How To Determine WGA Screenwriting Credits


Are you a screenwriter unsure how the WGA screenwriting credit system works? Screenwriting credits for theatrical motion pictures are designed by the WGA to give screenwriters due credit for their work. It may sound simple, but a lot of time (and often argument) goes into completing the term “written by”. Writing credits, in the presence of…

10 Super Scary Steps To Writing A Horror Screenplay


A  horror movie has certain rules. If you break too many the audience will be disappointed according to Henrik Holmberg. Here is a template that any horror screenwriter can use. 1) THE HOOK Start with a bang. Step right into a suspense scene. “Scream” opens with a terrifying sequence with Drew Barrymore on the phone…

Why Do Some Screenplays End Up On The Pass Pile?


Why Isn’t Your Screenplay In The Recommend Stack? 1) THE STORY IS TOO WORTHY Just because you’re covering sensitive, timely, important material, you still need to worry about  the dramatic elements of your script. Audiences don’t like being preached to. Let them discover the message on their own. 2) PASSIVE PROTAGONIST The main character just hangs…

Writing For Video Games


Do video games need writers as well as programmers? Traditionally, video games have been a linear experience based on skill and entertainment rather than storytelling. They are  firmly steeped in the realm of fantasy and were once a simple matter of killing gremlins or shooting things before they killed you. Video games are becoming increasingly more…

Types Of Change In Your Screenplay


In the global scheme of the universe, life is based on a transference of energy. Storytelling, which seeks to explain life, is about change. Nothing is ever stagnant, even if the rate of change is slow. A change can be of state, attitude, belief, physicality or situation. Main characters typically undergo internal and external changes;…

Writing Effective Screenplay Evaluations


Every screenwriter needs a second or third opinion on their screenplays. It’s all part of the screenwriting game. Script evaluations are a necessary part of script development. They are slightly different to script coverage which includes a scoring grid for various story parameters, a summary and some notes. Script evaluations highlight the strengths and weaknesses…

Writing The Super Spec Movie Script


Screenplays that get made often contain three key elements: a strong concept and hook, bankable cast and an appropriate budget. As a screenwriter, you only have control over the first element. A strong concept that is easily pitched will take your script higher up the pile. A good concept will eclipse technical issues with your script…

What Is An Origin Story?


Origin stories are the birthing stories of the main characters. Where their journeys began and why things turned out as they have? They give the audience an understanding of the characters’ psychology and helps us make sense of the choices they make in the story. The origin is the missing piece of the story puzzle…

Story Templates


According to Pilar Alessandra, most successful stories have for key building blocks. We generally call them plot points, act breaks or story beats. They tend to fall in these major categories. Act 1 Trauma – This sets the stage until the point where an event disrupts the character’s world forcing them to act. Act 2A…

Why You Should Write Your Antagonist Before Your Protagonist


Most screenwriters construct their stories from the protagonist’s (hero) point of view, and consequently write them first. Villains (antagonists) represent evil, while your hero represents goodness in screenwriting. Your audience will sympathise with your protagonist to a greater extent if they have an equally (or more) powerful antagonist to battle. This represents the darkness and…

The Difference Between Character Motivation and Goal In Your Screenplay


These two screenwriting concepts are inter-related by exploring why characters behave the way they do. MOTIVATION This draws from a character’s backstory and morality driving their current need to take a course of action. It is a deep-seeded factor in a character’s make up. A character may often not be aware of their behavioral motivation. Motivation is shaped…

Writing Better Web Series


Advice from Stephanie Folsom from an article in Script Magazine. Much of this efficient story telling advice came from the commercials world were a story needed to be told in anywhere from 15 to 30 seconds. 1) KEEP IT SHORT Your video should not be more than four minutes long. There are all kinds of…