The hallmark of a great scene is that is does several things at once in an effortless manner that appears to be unplanned... what the character would naturally do. This requires skill and planning on the part of the writer. Not all great scenes require dialogue - sometimes actions speak louder than words. In the Visual Storytelling Blue Book I look at a bunch of techniques for *showing* feelings and emotions instead of having characters discuss them - which is often unrealistic. As director Frank Capra noted before any of us were born, the goal in a screenplay isn’t to show the character feel the emotions... but to have the audience feel the emotions. Often if a character cries, the audience feels that they don’t need to cry... but igf a character must repress their emotions in a scene, the audience has to do the crying for them. So our goal is to make the *audience* feel something, and that is done through demonstration rather than description. A great tool for that is using a metaphor - a visual representation of the feelings inside the character so that the audience can react on their own...

Buy The Schmidt DVD

In Alexander Payne & Jim Taylor's ABOUT SCHMIDT(2002), Jack Nicholson plays the title role - an expert in insurance actuarial tables for Woodmen Insurance who is retiring after dedicating most of his life to charting the exact moment when a man will die given various pieces of personal information for his job. He has compiled his life's work in a series of files and has lovingly placed them in several clearly labeled boxes so that the fellow who replaces him can use them. At exactly 5 pm on his last day he grabs his coat and leaves the office - the boxes containing his files neatly stacked against the wall. His life’s work available for the next person who has his job to learn from.

This story is *about* retirement. That moment in a person’s life when they have worked for 25-40 years at a company and now get the rewards of all of that work - they get to live out the rest of their days on a pension, doing all of those things that they wanted to do over those 25 years of work but just didn’t have the time. They can buy an RV and drive across country seeing all of the sights! They can spend more time with their spouse! They can do everything they have always dreamed of doing!

But we know that dreams don’t always work out. The fantasy of retirement that they have spent those 25-40 years working towards... is often a rather boring reality.

Retirement doesn't suit Schmidt - he gets tired of sitting around the house listening to his wife vacuum. So at 9am he heads down to the Woodmen Building, says "Good morning" to his co-workers as he passes them in the hallway, and enters his office...

Except it isn't his office anymore. The young whipper-snapper hired to replace him is sitting behind the desk. And the desk is in an entirely different spot. And there's no sign of his files (his life's work). He asks the young whipper-snapper if he needs any help with anything. Any questions about how to do the job? Any questions about anything in the files? We understand - through demonstration - that Schmidt is bored with retirement and feels as if he has no purpose in life anymore. When he worked for the insurance company and compiled those detailed files on when and how and why people die, he had a purpose - a reason to exist. People identify themselves with their jobs - whether they admit it or not - and see what they do for 8 hours a day, 40 hours a week, as their contribution to society. They serve an important purpose! Their life has value! And when they retire, that purpose and that value seem to be over... So we understand what this scene is *really* about, and the more Schmidt asks if the new guy needs any help, the more we understand how much Schmidt feels that his life is now without purpose. He isn’t doing anything. He’s just sitting around the house watching his wife vacuum.

Schmidt didn’t have to *tell us* any of this through dialogue, the juxtaposition of the scene where he is bored at home watching his wife vacuum and this scene where he goes back to the office and asks if the whipper-snapper needs any help *demonstrates* that. The audience *feels* it. We feel what Schmidt is feeling.

After Schmidt has asked about every possible thing his replacement might need help with, the young whipper-snapper answers, "No". Then the phone rings and the whipper-snapper answers and has a conversation - completely ignoring Schmidt. As if the old man doesn’t exist. Schmidt looks around the office for his files - his 25 years of work... and they are no longer there. The cabinets have been moved somewhere - maybe to another room so that all of the employees can share in Schmidt’s 25 years of work? That would be a great thing - to have his 25 years of work shared by everyone in the company! The whipper-snapper’s phone call continues, and after a while, Schmidt realizes he's just in the way, grabs his coat and leaves... looking around for his files on his way out. Not visible anywhere.

