John and Craig revisit one of their favorite episodes, in which they sit down with screenwriter-turned-psychotherapist Dennis Palumbo to discuss writer’s block, procrastination, partnerships and more. It’s a can’t-miss episode for aspiring writers and professionals alike.
John and Craig look at the trend towards hiring two writers to work on separate drafts of the same project. Is it better to have writers working in parallel than serially? Or does it end up with studios ordering off a Chinese menu: this scene, that character, that other set piece?
I spent several months meeting with puppet specialists only to discover the project I’m making is better without puppets.
Craig and John take a swing at several of the week’s hyperbolic headlines, from conflict-free comedy to Fitzgerald’s failures to Strong Female Characters with nothing to do. In each case, there’s a valid idea lurking beneath the overstated claim, but it’s important to separate good examples from bad.
I’ve reformatted my 2007 post on How to Write a Scene into something you can print or pass out to a class.
John and Craig talk about what screenwriters can learn from the structure of classical music, then invite journalist Scott Tobias on to discuss how day-and-date video-on-demand releases make it hard to know how indie films are doing, individually and as a group.
Writer-Director David Wain joins John and Craig to talk about the long journey to bring They Came Together to the screen (on June 27th), the changing nature of spoofs, and the seminal summer camp film Wet Hot American Summer.
Craig Mazin wrote in to respond to criticism of his remarks in last week’s Scriptnotes.
Automator can easily assemble the PDF metadata I want.
In a wide-ranging episode, Craig and John look at a 1912 screenwriting book, Levinson’s beef with the WGA, and the Periodic Table of Storytelling.
We had 57 entries for the Three Page Challenge we’re conducting on May 15th. I wondered which apps these screenwriters were using, so I checked the metadata for each file.1 App # of Entries % of Total Final Draft 8 18 32% (unclear)2 7 12% Fade In 7 12% Final Draft (Windows) 6 11% Slugline […]
Kelly Kazek looks at what became of Spectre, the magical little town in Big Fish.
I wondered if a filmmaker could pull a beyoncé and release a film without any advance notice. I speculated a filmmaker like JJ Abrams or Joss Whedon probably could pull it off. Then a few weeks ago, Whedon seemed to just that with In Your Eyes. But is it really a beyoncé, or a new variation on direct-to-video?
No standalone file is safe from someone with enough time and the right tools. But for something like a screenplay, encryption is quite a bit better than I expected.
Nothing is cut-and-dried this week. John and Craig talk Game of Thrones rape, allegations against director Bryan Singer and the new report showing the same low employment numbers for female writers in film and TV.
Cameron Bonde wants the App Store to take a page from YouTube and Twitter, allowing users to subscribe to app developers.
Grimm’s fairy tales offer uniformly terrible marriage advice.
John and Craig talk with WGA President Chris Keyser about the tentative deal reached between writers and the studios, and why it’s more groundbreaking than it might appear at first glance.
Craig delights as John gets @-napped in a Twitter thread about copyright infringement. Then they talk disruption in television, and how it affects writers.
John and Craig talk Lab Rats, multi-cam, and what scenes might mean in their imaginary screenplay format. Craig clarifies what “spec writing” is, and when it’s permitted, both legally and ethically.
John and Craig discuss how you create a fictional universe for your story, and the limits of how much can fit on the page. From location to language to wardrobe, choosing which details to make explicit is a crucial early decision. Too little detail and the reader doesn’t know how your story is special; too much detail and the story gets lost.
Every episode of Scriptnotes starts with the same five notes: Beginning with episode 98, every episode ends with a new listener-created outro, each one a variation on that same five-note theme. We’ve had some amazing outros, both because our listeners are geniuses and the basic melody is so adaptable. You can hear all of them […]
John and Craig tackle the greatest controversy in screenwriting: how many spaces to put after the period. From there, it’s follow-up on the Final Draft episode, including some behind-the-scene details.
On their website, Final Draft claims to be the preferred format for WGA registration. But that doesn’t gibe with the WGA’s own site.
Craig and I are doing a live episode benefiting the Writers Guild Foundation on December 19th.