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The Rarity of Rug-Pulls in the Modern Era of Entertainment

Pulling the rug out from under an audience is tricky work these days. We’ve all seen so many hours of entertainment, even the casual viewer has become well-versed in narrative structure, the tropes of Hollywood storytelling, and genre clichés....
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The Five Pillars of a Successful Pitch

Our last Virtual Pitch Challenge was such a success that we decided to host another one, and WOW we were we blown away by the responses. It was abundantly clear that everyone who submitted took the advice from our last pitch panel and applied...
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Screenwriter’s Guide To Success

The creative life of a screenwriter is often filled with potholes, periods of drought and decisions largely out of your control. So how can a screenwriter plan their career? Focus on the creative process more than the outcome. Visualize signing your...
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The Dos and Don'ts of Pitching

As writers, pitching our stories can be an intimidating experience. After all, we are writers, not actors. Right? Not quite. This very notion is a common misunderstanding about pitching. We don't want you to be an actor. We just want you to be...
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The Taste of the Academy’s Animation Branch is Broadening

A funny thing happened on the way to the Oscar nominations for Best Animated Feature this year. The Academy decided not to nominate the all-time biggest moneymaker in animation history. That’s right, Frozen II did not make the final...
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How Screenwriters Can Achieve Screenwriting Zen

Few people understand the life of a screenwriter – sometimes not even screenwriters themselves. Like all artists, writers need to define what constitutes a creative life. What is work? Is reading a book unrelated to your current project...
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Screenwriting Advice: Give Your Characters the Power of the VOTE

Characters drive stories. Powerful characters give writers reasons to create stories around them. Directors want to create moments around that power. Actors want to channel that power. Audiences want to take part in that power. As a writer, your job...
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My Fast Track Transformative Experience

When I applied to the 2019 Fast Track Fellowship, I dreamed of winning the Grand Prize, but thought the possibility was remote. In fact, when I received the email, I had to read it several times before I actually believed it! Fast Track week was...
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8 Keys to Writing a Marketable Script

1. ONE GENRE TO RULE THEM ALL I recently sat through a webinar where writers were given the opportunity to pitch their concepts. One lady stuck out to me because she described her project as a suspense, thriller, and comedy, with horror elements....
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“Frankly, my dear, I don’t give a damn.” 7 Tips for Great Dialogue

Jacob Stuart's advice on writing dialogue for screenplays.Hollywood has a short attention span. Unlike writers, who may have all day to sit and ponder, plotting out their next script, or revising and revising a screenplay until their fingers are...
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7 Ways to Make Sure Your Screenwriting Career Never Takes Off

Often, I get asked: What are the commonalities you’ve seen among your writers who have broken in? What are the shared traits of working screenwriters? And, even more specifically, what are the most important things that a screenwriter can do...
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How to Write Action Description

Alex Southey explores five different kinds of action description, and how they dictate tone in a script. Many people tend to assume that because it doesn’t affect the final film, action description doesn’t matter very much. But this couldn’t...
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