THURSDAY'S SCRIPT TIP:

THE DEVIL IS IN THE DETAILS


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My new script is about this guy who goes to this place and meets this girl and then this thing happens and after that some other things happen, and he gets kinda messed up, but then he fixes everything and then he and the girl leave that place and the script is over. What do you think? Wanna buy it?

When you write scripts intended to be filmed, you walk a tight-rope between vague and specific. I have an old article about it somewhere (needs a rewrite) about walking that tight-rope. The problem is, no matter where your script takes place, chances are they will film it in Vancouver. So you need a script that isn't so specific that it can't be shot in Vancouver or Romania or wherever the good film deal is this week. At the same time, you don't want your script to be bland and take place in Generic City. You want distinctive, interesting locations... that can be filmed anywhere.

The same is true with characters. We don't want to do anything that will limit casting - like create a character with specific physical characteristic (there's a great series of mysteries about a circus dwarf who now works as a private eye - though Tom Cruise is short, he's not *that* short). Our lead characters need to be playable by anyone on that big list of movie stars - from Tom Hanks to Denzel Washington to Seth Rogen to Antonio Banderas. So the physical elements of the character will depend on who they cast... but the characters still need to be *characters*. They need to be distinctive and interesting and *individual* - not Generic People.

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21, starring Kevin Spacey and Kate Bosworth and Jim Sturgess is based on a true story... which probably wasn't as boring as the film. It couldn't have been this generic. The story seems completely by the numbers, with the only real thing to recommend it being the fantasy element - college kids suddenly become high rollers in Vegas and get comped into everything. That's a "dream fulfilment" concept... unfortunately, the rest of the film will probably put you to sleep.

21 is so generic, it seems like the outline for a screenplay instead of a movie - everything is sketchy, and many of the characters and scenes seem like those place holders you may dash off when you're writing a first draft against the clock. Later you'll come back and make the scene or character distinctive and interesting. Except no one ever came back to fix 21...

GENERIC CHARACTERS

We start out with some tin-ear dialogue - awful OTN stuff. Completely generic stuff. The story is about whiter-than-white college kid Ben who goes to MIT and *dreams* of going to Harvard Med. That's his motivation - he has this dream. He doesn't want to be a doctor to help people or be a doctor to cure cancer or be a doctor to make lots of money... he just dreams of going to Harvard Med. End of goal. He seems to have *no goal* after he graduates from Harvard Med. Just this completely generic goal for a completely generic character. He has no personality. He has a goal that's sketchy. He has no personality. He isn't interesting. The only thing that makes him different than some plastic mannequin is that he's freaky good with numbers... which isn't all that interesting, but does kind of explain how he got into MIT. Here's the problem with having the *one* character trait given to your MIT student be that he's good with numbers... it's MIT, everyone here is good with numbers! One of the weird things is that this guy has this generic need to go to Harvard Med, when he's already at one of the top universities in the world. It kind of negates that generic goal - he's already in a top college. And what's he doing at MIT if he wants to go to Harvard Med? Never explained.

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You need to know as much about your characters as is humanly possible - focusing on the things that define them and make them different than any other character in any other movie. Because that thing probably isn't going to be something physical (that would limit casting) you need to focus on the *character* of the character: their attitude, background, goals, fears, influences, personality, hobbies, pasts, quirks and anything else that makes them unique. What makes your lead character different? Focus on those elements and make sure they come out through actions and dialogue. If we can't *see* or *hear* the difference, it doesn't exist.

If you don't show it, the audience can't know it.

Generic Ben has these two fake friends, who seem like place holders for characters to be created later. They are generic nerds, who have a generic science project.... and here's the thing - they look completely different than our hero (though exactly the same as each other). He's a handsome guy, they are cliche chubby nerdy guys. So you *know* that he's going to dump them and move up. Both of the generic nerdy placeholder friends look and act exactly alike - making one of them redundant. Whenever you have any characters that spend a bunch of screen time together, you need to accentuate the differences between them and make sure that each fulfills a different *story purpose*. If both best friends serve the same purpose in your story - combine them into one character. Here we have two generic nerd friends who are working on the same science project with Ben - and he will abandon them and the science project (which is even a generic plot point).

