Advice — expert series

Comedy Writer: Know Thyself!

Posted by D.B. Gilles on

I know a lot of comedy writers.Some are funnier than others both in daily life and on the page. More often than you’d imagine, the funniest scripts are written by men and women who aren’t that much fun to be around. They can “write” funny, but not “be” very funny during normal life. Some are downright boring while others are depressed and a drag to be around. Likewise, some of the funniest writers I know are hilarious when they’re hanging out with friends or one on one, but they aren’t funny on paper. Because they were so funny, early in...

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Evolving Story

Posted by Jen Grisanti on

Strong story comes from so many different perspectives. There is value in every unique perspective, including your own. As storytellers, our story evolves as life moves forward. We continue to learn more about story from experiencing and interpreting our own life story and the stories of those around us. We learn new tools and techniques in how to tell story in the best way possible in order to have the optimal emotional effect on our audience. We breathe in story and breathe out the potential to emote and help others feel that their own life experience is connected to a...

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My Story Can Beat Up Your Story: The Missing Chapter

Posted by Jeffrey Alan Schechter on

How embarrassing is it for a writer to forget to write a chapter of his or her own book? Especially, a book about…uh…writing?Back when my book on story structure, My Story Can Beat Up Your Story!, was in the planning stage I knew that I wanted to accomplish two things: first, I wanted to clearly detail the understanding of story structure that I had developed and field tested over the last twenty years of being a professional writer and second, I wanted to NOT write a book of screenwriting tricks. The last words I wanted to see in my book...

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Myth, Magic, & Metaphysics in Your Media

Posted by Pamela Jaye Smith on

There’s MAGIC in the air, whether from Harry Potter’s wands or the wizards of Lord of the Rings. Ancient MYTHS come to life in modern forms from the Mayan calendar and Roland Emmerich’s 2012 to Slumdog Millionaire’s version of Orpheus and Eurydice.The principles of METAPHYSICS are all the rage in our personal lives from those Laws of Attraction promoted in The Secret to secrets of the gods and the afterlife as explored in Battlestar Gallactica. These three categories overlap, and each is a rich source of story material because they are some of the most enduring and popular ways we...

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Light A Fire: Writing For Celebrity

Posted by Hester Schell on

Artists want control. Really? How refreshing! Or, are we just making up new ways of defining independent? Perhaps. If a green light comes from independent financing and not a studio, you’ve got an independent. In 2009, 36% of the total film market was created by independents ( In 2010, the number was slightly less at 32%. The remaining 63 to 68 percent of the market was split among WB, Paramount, Universal, Buena Vista and Sony. So, what does that mean for screenwriters? A lot. It means everyone is looking for the next Juno, The Kids Are All Right, Slumdog Millionaire,...

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