Screenwriting & Playwriting Tips

The Scriptwriter’s Temper Tantrum

What to do when your writing student is sobbing, screaming, and throwing things... Read More...

Talking about Teaching

I gave this interview after my presentation at the Toronto Screenwriters’ Conference. If you’ve ever wanted to hear my deep thoughts on the teaching of dialogue writing, there ya go.

You're not Writing for the Rats

Animals may be smarter, but humans tell better stories. Read More...

Where Characters Come From

Cory Doctorow offers a helpful way to think about the process of character development. I particularly like the way he describes the process as a feedback loop that gathers momentum over time. I’ve definitely had that feeling when working with my characters. They grow from something very sketchy to something very lifelike. That process is slow at first, but it goes faster and faster the farther along you get in a project.

Subtext Speaks

The dialogue scene that you’re struggling with? Take the page, crumple it up into a paper ball and throw it into the trash can across the room. If you can make the shot, then you instinctively understand everything you need to know in order to write subtext. Read More...