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Is Your Story A Mystery, Horror or Thriller? Here’s How To Tell

Mystery, Thriller or Horror? Mystery, Thriller and Horror novels and screenplays do BIG business as they have high ‘adaptability’. Readers and viewers love them … plus there’s a lot of convergence between them. This is because the Mystery, Horror and Thriller genres have lots of elements that cross over. However, lots of writers run into trouble because they’re not really sure what their story *is* at foundation level. Whilst many writers know mystery usually involves some kind of twist, they often don’t know how to get there. As a result, writers may make their mystery too easy to guess, or… Read More »Is Your Story A Mystery, Horror or Thriller? Here’s How To Tell

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5 Uncomfortable Facts You Must Face If You Want Your Scripts Made

OR: Why There’s NOT ‘Loads’ Of Great Spec Scripts Waiting To Be Made If you want to get your scripts made, you’re not alone. It seems everyone is working on a spec screenplay! I love to see it too … Nothing makes me happier than hearing about the stories Bang2writers are working on. Whenever people talk about screenwriting though, it doesn’t take long before someone drops this claim … ‘There’s LOADS of great spec scripts just waiting to be made.’  They usually say this when a new movie reboot is announced, or a favourite TV series has jumped the shark.… Read More »5 Uncomfortable Facts You Must Face If You Want Your Scripts Made

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Top 5 Solutions When You’re Stuck on Your Novel

How To Get Unstuck On Your Novel Are you stuck on your novel? Have you tried several different approaches, only to end up stuck again? I experienced this with my most recent novel, The Beached Ones. It took me years to get past that stuck place. Talk about frustrating! I thought I was going to have to give up on the story. You may be feeling the same way. If so, I’m here to tell you: I got through that stuck place and went on to win a publishing contract for the book. You can too. When You’re Stuck on Your… Read More »Top 5 Solutions When You’re Stuck on Your Novel

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5 Examples of Story Structure You Should Know About

All About Story Structure Whether you’re writing a novel or screenplay, story structure matters. Building a story structure is like crafting a backbone for your narrative. It helps the audience understand the timeline and meaning of each event, keeping them engaged until the very end. All too often writers focus solely on describing their characters rather than the story’s overall architecture. This has a knock-on effect and an under-developed story structure can literally ruin your characterisation. The truth is that plot building is just as important, if not more, than the protagonist’s quirks and conflicts. So you’ll need to become… Read More »5 Examples of Story Structure You Should Know About

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1 Killer Screenwriting Trick From Walter Hill (ALIEN)

About Walter Hill Walter Hill is a director, screenwriter and producer with a super-shiny resumé. He is the writer-director of the classic gang warfare movie The Warriors, an adaptation of the novel by Sol Yurick. Known primarily for the action genre, Hill has worked with all kinds of Hollywood royalty such as Arnold Schwarzenegger (Red Heat); Eddie Murphy (48 Hours and Another 48 Hours); Sylvester Stallone and Jason Momoa (Bullet to The Head); and even Steve McQueen and Sam Peckinpah (Hardboiled crime author Jim Thompson’s The Getaway). But even with all that in mind, Hill is perhaps most famous for producing… Read More »1 Killer Screenwriting Trick From Walter Hill (ALIEN)

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Javier Grillo-Marxuach: ‘Lost Was NOT Purgatory’ (And Other Tales)

About Javier Grillo-Marxuach Javier Grillo-Marxuach is a screenwriter and producer. He has the kind of resumé most Bang2writers would kill for, including iconic shows like Charmed and Lost. He’s continued with fantastic modern TV such as The Witcher, The 100 and The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance as well. Wow! I was delighted to Zoom with Javier recently. I love high concept, dystopian and post-apocalyptic story worlds. He’s literally worked on some of my favourite shows that have influenced my own writing! Javier also wrote the AMAZING 11 Laws of show running, an online essay/memo which really requires its own post.… Read More »Javier Grillo-Marxuach: ‘Lost Was NOT Purgatory’ (And Other Tales)

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The Birthday Party: A Genius Analogy To Help Writers Introduce Their Stories

Feeling Awkward We’ve all been to a party where we don’t know anyone. We stand in the corner, feeling lost. Or where we are introduced to 27 people in 3 minutes and know we will never EVER remember who any of them are. It’s a horrible feeling, isn’t it … … So why would you do that to your own readers? Why??? The Birthday Party Analogy I have an analogy I use when thinking about how to start a script. I like to imagine that my audience/reader is someone I have invited to the birthday party of a friend of… Read More »The Birthday Party: A Genius Analogy To Help Writers Introduce Their Stories

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Are You Suffering From Feedback Trauma?

On Feedback Trauma Are you suffering from feedback trauma? I don’t just mean hurting over bad reviews, but an experience so awful you feel like a ‘bad’ writer beyond redemption. These traumatic feedback experiences may include but aren’t limited to … Vitriolic feedback and script reports from paid-for readers and contests Screenwriting ‘gurus’ holding up your writing as an example of what NOT to do in classes and online Industry pros shutting you down / dismissing you in pitch meetings Industry pros telling you ‘no one cares’ about subjects dear to your heart in your writing Beta readers and peer… Read More »Are You Suffering From Feedback Trauma?

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10 Top Tips About Bad Reviews

On Bad Reviews All writers suffer bad reviews. If you’ve got one or more from readers, viewers or places you’ve submitted (such as film festivals, agents, publishers, or elsewhere) you will know this heartache. You’re hurt, confused and probably can’t stop obsessing about them. Those bad reviews may be all you can think about, even at the expense of the good ones. This is NORMAL. Our stories are our babies. We’ve spent oodles of our time on them. We’ve probably made all kinds of sacrifices to get them written, submitted, published or produced. Supersadface. So how to deal with these… Read More »10 Top Tips About Bad Reviews

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5 Times It’s Okay To Write Stereotypes (Really!)

Writing Stereotypes So it’s accepted modern writing wisdom that writers should never, ever, ever, ever write stereotypes. A stereotype is a simplification, a short-hand if you will. It’s generally thought nowadays that only BAD writers use stereotypes. But what if I told you stereotypes are a writing TOOL like any other … it just depends how that tool is USED??? Really!! Writers can use stereotypes whenever they want … as long as it’s ON PURPOSE, not by accident. But what does ‘on purpose’ mean? Check out the below and pass it on to your writer friends and followers. Let’s go! 1) For… Read More »5 Times It’s Okay To Write Stereotypes (Really!)

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