Writers are in many ways single minded individuals. Our minds are so focused on our writing that it can be challenging to even discuss anything else. Part of the writing process whether you are a novelist, journalist, blogger, or screenwriter is becoming completely immersed in your plot, characters, and craft. We are completely consumed by all things writing. Because of this, if you were to be asked what college courses most influence your writing, you’d likely spout off titles like English 101, Writing 101, Rhetoric, Shakespeare, Literature classes, or specific genre classes. These courses are no doubt the first ones… Read More »3 Non-Writing Courses from College That Can Improve Your Craft by Lauren Bailey
Many thanks to the Bang2writers who sent in these questions via Twitter, email and Facebook over the last two weeks regarding actual novel writing and its side interests, such as adaptation. Jennie asks: How many characters “should” be in a novel? In direct contrast to screenwriting, novels can have as many characters as they want. Novels don’t even have to stay with the same protagonist; they don’t necessarily need an antagonist; they can have a huge cast of characters to focus on; they can have an unreliable narrator – YOU NAME IT. This is the freeing – and often very… Read More »Novel Writing: Characters, First/Third Person, Slang, Adaptation, Self Publishing
Writer’s groups are a great way to get feedback about your work and learn how to improve your writing. They also provide you with the inspiration and motivation you likely need to keep writing and stay on track. Plus, they’re a great way to meet other writers and to form long-lasting friendships. However, as with any group, writer’s groups can easily lose focus and turn into unproductive social hours where you’re just chatting about the latest books you read or movies you saw. Even if you manage to stay on topic about writing, these groups can devolve into personal attacks… Read More »How To Get The Most Out Of A Writer’s Group by Lisa Shoreland
Updated for 2017 Writing and making money from it is probably everyone’s dream … and we ALL dream of the six figure deals for our novels and screenplays! But before we get to that fabled return, we have to earn money – so it feels like we may be stuck in the boring day job FOREVER. Yet it IS possible to make money writing in OTHER ways while we write our specs and unpublished novels – welcome to the wonderful world of the freelance writer! Freelance writers are available to hire for any number of writing jobs, small, medium or… Read More »How Do I Become A Freelance Writer?
There’s lots of great books out there on writing, but which ones should you choose? Angelita steps in with her thoughts – and they’re not the “usual” either! Check ’em out. Listen: we know a novel is not a film is not a play is not a TV show. Each narrative medium works us over in different ways and possesses its own unique strengths. Nevertheless, the history of each is littered with successful adaptations (typically the newer medium cannibalizing the older one – though that’s been challenged with movie-based plays like The Producers, have you ever seen a film novelization… Read More »4 Great Prose Fiction Writing Guides by Angelita Williams
How I became a script reader One question I get asked all the time is, “How do I become a script reader?” So, once and for all – here is the lowdown on how my consultancy Bang2write started – plus make sure you check out my course, Breaking Into Script Reading, back for its seventh year in 2021! As I’ve said before, I never actually SET OUT to become a script reader. I did the BA (Hons) Scriptwriting for Film & TV course at Bournemouth University and part of the course covered it. As I also detail in this post, when… Read More »How To Become A Script Reader
Symbolism in Screenwriting Many spec writers want to introduce symbolism in their scripts. And why not? Sometimes the best writing we see “hints” at other things; there are multiple ways of “reading” it — and us screenwriterly types can pat ourselves on the back for “seeing” it. So Think LAYERS When it comes to symbolism of any kind, think LAYERS, like an onion. You can do this any way you want: visual metaphors, allusions, motifs, character traits. There are no rules, remember. However, the biggest issue I see when it comes to symbolism: It’s not clear what the screenwriter is… Read More »Case Study: All About Symbolism in ALIEN (1979)
ANNOUNCEMENT: Due to threats of divorce by my Husband and my subsequent agreement to go into rehab regarding my internet addiction, The Write Here, Write Now blog is on its very first summer break. OMFG!! How will you manage?!! IT WILL BE OKAY: Script Reading. Please note I’m still available for script reads during this time: get in touch via Bang2writeATaolDOTcom: all the details including links to a price list, here. Peer Review. If you’re looking for peer review, please look through The Feedback Exchange and add your own name too. Please DO NOT spam everyone on the list. Social… Read More »Summer Break 2010
Non Linearity is big news I’d venture for every ten spec screenplays I read, at least three will feature non linearity. Renowned non linear movies include Pulp Fiction, Memento, Twelve Monkeys, The Bourne Supremacy, Slumdog Millionaire, Groundhog Day and Premonition. Non-linearity sometimes finds its way into TV spec screenplays too – particularly of the supernatural genre – usually in the form of flashback. (For the purposes of this post, note that when I say “non linearity”, I mean the “beginning, middle, end” will not necessarily be in *that* order). I love non linearity. Done well, it can really add a new… Read More »4 Big Non Linearity Mistakes In Screenplays
[Kept updated as much as possible] All About Software One question new writers always ask in the B2W Facebook group is whether they should buy screenwriting software. So hello to Michelle who asks: “I’ve heard mixed advice from everyone on the screenwriting software issue… Some advise getting it, others say there’s no need for expensive software, at least not until you’re in the thick of it. What’s your take?” Biiiig question! Ready? Let’s go … There’s lots of software choices now Some people like screenwriting software; others see it as an excuse for a company to make shedloads of cash.… Read More »Which Screenwriting Software Is The Best? (Paid-For & Free)
Updated So, You’ve Written A Screenplay ‘I’ve written a screenplay, now what?’ is one of the top Google searches that leads writers to this blog. Plus Bang2writers write to me, asking me for ideas on what to do / where to send scripts they’ve written, so I thought it was time I put my thoughts on this in one place, once and for all … Enjoy! 1) Get Some Screenplay Feedback i) Getting it – do peer review You don’t have to pay for this, though you can if you want to. Alternatively, you can do peer review aka a… Read More »I’ve Written A Screenplay. Now What?
Updated So, parentheticals aka ‘wrylies’ have a tendency to turn up in screenplays … and they’re NOT NEEDED. They interrupt the flow of the read and what’s more, seriously ANNOY actors and filmmakers as well as script readers. TRUTH! Don’t believe me? Fine … check these out for size: 5. You are the writer, NOT the director! Unless you are the writer/director, the Director and Actors need room to make THEIR interpretation of your screenplay! This is the most-oft quoted case AGAINST parentheticals: if loads of lines of your dialogue tells the actors HOW to say lines “(condescendingly)”, “(pleadingly)”, “(wryly)” or whatever,… Read More »Top 5 Reasons Why Parentheticals Are Useless