Loglines and a lot of head-scratching

Black and white photo of a typically scraggly-haired Einstein next to a quote which says: If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough.

I clearly needed to get a hold of my script idea before it went off on a tangent. First stop, write the logline – screenwriting guru Blake Snyder’s first piece of advice in his book Save the Cat. The logline is the one (or two)-liner that sums up what the film, TV programme or book is about. Why a logline? It’s useful for pitching your idea to the people who could potentially commission it, but it also serves as a handy guide whenever you’re stuck with the writing, helping you re-focus. The point, Snyder writes, is if you don’t understand what …

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The Challenges of Mama-hood and Writing

Two Christmas cards with a baby boy's face on each, wearing brown hand print antlers and red noses a la Rudolph

A belated Happy New Year, dear reader! I hope you had a lovely Christmas (if you celebrate it) and that 2017 is fabulous for you. My first opportunity, thwarted by the lurgy December seemed like an ideal time to start work on the screenplay. I’d announced my plans and launched this blog, and my partner and I were taking time off for Christmas. Feeling positive, and slightly ambitious, I noticed an early opportunity to submit my screenplay to be read: the Writers Room, a BBC department which receives scripts twice a year (once for drama scripts, once for comedy). The …

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Screenwriting books

A colourful pile of screenwriting books with a baby monitor on top

I’ve begun many of my journeys with a ‘how to’ book. Even if I’ve ended up cursing and chucking it over my shoulder, the habit is long established and reassuring. So, I gathered all the books on my shelf that were related to writing and the above pile was the result. The lowdown I’ve read the War of Art, which is fabulous for creatives, outlining the struggle to battle our inner demons and just GET ON WITH THE DAMN WORK. And I’ve read The Right to Write, or rather I enjoyed doing the exercises, as it’s very interactive and nurturing. …

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10 Steps to Blog

The word BLOG bright, exploding into sparks

One of my aims for this blog is to share what I learn along my journey to make it useful to fellow dream-chasers and budding screenwriters. So, in that spirit, here’s how I created this blog… I could easily have spent weeks researching, designing and editing. I tend to second-guess things like this, strive for perfection (which of course I never achieve) and change my mind about what I want. My first website took me a month to finish and it was a flamin’ drag-and-drop template! This time, I created my online presence in A DAY. What changed? I kept …

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Where I am

Desktop screen, learning about blogs

Write from where you are. That was what I told a small writing group struggling with writer’s block some years ago. It was borrowed wisdom from Julia Cameron (the author of The Right to Write). It’s certainly true that when faced with a blank page, writers sometimes stall. Either, we suddenly don’t know what to say, or indeed there’s so much to say it’s hard to know where to begin. The remedy: write precisely about where you are: what are you sitting on? What can you see? How old are you now? What’s that like? Even overwhelmed by nothing or everything, …

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