Ok, so I decided to do a different sort of blog post today.
As you guys know I’m currently studying for a masters in Scriptwriting and as I’ve been a budding scriptwriter for a couple of years now I’ve decided to share with you guys some of the secrets and tips I’ve learnt over the years, starting with the books.
Believe it or not but scriptwriting is not as easy as you think it is and good books written by people in the industry can make all the difference with your writing. However, saying that these books are still just guidelines for writers and are not the be all, end all. If I were you, I’d try and find at least one book on screenwriting that you find useful and use that as a reference point.
I’m going to talk in detail about three I highly recommend and then briefly touch on two that I also believe to be quite useful.
I Highly Recommend
Save The Cat by Blake Snyder
This book is a bestseller and it’s no wonder why, Snyder reveals the industry standard secrets that have helped him sell screenplays. It’s funny, candid and full on so be prepared to be overwhelmed with information. Snyder believes every script follows 15 crucial steps which break the story down. However, I would be careful as I don’t fully believe you can apply his method to every script. If you want to write a movie then this book may be for you.
Alessandra is a leading Hollywood Screenwriter who has written the perfect book for anyone whose ever wanted to write a screenplay or TV pilot but struggles to find the time. It’s full of quick writing exercises to motivate readers into potential screenwriters. The book is easy to follow so you won’t get overwhelmed with information. If you’re gonna get this book I recommend getting the second edition as it has updated writing tools for TV pilots and pitches and structural shortcuts.
Now, this book is quite different to the others. It’s more like a step by step manual to writing a screenplay with different exercises for you to do. This book also includes script analyses from different films so it’s almost like your getting bottle-fed Field’s guide to the perfect script. It’s clear and expert advice.
And Other Recommendations…
If you’re as passionate about scriptwriting as me then there are two other books is recommend to all you budding writers out there. The U.K. Scriptwriters Survival Handbook by Tim Clague and Danny Stack is fantastic for anyone whose trying to crack how to get into the industry and offers insiders insights on how to get…inside. Another book is recommend for anyone writing a sitcom, like myself is The Little Book of Sitcom by John Vorhaus. This little book is brilliant at helping all sitcom writers with every aspect of their script. He even breaks sitcom structure down into fifteen basic steps which are easy enough for a child to follow. This guy knows comedy and he also knows how to sell it. For me, this book is a personal must have.