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My Writing Story, Pt 2: Beyond

So, as I said in the last post: I was done with writing, I was moving to Exeter, I was gonna be a teacher. Ha ha. I applied – too late as it turns out – for a PGCE that August, so I could start at uni the moment I got to Exeter in September. It didn’t work out; they were full, though they said I could start September after. Brilliant: I had a whole year to fill. Being a single Mum though meant I had plenty to occupy my time; I had to find my kid a school, for… Read More »My Writing Story, Pt 2: Beyond

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My Writing Story, pt 1: University

Miss Read has been writing about her own experiences at university doing a scriptwriting degree, which has got me thinking about mine. I’ve had a roundabout journey in scriptwriting, falling into script reading on the way and giving up on this whole lark more than once in pursuit of a more “sensible” job. But it seems I just can’t keep away, ‘cos I’m still going… Let us know how you got into it in the comments section.————————————————————————————-When I decided to become a writer, I was 18 and had dabbled with the creative arts my whole life. I’d done a journalism… Read More »My Writing Story, pt 1: University

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The Story Engine, Notes, Pt 2: Agents & Pitches

Here’s Helen’s excellent insights again – this time featuring the Blogosphere’s very own James Moran and some VERY interesting stuff about agents and pitching. Enjoy!————————————————————————————————- Screening: TORCHWOOD – SLEEPER Writer James Moran gives a live commentary to his episode of the popular sci-fi series. Followed by Q+A. Has carved out a niche in horror/sci fi He wrote Severance but got pigeonholed after this. However then Dr Who was relaunched. He wrote the Fires of Pompeii episode. Sleeper for Torchwood as well as writing for Primeval, Spooks Code 9 and Spooks. It’s cheaper to blow up a car than have several… Read More »The Story Engine, Notes, Pt 2: Agents & Pitches

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Good Luck

A great philosopher once said: “The best kind of luck is the kind you make yourself.” Okay, it was The Care Bears. But it’s true. When you’re a screenwriter, it’s easy to fall into the thinking the THE WORLD HAS IT IN FOR YOU. Initiatives don’t shortlist you? They must hate you. Agents don’t want to read more of your work? They must be trying to destroy you. You haven’t won a contest or got an option? Why, that is blatant sabotage. It’s hard, after multiple knockbacks, to not wallow in self pity and/or stick a fork in your leg.… Read More »Good Luck

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Writers Write: A Response To Adrian’s Post

Still busy… But still got other people expelling wisdom on this blog’s behalf! (“My people” will write this blog for me in fact, arf). So here is an interesting response from the marvellous Dublin Dave to Adrian Mead’s post yesterday in which he posed the analogy of hiring two architects:—————————————————————————–None of what Adrian’s saying is incorrect. Every writer finds their own path, but let’s be really clear about one thing: what matters is the work. Since 1999, I’ve been making a living as a TV writer. That career began with a feature length script, my fifth. I didn’t go to… Read More »Writers Write: A Response To Adrian’s Post

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Do Your Preparation: How To Write Outlines, Beat Sheets And Treatments

You should do your preparation! Bang2writers often ask me what is the “best” way to go about writing a screenplay or novel. My answer? There is no “best” way. But it’s definitely going to help if you’ve done your preparation first in the form of an outline, beat sheet and/or treatment. Here’s why preparation work helps you get rid of all the obvious pitfalls and crap FIRST, as it … GIVES your brain time to “breathe” and work out all the machinations of the plot and the character motivations and themes etc concurrently STOPS you writing a load of junk… Read More »Do Your Preparation: How To Write Outlines, Beat Sheets And Treatments

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Agents, Pt 3: When An Agent Is Not Really An Agent

In a business like scriptwriting, when there are so many writers (new and more experienced) desperate to attract the eyes of agents, producers, managers et al, it’s not surprising there are nasty people out there wanting to cash in on this. Knowing how agents work can be the difference between getting scammed or not, quite literally. More than once I have been contacted by Bang2writers wanting to engage my services as a reader after being asked by a so-called agent to get coverage to ensure their script is “ready for market”. Why would this be a problem, you might ask?… Read More »Agents, Pt 3: When An Agent Is Not Really An Agent

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Agents, Part 2: What Do They Do?

Agents are much maligned: you don’t have to go far to find a professional writer who will say all theirs does is take their commission, leaving the writer to do all the donkeywork. I know one guy who insists that he hasn’t heard from or even met with his in fifteen years except at Christmas where she sends him a card… And spells his name wrong every year without fail. So why have an agent, if you have to find your own work? Not only are you in the same position you were previously, you’re now actually WORSE OFF: if… Read More »Agents, Part 2: What Do They Do?

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Agents, Part 1: Not The Destination

One thing I hear more than any other from new writers in particular is how much they want an agent. It is, without any doubt in my mind, the single most important thing to them: above contest placings or even wins; above collaboration; above getting the respect of their peers even. And why not? When I first started, there was one single objective in my mind that counted above all others and that too was getting an agent. How else was I to know whether I was any “good” or not? Getting representation was proof of my ability if you… Read More »Agents, Part 1: Not The Destination

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