How to Sell Your Screenplay by P-IndependentPublish

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									How to Sell Your Screenplay
Author: Carl Sautter
Table of Contents

Preface
CHAPTER ONE AN INTRODUCTION
CHAPTER TWO HOW TO MAKE YOUR OWN FIRST BREAK
CHAPTER THREE THE BASICS OF SCREENWRITING
CHAPTER FOUR FEATURE FILMS
CHAPTER FIVE WHAT DO FEATURES LOOK FOR?
CHAPTER SIX PRIMETIME EPISODIC TELEVISION
CHAPTER SEVEN HOW TO DO A SPEC SCRIPT FOR EPISODIC TV
CHAPTER EIGHT OTHER PRIMETIME TELEVISION
CHAPTER NINE ALTERNATIVE MARKETS, PART I
CHAPTER TEN ALTERNATIVE MARKETS, PART II
CHAPTER ELEVEN ALTERNATIVE MARKETS, PART III
CHAPTER TWELVE HOW TO WRITE BETTER THAN ANYONE ELSE
CHAPTER THIRTEEN IT'S DONE, NOW WHAT?
CHAPTER FOURTEEN FOUR ESSENTIAL SCREENWRITING SKILLS
CHAPTER FIFTEEN SURVIVAL AND OTHER CONSIDERATIONS
CHAPTER SIXTEEN CONCLUSION
APPENDICES
A. SPECIAL FORMATS
B. THE WRITERS GUILD
C. GLOSSARY OF TERMS IN THE BUSINESS
D. RESOURCES AND BIBLIOGRAPHY
INDEX
Description

An Emmy Award nominee and former Moonlighting story editor gives smart, timely inside information on
how to successfully market a film or TV screenplay in this handy guide.
Excerpt

For a new writer, selling that first script is the hardest step in building a career, although most writers will
say that every step is hard. There's no question that one sale under the belt does wonders for self-
confidence. You are not just another of the 200,000 people in Los Angeles peddling unsold material;
suddenly, you are a
contender.The truth is, the hardest step in becoming a screenwriter is writing a script that's good. Most of
those 200,000 would-be writers are peddling bad material. And the percentages for selling a bad script
are much lower than the chances of selling a good one. Not
that everyone who gets paid for writing is good. But they got lucky - and it's a lot easier to get lucky if
you're good.HOW DO YOU GET GOOD?1. Research the market in which you're competing. Where is
there the least competition for your writing style? Learn to avoid mistakes such as the wrong length,
wrong format, duplication of stories, or competing in a market where new writers are not welcome.2.
Learn your strengths and weaknesses. Find out the style of project
that you write best. If you are an actor, you should have an advantage with dialogue — an instinct for the
rhythms in which characters speak. If your background is journalism, you're no doubt a good narrative
writer; stage directions may come relatively easily.3. Write what you watch. If you are addicted to
sitcoms or soaps, those are the markets you should consider. If you're a movie fanatic, that's the market
where you have the advantage. If you are a short story buff, look at the anthology shows.4. Write what
you know. Ask yourself which stories you can tell that no one else can. Don't pick a story because you
think it's what they want, or because it's like the film you saw last week. concentrate instead on stories
only you can tell. For example, if you have teenage children, you should have a reservoir of irritating
stories to bring to one of the network family shows.5. Don't mistake commercial for sloppy. Never write
down to the level of what you perceive film or television to be. There will be plenty of opportunities later in
your career to be mediocre; for now,
write the best you possibly can.6. Write a lot of projects. Think of each script as a step in the learning
process. Learn what you can, then move on to the next one. Becoming employable is a matter of taking
basic strengths and skills, studying, and getting better with every script and rewrite. Particularly in the
early stages, learn to rewrite what you write, then rewrite
that.One of the biggest mistakes a new writer can make is to finish the first project and wait for the offers
to roll in. Russ Woody (St. Elsewhere, Murphy Brown) says: "The day I finish a script, I force myself to
start on the next one, even if it's only a matter of jotting down a few ideas or lines of dialogue. It helps me
let go of what I've written."7. Read a lot of scripts. Scripts read differently than they play. A writer isn't just
selling the finished project complete with dazzling performances and intricate camera angles. A writer is
selling what is on the page. One of the best ways to write better is to understand what makes a script
read well. Writers should read as many different
scripts as they can — good, bad, indifferent. This is the specific value of writers' support groups...
Author Bio
Carl Sautter
Carl Sautter has written for the television series Moonlighting and Beverly Hills 90210.

								
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