You don't want to litter your script with hundreds of little details about your character - find the one detail that defines the character, the main thing that makes this person, place, scene, or thing different and focus on that. Use that element to influence dialogue, actions, props, and everything else. If there are a million little things that make two characters different, it will be difficult for the audience to see all of those little things in a 2 hour movie. Instead, find the one big thing and use that. This may not be easy, but it's our job.

GENERIC LIVES

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Generic Ben works at a retail job in a clothing store... that is pure hell. Except, it's not. We see him goofing off in the back room, and his job is dealing with upscale people buying upscale clothes. We never see him actually doing any *work* - he sells some clothes, using that freaky numbers thing, but the customer is a nice generic customer. Nothing is more generic than working retail when you're a college kid character. Though that may be a *realistic* job for a collage kid, there's lots of room to customize "retail" - a clothing store is pretty bland. Why not a hardware store? A plumbing supply store? A hunting & fishing store? Or have him work in a rest home? And if the character was more distinctive and had a less generic background, he might work in some other industry - some people do work non-retail jobs to get through college.

Ben hates his cushy retail job selling upscale clothes to rich people... When I worked at Safeway Grocery, they would send me to other stores to fill in for people on vacation sometimes... and no matter how much seniority I had at my store, in the other stores I was the guy they gave the crap jobs to - and that usually meant cleaning the public restrooms, an *actual* crap job. I scrubbed toilets. That's the kind of job you learn to dislike. That's the kind of job that makes you say "Yes" when someone asks if you'd like to do something on the fringe of illegal. But he's got a nice, clean job selling upscale suits. It's a bland generic job - and doesn't seem like anything that you would hate. Too generic to have *any* real feelings about.

In fact, when Ben complains about his job, instead of feeling sympathy... I think he's a wuss complainer and I actively dislike him. I'm not sure that's why the writer intended.

Then comes a scene in this generic movie where you think there may be some kinky (interesting!) subplot. Our bland hero Ben starts to flirt with an older diner waitress... then he says he's coming home with her! Heck, she's old enough to be his mother! Is this some aspect of his character that makes him different and interesting? But then we figure out she *is* his mother. It was a bad way to introduce her... but after that, his relationship with his mom? Bland. She loves and supports him... no drama, nothing interesting - she's kind of a generic, place holder character. The generic mom - would you like some milk and cookies?

She works in a diner, and they live in a completely generic suburban home. They could have done something interesting here - since they were hinting that Ben is some kid at MIT on a full scholarship. They could have made Ben into a poor kid from a working class background - and had his day job been something where his hands get dirty. Manual labor. A blue collar job of some sort. And instead of that suburban house, mom could have lived in some slum apartment. That might have been interesting - gritty kid from the streets works as a janitor but is really a brainiac... wait, that's GOOD WILL HUNTING (a much better movie). How do you like them apples?

GENERIC PLOT

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The plot comes from Kevin Spacey's character, an MIT professor who brings our generic hero Ben onto his team of card counters who fly to Vegas on weekends to make lots of money. Ben says he's only interested in making enough to pay for his dream of going to Harvard Med, then he quits. The other members on the team are all place holders - they have no characters. Sure, one is a klepto, and one is a pretty boy and one likes to wear wigs... but none of these are *characters* - they are sketches waiting to be filled in and shaded. Externals with nothing under their skin.

Kate Bosworth plays the girl - and that's pretty much what her role is. Our generic hero Ben has the hots for her, and there are scenes where they talk for a moment - this is supposed to show the relationship progressing. Except they don't have a relationship. It's almost as if the talk scenes are placeholders, and the writers planned to come back and actually write a romantic subplot... then forgot. Eventually she invites him to a comped room in Vegas, and you're thinking - they have no relationship at all! We know *nothing* about her - in fact, we know so little about her that I thought for a while she might be Spacey's daughter. Through all of those talk scenes, we never learned a single thing about her! Is she Spacey's daughter? Is she Spacey's lover? Is she Spacey's TA? At no time are any of the *relationships* between characters defined in any way. That's why that scene in the diner where Ben seems to be picking up the frumpy woman old enough to be his mother is so strange - they never did anything to show us what the relationship was, allowing us to jump to a strange conclusion.