On the street, he passes the building’s dumpsters... where the boxes containing his files are neatly stacked waiting for the garbage men to take them away. His files are unwanted, he is unwanted. After 25 years, they have thrown Schmidt away. The files are his life's work... and symbolize his life. Not a word of dialogue when Schmidt sees 25 years of his life in the dumpster - the pictures tell the story. The audience *feels* Schmidt’s pain and loss.

That is how a metaphor works. An object is made symbolic of someone or something, so what happens to that object demonstrates what is happening emotionally to the person. It takes thoughts and emotions and feelings that are inside a character and finds a way to externalize them so that the audience can respond using their own emotions. We can feel the character’s pain or joy or love or loss or fear or whatever. How about another example?



In LORD OF THE RINGS: THE FELLOWSHIP OF THE RING (2001) future king Aragorn, Lord Of Dunedain, (Viggo Mortensen) has sworn his heart to elf princess Arwen (Liv Tyler) - even though human/elf love may be illegal in some states. Before he rides off to do battle with Dark Lord Sauron's evil orks, she gives him her medallion to wear close to his heart. That medallion is a symbol of Arwen - what I call a “twitch” or “touchstone” in the Visual Storytelling Blue Book. In this case, a touchstone - a positive token. Even though Aragorn is riding off to battle, that medallion is a reminder of the elf-woman that he loves. She is with him even when she is not there. The audience understands, every time that they see that medallion, that somewhere Arwen is thinking of Aragorn, and Aragorn is thinking of Arwen. We don’t need for him to ever say it.

A year later in THE TWO TOWERS (2002), the medallion is still his most cherished possession. A symbol of his love for Arwen. He has been through battles, he has been on a long arduous journey, and he still wears the symbol of his ardor for Arwen. When he sleeps, he holds the medallion in his hand and dreams of her... and we understand that this medallion is not just metal, but a symbol of his emotions and her emotions. Of their romantic bond.

But the battle rages on, the fellowship has broken, and Aragorn, plus too-short-to see-over-the-wall dwarf Gimli (John Rhys-Davis) and elf warrior Legolas (Orlando Bloom) find themselves in the kingdom of Rohan looking for help. Though the King is intent on remaining neutral, his beautiful sword-wielding daughter, Lady Eowyn (Miranda Otto) sides with Aragorn.... and she falls for him. The two are evenly matched with swords and with wit. Lady Eowyn has finally found a man who is her equal, and romance blossoms. In a battle scene, Aragorn loses his medallion...

What does the audience think when he loses the medallion?

How does the audience feel when he loses the medallion?

What do you think is the audience’s *reaction* to losing the medallion?

When Aragorn returns from the fierce battle, Lady Eowyn decides to profess her love for him... but stops when she sees Legolas handing Aragorn the medallion he had lost. Stops when she sees the way Aragorn holds the medallion, caressing it... as if it were princess Arwen herself. Even though millions of miles may separate the two, the medallion acts as a SYMBOL of their love. It's obvious by the way he holds the medallion, that he is still very much in love with Arwen. So Lady Eowyn turns and walks away - broken hearted. Not a word is spoken in this scene - that symbolic medallion says it all. The audience KNOWS how Aragorn feels and KNOWS how Lady Eowyn feels. We have been taken *inside* the story and allowed to share the feelings of the characters rather than being an outsider who is being told about those feelings through dialogue. We get the feelings first hand, rather than second hand by a character saying how they feel. That is the power of using metaphors.


Buy Best Years DVD

Using metaphors requires a good imagination on your part and the ability to figure out the core reasons and motivations of your characters. The first thing you need to do is figure out what it is about your character that you want the audience to *feel*. Do you want them to feel cast aside by the world? Do you want them to feel loss? Do you want them to feel love? Do you want them to feel confidence? What is the specific feeling that you want the readers or viewers to feel, that your character is feeling, in this scene? The more specific you can be the better - and that means that you need to understand your characters in order to make the audience understand your characters.

What can be the physical symbol of that emotion? Schmidt feels that he is without purpose or value after he has retired - so what is symbolic of his purpose and worth? Aragorn feels a deep love for Arwen - so what can be symbolic of that love? Often this is the difficult part, because you need to find a physical object that the audience easily sees as symbolic of those emotions or thoughts. In ABOUT SCHMIDT the actuary files are the perfect symbol of his value - 25 years of hard work has created them. Those are *character specific* - if he had been in a different line of work, you would need a different symbol. So knowing your character is required! Using your imagination to come up with that symbol is required! As writers, those actuary files don’t exist until we create them. So we need to know that we are going to use that symbol later so that we can invent it now.

