Screenwriter and TV scribe Christine Boylan talks through her work habits and tools.
At the end of any day in which I’ve had to keep up in French, I’m zombie-tired. Research Daniel Kahneman has the explanation.
John and Craig discuss why screenwriters want to please people — and how it often hurts them and the movie they’re writing — before a lengthy discussion of the pros and cons of going to film school.
I had a hunch that late in the day wasn’t the best time to introduce a new song for Big Fish. Science agrees.
Sean Hood writes up his experience of dealing with a film flop.
How do you handle a producer who won’t stop giving notes?
I never watched Oprah. But I’m not surprised she had some good parting thoughts.
College was the first time I started writing how I speak. Or, more accurately, college was when I stopped trying to write the way I thought I should write.
Sure: everyone’s already linked to Austin Kleon’s wonderful post How to Steal Like an Artist (and 9 things nobody taught me). But I can’t know that you’ve read it. And I don’t have better advice for you today, or even this week. So I really recommend you read it, and take some notes.
Lawrence Turman suggests asking random people for their opinions of your concept. Great idea for a producer, but potentially a bad idea for a screenwriter.
The Time Magazine profile on Mark Zuckerberg offers a concise description of what makes me uneasy about Facebook in its current form: the binary definition of friendship.
While you can intuit a bit about producers’ taste by the films they’ve made, don’t assume producers only get certain genres. And never turn down a chance for a read.
When you make something that you yourself use, that’s called dogfooding, a contraction of “eating your own dogfood.” That’s developer-speak, but it’s something screenwriters would do well to appropriate.
What’s a reasonable amount of time to give your manager to read a draft of your script? It sometimes takes this screenwriter’s manager up to a month.
General meetings aside, how many pushes merits cause for concern regarding interest in you/your idea?
What do you do when your best work is met with an indifferent shrug?
Ostracism is a handy motivation for both heroes and villains.
Screenwriters benefit from worst-case scenario thinking.
Jenny was prescribed anti-anxiety medication, but worries it will mess up her writing.
Paul spent 29 years in a job too good to leave, and regrets it.
You’re naturally going to be drawn towards real-life people who are fascinating. That’s a good thing. Observe behavior. Figure out motivations and pathology. Then forget the real person.
In defense of fake tears and the emotional work screenwriters do.
Scott wonders if his online filmmaking classes are teaching him what he needs to know.
For the past few years, I’ve been aiming more towards “areas of interest” rather than true resolutions. That way, there’s no implied promise to be broken.
As the writer, you need to burn down houses. You need to push characters out of their safe places into the big scary world — and make sure they can never get back.