Generic Ben and Kate don't have anything in common, other than they're in the same movie and on the same card counting team... hey, why doesn't she hook up with one of the other guys? Or Spacey? There is no relationship - other than the generic boy and girl thing. So our generic hero Ben goes up to her room, and they kiss in front of a penthouse window overlooking Vegas.... but they have no conversation! They have no characters! Afterwards, they don't act like slept together - they treat each other like strangers... which is pretty much how they treated each other before. It's bland. No drama. No real characters. It's a placeholder scene - an outline of a scene, but not a scene.

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Okay, if I were some math nerd who just slept with Kate Bosworth, I'd be dancing on the ceiling like Fred Astaire. My whole character would change... and I'd be kinda nervous that I might say or do the wrong thing and it would never happen again... at the same time as I'd worry that she might read too much into it and be pricing wedding gowns. But that wouldn't stop me from grinning like an idiot all day. When you're a college kid, you have your whole future ahead of you - and sometimes that weighs on you in strange ways. Sometimes you worry about the consequences of your actions at the same time you're excited about those actions... especially if you've had zero conversations about relationships. But our generic hero Ben just acts as if he never had sex with Kate Bosworth. I find that unrealistic - which is a big problem when everything is generic... nothing is real. Kate doesn't act like she just had sex with Ben, either... she's just the generic hot chick placeholder character in this story.

GENERIC VILLAINS

Also in Vegas, we have the place holder for a villain, played by Larry Fishburne... who seems like he belongs in some other movie - some 1950s mob flick. He's a cliche leg breaker... but in modern Vegas. Completely out of place! They keep trying to find ways to Scotch tape him into the story - but he seems like he stumbled in from some other film. Since card counting is not illegal, just frowned upon, they needed some physical threat - and that's Fish. He beats people up just for fun - because modern Vegas isn't mobbed up anymore. He seems to have no purpose, no motivation, no real employer. It's as if someone gave him a card that says "Bad Guy" and he's stuck playing it.

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The film just goes through the motions, ticking off scenes until they reach the running time... but none of it adds up to anything. The characters seem like sketches, there is no drama, there is no actual conflict, and we don't care. The film has no "juice" - we feel nothing at all. There is no suspense or mystery or romance or excitement or anything. One character says "In Vegas you can be anybody" - except none of these people live a fantasy life. Sure, they put on wigs or moustaches and go to strip clubs - but they don't live any fantasy. They just play cards. This was a major fumble, because the dream this concept sells to the audience is that fantasy life. You can be anything you want in Vegas, I want to see the characters becoming their fantasies - living their fantasy lives. Doing more than just pasting on a fake moustache. Real life is full of amazing con men and women who created whole personalities for themselves - from royalty to adventurers to the illegitimate spawn of the famous and the infamous. If you could be anyone or anything - what would you be? Your imagination is the only limit! But in 21, the kids just stick on fake moustaches and pretend to be generic high rollers. None of these characters are defined clearly enough to know who they are in their regular life, let alone some fantasy life. So the audience's fantasies are not fulfilled. We don't get to live vicariously through these characters, and the story lets us down.

Eventually Spacey gets to say, "You know what I'm capable of!" as a threat... but we don't know what he's talking about, so it's an empty threat - even a silly threat. They never defined what Spacey is capable of - they never really defined who Spacey is. Why is he running this card counting team? Does he dream of going to Harvard Med, too? None of the characters have any motivations, none of them have any *character*. When Spacey makes his threat, it's because the generic story needs a generic threat at that time to keep things moving. But the threat is meaningless and silly.

When they come to the end of the list of generic scenes with generic characters and we get the closing credits... I didn't feel anything. I didn't care... and I didn't really believe any of these people or events ever existed, even though it's based on a true story.

When you are writing your script, you need to know: What makes this scene different? What makes this character unique? Make sure every line of dialogue in your script has never been used in any other movie. What defines this relationship? What *is* this relationship? You don't want to ever have a placeholder or generic element in your finished screenplay. Everything needs to be unique - one of a kind. For every scene of your screenplay you should know - what do you want the audience to feel? And how are you making them feel that? If they aren't feeling anything, they are just sitting there... wondering when the damned movie is going to be over. 21 is a placeholder of a movie...