I am all about making the best choice, which means that you need a choice... so whatever you want to show about your character - make a list of possible things that can symbolize that. Give yourself several good choices so that you can select the best. The physical object that the audience will instantly understand is symbolic of that feeling. Sometimes it’s a physical scar on a character that symbolizes an emotional scar. Sometimes it’s an object. In BASIC INSTINCT Michael Douglas’ cop has been dating police psychologist Jeanne Triplehorn for a while and have exchanged apartment keys - she has a keyfob of Homer Simpson. The *apartment keys* symbolize their relationship - and when he asks for his key back, that scene where the key is removed is an *emotional* scene... and later in the film, when she touches that keyfob in her pocket, we know that she is thinking about their relationship. So you will need to select the physical object that best represents the thought or feeling or emotion. We understand what the key really means.

Once we have that symbolic physical item, we have to show the audience what it means. The scene in SCHMIDT where he carefully makes sure that his replacement knows about his files, the scene in RINGS where Arwen gives him the medallion. Sometimes the audience can understand the symbol without a scene that sets it up, like the apartment keys in INSTINCT, or this great film...

Buy Best Years DVD

THE BEST YEARS OF OUR LIVES (1946) is a gritty, realistic story of soldiers returning after World War 2 that won Best Picture Oscar and six others, and shows the intertwining stories of three different soldiers from the same small town returning home and attempting to readjust to society. It is an amazing example of visual storytelling because the soldier’s thoughts and feelings are never discussed - that is too painful, too private... these are war heroes! So the story demonstrates the problems they are struggling with - alcoholism, losing your limbs, and going from War Hero to unskilled civilian entering the work force. If you haven’t seen this film, check it out. I think Harold Russell is the only actor to win 2 Oscars for the same role - he was an actual soldier who lost both of his arms giving an amazing performance that probably hit way too close to home. He continued as an actor, doing great work, and the first time I saw him was in INSIDE MOVES (1980) as a smart alec supporting character.

One of the three stories stars Dana Andrews as an Air Force Hero who comes home from the war and can't seem to find a job anywhere. He was a Captain in the Air Force - who commanded men... but before he enlisted he worked behind the counter at a soda fountain - the equivalent of a fast food job today. While he was gone, his wife was busy screwing other guys (implied - this is a 40's film - but she worked in a sleazy night club as a waitress). He ends up working at a drugstore for minimum wage - kind of the same type of job he had before the war. His wages are so low, that his wife leaves him, and now he has nothing. We see him working the terrible job, with pushy a-hole customers, and how do we think he feels? Now, these scenes could have had wonderful customers... but that wouldn’t make the audience feel his pain, would it? He eventually loses his temper with a verbally abusive customer and is fired. The worst job there is - and he’s fired from it.

Everybody in town knows him... he was a war hero, but now he's a bum.

He packs his bags, puts on his Airforce uniform (how do you think that makes him feel?), and takes the bus to the nearest Airforce base. He asks the dispatcher if he'd do a favor for an ex-Airforce nose gunner. "What kind of favor?" "Can I hitch a ride on the next plane for the coast?" "Which coast?" "I really don't care." The dispatcher tells him there's a plane leaving at 8 pm, if he can wait. He has nothing else to do, no place else to go.

Andrew kills time by wandering through the airplane graveyard. Hundreds and hundreds of planes, as far as the eye can see, no longer needed after the war. Rusty, dusty. A crew is dismantling them for the parts. For the scrap metal. They are junk. He is surrounded by Air Force planes which are no longer useful... just as he's no longer useful.

