Are books any good???

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  • Are books any good???

    Are books on screen writing really going to help develop my writing skills any more than just simply practising?

    If so which titles are reccomended?

  • #2
    Although Denny Martin Flinn's How Not to Write a Screenplay is actually pretty handy, I find the volumes of interviews edited by William Froug (including his Zen and the Art of Screenwriting series) to be the most informative. To hear working screenwriters speak of the craft can give you a lot of insight into what it takes to succeed in this business.

    Otherwise, it's the same old, tried-and-true piece of advice: write every day, seven days a week until it becomes as important to you as breathing. Read scripts. Go to movies. Read good books. Eat your spinach. Drink good Scotch.

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    • #3
      I always suggest Dennis Palumbo's WRITING FROM THE INSIDE OUT. It deals with writing in general, not screenwriting, but is the best text I've seen on getting a writer to open himself up.

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      • #4
        I agree.

        Palumbo (whose articles appear monthly in the WGA magazine) is very good on the basics of getting yourself out of bed and before the computer. It's basic stuff, but handy to read, and to know that others out there live with the same doubts as you do is a healthy thing.

        If it's any consolation, in my incarnation as a novelist, I always found that other novelists rarely spoke of their doubts or failures. But because doubt and failure is simply part and parcel of the screenwriter's career, I often hear pros saying, "No, the last one just died. I'm onto something new." I find it very comforting to know that those who have succeeded in the past can still deal with failure in the present.

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