Get Premium Access
Info

Scriptnotes Podcast

Screenwriters John August and Craig Mazin discuss screenwriting and related topics in the film and television industry, everything from getting stuff written to the vagaries of copyright and work-for-hire law.
RSS Feed Subscribe in iTunes Premium Podcasts
2017
August
July
June
May
April
March
February
January


2016
December
November
October
September
August
July
June
May
April
March
February
January


2015
December
November
October
September
August
July
June
May
April
March
February
January


2014
December
November
October
September
August
July
June
May
April
March
February
January


2013
December
November
October
September
August
July
June
May
April
March
February
January


2012
December
November
October
September
August
July
June
May
April
March
February
January


2011
December
November
October
September
August


All Episodes
Archives
Premium Episodes
Now displaying: July, 2014
Get access to all episodes from SCRIPTNOTES for just 1.99 a month with Premium Access through MyLibsyn.
Jul 29, 2014

John and Craig look at the trend towards hiring two writers to work on separate drafts of the same project. Is it better to have writers in parallel than serially? Or does it end up with studios ordering off a Chinese menu: this scene, that character, that other set piece?

 

Both Craig and John just started new first drafts, so we talk about the difference between the Map and the Territory, and how outlines can’t always anticipate the discoveries made while writing.

 

Finally, we answer a bunch of listener questions ranging from the Peter Stark Program to loving your day job.

 

Links:

 

 

You can download the episode here: AAC | mp3.

Jul 22, 2014

John and Craig talk structure and escalation. Structure is simply what happens when. Escalation is how things get tougher.

 

In features, characters are usually going on a journey that can only happen once, so you need to make sure that the events in your story are constantly challenging your heroes in new ways so they can continue to grow.

 

In television, you’re often telling stories in which the character themselves don’t change much, yet the sequence of events within the episode (and in the season) needs to feel like it’s pushing forward.

 

Along the way, we discuss Intro to Journalism’s Five W’s, and what people mean when they say a two-hander.

 

John and Craig are headed back to the Austin Film Festival again this year for a live show and other special events. Use the code SCRIPTNOTES to get $25 off our Conference and Producers Badges.

 

Links:

 

 

You can download the episode here: AAC | mp3.

Jul 15, 2014

In their first-ever live streaming episode, John and Craig open the mailbag to answer a bunch of listener questions.

 

  • What research should a writer do before soliciting an agent or manager?
  • What should a writer be willing to give up in order to make her first sale?
  • Does a Mormon writer face special challenges in drink-and-drugging Hollywood?
  • Why doesn't Highland exist on Android?
  • What determines "Story by" credit on a feature?
  • How did we like DungeonWorld? (John asked this question.)

 

All this, plus the Fermi Paradox in this episode of Scriptnotes.

 

Links:

 

 

You can download the episode here: AAC | mp3.

Jul 8, 2014

Aline Brosh McKenna joins Craig and John to talk about the difficult journey through pages 70-90 of your feature. After that, we talk about procrastination, the Panic Monster and our inner Instant Gratification Monkeys.

 

Screenwriting books always talk about structure, but never about tone, which is much more important for distinguishing great writing. So we spend some time looking at what tone feels like on the page.

 

Finally, we talk mentors. Aline has specific suggestions for young women.

 

Links:

 

 

You can download the episode here: AAC | mp3.

Jul 1, 2014

John and Craig discuss why most characters are liars, and how that’s actually a good thing. John offers seven suggestions for picking character names that will help your readers. Then we look at a three page challenge that’s been filmed to see what worked on the page versus on screen.

 

In follow-up, we discuss the Aereo decision and our mutual love of Slate’s Culture Gabfest.

 

Finally, we answer a reader question about the proper protocol for checking in after a meeting.

 

Links:

 

 

You can download the episode here: AAC | mp3.

1