Just say no to generics... give us the details that make your characters and your script come alive.


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OUTLINES & THE THEMATIC!

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hcd

FINAL DRAFT SOFTWARE

Use your creative energy to focus on the content; let Final Draft take care of the style. Final Draft is the number-one selling application specifically designed for writing movie scripts, television episodics and stage plays. Its ease-of-use and time-saving features have attracted writers for almost two decades positioning Final Draft as the Professional Screenwriters Choice. Final Draft power users include Academy, Emmy and BAFTA award winning writers like Oliver Stone, Tom Hanks, Alan Ball, J.J. Abrams, James Cameron and more. * * * Buy It!

copyright 2018 by William C. Martell


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SCRIPT SECRETS STORE

Script Secret Store SCRIPT SECRETS STORE From Typing Monkey coffee cups to messenger bags to T shirts - everything a screenwriter needs to look sharp while working on that Oscar nomination! Get your Script Secrets Coffee Cup today!

MY OTHER SITES

B MOVIE WORLD
Cult Films, Exploitation, Bikers & Women In Prison, Monster Movies.

FIRST STRIKE PRODUCTIONS
Producing my own scripts, investment possibilities, pipe dreams.

NAKED SCREENWRITING CDs

Naked Class NEW! The NAKED SCREENWRITING CLASS ON CD! The 2001 London Class on 8 CDs! Recorded *live* the morning after the Raindance Film Festival wrapped. The two day class on 8CDs, plus a workbook, plus a bonus CD with PDFs.
The 2 Day Class on CD!

E BOOKS PAGE

bluebook E BOOKS: New Blue Books and Novelettes!
I am expanding all of the Blue Books from around 44 pages of text to around 200 pages! Some are over 250 pages! See what is availabale and what is coming soon!Also, I've been writing Novelletes and there will soon be novels.
E BOOKS: BLUE BOOKS & NOVELLETES

BOOKSTORE

Every screenwriting book in the world!
SCREENWRITER'S BOOKSTORE
In Association With Amazon.com
From the latest screenwriting book to guides for finding agents and producers... all with at the Amazon.com discount!

BOOKLETS & PRODUCTS

bluebook FIRST STRIKE BLUE BOOKS
Each Blue Book is 48 pages and focuses on a different aspect of screenwriting. Dialogue. Visual Storytelling. Your First Ten Pages. Act 2 Booster. Protagonists. Great Endings.
Seventeen Blue Books now available!

THE SECRETS OF ACTION SCREENWRITING The Best Nuts & Bolts Screenwriting Book On The Market!

ONLINE CLASSES
Furious Action Class
BILL'S CORNER

My nineteen produced films, interviews with me in magazines, several sample scripts, my available scripts list... And MORE!
...............................BILL'S CORNER


Available Scripts

CLASSES ON CD

Class CDs CLASSES ON CD! Take a class on CD! GUERRILLA MARKETING - NO AGENT? NO PROBLEM! and WRITING THRILLERS (2 CDs). Full length classes on CD. Now Available: IDEAS & CREATIVITY, WRITING HORROR, WRITING INDIE FILMS, more!
Take classes on CD!


Tip FAQ

My New Script Secrets Newsletter!


NEW BOOKS!


LEARN SUSPENSE FROM THE MASTER!

*** HITCHCOCK: MASTERING SUSPENSE *** - For Kindle!

Alfred Hitchcock, who directed 52 movies, was known as the *Master Of Suspense*; but what exactly is suspense and how can *we* master it? How does suspense work? How can *we* create “Hitchcockian” suspense scenes in our screenplays, novels, stories and films?

This book uses seventeen of Hitchcock’s films to show the difference between suspense and surprise, how to use “focus objects” to create suspense, the 20 iconic suspense scenes and situations, how plot twists work, using secrets for suspense, how to use Dread (the cousin of suspense) in horror stories, and dozens of other amazing storytelling lessons. From classics like “Strangers On A Train” and “The Birds” and “Vertigo” and “To Catch A Thief” to older films from the British period like “The 39 Steps” and “The Man Who Knew Too Much” to his hits from the silent era like “The Lodger” (about Jack The Ripper), we’ll look at all of the techniques to create suspense!

