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No, Your Spec Screenplay Is NOT A ‘Drama/Thriller’. Here’s Why

NEWSFLASH: Drama/Thriller Is NOT A Thing! So, I keep seeing screenwriters on social media saying they’re writing a drama/thriller. OI WRITERS NO … YOU ARE NOT!! Dramas and thrillers are VERY different beasts. It’s why I wrote a whole-ass book on each of them!!! Before I start this epic rant, a reminder: B2W stands with the WGA and the current US writers’ strike. This post is NOT designed to encourage anyone to break the picket line and scab. It’s an article primarily designed to help you with your writing CRAFT. Secondly, it’s to help you realise how the industry works.… Read More »No, Your Spec Screenplay Is NOT A ‘Drama/Thriller’. Here’s Why

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Top 10 Tips On Writing Sizzling Sexual Tension In Your Novel Or Screenplay

What is Sexual Tension? Sexual tension is a key ingredient in many successful published novels and produced screenplays. Whilst sexual tension turns up most in romance stories, it can be part of ANY story in any genre. For example, I wrote sexual tension in my crime novel, The Other Twin. Sexual tension is that feeling of excitement and anticipation you get when something hot and heavy is happening between the characters, but they haven’t yet acted on their desires. Done well, sexual tension can be incredibly addictive for readers and viewers. It keeps them turning pages late into the night,… Read More »Top 10 Tips On Writing Sizzling Sexual Tension In Your Novel Or Screenplay

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How To Write A Fantastic Opening Sentence In Your Novel

Your Novel’s Opening Sentence Is SO Important The opening sentence in your novel has to do some heavy-lifting, so HOW you write yours is very important. Readers frequently read the first sentence to decide whether they will buy the book. They may do this in real life by literally picking it up from a shelf and going to page 1. Alternatively, they may utilise the ‘Look Inside’ feature on Amazon, or download the sample to their Kindles. WHY A Great Opening Sentence is Important A great opening sentence in a novel is important for several reasons … i) It sets… Read More »How To Write A Fantastic Opening Sentence In Your Novel

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How TV Thrillers Have Changed Since The 00s And What You Need To Know

All About TV Thrillers & Target Audiences I’ve been streaming a lot of TV thrillers shows from the early 00s to approximately 2012 at the moment. As veteran Bangers know, I love to track the changes to writing craft and what’s popular with TV audiences. Many people think I get ALL my information from talking with industry pros. That is true in part now, but it wasn’t before I made those contacts (duh!). This means I was doing this long before I knew anyone of note. Many new writers are surprised to hear the vast majority of my knowledge comes… Read More »How TV Thrillers Have Changed Since The 00s And What You Need To Know

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3 Ways New Authors Can Get Their First 100 Amazon Reviews

Calling New Authors … It is incredibly hard for new authors to build sales momentum. One critical step in creating organic sales is getting at least 50 to 100 positive reviews of your book on Amazon. The reviews establish social proof that your book is worth reading and will help you convert more browsers to buyers. How do you do that? How do you connect with readers willing to give your untested book a chance? 1) Message people on Reddit who like similar books There are so many Reddit groups about books. You can easily find people who like similar… Read More »3 Ways New Authors Can Get Their First 100 Amazon Reviews

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3 Top Tips On Querying Via Email (Plus 3 Cringey Things to Avoid)

Query Via Email Email is a much abused and misunderstood tool when it comes to querying. Yet sending query emails is your first line of attack and is a great way of getting your writing solicited. Sadly, most query emails however are badly worded, weird and/or generally needy. This makes it very easy for agents, producers and their assistants to delete or send that “no unsolicited material” link back to writers. Supersadface. But as we know, it’s perfectly possible to get your screenplay solicited, EVEN IF that company’s official line is “no unsolicited material”! So how do we do that?? Model… Read More »3 Top Tips On Querying Via Email (Plus 3 Cringey Things to Avoid)

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3 Unusual Female Character Tropes Audiences Can’t Get Enough Of Right Now

Female Character Tropes Good news: female character tropes are finally becoming more varied as standard! Not so long ago, female characters were sidelined or defined by the men in their lives … but these days, we’re much more likely to see holistic and layered female characters in movies, TV or novels. However, when B2W talks about tropes, many writers say: ‘Aren’t tropes a bad thing??’ It’s not difficult to see why writers might think this. Many online commentators – including actual critics! – often conflate tropes with clichés. Whilst tropes can indeed become clichés when they’re overused, tropes are actually… Read More »3 Unusual Female Character Tropes Audiences Can’t Get Enough Of Right Now

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How To Write A Great Cover Letter That Gets Results

Why do writers need to write cover letters? It’s the 2020s and the digital era, so why do writers need to worry about cover letters? Well, these days cover letters are most likely cover EMAILS … but you’ll still need the basics of how to write them. The only thing that’s changed is the delivery, basically. This means you’ll usually write cover letters as part of your submission process. This will frequently be a requirement, even if you’re using an online submissions portal such as CoverFly, Submittable or QueryTracker. Other times you may be expected to use cover letters is… Read More »How To Write A Great Cover Letter That Gets Results

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5 Simple Ways To Make It As A Writer

Make It As A Writer If you want to make it as a writer, you’ve come to the right place. Here’s 5 simple and straightforward ways to do this that anyone can do (really! This advice works for both authors and screenwriters). Ready? Then let’s go … 1) Write regularly The more you write, the better you will become … but this is where lots of advice online deviates from B2W’s. Most sites say that if you want to make it as a writer, you should make it a habit to write every day, even if it’s just for a few… Read More »5 Simple Ways To Make It As A Writer

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3 Quick Tips On Effective Character Development (Plus 4 Key Questions)

Effective Character Development Effective characterisation starts with good character development. Some writers insist that characters come to them ‘fully formed’ but I call BS. Good character development is not dictation. We are CREATING characters and honing our craft! There are a few key things to keep in mind when developing your characters: 1) Make them relatable Your audience needs to be able to connect with your characters on some level. If they can’t relate to them, they won’t be invested in their story. By the way: note how the above DOESN’T say make your characters ‘likeable’. This is a red herring.… Read More »3 Quick Tips On Effective Character Development (Plus 4 Key Questions)

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3 Simple But Powerful Writing Exercises To Make Your Characters POP

Make Your Characters POP It’s not hard to understand why writers do so much work on their characters. Target readers and audiences value good characterisation very highly. Not working hard on yours can really cost you in the long run. However, lots of writers over-complicate this process and tie themselves up in knots. This is why I recommend these three very simple but high-yield writing exercises for yours. Ready? Then let’s go … Exercise 1: Traditional These steps can help you create a well-rounded and believable character. By taking the time to flesh out your characters, you’ll be able to… Read More »3 Simple But Powerful Writing Exercises To Make Your Characters POP

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Top 10 Myths about Sensitivity Readers (And Why They’re Wrong)

About Sensitivity Readers Sensitivity readers are never far from the news these days. There’s been countless articles and threads online decrying them, citing ‘cancel culture’ and ‘offended snowflakes’ supposedly ‘ruining’ writing in the 2020s. A sensitivity reader is someone who reads a literary work, looking for perceived offensive content, accidental stereotypes and bias. They then create a report for a writer, publisher or another industry pro with suggested changes. No more, no less. FYI, I actually don’t like the term ‘sensitivity reader’. I feel it plays into (some) writers’ belief the job is ‘pandering’ to various communities or cultures. These… Read More »Top 10 Myths about Sensitivity Readers (And Why They’re Wrong)

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