Monday, September 22, 2014

Here is something else I got in an email. it is an article from Scripted Magazine.

Read the info below then chick to read the full article on Scripted's web site.


Writers' Room 101: Beats, Breaking, and Blending
imageplaceholderJeanne Veillette Bowerman
Online Editor

TV writer Eric Haywood takes you into the writers' room to share advice on "beats, breaking and blending."

If you're trying to break into television writing, don't miss William Rabkin's webinar on Thursday, September 25th onModern TV Drama: Tone, Style, and Pace, now ON SALE until September 19, 2014.

by Eric Haywood

In the previous blog post, I talked in detail about some specific tips for navigating the pitching process. This time, we're going to delve into the next few steps you'll be taking in the writers' room, all of which are meant to bring you closer to being ready to write an actual script. Essentially, what you'll be focusing on after pitching can be boiled down to three things: beats, breaking, and blending. These are the basic building blocks of crafting a story. 

(And yes, in case you're wondering: today's post is brought to you by the letter "B.") 

So your writing staff has successfully pitched some ideas for a given episode and gotten them approved by the showrunner. Great. Now what? 

Now the writing staff must turn those pitches from vague ideas into actual, concrete storylines. This process is called "breaking stories," and it's another group effort in which you'll be expected to participate. 

In order to minimize confusion among your episode's various stories, one of the first things you'll want to do is name them. In most cases, the stories will simply be assigned a letter, with the "A" story being the most important (and longest) in the episode, the "B" story the next most important, and so on. You'll most likely have a "C" and maybe even a "D" story (sometimes called a runner), and while it's fairly rare to have more stories than that, it's not unheard of. The number of stories will vary from show to show, but you can generally expect to follow the same basic A-B-C-D pattern. 

Simply put, breaking a story means coming up with each individual scene for that story and arranging those scenes in their proper order as they'll appear in the script. A scene is often referred to as a "beat," and the terms are used pretty interchangeably. So you're basically taking the story idea (the pitch) and expanding it until you've literally broken it down into pieces, beat by beat. 

Breaking a story is really just an extension of the pitching process, because the writing team will toss out different ideas for beats, and generally speaking, it's another best-idea-wins process. The beats get written down - usually on a whiteboard, allowing everyone to watch the story begin to take shape - and before you know it, you've got a complete beginning, middle, and end, with some cool twists and turns thrown in along the way. Then the writing staff repeats these steps for the "B" story, the "C" story, and - well, you get the idea. In each case, the goal is to simply figure out the right beats necessary to tell a satisfying, compelling story. 

If the showrunner has been away from the room while all this is being done, she'll return once the stories are broken, and the writers will pitch each story to her, one beat at a time. You'll then receive feedback ranging from minor tweaks to major overhauls, and in some cases, you'll re-pitch the adjusted stories and hopefully get that highly-sought-after thumbs-up from the showrunner. 

And now you're ready for the blend... 

Read more tips on writing for TV... 


Hello everyone.

here's something I got in an email that you may be interested in-- for those of you who are script writers:

Hi Frances!
In case you're not keeping an eye on our YouTube channel, we've got a new FREE video for you:
This is a question almost all writers ask, but with SO MUCH misinformation online (from some of the top screenwriting sites!), you may be focusing on the wrong things.
In this Screenwriting Uncut episode, I spell out the TRUTH about how to get an agent — including the very BEST way... the next best way... and then the specific method to grab their attention.
Please share this video! And leave any questions or comments on the YouTube page.

In this video, I explain how to master the craft of screenwriting. See, to really SELL your work, you have to write at a PRO level — which requires some degree of mastery of this delicate and nuanced craft. Here, I show you exactly how to get there.
(And yes, please share this one, too!) And leave any questions or comments on the YouTube page.

If you haven't watched this one yet, please don't delay. It includes thescientific reason WHY you MUST write TODAY. If you've been procrastinating, it might be worth watching again.
Oh, and please share. (It really helps us, which is how we can keep helping you!) And leave any questions or comments on the YouTube page.

A Special Request

Now, if you're new to this newsletter, you may not realize something:
It's interactive.
Did you know you can REPLY to this email, and get a personalized response from me?
Did you know you can ask ANYTHING (about anything!)... and I'll give you a direct, honest, personal answer — one to one?
TRY IT! Reply now... and ask anything.

