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8 Mistakes That Will Kill Your Horror Screenplay DEAD

Horror is a high concept genre that can lend itself easily to low budget filmmaking (both feature and short film), so it’s no wonder I get so many of them across my desk via B2W and my industry clients. What’s more, audiences’ gore tolerance is on the UP, so television can be considerably more scary and violent than it used to be as well. Yet just there ARE some classic clangers scribes can fall into when attempting the horror genre, so check this out for size because they will kill your Horror screenplay DEAD: 1) Just write a string of… Read More »8 Mistakes That Will Kill Your Horror Screenplay DEAD

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Top 20 Quotes For Writing Success

 Sign up for the B2W Mailing List, HERE! If like me you’re feeling a little weary this week (with no destination in sight for the forseeable), I thought you’d appreciate some of my fave quotes on what constitutes SUCCESS … I bet you’re at least halfway there already! Also, don’t forget you can now check out my latest podcast appearance on @thecreativepenn. I talk adapting novels, genre, film rights, treatments and much more with the lovely Joanna. Listen to it free, HERE. 1) Pablo Picasso Action is the foundational key to all success. 2) Emily Dickinson Success is counted sweetest… Read More »Top 20 Quotes For Writing Success

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7 Things You Must Stop Doing If You Want To Be A Professional Writer

Want to be a professional writer? One of the most-hit searches leading to this blog is ‘how to become a professional writer’. So good news – you’re here! I can definitely help advise you on this. But this is the thing. You’re doing all the classes … You’re reading all the sites and trades … You can even pitch and network like a pro … but there’s one problem. You’re not thinking like a professional writer. That’s the bad news. The good news: you can start, TODAY!! Here’s what you’ve got to stop doing, NOW … 1) Stop sweating the… Read More »7 Things You Must Stop Doing If You Want To Be A Professional Writer

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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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9 Steps To Get Your Spec TV Pilot Written, Edited & Sent Out …

Writing, Editing & Submitting Your Spec TV Pilot Writing a spec TV pilot? Lots of writers are! Whilst many spec TV pilots **end up** great, their writers often tie themselves up in terrible knots getting them written, slowing themselves down, especially when they often send out works in progress, left, right and centre AS WELL. Yet it needn’t be this way, with just a little more preparation at foundation level. So here’s my 9 steps on how to get YOUR polished killer spec TV pilot on the page AND out there … Step 1: Write your Series Bible Before you are able… Read More »9 Steps To Get Your Spec TV Pilot Written, Edited & Sent Out …

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2 Things ALL Writers Get Wrong In Early Drafts

What Writers Always Get Wrong There’s two things writers get wrong more than ANY OTHER writing craft elements … Yep: Not. Even. Kidding. We’re talking novelists AND screenwriters, plus pro writers JUST AS MUCH as the seasoned and newbies too ! Just about every single writer IN THE ENTIRE UNIVERSE including aliens (and why wouldn’t *they* write?) get these two things wrong in their early drafts. And NO it’s not hyperbole either! Bang2writers might come to me and ask, “What are the most likely things writers get wrong in early drafts?” I suspect this is because they want to try and… Read More »2 Things ALL Writers Get Wrong In Early Drafts

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What’s The Difference Between Thriller And Horror?

Thriller Vs. Horror Thriller and Horror … They’re practically the same genre, right? NOPE. Not by a long shot. Whilst they may share certain characteristics, Thriller and Horror are two definitive genres and this post will attempt to explain why in more detail. It’s A ‘Thriller / Horror’ Though I touch on this issue in my book, Writing & Selling Thriller Screenplays, I think it’s worthwhile to go into more detail on this element. I see LOTS of spec screenplays that call themselves “Thriller / Horrors” and this is nearly always a mistake. Not only does it wind up the… Read More »What’s The Difference Between Thriller And Horror?

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6 Ways To Annoy The Crap Out Of People Online

ANTI-Social Media I talk to A LOT of people because I spend a lot of time on social media. You may have noticed. (Just a bit!). What you may not have realised however is how much I READ about social media. It’s a subject that really interests me, especially the notion of “best practices”. Why? Because I see so many people completely screwing up social media and annoying the crap out of others online. What’s particularly surprising then is there is a plethora of good advice going around on best practices for social media. It’s one of the reasons I… Read More »6 Ways To Annoy The Crap Out Of People Online

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Top 5 Ways Writers Screw Up Their Characters

Don’t Screw Up Your Characters Characters are the lifeblood of any great story, so we don’t want to screw up on this … BUT writers frequently do. There are multiple, multiple ways to screw up on characterisation, but here are the typical ways … Characters are ‘tropey’, ie. derivative of existing characters, so boring They are stereotypes or recycle toxic myths and ideas The characters feel inauthentic Readers feel they can’t invest in the character’s journey for a specific craft reason (as opposed to personal reason) So if we don’t want to screw up, we need to keep the above… Read More »Top 5 Ways Writers Screw Up Their Characters

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Submission Horror Stories: 29 Ways NOT To Submit To An Agent

Submission Horror Stories ‘How NOT to submit to agents’ is one of the top searches leading to this blog! It should be noted there’s no ‘right’ way to submit writing, but there *are* multiple wrong ways, so check this post out. There are some real submission horror stories here … Many thanks to Carole Blake from the Blake Friedmann Literary Agency for providing a VERY comprehensive list on how NOT to submit to an agent. This is a fab list and  I have actually had a number 27 myself!! Maybe it was the same lady??? Eeek. This post is in… Read More »Submission Horror Stories: 29 Ways NOT To Submit To An Agent

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10 Ways To Conquer Your Scene Description

All About Scene Description Scene description is arguably the most problematic, yet most important, element of your screenplay. You probably write more of it than anything else (that’s right … even if you subscribe to the notion “less is more”!). I’ve been writing a fair bit about scene description lately in notes for people lately. I thought I would write a dedicated post about the pesky things that can interrupt the “flow” of the story and/or make the page look messy. So, good scene description should: Push the story forward Reveal character Do a bit of both Well, durr, etc.… Read More »10 Ways To Conquer Your Scene Description

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6 Tips On Writing A One Page Pitch For Your Script Or Novel

All About The One Page Pitch Is there any more misunderstood and feared document than the one page pitch? Sometimes called a ‘one pager’ or synopsis (especially for novels), the one page pitch can make or break your submission. Lots of writers want to avoid writing a one page pitch. This is is a big mistake. Never, ever, ever send your work without a one page pitch. A One Pager is a GREAT opportunity to sell your story “off the page” and get in that reader’s good books. Wait … What’s that you say? You already have a one page… Read More »6 Tips On Writing A One Page Pitch For Your Script Or Novel

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