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How To Avoid Killer Errors In Your Screenplay’s Scenes

Killer Scenes I’ve been working my way through a GIGANTIC pile of Bang2writers’ screenplays of late and noticed a common theme between most of them: their individual scenes needed work (as well as overarching story & characterisation). Since screenplays are the sum of ALL their parts, I thought I would compose a complete rundown of all the potential issues scenes can have individually, in orderto shed some light on the matter for interested parties. So, ready?? It’s a LOOOOOOONG list! Let’s go … 1) Starting too early The classic. Every time you write scenes – and I mean every single… Read More »How To Avoid Killer Errors In Your Screenplay’s Scenes

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How Does Exposition Work? AKA 9 Common Exposition Qs Answered

I’ve been talking a lot recently with Bang2writers about exposition and its place within their stories, whether novel or screenplay. As I’ve heard some common misconceptions, I thought it useful to put exposition under the microscope and really consider WHAT exposition is and HOW we can use it, framed as questions to answer. Enjoy! 1) Isn’t exposition a **bad** thing? No. Exposition in all stories – whether novels or screenplays (or something else) – is 100% necessary. Exposition is basically just the background information a reader or viewer needs in order to be able to understand the story. However, many… Read More »How Does Exposition Work? AKA 9 Common Exposition Qs Answered

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What Script Editors Do AKA 5 Tips To Edit Your Own Screenplay

So, I’m in/famous for insisting there’s too much dialogue in *most* spec screenplays AND that scene description AND format can be a major issue in a huge proportion of them, too — yet many of my Bang2writers confess they’re not really sure what to do about the first two issues in making their screenplays’ stories “flow” better for the reader. So major kudos to plucky Bang2writer Kym Wimbus who has very kindly stepped in and provided me with a scene from his Thriller screenplay, MAINTAIN THE RAGE which I will duly script edit for you*, right on this blog, so writers can… Read More »What Script Editors Do AKA 5 Tips To Edit Your Own Screenplay

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6 Reasons Dialogue Is Your Enemy

So, whenever I say dialogue is overrated (which, let’s face it, is A LOT), hordes of indignant writers holler at me over social media, “Nooooooo! How can this BE????”  You might love your dialogue. You may think it’s your friend. But believe me, Bang2writers when I say dialogue is actually a wolf in sheep’s clothing! Dialogue is the worst kind of frenemy you can have, for it will literally HARPOON your spec’s chances in the marketplace (or of even getting written in the first place!), like an unsuspecting and defenceless whale in Japanese fishing waters, first chance it gets.  100%… Read More »6 Reasons Dialogue Is Your Enemy

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How to Write Your Script to A Microbudget (And Not Make It Look Microbudget On Screen)

Everyone’s looking for that micro-budget breakout project. The next Following, Paranormal Activity or Blair Witch Project. But how do you make yours stand out? And how do you turn your script into a micro-budget film? We’re midway through filming our debut feature project Kidnap Me, for a budget of virtually nil, so I thought I’d share some thoughts and lessons from its development and production.  1. Have a USP Kidnap Me is a comedy. An edgy black comedy of love, sex and mistaken identity. With spanking. In a marketplace packed full of zero budget horrors, rape-revenge thrillers and Richard Curtis knock-offs, ours… Read More »How to Write Your Script to A Microbudget (And Not Make It Look Microbudget On Screen)

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5 Reasons Why Theatre Is A Writer’s Best Friend

If you’re feeling frustrated about rejections or getting a “way in” to the industry, then today’s short but VERY sweet post from Carla offers some GREAT food for thought on getting a foot in the door via writing for theatre … Also, make sure you check out the new playwriting award from Theatre503. Enjoy! Theatre is a great way to get your work out there and there are some fantastic opportunities for emerging writers. Over the past two years I have been developing a play with Theatre503, a new writing theatre in south London and found the experience invaluable. Here… Read More »5 Reasons Why Theatre Is A Writer’s Best Friend

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7 Things Readers Can Tell About Your Script On Page 1

I’ve lost count over the years of how many writers have told me readers *can’t* know their story from the first ten pages. Those writers complain it’s not enough time and that readers are nasty creatures who form premature and false assumptions about the writing in front of them. It’s not fair, etc. Well I have news for you. Readers don’t just form a judgement in ten pages – they form it in ONE page. That’s right. ONE PAGE!! But you know what? So do you!!! Seriously. How many times have you opened a book and read the first few paragraphs… Read More »7 Things Readers Can Tell About Your Script On Page 1

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Novels Vs Screenplays: Differences Writing Them

Many thanks to Mya, who asks about writing a screenplay when one is used to writing novels. I was a novelist after writing my own screenplays, but I feel I can answer this question from my script reading experience, as I have noted some significant pitfalls novelists *may* fall into when I’ve worked with Bang2writers trying to make the switch: Too much scene description. This is the obvious one. Used to writing lots of prose, the average novelist is often easy to pick out in the script pile because they write OODLES of scene description, often in big black chunks,… Read More »Novels Vs Screenplays: Differences Writing Them

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My Thoughts On The Final 50 of “50 Kisses”

It was always going to be difficult, honing a list of 1800+ scripts down to just 50. It wasn’t just a case of picking only the “best” writing either, but balancing the “best” with the “right” subject matter too – we didn’t want 50 smoochy-smoochy scripts, or 50 outlandish ones either. The reading team needed to keep that end outcome in mind of “50 Kisses – the movie” as well! NOT easy. And I for one think the reading team did a fantastic job again. I wasn’t able to head the team this year because of other work commitments, but… Read More »My Thoughts On The Final 50 of “50 Kisses”

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#scriptchat @Londonswf 50 Kisses Comp #5: Scene Description

The “50 Kisses” contest is NOT just a writing contest – potentially, your script could be made by filmmakers. If you want your script to be picked first by the reader, then by the filmmaker, yours has to STAND OUT and one really easy, quick-fire way of doing this is to ensure your scene description ROCKS. Most scene description is bland at best, yet good scene description knows it is SCENE ACTION. Everything you write as scene description should be about moving the story forward and revealing character. A lot of writers get uppity and say the above cuts out… Read More »#scriptchat @Londonswf 50 Kisses Comp #5: Scene Description

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