Only $5.99


NO KINDLE REQUIRED! Get the *free* app (any device, except your Mr. Coffee) on the order page on Amazon!


bourne

BRAND NEW!

*** THE BOURNE MOVIES

All five "Bourne" movies (including "Legacy" and it's potential sequels) - what are the techniques used to keep the characters and scenes exciting and involving? Reinventing the thriller genre... or following the "formula"? Five films - each with an interesting experiment! A detailed analysis of each of the films, the way these thrillers work... as well as a complete list of box office and critical statistics for each film. This book is great for writers, directors, and just fans of the series.

Only $3.99 - and no postage!


bluebook

BRAND NEW!

*** HOOK 'EM IN TEN *** - For Kindle!


Your story doesn't get a second chance to make a great first impression, and this book shows you a bunch of techniques on how to do that. From the 12 Basic Ways To Begin Your Story, to the 3 Stars Of Your First Scene (at least one must be present) to World Building, Title Crawls, Backstory, Starting Late, Teasers and Pre Title Sequences, Establishing Theme & Motifs (using GODFATHER PART 2), Five Critical Elements, Setting Up The Rest Of The Story (with GODFATHER), and much more! With hundreds of examples ranging from Oscar winners to classic films like CASABLANCA to some of my produced films (because I know exactly why I wrote the scripts that way). Biggest Blue Book yet! Print version was 48 pages, Kindle version is over 100,000 words - 312 pages!

Only $4.99 - and no postage!





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Over 400 Pages!

*** BREAKING IN BLUE BOOK *** - For Kindle!


Should really be called the BUSINESS BLUE BOOK because it covers almost everything you will need to know for your screenwriting career: from thinking like a producer and learning to speak their language, to query letters and finding a manager or agent, to making connections (at home and in Hollywood) and networking, to the different kinds of meetings you are will have at Studios, to the difference between a producer and a studio, to landing an assignment at that meeting and what is required of you when you are working under contract, to contracts and options and lawyers and... when to run from a deal! Information you can use *now* to move your career forward! It's all here in the Biggest Blue Book yet!

Print version was 48 pages, Kindle version is over 400 pages!

$4.99 - and no postage!


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MAKING A SCENE!

*** SCENE SECRETS *** - For Kindle!

***

What is a scene and how many you will need? The difference between scenes and sluglines. Put your scenes on trial for their lives! Using "Jaws" we'll look at beats within a scene. Scene DNA. Creating set pieces and high concept scenes. A famous director talks about creating memorable scenes. 12 ways to create new scenes. Creating unexpected scenes. Use dramatic tension to supercharge your scenes. Plants and payoffs in scenes. Plus transitions and buttons and the all important "flow"... and more! Over 65,000 words! Print version was 48 pages, Kindle version is around 210 pages!

Only $4.99 - and no postage!


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50 Tips On Dialogue!

*** DIALOGUE SECRETS *** - For Kindle!

*** DIALOGUE SECRETS *** - For Nook!

Expanded version with more ways to create interesting dialogue! How to remove bad dialogue (and what *is* bad dialogue), First Hand Dialogue, Awful Exposition, Realism, 50 Professional Dialogue Techniques you can use *today*, Subtext, Subtitles, Humor, Sizzling Banter, *Anti-Dialogue*, Speeches, and more. Tools you can use to make your dialogue sizzle! Special sections that use dialogue examples from movies as diverse as "Bringing Up Baby", "Psycho", "Double Indemnity", "Notorious", the Oscar nominated "You Can Count On Me", "His Girl Friday", and many more! Print version is 48 pages, Kindle version is 175 pages!

Only $4.99 - and no postage!


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FIRST HITCHCOCK BOOK!

