Friday, February 04, 2011

Philosophy of a Great Screenwriter: Tip 1

Philosophy of a Great Screenwriter Class

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Tip 1. Drive Your Own Story

Think of the biggest successes you've had in life -- especially the ones that you worked for -- and let me ask you a question.

Don't they all have a story that comes with them?

A beginning when you decided to go for a specific goal. Then a middle when you encountered the work required to make that goal happen. And finally, an ending where you've succeeded!

Very likely, you learned something in the process -- your own character arc.

Right now, as a screenwriter, you are somewhere in that 1st or 2nd Act. You are the protagonist of your story. And the beautiful thing is that this story ends with you succeeding in a big way...

...if you choose to DRIVE your own story.

Make sure you understand that last point. You, and you alone, are in charge of driving your own story. Reluctant protagonists don't succeed at breaking in. You can afford to be reluctant AFTER you are a star. But to break in, you must be proactive. You must take control of your screenwriting career.

The good news is that there are more resources for becoming a professional screenwriter than at any other time in history. Check out these resources: Screenwriting software (like Movie Magic) instantly formats your script to look and feel professional. Screenwriting communities (like ScriptChat) offer places where you can discuss the craft with other writers. There are sites where you can pitch your script from anywhere in the world (like Virtual Pitch Fest and ScriptBlaster), or upload your logline/script for producers to see (like Inktip). And we're proud to offer some of the best screenwriting classes in the world (ScreenwritingU).

With those and other resources, you can truly succeed...if you drive your own story.


You are the writer of your own story. Don't write a tragedy. Don't try to create a lot of drama for your protagonist (yourself). Instead, create an amazing story where the hero succeeds.

Today, you are on a journey -- your own hero's journey. This journey doesn't come to you. You come to it. Every day, you make the choices and take the actions that will further your journey.

You are the proactive protagonist that never quits. Wherever you are, you look to the next leg of the journey and move forward. You don't allow anything to stop you. You take the steps, confront the demons, and become the master of your own world.

You know your destination. Honor it.

ACTION: Make a list of the things you need to do to succeed. Then put them in a sequence. Choose one you can take action on today and move forward in your journey.

List of Actions could be: Write. Join ScriptChat. Take a class. Attend a screenwriting conference. Write a query letter. Send a query letter. Talk with another screenwriter. Answer an ad in Craigslist for "Screenwriters Wanted." Improve your network. Meet a new screenwriter on Facebook or Twitter. Comment on a screenwriting blog. Enter a contest.

There are 100 things you could do today. Pick one that moves your writing career forward today.

QUESTION: Every day, ask yourself the question, "What can I do right now to move my screenwriting career forward?"


For more information and classes, visit

Write right and write on!

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