The writers found a metaphor for Andrew' character. The planes ARE Andrews. We know exactly how useless Andrews is feeling. This is a big emotional moment in the film, without a word of dialogue. When he finally climbs inside one of the planes, brushing away the dust, and sits in the nose gunner's seat, you know that he's trying to recapture those times when he was a hero... someone with a purpose... someone who was appreciated by those around him. And this is a strong moment in the story. It doesn’t tell the audience how to feel, it doesn’t tell the audience how Andrews feels... it creates a situation using a metaphor that makes the audience feel what Andrews feels. Allows them inside of the story so that they can feel the emotions themselves, instead of watching the story from outside the frame.

Whether your story is about the battle for identity and dignity after retirement or the battle for Middle Earth, to rejoin society after returning from battle, using metaphors is a great way to SHOW how characters feel by using symbols.




"The Presidential Suite of the Hollywood Hoover Hotel looked like a bloody battlefield: bodies everywhere, furniture broken, red liquid dripping from the walls, dead soldiers littering the elegant Berber rug as clouds of smoke overhead bounced between two air conditioning vents.

Mitch Robertson stepped over the body of an ex-child star turned sex tape star turned pop star and entered the room, spotted a gun on the floor and picked it up... careful not to spill his coffee with three pumps of mocha syrup from Penny’s Coffee Shop. That coffee was gold, the only thing keeping him going in this dazed state of wakefulness. The gun felt light. Holding it, he saw the silhouette of an 80s action star sitting sideways on a tipped over chair. Motionless. Was he dead? Mitch was still hung over from the Awards Party the night before, and wondered whether this was all some sort of crazy nightmare that he would wake up from... but when he tripped over the brown legs of a bottomless Superhero, flaccid junk encased in a condom but still wearing his mask, and hit the edge of the sofa, gun skittering and coffee spilling, he realized that it was all very real. What the hell had happened here?"

Short Novel. Only 99 cents! - and no postage!


All About Rewrites!



Rewriting In Waves?

When You Finish Your Screenplay Or Novel...
The Rewrites Begin!

The end is just the beginning! You’ve finished your story, but now the rewriting begins! This 405 page book shows you how to rewrite your screenplay or novel to perfection. Everything from Character Consistency to Shoeboxing to How To Give And Receive Notes to 15 Solutions If Your Script’s Too Long! and 15 Solutions If Your Script’s Too Short! to Finding The Cause Of A Story Problem to Good Notes Vs. Bad Notes to Finding Beta Readers to Avoiding Predictability to Learning To Be Objective About Your Work to Script Killer Notes and Notes From Idiots to Production Rewrites and What The Page Colors Mean? and a Complete Rewrite Checklist! The complete book on Rewriting Your Story!

Only : $4.99 - no postage or handling!




NEW: Updates On Films 7 & 8 Casting!

All Six Movies analyzed! All of the mission tapes, all of the “that’s impossible!” set pieces and stunts, the cons and capers - and how these scenes work, the twists and double crosses, the tension and suspense (and how to generate it), the concept of each film as a stand alone with a different director calling the shots (broken in the sixth film), the gadgets, the masks, the stories, the co-stars and team members (one team member has been in every film), the stunts Tom Cruise actually did (and the ones he didn’t), and so much more! Over 120,000 words of fun info!

THE MISSION IMPOSSIBLE MOVIES - 347 Pages - Only $3.99 !

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




NEW: Updates on TREADSTONE TV show!

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!


Over 240 pages!

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

He's back! The release of "Terminator: Dark Fate" is set to begin a new trilogy in the Terminator story... 35 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!

Making Your Own Movie?


Making Your Own Movie?
Writing An Indie Film?
Writing A Low Budget Genre Script To Sell?
Writing A Made For TV Holiday Movie?

You will be writing for BUDGET. On a standard spec screenplay, you don’t have to think about budget, but these types of screenplays writing with budget in mind is critical!

If you are making your own movie, budget, is even more important - and you need to think about budget *before* you write your screenplay... or you will end up with a script that you can’t afford to make (or is a struggle to make). Everyone is making their own films these days, and even if you have done it before there are lots of great techniques in this book to get more money on screen - for less money! You can make a film that looks like it cost millions for pocket change.

344 Pages - ONLY: $9.99!

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





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!



Strange Structures!



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"?

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!



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

Tips FAQ

My New Script Secrets Newsletter!




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


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!





