Screenwriting Tricks for Authors

Write your first book—or your best book yet—
using the storytelling tricks of your favorite movies

Fall in Love with Story Structure!

So in this New Year, of all my Top Tricks to Get Yourself Writing Again, my Trick #1 is:                                                Fall in Love with Story Structure I’m not ever going to try to talk anyone out of being a pantser! Your process is your process.To...

read more

SELMA – Act I Story Breakdown

This month, why not celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. and work on your storytelling craft—by watching Selma? We’ve started talking about using Story Patterns (What KIND of Story is It?). In Selma, the filmmakers have chosen the structural form of a War Story and...

read more

15 Minutes of Writing Per Day Equals a Book

Happy New Year, everyone!! I’ll keep this brief, because I’ve come to believe in easing into the year instead of making frantic pages of resolutions, But how about just this one? I’m going to write on my book or script for 15 minutes a day. When I was teaching dance I...

read more

Holiday Homework: IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE

I know some of you have heard me talk about this movie before. But I have to repeat it. Because there is something that a whole lot of us do this time of year that we can actually turn into an almost miraculous (as it were) 2 1/2 hour session on writing. We sit down...

read more

First Chapters

First Chapters are a very fraught subject. Writers agonize over them. I don’t have to tell you! The pressure is enormous, isn’t it? The first chapter sells your submission and it sells your book once it’s published. It carries the whole weight of the book with it. It...

read more

Nanowrimo Now What?

  You did Nanowrimo! Huzzah!! Or maybe you didn’t, but whether you did it through Nanowrimo or not, you now have a rough draft—maybe a very, very, very rough draft— of your book or script. Huzzah!!' So now what? First of all, Take a break. If at all possible, when...

read more

The Writer’s Journey: The Descent

In Greek mythology, the Hero’s journey into the Underworld is called katabasis. Writers take that journey all the time. You could say that every time we turn on our laptops to write, every time we enter the worlds of our books, we are entering the Underworld: the...

read more

Nanowrimo 2022 series and more

YES, I am doing my usual prompts for Nanowrimo! You can find them and lots of other non-Nano posts on the Screenwriting Tricks for Authors Substack main page. Nanowrimo prompts: Act I Questions and Prompts Elements of Act II:1 overview             Act II Part I...

read more

Nanowrimo Now What? – Top Ten Things I Know About Editing

So you did Nanowrimo! Huzzah!! Or maybe you didn’t, but whether you did it through Nanowrimo or not, you now have a rough draft—maybe a very, very, very rough draft— of your book or script. Huzzah!! So now what? First of all, I hope you’ve had a good long break. If at...

read more