Craft

the theory and practise of screenwriting

 James Napoli

How to Climb into Your Screenplay (Part 2)

How to Climb into Your Screenplay (Part 2)

Okay, so you’ve gone through the various permutations of the initial inspiration for your idea and started to get a handle on how it might sustain a full story. You’ve worked out a good, story-driven logline to narrow down the basic progression of your narrative, and you’ve started to do research on any of the […]

 Jim

How To Write Stronger, More Dramatic TV Shows

How To Write Stronger, More Dramatic TV Shows

The Golden Age of Television shows no signs of abating. We are spoiled for choice on which TV show to watch or which iconic character to invest our time with. Television allows writers to create a limited series comprising a few episodes or a long-running show which spans many seasons. TV writers may have a […]

 Jim

5 Reasons You Should Kill Your Darlings

5 Reasons You Should Kill Your Darlings

Screenwriters are often told to kill their darlings – figuratively speaking. Snuffing out your characters begins during the outlining stage of your screenplay. If two or more characters are too similar and the story still stands if you remove one or more, then they are not essential. Your audience won’t miss them. Consider a scene […]

 Jim

How To Use Cognitive Bias To Layer Your Characters

How To Use Cognitive Bias To Layer Your Characters

Well-drawn characters in storytelling are defined by four key components – their goal, their motivation, their obstacles, and the consequences of achieving (or not achieving) their said goal. These are the basis of the plot in your screenplay. However, good screenplays are defined by layered, complex characters more than the storyline. For screenwriters, complexity means […]

 Patrick O'Driscoll

Dramatic Tension – Don’t Let Them Go (Part II)

Dramatic Tension – Don’t Let Them Go (Part II)

Keeping audiences hooked relies on meaningful dramatic questions, yet few stories generate tension on the most meaningful level. Nothing prevents an audience’s boredom like the need to know what happens at the ending. Provided the protagonist has our empathy or interest, the stakes are significant and the outcomes are genuinely uncertain, a story’s external and internal […]