My first novel, Arlo Finch in the Valley of Fire, comes out today in stores throughout North America. I’d love you to, well, buy it. People buying books makes future books possible. It’s available at massive online stores, national chains and your local indie bookstore. Arlo Finch is middle-grade fantasy fiction. That’s the broad category […]
John and Craig introduce Launch, John’s new podcast about making a book. Over the course of six episodes, the series tracks the process of writing and shipping a novel, from idea to printing. The first two episodes are available today, with new episodes coming each Tuesday. Not to worry — Scriptnotes isn’t going anywhere. We’ll […]
John and Craig discuss suspense and its function in all genres, from thrillers to romcoms. They examine suspense of the known and of the unknown and the techniques available to construct it. We also answer listeners questions about registering scripts with the WGA, how to overcome creative paralysis and unconventional sluglines. Links: The WGA’s page […]
When working of paper edits, I’ve found the fastest solution is to stop scrolling altogether and use the built-in search function.
I have a very hard time writing a character if I don’t love the name. So I obsess over picking the right one. I’ll spend hours staring in the middle distance, trying out various combinations until something clicks.
This quote from Dennis Lehane on the difference between writing books and movies is spot-on, but worth a few clarifications.
Books have two title pages. Like most things that seem oddly wasteful at first glance, there’s a good reason for it.
I’m not here for work, or to escape this nightmare of an election. Rather, this sojourn has been in the planning stages for several years, going all the way to back to a screenwriters trip organized by Film France back in 2009. My daughter is attending sixth grade here. We’ll head back to Los Angeles for seventh.
Arlo Finch in the Valley of Fire will be the first book in a new series from Roaring Brook Press, an imprint of Macmillan. It comes out in 2018.
Next week we’re consolidating our One Hit Kill inventory, which means counting, boxing and shipping games from four different warehouses. So through Friday, we’re selling One Hit Kill at 50% off on Amazon.
John and Craig look at the non-screenplay things screenwriters end up writing, most notably outlines and treatments. We discuss some of the ones we’ve written (with examples), and offer advice on writing your own.
Where do screenplays go when they die? John and Craig take a look at their movies that never were, looking for patterns among dozens of their unproduced works. What can screenwriters learn from the dead, and is it ever worth trying to resurrect these flatliners?
As an animated film moves from screenplay to storyboards to scratch reels, you see the story coming to life — and the problems front-and-center.
One of my goals for 2016 is to be better about writing reviews for the products I love. Every Tuesday I’ll be leaving reviews on the applicable store.
Noah Bradley, who illustrated several of the weapon cards for One Hit Kill, has a great post up about his journey to becoming a full-time professional artist.
Daniel Wallace, who wrote the novel Big Fish, sent me the syllabus for the college writing class he’s teaching, including a first-week requirement of a 100-word short story.
As a screenwriter, I’m always looking for ticking clocks to increase the tension in a story. One my favorite sub-tropes is the Automatic Gate.
Because OHK is designed to grow and change — both with our own expansion packs and user-created variants — we wanted to be able to quickly update and “officialize” rules to reflect the state of the game.
Minutes ago, we launched the Kickstarter for One Hit Kill, our new card game of ridiculously overpowered weapons and monsters and cuddly rabbits.
John and Craig dig into the listener mailbag and take questions on TV producer credits, jealousy over other writers’ success, writing tight vs writing long and plenty of other follow up.
One Hit Kill is a game full of ridiculously overpowered weapons, drawn from science fiction, myth and popular culture. You can check out some of these weapons and other cards at our prelaunch website
Writing for The New Yorker, Oliver Sacks recounts his interactions with monologist Spalding Gray, and how his death was connected with Big Fish.
Last week, we shipped out 8,000 Writer Emergency Packs to our Kickstarter backers. The bulk of the packing happened in three days, so I set up a time-lapse camera to document the process.
Craig and John discuss the 31 superhero movies slated for the next few years. Is it good business or a trainwreck in the making?
Kelly Kazek looks at what became of Spectre, the magical little town in Big Fish.