*** HITCHCOCK: EXPERIMENTS IN TERROR! *** - For Kindle!

***

Contained Thrillers like "Buried"? Serial Protagonists like "Place Beyond The Pines"? Multiple Connecting Stories like "Pulp Fiction"? Same Story Multiple Times like "Run, Lola, Run"?
HITCHCOCK DID IT FIRST!

This book focuses on 18 of Hitchcock's 52 films with wild cinema and story experiments which paved the way for modern films. Almost one hundred different experiments that you may think are recent cinema or story inventions... but some date back to Hitchcock's *silent* films! We'll examine these experiments and how they work. Great for film makers, screenwriters, film fans, producers and directors.

Only $5.99 - and no postage!


bluebook

BRAND NEW!

*** VINTAGE #1: HOW TO WRITE PHOTOPLAYS *** - For Kindle!

***

Screenwriting books have been around as long as films have. This series reprints vintage screenwriting books with a new introduction and history, plus new articles which look at how these lessons from almost 100 years ago apply to today’s screenplays. Anita Loos book is filled with information which still applies. In addition to the full text of the original book, you get the full screenplay to Miss Loos' hit THE LOVE EXPERT, plus several new articles on the time period and women in Hollywood.

Only $2.99 - and no postage!


MY BLOG!

SCRIPT SECRETS STORE - Do you have a monkey mug yet?




The new CDs are available now!

AUDIO CLASS!

NOIR & MYSTERY80 minute CD packed with information on writing Film Noir and Mystery scripts. Using examples from CHINATOWN to OUT OF THE PAST to DOUBLE INDEMNITY you'll learn how to create stories in this dark, twisted genre. How to plant clues, red herrings, suspects, victims, spider women, fallen heroes, the funhouse mirror world of noir supporting characters... and the origins of Film Noir in literature Noir dialogue and how noir endings are different than any other genre. All of the critical elements necessary to write in this critically popular genre.
The Noir & Mystery Class is only $15 (plus $5 S&H). First 20 on Limited Black Disk!

RECESSION SALE! $5 OFF!

WRITING HORROR - The essentials of a horror screenplay - what do ROSEMARY'S BABY, NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD, THE EXORCIST, BRIDE OF FRANKENSTEIN, THE OTHERS and OPEN WATER have in common? This class will tell you! All of the critical elements necessary to write a script that scares the pants off the audience. Writing Horror is $10.00 (plus $5 S&H).

IDEAS AND CREATIVITY - 80 minute CD packed with information. Tools to find ideas that are both personal *and* commercial. Hollywood wants scripts with High Concept stories... but not stupid scripts. Developing *intelligent* high concept ideas. How to turn your personal story into a blockbuster - or find your personal story in a high concept idea. Brainstorming and being creative. Ideas and Creativity is $10.00 (plus $5 S&H)

WRITING INDIES - Writing an Indie film? This class covers everything you need to know - from Central Locations to Confined Cameos. Using examples from SWINGERS, THE COOLER, STATION AGENT and others, this 80 minute CD is packed with information. How Indoe films challenge the audience (while mainstream films reassure the audience). Structures, using BOYS DON'T CRY, RUN LOLA RUN, HILARY & JACKIE, and others as example. Writing for a budget, writing for non-actors, getting the most production value out of your budget. Writing Indies is $10.00 (plus $5 S&H)

Click here for more information on CLASS CDs!



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Makes a Great Gift!

*** THE SECRETS OF ACTION SCREENWRITING *** - For Kindle!

*** THE SECRETS OF ACTION SCREENWRITING *** - For Nook!

Why pay $510 for a used version of the 240 page 2000 version that used to retail for $21.95? (check it out!) when you can get the NEW EXPANDED VERSION - over 500 pages - for just $9.99? New chapters, New examples, New techniques!

"SECRETS OF ACTION SCREENWRITING is the best book on the practical nuts-and-bolts mechanics of writing a screenplay I've ever read." - Ted Elliott, co-writer of MASK OF ZORRO, SHREK, PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN and the sequels (with Terry Rossio). (ie; 4 of the top 20 Box Office Hits Of ALL TIME.)

Only $9.99 - and no postage!


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HOW YOU TELL IT!

