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Break into Screenwriting: Teach Yourself [Paperback]

Ray Frensham
3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)

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Book Description

27 Aug 2010

Is this the right book for me?

A comprehensive, jargon-free guide for all budding screenwriters

Its aim is not just to guide you through the techniques and skills you need to write for the screen (film and television), but also to give you guidance on how to approach the industry as a whole. Focusing on every aspect of screenwriting, from how to set about the writing process to how to develop your characters, plot and structure, this book will give you all the guidance you need to break into this highly competitive industry and make a career for yourself as a screenwriter.

Break into Screenwriting includes:

Chapter 1: Introduction

Chapter 2: Screenplay layout: your visual language

Chapter 3: Originating your ideas

Chapter 4: Developing your ideas: from idea to framework

Chapter 5: Creating your characters

Chapter 6: Character goals, growth, motivation and conflict

Chapter 7: Structure

Chapter 8: Structural variations

Chapter 9: 'Deep structure'

Chapter 10: Enhancing emotion

Chapter 11: The next step Chapter 12: The actual writing

Chapter 13: The craft of the rewrite

Chapter 14: The 'finished' item

Chapter 15: Assembling your portfolio

Chapter 16: Copyright

Chapter 17: Agents

Chapter 18: Adaptations, shorts, soaps, series, sitcoms and collaboration

Chapter 19: The industry: how it works and your place in it

Chapter 20: Your career as a writer

Chapter 21: Final comments

Chapter 22: Screenwriting and the internet

Learn effortlessly with a new easy-to-read page design and interactive features:

Not got much time?

One, five and ten-minute introductions to key principles to get you started.

Author insights

Lots of instant help with common problems and quick tips for success, based on the author's many years of experience.

Test yourself

Tests in the book and online to keep track of your progress.

Extend your knowledge

Extra online articles to give you a richer understanding of the subject.

Five things to remember

Quick refreshers to help you remember the key facts.

Try this

Innovative exercises illustrate what you've learnt and how to use it.



Product details

  • Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Teach Yourself (27 Aug 2010)
  • Language: Unknown
  • ISBN-10: 1444103253
  • ISBN-13: 978-1444103250
  • Product Dimensions: 13.2 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 551,858 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

More About the Authors

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Product Description

Review

"Everything that you need to know can be found between these covers" (- Total Film Magazine)

"Raymond Frensham's invaluable guide to writing screenplays, 10th in the film best-sellers..." (- The Independent Arts and Book Review)

