How to get ideas out of your head and up on the screen.
Staring at that blank page with all your ideas stuck in your head, in most cases, is the hardest part of filmmaking. To figure out how to mold these thoughts into something real that will eventually get everyone from the producers to the stand-ins, up and moving and to get that audience into their seats viewing your idea that was once just an idea is nothing but a little overwhelming. In Christina Hamlett’s, “Could it be a Movie?,” she lays out all the fundamental essentials of writing. Not only for screenwriters but fellow authors and playwrights as well. If you have found yourself stuck in front of that blank page too many times, this tool is the key to finding your motivation.
Christina Hamlett is a respected and well-known script consultant who has taken her knowledge of the industry and turned it into a thought-provoking look at the process of writing a script. While most how-to books on screenwriting give a reader the nuts and bolts of what makes a good screenplay, Hamlett does one better and walks us through how to make a good screenplay and gives great, detailed advice to aspiring screenwriters trying to come up with ideas and inspiration. Could It Be A Movie? is conversational and encouraging the whole way through and I especially like the hands on exercises that can be found in each chapter. They truly provide insight on what works for a story and what doesn't.
Hamlett helps our ideas become a reality by actually explaining the details of not only what makes a good story but discussing dialogue, agents, what producers do once they have your script and more. Which format do you want to begin in - movie, book, stage play? The possibilities are all there. She includes interviews and inside stories from some of the leading industries professionals who help explain what writing for Hollywood is all about.
Everything you’ve wanted to know, not only about the screenwriting process - three-act story and it's proper structure, character and dialogue, adapting material from other mediums, rewrites, and script consulting - but the business side we all need to master by learning how to protect your work, picking (or not picking) an agent, and making smart business decisions regarding your writing and how to get your work actually made and you actually paid.
Hamlett's wonderful insights and straightforward writing style make it clear that she enjoys writing and helping other writers achieve their full potential. This is a wonderful resource that I would highly recommend adding to your collection. This is one of the best, most inclusive, humorous and spot-on books on screenwriting I have seen in some time.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Former actress and theater director Christina Hamlett is a script consultant, instructor, award winning author and professional ghostwriter whose publishing credits include 31 books, 157 plays, 5 optioned films, and hundreds of articles and interviews that appear online and in trade publications worldwide. Her degree in Communications from California State University, Sacramento led to assignments in all aspects of media, cable television and public relations, including the development of her own touring theater repertory company which she ran for eight years. She is married to insurance industry executive Mark Webb and resides in Pasadena, California.
Christina can be reached for questions or script consultations through her website www.authorhamlett.com.
SECTION I: DREAMING IT UP
CHAPTER 1: It all begins with an idea
CHAPTER 2: Stage, page, or cinema?
CHAPTER 3: Pre-existing inspirations
CHAPTER 4: Conflict management and the view from here
CHAPTER 5: The audience mindset – what’s in it for me?
SECTION II: WRITING IT DOWN
CHAPTER 6: Timing is everything
CHAPTER 7: Storytelling structure
CHAPTER 8: Been there, done that
CHAPTER 9: Are you a solo act, a duet, or just the messenger?
CHAPTER 10: Show us your specs and shorts
SECTION III: WORKING IT OUT
CHAPTER 11: The realities of revision
CHAPTER 12: Making the most of professional consultation
CHAPTER 13: The art of conversation
CHAPTER 14: Verbatim ad nauseum and the curse of adverbs
CHAPTER 15: Foreign exchange
CHAPTER 16: How to protect your plots
SECTION IV: WINNING THEM OVER
CHAPTER 17: All about agents
CHAPTER 18: They shoot movies, don’t they?
CHAPTER 19: Getting to Hollywood via the indies
CHAPTER 20: The competitive edge
CONCLUSION: Playing to your strengths
POSTSCRPIT: Giving success a personal definition
About the Author
Paperback: 288 Pages
Publisher: Michael Wiese Productions - January 25, 2005
Libby Blood, editor, SVN Student Filmmaking, is a filmmaker and videographer living and working in California. She is co-founder of the SVN Visual Media Awards.