Gotta Be Honest Bang2write is known for being honest in its feedback. Note that doesn’t mean brutal, vitriolic or cavalier. Writing is tough and writers have to make all kinds of sacrifices to get words on the page. Nothing winds me up more than readers and feedback-givers who don’t exercise due care. Every piece of work is an expression of someone’s hopes and dreams. I take this very seriously. But I do have to be honest. I would be failing in my remit as a script editor if I do not put honest notes at the very heart of what… Read More »Be Honest, Writers – Do You REALLY Have A Story?
To Analyse: A Definition Bang2writers have been asking me how to analyse a story to help their writing. It’s something I recommend, because it gets us into the analytical frame of mind. This in turn helps us think about our own stories and what they need. You can read all my #B2WReviews here. But how do we get into this mindset? It’s worth remembering that emotion and anticipation go together. This means, the more you know (or thinkyou know), the more likely you are to be disappointed by a story. It’s just the way it goes. Disappointment can breed negativity and that’s rarely productive for… Read More »8 Steps To Analyse A Successful Story
Wanted: Diverse Characters Diverse Characters were in demand in my latest experts panel … Producers, Agents, Publishers, Script Editors and Script readers all said they wanted more of them in the year to come. This is no real surprise, since ‘more diverse characters’ has been on the the industry’s wish list for a good while now. I am pleased to say most Bang2writers have picked up the mantle on diverse characters. Whilst there is a contingent of writers who believe diverse characters are a ‘fad’, they are mostly confined to ranting on Facebook. In the past two years in particular,… Read More »Top 5 Mistakes Writers Make With Diverse Characters
Comedy Heavyweights If you want to learn, ask the masters … and wow, does Bang2write have some real comedy heavyweights on the site today! I’m delighted to welcome Paula Finn to B2W, who has interviewed the comedy greats and compiled their comedy mastery in her book, which you can find on Amazon. For a taste of what you can find there, check out these nuggets of wisdom from the masters below. Don’t forget to check out Paula’s book either. Enjoy! Learning From The Masters Over the last few years, I’ve enjoyed in-depth conversations with over 50 successful comedy TV writers. Here… Read More »14 Masters Of Comedy Share Their Secrets
Rise of the Spec TV Pilot Every screenwriter alive wants to write a great pilot episode of their own, if the spec pile is anything go by. When I started B2W back in the day, I hardly ever saw spec TV pilot episodes of any kind. Fast-forward fifteen years and I would venture I read more spec TV pilot episodes than anything else! It also means THE most popular article on this entire site is How To Write TV Series Bibles – over 130K+ unique hits now. Wow! That said, spec TV pilot episodes are notoriously difficult to write. Whilst… Read More »Why FRIENDS Has An Awesome Pilot (And What It Can Teach Writers)
Jurassic Snark Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom came out last week to coincide with 25 years of the franchise. Needless to say, many official critics gave the new instalment a kicking, plus there was the inevitable cries on social media about it ‘not being as good’ as the original. But love or hate the new Jurassic Worlds, there’s plenty for us to learn as writers from the franchise. You ready for another instalment of Movie Lessons For Writers? OBVIOUSLY there will be *some* spoilers for the franchise as a whole, but only mild ones. So let’s go … 1) Entertainment first, ALWAYS… Read More »25 Epic Years of JURASSIC PARK: What Can Writers Learn?
What is a caption? On a screenplay, ‘captions’ are those bits of text you may see flash up on screen – i.e.: 24 HOURS EARLIER NEW YORK DAY 32 COLONY 1, THE MOON BAGHDAD, IRAQ INSIDE DEREK’S LOWER INTESTINE You know the ones. You will have seen them countless times whilst watching movies, TV dramas, sitcoms, documentaries and even short films, web series, sketches, YouTube reviews etc. Lots of Bang2writers ask me how to format these. Well, it’s pretty simple. You just need to write: SUPER: [Caption you want to put in] Apparently, ‘Super’ is short for ‘Super impose’. This… Read More »FOCUS ON FORMAT – When To Use Captions
Cringey Capers You only have to dip into the erotica section of Amazon to see that it is distressingly easy to write poor sexy tales. Yet just by following a few simple rules you can lift your erotica from tacky to tantalising … Just don’t make any of THESE clangers … 1) No story! Where’s the story? If you are going to write your own sexual fantasies, then don’t forget to make it part of the story and not just a cold happening. 2) Being OTT Keep it your erotica simple and relatable. Use something ordinary and familiar as your starting point-… Read More »Top 5 Mistakes Writers Make With Erotica
1) TIP: Never Use Boring Words! First up, the obvious … And one that some say is the ONLY rule every writer should follow – ‘Don’t be boring!’ Novelist Bang2writers obviously have the strongest burden in NOT being boring. In comparison to screenplays, every single word of a novel is accessible to a reader. That said, script readers have to read a screenplay first, so it’s still not wise to be repetitive and write ‘flat’ and flabby prose. This infographic from Custom Writing breaks down some common and frankly DULL words, plus what ALL writers can use instead. Remember, just because… Read More »10 Useful Infographics To Help You Pick The Right Words
WARNING: Spoilers In my occasional Movie Lessons For Writers series, I put a recent or classic movie under the microscope and draw attention to what writers can learn, for good or ill. Since IT has been lighting up screens all over the world – surpassing the hallowed £500m mark, no less! – then whether we loved or hated it (or loved TO hate it), we can agree this remake has *something* to impart. What’s Working Obviously, plenty is. Rightly or wrongly, movies this popular will always have their detractors, but overall we can discern that the filmmakers definitely got something… Read More »How IT Demonstrates The Enlightening Power Of Subtext
If you want your readers to NOT get bored with a stereotypical ending and/or to keep them hooked, then it is high time for you to learn about The Art of the Unspoken! This technique can be hard to grasp and utilise effectively at first, but it means you will give your readers chance to fill in the rest WITHOUT you needing to be ‘on the nose’ with it. These 7 tips will make your journey to creating the breathtaking mysterious atmosphere easier. Chew on these for size: 1) Pacing With a purpose to create a mystery you need to control… Read More »The Art Of The Unspoken: Give Your Reader A Chance To Fill In The Rest
What’s a story without a masterful villain? A boring thing that gets no one’s attention, right? Great stories are based on conflicts between good and evil, meaning that a memorable antagonist is just as important as the story’s protagonist! But how exactly do you create an outstanding antagonist? Check out these tips to understand the essential characteristics of a memorable antagonist. The imperfection of a perfect villain Name few of the most powerful antagonists you can think of. Is there a violent and psychotic gangster, a murderer, or sociopath among them? Are some of them a simple guy next-door ?… Read More »How To Create A Memorable Antagonist