Sunday, 4 January 2009

Reading List

While I have nothing to talk about writing-wise, I thought I'd run through some of the books I've found particularly interesting and shiny for screenwriting. Some are listed at the right-hand side of this blog, but for those who haven't noticed, here's a list.
  • "The Screenwriter's Bible" by David Trottier - a must-have. It's the first screenwriting book I bought and within two weeks, I could format a script no problem. This is one hell of paperweight and costs a fair bit, but it's invaluable for the writing gig. If you're just starting out, it runs through complete formatting and if you're more experienced, it covers loads of stuff about characters, dialogue, story, action and the writing game (getting an agent). It's more of a reference tool. If you can't remember how to format a montage for example, you can just look it up in here, no problem. It also has a lot of exercises and tips on how to improve your writing.
  • "Crafty Screenwriting" by Alex Epstein - an excellent book showing an insight into the world of feature writing. assuming you can format correctly, this book has most of the things you need. It's quite cheap for what it is and has loads and loads of tips for you writing.
  • "Crafty TV Writing" by Alex Epstein - the TV version of the above book. This is an excellent how-to guide when it comes to TV writing, with examples from loads of hit shows. Epstein talks about creating shows, specing pilots, getting a TV agent, working in the writers' room and a lot more. Easily one of the best TV books out there.
  • "The Creative Writing Coursebook" - a great book if you're working in any line of fiction writing, not just for screen. It has input from 40 authors, who each give a chapter on different topics. It has a lot of activities and exercises on how to write great fiction.
  • "The Writer's Complete Fantasy Reference" - a resource book that's a must-have for anyone wanting to write any fiction about a fantasy world, or even something historical. What did they wear in the middle ages? What weapons did they use in the dark ages? Where do elves come from? What punishment was used for witches? Why was stretching such a popular form of punishment? It's all in here.
  • "Rewrite" by Paul Chitlik - "Writing is in the rewrite", that's what they say. And it's true. This book is a how-to guide on how to take your first,. second, third, or 50th draft and make it a killer script.
That's all I have at the moment, but if anyone has any other good books on fiction or screenwriting, please feel free to let me know and I'll add them up ASAP.

Happy writing,

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