Screenwriting How-To Articles

Our screenwriting articles will help hone your craft and understanding of the entertainment business. Together with The Writers Store, ScriptMag is dedicated to help you succeed in your screenwriting career.


Writing Dialogue: Beats of a Dead Horse

Don’t miss Jim Mercurio’s webinar on Advanced Scene Writing: Breaking the Rules with Style on Thursday, August 28, 2014 at 1:00PM PDT. When I dove into a theoretical approach to teaching dialogue, I was pleasantly surprised that although dialogue seems in some ways contrary to structure, the way to improve it is often through...

Do It or I Chew It

Why Spec Scripts Fail: Failure To Do Your Homework, Part 4

In our previous homework discussions, Part 1, Part 2 and Part 3, several reasons spec scripts fail may have seemed obvious or simplistic to some readers… As obvious as looking both ways before you cross the street. Or as basic as not falling prey to “TEXTAHOLISM” while you hold up traffic at a stop...

Resistance can turn your desk into a prison.

Breaking & Entering: Resistance Is Futile Or Can It Be Fueling?

“We are the Borg. Lower your shields and surrender your ships. We will add your biological and technological distinctiveness to our own. Your culture will adapt to service us. Resistance is futile.” Ah, that iconic phrase, uttered when you are about to conquer your opponent! “Resistance is futile.” Brought into popular culture by Star...


Legally Speaking, It Depends – Guild or Union

*Note: This is the first of a two part article series… Guild or Union? Which is which and is there a difference? It might come as a surprise to some even inside our industry but there is an actual difference and knowing the subtleties involved, could possibly save some embarrassment or miscommunication. At the...

Writing a Documentary Film

Writing a Documentary Film With No Rules

By Susan Kouguell Writing a documentary… Want to learn how? Register for Susan’s upcoming Screenwriters University class, starting August 28, 2014. There is no “right or wrong” way  when it comes to writing a documentary film. Sounds easy then, right? Well–wrong! While there are no set screenwriting rules for writing a documentary script, it...

The Tamale Principle

Behind the Lines with DR: The Tamale Principle

The Tamale Principle… A simple axiom. When faced with a choice between the unfamiliar and the familiar, most people will choose the latter. At least, thus was the theory posited by my old man when describing one of the quandaries of a democracy. Hang with me here if you want to know how this...


Writers on the Web: Interview with Michael Gene Conti, Creator of Web Series Spooked

If you’re into the paranormal, you’ll be sure to love the new web series Spooked, executive produced by Bryan Singer (X-Men: Days of Future Past) and Felicia Day (The Guild, Geek & Sundry), which recently premiered on Hulu and YouTube. Starring Julian Curtis (Captured), Ashley Johnson (The Killing), Neil Grayson (Eureka), Derek Mio (Greek), and Shyloh Oostwald...