*** STORY: WELL TOLD *** - For Kindle!


This book takes you step-by-step through the construction of a story... and how to tell a story well, why Story always starts with character... but ISN'T character, Breaking Your Story, Irony, Planting Information, Evolving Story, Leaving No Dramatic Stone Unturned, The Three Greek Unities, The Importance Of Stakes, The Thematic Method, and how to create personal stories with blockbuster potential. Ready to tell a story? Print version was 48 pages, Kindle version is over 85,000 words - 251 pages!

Only $4.99 - and no postage!


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ACT TWO IS EASY!

*** ACT TWO SECRETS *** - For Kindle!


Expanded version with more techniques to help you through the desert of Act Two! Subjects Include: What Is Act Two? Inside Moves, The 2 Ps: Purpose & Pacing, The 4Ds: Dilemma, Denial, Drama and Decision, Momentum, the Two Act Twos, Subplot Prisms, Deadlines, Drive, Levels Of Conflict, Escalation, When Act Two Begins and When Act Two Ends, Scene Order, Bite Sized Pieces, Common Act Two Issues, Plot Devices For Act Two, and dozens of others. Over 67,000 words (that’s well over 200 pages) of tools and techniques to get you through the desert of Act Two alive! Print version was 48 pages, Kindle version is well over 200 pages!

Only $4.99 - and no postage!


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BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR!

*** SUPPORTING CHARACTER SECRETS *** - For Kindle! (Exclusive)


Expanded version with more techniques to flesh out your Supporting Characters and make them individuals. Using the hit movie BRIDESMAIDS as well as other comedies like THE HANGOVER and TED and HIGH FIDELITY and 40 YEAR OLD VIRGIN and many other examples we look at ways to make your Supporting Characters come alive on the page. Print version was 48 pages, Kindle version is around 170 pages!

Only $4.99 - and no postage!


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WRITING PICTURES!

*** VISUAL STORYTELLING *** - For Kindle! (exclusive)


Show Don't Tell - but *how* do you do that? Here are techniques to tell stories visually! Using Oscar Winning Films and Oscar Nominated Films as our primary examples: from the first Best Picture Winner "Sunrise" (1927) to the Oscar Nominated "The Artist" (which takes place in 1927) with stops along the way Pixar's "Up" and Best Original Screenplay Winner "Breaking Away" (a small indie style drama - told visually) as well as "Witness" and other Oscar Winners as examples... plus RISE OF THE PLANET OF THE APES. Print version is 48 pages, Kindle version is over 200 pages!

Only $4.99 - and no postage! (limited time price)


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BEST SELLER!

*** YOUR IDEA MACHINE *** - For Kindle!

*** YOUR IDEA MACHINE *** - For Nook!

Expanded version with more ways to find great ideas! Your screenplay is going to begin with an idea. There are good ideas and bad ideas and commercial ideas and personal ideas. But where do you find ideas in the first place? This handbook explores different methods for finding or generating ideas, and combining those ideas into concepts that sell. The Idea Bank, Fifteen Places To Find Ideas, Good Ideas And Bad Ideas, Ideas From Locations And Elements, Keeping Track Of Your Ideas, Idea Theft - What Can You Do? Weird Ways To Connect Ideas, Combing Ideas To Create Concepts, High Concepts - What Are They? Creating The Killer Concept, Substitution - Lion Tamers & Hitmen, Creating Blockbuster Concepts, Magnification And The Matrix, Conflict Within Concept, Concepts With Visual Conflict, Avoiding Episodic Concepts, much more! Print version is 48 pages, Kindle version is over 175 pages!

Only $4.99 - and no postage!


bluebook

IT STARTS WITH CHARACTERS!

*** CREATING STRONG PROTAGONISTS *** - For Kindle!

*** CREATING STRONG PROTAGONISTS *** - For Nook!

Expanded version with more ways to create interesting protagonists! A step-by-step guide to creating "take charge" protagonists. Screenplays are about characters in conflict... characters in emotional turmoil... Strong three dimensional protagonists who can find solutions to their problems in 110 pages. But how do you create characters like this? How do you turn words into flesh and blood? Character issues, Knowing Who Is The Boss, Tapping into YOUR fears, The Naked Character, Pulp Friction, Man With A Plan, Character Arcs, Avoiding Cliche People, Deep Characterization, Problem Protagonists, 12 Ways To Create Likable Protagonists (even if they are criminals), Active vs. Reactive, The Third Dimension In Character, Relationships, Ensemble Scripts, and much, much more. Print version is 48 pages, Kindle version is once again around 205 pages!

