. Over time, I found myself recommending these 2 tips, over and over again. They make a HUGE difference!

44) How To Assign A Character’s Race In A Screenplay

The pendulum has swung a LONG way since I started out … Where once it was assumed screenwriters SHOULDN’T assign a character’s race, now it is generally accepted they SHOULD. Here’s why, plus how to do it.

45) 3 Tips To Get Your Work Solicited Via Email – And Not Blow It In The Very Next Email

Lots of Bang2writers see ‘no unsolicited material’ and think there’s nothing they can do. NEWSFLASH: there totally is! You get your work solicited … Just don’t blow it by doing the things listed in this article.

46) 25 Mistakes That Send Your Screenplay To The Trash

As it says on the tin … More tips from the inside of the spec pile, via B2W’s script reading eagle eye!

47) THIS Is How You Create Your Writing Career

Writers spend a lot of time thinking about ‘breaking in’ … But what if I told you it’s more about CREATING or BUILDING your career? Find out where you are in the process.

48) 5 Important Elements of Writing a Romantic Comedy

Another zombie post that came back to life with a vengeance this year … Proving that amongst all the horror and thriller, the Bang2writers are big softies really! If you’re writing a romantic comedy, you must check this one out.

49) Structure Spotlight: 3 Things To Remember For Act 3

Set Up/ Pay off can present a huge challenge for writers, whether they’re screenwriters or novelists. Here’s B2W’s thoughts on endings and how they hold the key.

50) 10 Top TV Writers Share Their Writing Craft Secrets

As we’ve already seen in this list, TV writing is a goal for many of you, so this post is a no-brainer. But even if you have your sights set on another medium, these pro writers still have some great insights to share.

51) 10 Tips For The Perfect Ten (Pages)

We all know we get 10 pages to impress … So here’s the official B2W rundown on what I look for, from a script reading POV.

52) How To Avoid Stereotypes When Writing Diverse Characters

‘Stereotype’ means ‘simplification’ … 9/10 we don’t want this in our writing, but ESPECIALLY not when we’re writing characters who aren’t like ‘ourselves’.

 53) 7 Ways Of Showcasing Your Writer’s Voice In Your Screenplay

Writers are always told how important ‘voice’ is … But WHAT is it, plus how can we showcase it in our screenplays?? I wrote this article over five years ago, but it’s always popular, so I gave it a makeover. Check it out and bookmark today!

54) The Secret of Writing Great Conflict In Scenes: 3 Examples

Very often Bang2writers believe ‘conflict = arguments’, but this is because they think dialogue stands in for ACTION. Here I break down three VERY different sequences involving extreme conflict, without an argument or even a ‘heated discussion’ in sight. Pass it on!

55) When To Follow Up On Your Submission

Every single day writers ask on social media or Google (and thus B2W), ‘I haven’t heard about my sub mission … what do I do?’ Answer: FOLLOW UP! Just don’t be too hasty … Here’s when is a good time.

Join Us, Bang2writers

So, that’s it for 2018 … B2W will be back and raring to go in 2019.  Don’t forget to check out the B2W Resources page for all your writing needs. If you want to chat to other writers, be sure to join us in the B2W Facebook group. Lastly, did you know there’s now a B2W instagram, new for 2019? Check it out, HERE.

See you there!

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