Your story is like a road trip... but where are you going? What's the best route to get there? What are the best sights to see along the way? Just as you plan a vacation instead of just jump in the car and start driving, it's a good idea to plan your story. An artist does sketches before breaking out the oils, so why shouldn't a writer do the same? This Blue Book looks at various outlining methods used by professional screenwriters like Wesley Strick, Paul Schrader, John August, and others... as well as a guest chapter on novel outlines. Plus a whole section on the Thematic Method of generating scenes and characters and other elements that will be part of your outline. The three stages of writing are: Pre-writing, Writing, and Rewriting... this book looks at that first stage and how to use it to improve your screenplays and novels.

Only $4.99 - and no postage!



*** STRUCTURING YOUR STORY *** - For Kindle!

William Goldman says the most important single element of any screenplay is structure. It’s the skeleton under the flesh and blood of your story. Without it, you have a spineless, formless, mess... a slug! How do you make sure your structure is strong enough to support your story? How do you prevent your story from becoming a slug? This Blue Book explores different types of popular structures from the basic three act structure to more obscure methods like leap-frogging. We also look at structure as a verb as well as a noun, and techniques for structuring your story for maximum emotional impact. Most of the other books just look at *structure* and ignore the art of *structuring* your story. Techniques to make your story a page turner... instead of a slug!

Only $4.99 - and no postage!



*** 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!



*** 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!

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





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!



*** 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!





Most screenplays are about a 50/50 split between dialogue and description - which means your description is just as important as your dialogue. It just gets less press because the audience never sees it, the same reason why screenwriters get less press than movie stars. But your story will never get to the audience until readers and development executives read your script... so it is a very important factor. Until the movie is made the screenplay is the movie and must be just as exciting as the movie. So how do you make your screenplay exciting to read? Description is important in a novel as well, and the “audience” does read it... how do we write riveting description?

Only $4.99 and no postage!



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


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 over 175 pages!

Only $4.99 - and no postage!



*** 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!



*** 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!



*** 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!

All About Endings!



The Perfect Ending For Your Story!

The First Ten Pages Of Your Screenplay Are Critical,
But What About The Last 10 Pages?

Creating the perfect ending to your story! This 100,000 word book shows you how to end your story with a bang, rather than a whimper. Everything from Resolution Order to Act Three Tools to Happy or Sad Endings? to How The Beginning Of Your Story Has Clues To The Ending (in case you were having trouble figuring out how the story should end) to Falling Action to How To Avoid Bad Endings to Writing The Perfect Twist Ending to Setting Up Sequels & Series to Emotional Resolutions to How To Write Post Credit Sequences to Avoiding Deus Ex Machinas, to 20 Different Types Of Ends (and how to write them) and much more! Everything about endings for your screenplay or novel!

Only: $4.99

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




Distilling Your Screenplay!

Loglines, Treatments, Pitching, Look Books, Pitch Decks, One Pagers, Rip-O-Matics?

You have written a brilliant 110 page screenplay, but how do you get anyone to read it? You need to distill it down into some form of verbal moonshine or story rocket fuel that will ignite that bored development executive or manager or agent and get them to request your screenplay. But how do you shrink those 110 pages into a 25 word logline or a 2 minute elevator pitch or a one page synopsis or a short paragraph? This 100,000 word book shows you how! Everything you need to know! From common logline mistakes (and how to solve them) to how your pitch can reveal story problems to the 4 types of pitches!

272 Pages - ONLY $4.99!



*** 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!



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 2021 by William C. Martell

eXTReMe Tracker

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.

Furious Action Class

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

Producing my own scripts, investment possibilities, pipe dreams.


Naked Class The NAKED SCREENWRITING CLASS ON MP3! The 2001 London Class on 8 MP3s! Recorded *live* the morning after the Raindance Film Festival wrapped. The two day class on 8MP3s, plus a workbook, plus a bonus MP3 with PDFs.
The 2 Day Class on MP3!


A Whole Week Of Programming!
(no actual sex is involved)
From Trailer Tuesday to Film Courage Plus to THRILLER Thursday to Fridays With Hitchcock and more! My blog has all kinds of great stuff! Check it out! Lots of cool stuff every day!


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!


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

Available Scripts


Take classes on MP3!