Only $4.99 - and no postage!


bluebook

Over 240 pages!

*** THE TERMINATOR MOVIES *** - For Kindle!


He's back! The release of "Terminator: Genisys" (now on BluRay) is set to begin a new trilogy in the Terminator story... 31 years after the first film was released. What draws us to these films about a cybernetic organism from the future sent back in time? Why is there a new proposed trilogy every few years? This book looks at all five Terminator movies from a story standpoint - what makes them work (or not)? What are the techniques used to keep the characters and scenes exciting and involving? How about those secret story details you may not have noticed? Containing a detailed analysis of each of the five films so far, this book delves into the way these stories work... as well as a complete list of box office and critical statistics for each film. This book is great for writers, directors, and just fans of the series.

Only $3.99 - and no postage!



hcd

FINAL DRAFT SOFTWARE

Use your creative energy to focus on the content; let Final Draft take care of the style. Final Draft is the number-one selling application specifically designed for writing movie scripts, television episodics and stage plays. Its ease-of-use and time-saving features have attracted writers for almost two decades positioning Final Draft as the Professional Screenwriters Choice. Final Draft power users include Academy, Emmy and BAFTA award winning writers like Oliver Stone, Tom Hanks, Alan Ball, J.J. Abrams, James Cameron and more. * * * Buy It!

copyright 2018 by William C. Martell


eXTReMe Tracker
SCRIPT SECRETS STORE

Script Secret Store SCRIPT SECRETS STORE From Typing Monkey coffee cups to messenger bags to T shirts - everything a screenwriter needs to look sharp while working on that Oscar nomination! Get your Script Secrets Coffee Cup today!

MY OTHER SITES

B MOVIE WORLD
Cult Films, Exploitation, Bikers & Women In Prison, Monster Movies.

FIRST STRIKE PRODUCTIONS
Producing my own scripts, investment possibilities, pipe dreams.

NAKED SCREENWRITING CDs

Naked Class NEW! The NAKED SCREENWRITING CLASS ON CD! The 2001 London Class on 8 CDs! Recorded *live* the morning after the Raindance Film Festival wrapped. The two day class on 8CDs, plus a workbook, plus a bonus CD with PDFs.
The 2 Day Class on CD!

E BOOKS PAGE

bluebook E BOOKS: New Blue Books and Novelettes!
I am expanding all of the Blue Books from around 44 pages of text to around 200 pages! Some are over 250 pages! See what is availabale and what is coming soon!Also, I've been writing Novelletes and there will soon be novels.
E BOOKS: BLUE BOOKS & NOVELLETES

BOOKSTORE

Every screenwriting book in the world!
SCREENWRITER'S BOOKSTORE
In Association With Amazon.com
From the latest screenwriting book to guides for finding agents and producers... all with at the Amazon.com discount!

BOOKLETS & PRODUCTS

bluebook FIRST STRIKE BLUE BOOKS
Each Blue Book is 48 pages and focuses on a different aspect of screenwriting. Dialogue. Visual Storytelling. Your First Ten Pages. Act 2 Booster. Protagonists. Great Endings.
Seventeen Blue Books now available!

THE SECRETS OF ACTION SCREENWRITING The Best Nuts & Bolts Screenwriting Book On The Market!

ONLINE CLASSES
Furious Action Class
BILL'S CORNER

My nineteen produced films, interviews with me in magazines, several sample scripts, my available scripts list... And MORE!
...............................BILL'S CORNER


Available Scripts

CLASSES ON CD

Class CDs CLASSES ON CD! Take a class on CD! GUERRILLA MARKETING - NO AGENT? NO PROBLEM! and WRITING THRILLERS (2 CDs). Full length classes on CD. Now Available: IDEAS & CREATIVITY, WRITING HORROR, WRITING INDIE FILMS, more!
Take classes on CD!