INSIDE THE ART, CRAFT AND BUSINESS OF WRITING for Film, TV, Books, Stage, Print or Digital Media (with Particular Attention to Comedy)

Managed Fantasy

Fantasy is important – especially for writers. But maybe we should try to fantasize more about simply finishing the project, not the wild success we’ll enjoy after it’s written. Here’s … Continue reading

February 20, 2014 · Leave a comment

The Disciplined Writer: Pro- and Con-crastination

Every writer wishes their writing was going faster. If only we could spend more time at our desks! Or get more done while we’re there! Why can’t we get more … Continue reading

November 8, 2013 · Leave a comment

The Feedback Loop: How to Use Readers for Your Rewrite(s)

Ask ten writers for their opinion and you’ll get at least a dozen different opinions – and yet… After you’ve written a draft of your book or script (much less … Continue reading

November 3, 2013 · 1 Comment

7 Tools for Critical Thinking (from Philosopher Daniel Dennett)

As I say in my book, “How To Be A Writer Who Writes”, (a phrase I love saying and really should say more), different phases of the writing process call … Continue reading

May 24, 2013 · 2 Comments

Just Say No: A Simple One-Word Key to Productivity

Thanks to Blogger Kevin Ashton for his inspiring post justifying my lack of inspirational posting this month – I’ve been busy writing! – and his post about why creative people … Continue reading

May 19, 2013 · Leave a comment

“This One Will Write Itself” – and 5 Other Lies We Tell Ourselves to Keep Writing

What’s wrong with a little well-placed denial? If we really let ourselves embrace and admit how much work it takes to write a script or book, very few of them … Continue reading

April 17, 2013 · 1 Comment

Why I Love Index Cards as a Writing Tool (Pt. 2): Full-Color Edition

Writing doesn’t always look like ‘writing’. For the last 2-3 weeks, my work on the current screenplay has consisted of staring at a wall of index cards (in photo at … Continue reading

April 11, 2013 · 7 Comments

Happiness is a Warm Desk: How Your Work Area Affects Your Productivity

Some writers put way too much attention into their working environment – and then don’t actually get much work done. Many others (like me) pay barely any attention at all … Continue reading

March 26, 2013 · Leave a comment

How To Get Feedback on Your Draft

“Don’t pay any attention to the critics—don’t even ignore them.”  — Samuel Goldwyn 1.  Get feedback BEFORE re-reading your draft (if you can possibly wait) 2.  Ask for the kind of feedback you … Continue reading

March 21, 2013 · 2 Comments

Do you really want to call it “DEATH of a Salesman”? (Even Arthur Miller Got Notes)

Screenwriter Nicholas Kazan wrote a memorable article for the Writer’s Guild Magazine about receiving notes. His father features in the story, which revolves around the first draft of Arthur Miller’s … Continue reading

March 7, 2013 · Leave a comment

Why I Love Index Cards: The Humble Office Supply That Can Leap Tall Problems in a Single Bound

I’ve been working with a client who developed and outlined his screenplay using index cards. (See photo left. One wall of the garage where we were working had easy access … Continue reading

March 5, 2013 · 2 Comments