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SCRIPT INDUSTRY EXPERT Q&A: Mario O. Moreno

Script brings you behind the scenes to get to know our family of contributors on a more personal level. Meet Mario O. Moreno, author of our column Screenwriter’s Guidepost. Mario O. Moreno talking jive at the Screenwriter’s World Conference Mario is a Story Specialist for The Writers Store by day, and a screenwriter by night. Since earning a bachelor’s…

SCREENWRITER’S GUIDEPOST: Writing to Win (the Insider Contest)

Q: How can I give myself the best chance to win the Industry Insider Contest? It boils down to this: Finish the rough draft ASAP. Then rewrite more than anyone else. Q: How do you finish your rough draft ASAP when the contest announces the finalists and you’ve barely finished responding to all the congratulations posts on Facebook when…

Screenwriter’s Guidepost: Is Screenplay Structure Theory Ruining Movies?

Question: Is structure theory ruining movies? Should I still use it? The value of structure theory has fueled almost as many conversations as the phrase “I’ve got an idea for a story.” Arguments in favor: “It helps keep the story on track.” “When it works, it’s invisible.” “It’s what Hollywood wants.” Arguments in opposition: “It leads to…

Screenwriter’s Guidepost: “How do I know when my script is done?”

Let’s get this straight up front: it’s never really done. Not until it’s cast, shot, edited, mixed and released. And, as we saw with George Lucas and the original Star Wars trilogy, if you give a storyteller a chance to tinker with their story, even after all that, they will take it. Since no story is ever really…

Screenwriter’s Guidepost: The Art of Taking Notes

Question: “How can I avoid weeping every time I get notes?” When I first arrived in L.A., my writing partner (at the time) and I had two sample scripts that an exec had “loved,” and a manager that the exec helped us find. I imagined our first real meeting with said manager would be ceaseless, unadulterated praise and maybe some minor trim notes.…

The Last Time I Spoke With Blake

The last time I spoke with Blake was at the Writers Store’s previous location in West LA. Blake lived nearby and would visit the store often. He’d usually arrive to find the staff trying to work through some story issue. Blake would be engaged by our conundrum and stick around, riffing suggestions, for however long…

Screenwriter’s Guidepost: Can Screenwriting Contests Advance Your Career?

Question: “Can entering screenwriting contests really help my screenwriting career?” Beyond winning and losing, it depends on you. With the allocation of time required for reading guidelines, financial resources for entry fees, and research required to identify the best contests, writers can find themselves investing more time on entering contests than on writing. While the wrong approach…