9 Ways To Write Toxic Characters In Your Screenplay


I’ve previously written about various extreme characters you can include in your screenplay to create some really interesting stories. These range from simple liars, to the delusional, to the dark villains. Extreme characters make for highly engaging films, especially in the horror, drama and thriller genres. You can really put your psychology to work in…

How To Write The Engine Of Your TV Series


There is a term bandied around TV writers rooms called the ENGINE. What exactly is the engine of a TV show? As its name suggests, the simplest way to describe your story engine, is to define what drives every episode in the series. The engine is the nerve center of your TV series. It defines…

Why All The Characters On The Same Team Aren’t Always On The Same Team


The characters in your screenplay are the basis of your story. They are typically categorized as either protagonists and antagonists. One group of characters either helps the main character achieve their story goal, while the other other acts to obstruct them. The main characters have mentors, buddies and helpers to lead them to their final goal….

Your Screenwriting Process Is All Wrong


Okay. Hold on to your keyboards fellow screenwriters. Don’t fire virtual missiles at me. Every screenwriter experiences fear and doubt during their writing process. We wrestle with these major two key questions: Is my screenwriting any good? Is my concept any good? The answers to these questions are irrelevant. What matters is, that the anxiety should spur your…

10 Ways To Define Your Characters By Their Speech Patterns


Screenwriters often define their characters in two key ways; via their dramatic function such as protagonist or antagonist. and by their personality traits such as kindness, selfishness or generosity. However, we can also enhance our screenwriting by paying attention to character speech patterns. This is not just their dialog (actual words spoken), but more the way…

Is Your Moral Compass Pointing True North In Your Screenwriting?


Let’s get into some deep character work here to make your screenplays really stand out. Every screenwriter understands the concept of morality. It is an internal guidance systems that shapes your characters life direction. Everyone has an internal moral compass which drives their beliefs and actions. This helps screenwriters define their characters as either GOOD or BAD….

Could The Locations In Your Screenplay Be Characters?


Good question. Screenwriters have typically thought of characters as human beings. After that, they can beasts such as King Kong and Godzilla, robots such as Chappie, I Robot and Ex Machina, or even aliens, such as err… Alien and Arrival. So far, so good. Your screenwriting survives. The characters in your screenplay are living beings of…

25 Ways To Raise The Stakes In Your Script Writing You Need To Know


The screenwriting journey for both your main characters and your audience should be filled with twists and turns; ups and downs. Screenwriters are taught to raise the stakes for their characters to create excitement, tension, intrigue and anxiety. This is more than simply putting multiple obstacles in the path of the main characters in your…

Put Some Lovin’ In Your Screenwriting


Romance films, romantic comedies and romantic subplots have been staples on our film and TV screens since the dawn of cinema and television. We love them. And our appetite for them shows no signs of slowing down. As is the case in all film genres, love stories have their own set of conventions which audiences expect.  If…

10 Types Of Villains To Turn Up The Badass Factor In Your Screenwriting


Here at Gideon’s screenwriting tips, I’m always looking for inventive ways for screenwriters to create different classes of villains. Are they merely the bad guys (or gals) or antagonists? While villains are generally involved with negative behavior, this isn’t always true. They are however, directly responsible for obstructing the main character’s goal. Sometimes their causes…

Are Your Characters Sleep Deprived?


The characters in your screenwriting become a whole lot more interesting when they’re placed in physical and emotional stress. One easy way to do this is to think about how they might act if they haven’t had enough sleep. This could range from a sleepless night when the dog was barking all night to a…