Kathy Cabrera, an Atlanta based screenwriting teacher, was kind enough to write a short review. Expect to see it up on Amazon etc. in the near future:
For the aspiring screenwriter and seasoned – but blocked – writer alike, there are words of wisdom in Julian Hoxter’s book, Write What You Don’t Know that will help you. Regardless of how new to screenwriting you are, or what particular phase of your draft you’re in, Hoxter’s chapter-by-chapter manual makes the craft accessible with information when and where you need it. Case in point, I’ve written over six scripts and hold a screenwriting M.F.A. from UCLA, but it feels like moving a mountain to rev up the energy I need just to start the months-long process of writing a new spec script. When I started a new project recently and was lacking in motivation, I flipped to Chapter 2: “Screenwriting: The Hardest Easy Thing You Will Ever Do.” The chapter got my butt in gear (aka in the chair to burn up some pages!) and helped me re-focus in that crucial brainstorm phase as to what the story was that I really needed (versus wanted) to tell.”
Thanks to all who came out for the final workshop at Brock – a room full of engaged and entertaining students made for a most enjoyable session. I almost didn’t feel the extra two hours… almost. Six hours was a bit of a marathon, but fun for me anyway.
Back to San Francisco tomorrow morning, as long as Chicago is no longer snowed in…
Thanks in particular to Scott Henderson and Shannon and Stella and Amanda for making the trip so easy.
I’ve been thoroughly enjoying my various lectures and presentations up in the Great White North. The biggie is tomorrow (Sat 20th), 12-4pm (at least) on the Brock campus in AS456 (wherever that is…). It’s going to be an introduction to all things screenwritingy – yes, that is now a word – and it is free so, all you Brock related humans, come along.
We’ll even get into embarrassing and public critiques of your scripts and story ideas at the end – constructive, of course.
Here’s the skinny:
Taking place on Saturday January 21 during the Writer’s Digest Conference at the Sheraton Hotel & Towers in New York, Screenwriters World Conference offers access to New York’s top agents, managers, and executives currently seeking new material. There’s no other script-centric opportunity like this on the East Coast!
You’ll have the chance to pitch to as many execs as you can in five-minute sessions over a four-hour time frame. You’ll have 90 seconds to pitch your work, with the remaining time for the exec to give immediate feedback, along with helpful suggestions for improving your pitch. This is invaluable practice for pitching in the high-stakes world of screenwriting.
Next up is an afternoon full of networking and educational opportunities for those at every level, from newbie to seasoned writer. Choose from an array of seminars led by Industry professionals in tracks that cover the business of the silver screen, the craft of screenwriting, and tactics beyond the typical spec script. Choices include:
Track One: The Business
- Represent Me!
Learn how to determine which representatives are best for you and your work, and how to build successful relationships with them.
- Breaking Down the Doors
Find out how to market yourself as a screenwriter with an arsenal of sensational query letters, treatments and pitches-and the knowledge to get them in the right hands.
- All I Want to Do is Write
Writers can build steady careers by writing on assignment. Here’s how to pay the bills while doing what you love.
Track Two: The Craft
- Tools to Tackle the First Draft
Hear from successful screenwriters on how they prepare to write the first draft and how that preparation helps them write screenplays that sell.
- Anatomy of a Scene
Working writers discuss the scenes they have struggled with, and give advice on how to tackle the most challenging scenes in your own scripts.
- Secrets of Screenplay Dialogue
Professional screenwriters share how they craft dialogue that sings and what trade secrets you can use to make your lines leap off the page.
Track Three: Beyond the Spec Script
- Breaking Into Television
Discover what in-roads are available for scribes who want to write scripts for the small screen.
- Is My Screenplay a Novel?
Information on rewriting your scripts as novels and selling the film rights.
- Words Into Pictures
Find out how to give your script new life as a graphic novel or comic book.
Plus, Screenwriters World Conference East is limited to just 200 attendees to maintain the most advantageous ratio for pitching and networking. So don’t miss this opportunity to get in front of the Biz’s best and brightest, right in your own backyard.
I have been invited by the Department of Communication, Popular Culture and Film to give a series of workshops to their students. I’ll be talking to the undergrads on Thursday, the MAs on Friday and giving a free half day introductory workshop on Saturday.
Here’s the rather cool poster for the Saturday event:
Here’s the info:
A well developed and written script is the single most important ingredient in producing a television show. Story, narrative structure, character development, dialogue, scale, scope and shelf-life are essential elements in TV, whether you’re writing a drama, comedy or producing a reality show.
The most successful writers in the world today write for television. Mad Men.Dexter. True Blood. Modern Family. American Horror Story. 30 Rock. NCIS.Boardwalk Empire. Beyond Scared Straight. The Simpsons. Storage Wars.Game of Thornes. The list goes on and on. Whether you’re writing a scripted series for a network (CBS, NBC, ABC, Fox), premium cable (HBO, Showtime) or online (Hulu, Funny-or-Die, etc.), or developing a reality series for A&E, Bravo, History or TLC, television is where today’s top writers and producers are finding their greatest success both creatively and financially.
But how do you develop and write a show that gets on TV?
The TV Writers’ Summit brings together the four top speakers in the world on the art and craft of television writing – Chad Gervich, Ellen Sandler, Troy DeVolld and Jen Grisanti. Over two intense days, these four master teachers will provide you an unmatched depth and understanding of writing, story and producing all genres of TV (whether you’re writing a Comedy, Drama or working on a Reality idea) that is ideal for TV writers, producers and creative executives. Troy, Jen, Chad and Ellen will each teach half-day classes followed by a half-hour Q&A session in which you’ll be able to follow-up with any questions you may have. The speakers having taken the time and care to share their outlines with each other to make sure they provide you the best, most engaging material possible without overlap.
The VP of Current Programs at CBS, Alix Jaffe, said, “Jen Grisanti has great insight into working with writers. She has a special ability to nurture their vision, while being true to story structure, character and dialogue.Her notes are always clear, insightful and productive.”
Legendary NBC President Warren Littlefield said, “Who says learning can’t be fun? Sitting in a classroom and listening to Chad Gervich teach gave me goose bumps – why didn’t I have teachers like this? After his class I couldn’t sleep that night – my mind was racing with possibilities. Must hear teaching!”Entertainment Today magazine called Emmy-nominated writer Ellen Sandlerthe “Dalai Lama of television writing” for “credentials that include her work on more than 25 prime-time shows, plus the pilots she’s created for network and cable television.” Andrew Hoagland, Story Producer for the hit shows The Bachelor and Basketball Wives, said, “I doubt anyone knows more about the making of Reality television than Troy DeVolld.”
The TV Writers’ Summit is ideal for :
|• TV Writers||• TV Producers||• Development Executives|
|• Screenwriters||• Creative Executives||• Actors|
|• Producers||• And More!|
Don’t miss this rare opportunity to hear the four top speakers on TV writing in a single two-day weekend, as well as to network with other television writers. Whether you’re a first time TV writer, in the middle of a spec script, a working writer on a current show, developing a reality idea or just want to learn more about writing for television, you won’t want to miss the TV Writers’ Summit in LA the weekend of February 11-12, 2012!
We got a little mention in their books column on December 31st 2011.
Check out and support this local San Francisco initiative – run by an SFSU Cinema alum!