Book Description

This is a comprehensive and jargon-free guide for all budding screenwriters.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
15 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An excellent guide for the beginner 29 July 2001
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
This book is brilliant, not only showing you how to lay out a screenplay but going into the fine detail of how to structure plots without being confusing or full of jargon. Frensham also provides a lot of help in generating and refining ideas, an area that is neglected by many other screenwriting texts. I refer to this book on an almost daily basis, I can't give higher praise than that!
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
Frensham begins at the beginning and finishes at the end: visual layout of your script (including size of pages, colour, text size, UK or US), synopsis, genres, the 8 basic stories, development of your story, character development, 1st draft, 2nd draft, to promotion.
Frensham takes you on a journey, he advises films to watch and take note from. HE IS TEACHING, it's kind of an interactive book.
If you are thinking of writing for film or TV, to say this book is invaluable is an understatment.
Alfred Hitchcock said 'To make a great movie, you need just three things: a great script, a great script, and a great script.' (taken from TY Screenwriting By Raymond Fresnsham.)
I say 'To learn to write that great movie, you need just three things: this book, this book, God! You need this book!'
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14 of 18 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback
The best thing about Frensham is his emphasis on characterisation.
The main arguement of Robert McKee's book is plot-structure being far more important than characterisation. Thus if you want to know about plot-structure then buy McKee but if you want a great character biography analysis checklist buy Frensham.
Also frensham has lots to say about how to approach rewriting: he outlines his 6 different stages: again with good checklists.
Best of all he has a typical production company script reader's (story analyst) checklist, so that we know what how the enemy thinks.
However, on plot-structure he is too formulaic: he doesn't prove story principles the way McKee does. McKee's principles are based on Aristotle and Stanislavski.
I'd suggest you'd buy "An Actor Prepares" if you really want to 'Act at the desk' so that you feel what the characters feel.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Using my copy as a door wedge. 7 Jan 2012
By ST
Format:Paperback
Avoid this book, it will put you in the wrong direction completely. Robert Mckee "story" is a very good choice. The author, after some Googling, has done zero in screenwriting. Waste of time. Would rate 0 if I could.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Very straightforward guide 31 Dec 2013
By Dalea11
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This is a very readable, no-frills, introductory guide to the business of screenwriting. Highly recommended for anyone seeking a straightforward, step-by-step introduction to the craft. 'Does what it says on the tin".
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Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This is a serious study book with lots of useful, essential information. It contains all that is needed for good scripts and hints and tips on how to move forward with writing.
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8 of 11 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
Frensham begins at the beginning and finishes at the end: visual layout of your script (including size of pages, colour, text size, UK or US), synopsis, genres, the 8 basic stories, development of your story, character development, 1st draft, 2nd draft, to promotion.
Frensham takes you on a journey, he advises films to watch and take note from. HE IS TEACHING, it's kind of an interactive book.
If you are thinking of writing for film or TV, to say this book is invaluable is an understatment.
Alfred Hitchcock said 'To make a great movie, you need just three things: a great script, a great script, and a great script.' (taken from TY Screenwriting By Raymond Fresnsham.)
I say 'To learn to write that great movie, you need just three things: this book, this book, God! You need this book!'
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Don't buy this 9 Dec 2012
By CW
Format:Paperback
I didn't find this book very helpful at all. It didn't teach me anything new. I don't recommend it at all.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Essential Reading
This is the ideal book for learning about the craft of writing screenplays. It really goes into the nuts and bolts of creating the bones of a story. Read more
Published on 10 Aug 2011 by C. Dunford
5.0 out of 5 stars Completely invaluable to every amateur screenwriter.
An enormously useful book. As a baby screenwriter, I've read practically every book, blog, website on screenwriting possible and this has to be the most comprehensive book that... Read more
Published on 13 Nov 2010 by GloGlo
2.0 out of 5 stars don't expect miracles
Writing a good script is difficult. Best way to do it, is to develop your own (unique) style, but you should learn the craft of screenwriting from those who have gone before... Read more
Published on 3 Oct 2010 by Zeynep Ates
1.0 out of 5 stars Ewww... AVOID!
With the likes of Robert Mckee and Syd Field around - this book has no place. It took me in completely the wrong direction, and looking back now - the writing was a disaster. Read more
Published on 3 Oct 2010 by Bonnie Loves Coldplay
1.0 out of 5 stars Terrible
This was absolutely terrible, it didn't hold my attention, it told me little I needed to know. In fact I began to dislike the author immensely afterwards. Read more
Published on 3 Jun 2010 by FuzzyLou
4.0 out of 5 stars A good introduction
I belive this book is a good introduction to the craft of screewriting. I'm no expert on the matter but I found it very useful and complete. Read more
Published on 2 April 2010 by G. Carvalho
1.0 out of 5 stars badly written, but a nice checklist at the back,
There are many (maybe hundreds!) of screenwriting books outthere.
Only a handful of them are any good, this is certainly NOT one of them. Read more
Published on 14 Jan 2010 by Mrs K Digby
1.0 out of 5 stars Rubbish from start to finish
As a previous review states - this book is off putting to any aspiring screenwriter.
Not only does it make the task seem monotonous and dull, it takes you on a journey... Read more
Published on 12 Jan 2010 by Ian Dennis
4.0 out of 5 stars Useful and comprehensive
Ray Frensham offers a straightforward manual on the craft of screen writing. The examples are well chosen and the exercises will lead the aspiring witer towards their first script. Read more
Published on 22 Dec 2009 by Donald A. Mcintyre
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