The Weekly Screen & Fiction Writers' Tips

2014 – The Year of ‘What If…’

In Authors and Books on 04/01/2014 at 15:32



let’s get our ass in gear

and get down

to some work.

Time’s moving on…

Welcome back Happy Key Bashers.

Hope you’ve all had a great holiday.

Ate and drank well, I suppose? Yup! Opened your presents and  tried to hide your groan. Argued with your family. Swore you will never invite your in-laws again. Couldn’t get back to work quick enough.

Kids, have you done your homework? Revised for your mock exams? Got your satchel ready for Monday. Washed your sports kit. Oh no, forgot that’s Mum’s job. So no new resolutions then?

And my dear writers, what resolutions have you made. Promised you will write every day. Read a new film script every week, ready to watch to or three films a week? And what about you fiction writers? Have you started reading your new or old book list? Joined a writer’s only Facebook?

You see…

A new year is time to sweep out old ideas, old ways, old thinking and old attitudes. You can only move up and on in life with new attitudes, new thinking, new ideas which will lead you on to new ways. So let’s add to that. Using those four points write out 10 new writing resolutions. You can do it. There are many ways you can polish up your writing life.

This only applies if you want to get published, or see your work on screen or TV. If you are writing for fun, then I’m sorry but this site is not for you. I will only support workers not shirkers. What is the point of writing if you don’t have an objective? So you can go around and tell people you are a writer, because that’s all you are a writer. Anybody can be a writer and say so. But writing is a job and should be respected as such. You are creating a product, not just saying you are.

So for the serious writer amongst us, have you received any writing books? I have and I get them in the form of a book token, because people around me KNOW I am a writer. Nothing gives me greater joy then running off to the bookshops after the New Year and grabbing some writing books to polish some area of my writing, or read a new perspective on some aspect. With writing, you never sit still.


So what books would you recommend for screenwriters at all levels this coming year Nev?

Why, thanks for asking?

My top ten loved books which I should urge you to get, and are in no particular order by the way, are these?

1.  Story Design by SEAM (Shared Experience Art Machine): Great book, suggesting a novel way for screenwriters to think about film, screenplays and screenwriting. This book is written by a Social Studio that unites Artists and Audiences to create a meaningful entertainment with a positive social impact.

2.  Your Screenplay Sucks or 100 Ways to Make it Great by William M. Akers: This book will guarantee to find faults in your scripts and how to rectify them. Find those errors before a producer, agent or creative executive finds them.

3.  How Not to Write a Screenplay by Denny Martin Flint: This book is subtitled the ‘101 Common Mistakes Most Screenwriters Make.’ And it is true, most of them are subconscious and Denny believes that all bad screenplays are the same. This book will show you how to avoid those horrible amateurish disasters.

4.  Developing Story Ideas by Michael Rabiger: Where do you get story ideas from, and what do you do with them once you’ve got them? Stories are always around us but we are often ignorant to them. This book and the suggested ideas raises your awareness.

5.  Psychology for Screenwriters – Building Conflict in Your Script by William Indick, Ph .D.: Not it’s not a book on how to cure screenwriters who have just suffered a breakdown. It’s being able to be consistent and accurate about about your character’s psychology.

6. Save The Cat! by Blake Snyder: The first in a three book set on Blake Snyder’s phenomenally successful 15 Beats. Great books for new screenwriters, or those leaping from novels to screens. I often pop into this book annually since it was released in 2005 and I always pick up something I missed or needed to learn.

7.  Writer’s Guide to Character Traits by Linda N. Edelstein, Ph. D.:  A great book novelists and screenwriters, or anyone connected with fiction. I always keep this book beside me when I’m writing. The title is self-explanatory and it’s usefulness is also very obvious. Another book to keep.

8.  Writing for Emotional Impact by Karl Iglesias: The book is subtitled ‘Advanced dramatic techniques to attract, engage, and fascinate the reader from beginning to end. Another book for novelists and screenwriters. Writing is a journey of emotion, character and conflict and you need to know how to handle it.

9.  20 Master Plots and how to build them by Ronald B. Tobias: All stories, films and television programmes are based on only a handful of original plots. Anywhere from three to this book but the real secret is how you build on them. This book cleverly shows you how and you need to know how otherwise you will only have one story or film in you. Not a long career is it.

10.  The 101 Habits of Highly Successful Screenwriters by Karl Iglesias: Another book by Mr Iglesias and another goodie. This book is often found on the top ten books of screenwriters. It gives you a wonderful insight into the mind of successful screenwriters. Great book.

These books are all available from Amazon, or ordered through your local book shop.

Well that’s it. A few gems from my personal library and they are just a few gems. To get better you have to read other writers’ ideas and thoughts. So what writing books have you got in your collection?


So 2014 is the year of What If… You have to ask yourself that same question. What if you changed those thoughts about you as a writer to more positive ones? What would happen? There’s only one way to find out.

Until next week… keep well, loving and full of peace.

Believe. Believe. Believe.

All my loving



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