To kick off the conversation, can I ask YOU something?
If you're on this list and you're NOT participating in FAST Screenplay... would you mind if I asked "Why not?"
If you've thought about joining, but you're not sure... or you've decided against it... or you're hesitating... could you let me know the reason?
Don't worry. I won't pressure you.
I'm just looking for feedback.
See, I spent 5 years building this system (and 10 years before that developing it)... I put my career on hold for 15 years to build it. And:
100% of writers who complete the system as instructed
achieve professional results.
But, frankly, I'm not a salesman; I'm a filmmaker. (Maybe you can relate? Think about how much you resist the selling part of screenwriting!)
And it's possible I'm doing something wrong — which harms yourchances of success. But I have no way of knowing if you don't tell me.
So I could really use your help. I'd love some feedback.

In exchange for your time, I'll give you a bonus 20-minute Skype (or phone) conversation if you join FAST Screenplay before the end of September (within the next 12 days). We'll chat within your first week, to make sure you get off to a great start! (Email me after signup to arrange it.)
Simply reply here, and let me know your thoughts about FAST.The website, the free reports, the videos, the newsletters, the YouTube or Facebook pages — anything you want.
Even if it's bad! (Especially if it's bad!)
And don't forget to ASK anything, too!

Until next time, remember to TAKE ACTION... and enjoy the process.
Have a great weekend!
Jeff Bollow
Embryo Films
FAST Screenplay

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Hello, Readers!

Happy September!  I want to start off by directing you to an article from Writers Digest titled :

HOW TO BE A WRITER LITERARY AGENTS WANT —by Literary Agent Kimiko Nakamura

The part of the article that I want you to pay attention to the most is the section on 




They were written from the point of view of an actual literary agent. The two sections discuss the exact same things I tell writers. However, if you read what I have said coming from an agent, you may take the advice seriously.  

To read the article:

Literary agent Kimiko Nakamura breaks down five things you can do as a writer to put yourself in the best position to impress (and land) a literary agent:

All agents, admittedly or not, have a wish list-markers that help us determine which writers are primed for our representation. With hundreds of projects flooding our inboxes daily, writers who follow these simple guidelines can catch the eye of an agent and rise like a lotus blossom out of the slush pile. Here's how to do it.  Read more...  

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Do you have a book written that you would like to enter into a contest?

3 OCTOBER WRITING CONTESTS lists hundreds of contests for writers of fiction, nonfiction, poetry, writing for 
children, and more. Here are three with October deadlines:
  • Atlas Shrugged Essay Contest is offered annually to encourage analytical thinking and
  •  excellence in writing-open to high school seniors, undergrads, and graduate students.
  •  More than 80 cash prizes, including a $10,000 top prize. Deadline: October 24.
  • Gerald Cable Book Award is offered annually for the best previously unpublished
  •  debut poetry collection. Top prize is $1,000, publication, and 25 copies of the book. 
  • Deadline:October 15.
  • Indiana Review Fiction Contest is offered for the best previously unpublished short 
  • story. The winner receives $1,000, publication, and contributor copies. Deadline: October 31.
  • Bonus contest! Writer's Digest Popular Fiction Awards is an annual prize for the best
  •  previously unpublished genre fiction (up to 4,000 words). There are six categories: 
  • romance, thriller, young adult, crime, horror, and sci-fi. There is one grand prize of $2,500 cash,
  •  a trip to the 
  • 2015 Writer's Digest Conference, and more! Each category winner also receives $500 cash, 
  • recognition in Writer's Digestmagazine, and more! While it has an early bird deadline
  •  of September 15, the hard deadline is October 15.
(NOTE: If you're unable to access the listing, it means you either need to log in or sign up for first.) lists more than 8,000 publishing opportunities, including listings
 for contests, magazines, book publishers, literary agents, conferences, and more. Log in
 or sign up today to start submitting your work. 

Click to continue.

Free Class on Getting a Film Script Agent

Hello, everyone.

This Saturday there will be a free teleconference explaining how to get agent. Check it out.

Looking for an agent?
Over 50 writers have landed an agent or managerusing this ScreenwritingU Model.

 In this two hour class, you will learn:
  • Strategies from over 100 interviews with agents and managers.
  • Step-by-step process for landing an Agent or Manager.
  • The Rules of Engagement with Agents.
  • 8 ways to gain ACCESS to Agents and Managers.

Saturday, Sept 6th, 2014 at 12:00pm (noon) Pacific Time

All classes conducted by