Let Heather Hale, a veteran Hollywood insider, teach you the secrets of networking that empower YOU to supercharge your career. Hit the ground running — or reboot your enthusiasm. Learn how to break the ice and build rapport, team-network and work a room with your wingman, mine organizations from the inside out through events and volunteering, mind map your web of relationships, diversify your sphere of influence, expand your constellations of connections and refine your hit lists.
Learn how to survive the gauntlet of obstacles on the journey a film or television project makes from conception, through development, to financing and packaging and finally to distribution and marketing. During this entertaining “tell it like it is” seminar, you’ll learn: why there are 4,400 production companies but only about 15 real buyers – and who those main players are – and how to get your project into their hands and how to turn them into champions of your work, how to move your projects up various simultaneous ladders, how and why Hollywood studios strive for blockbusters at the risk of bombs. Learn where the indie niche opportunities are, where “No Man’s Land” is in terms of film budgets and what the network and cable companies are looking for right now. Available as a DVD from Creative Screenwriting Magazine.
Writing and Analyzing Business Plans for Independent Films – and YOU!
Business plans are dynamic tools that empower you to clarify, test and resolve each and every aspect of your venture on the page. Whether it is a simple producers’ package to secure greenlighting elements or a sophisticated business plan for the acquisition, development, production and/or distribution of an entire slate of films for a start-up production company, your business plan should be as polished as the script it is representing. Plan your work, then work your plan. Pencil out your vision so that by the time you are making an investor presentation or launching your film, you will have earned the right to be genuinely confident. Nothing reveals the weaknesses and shortcomings in your film strategy – or helps you to manifest your dreams - more clearly than a well-executed business plan! ALSO: learn how to adapt all the key elements to your own personal business plans for writers, directors, actors, artists and entrepreneurs!
When does a non-linear story structure serve your project? And when does it distract? How to decide when the emotional tract of the story is best served by mixing up the chronological timeline in order to unfolding the sequence in a more intriguing way. Scenes and scripts pages of popular and classic films that do it well will be analyzed. Available soon in a DVD from Creative Screenwriting Magazine.
Learn the right way to “direct on the page” so that not only do you not piss off your director, but that you engage him or her emotionally to want to manifest your vision. Don’t lose your reader in camera directions but rather discover literary ways of emulating the viewing experience on the page. Take your readers on a compelling tour of what’s in your mind’s eye.
Pruning your narration, refining your dialogue and killing your babies are some of the most critical skills for a screenwriter to learn. Learn where and how to bury back story, deftly lay pipe, subtly set-up for later pay-offs and use exposition as ammunition as conflict in motion. Don’t just learn tips and tricks — learn the trade. You have to master the craft before you can excel at the art.
Learn how to track down whoever’s true life story it is — or the author or journalist who captured it on the page – or any other people involved — and get into partnership with them. How to condense a life (or a novel, play or news article) into two entertaining hours driven by a unified theme. Not a class on law at all but rather a real world workshop on the management of relationships — and the development of material into a marketable literary asset.
Have fun learning how to think your story through on paper (and brainstorm collaboratively with a team) synchronizing color-coded 3” x 5” post it’s and timelines on butcher block paper. Learn interesting mind mapping character development strategies and story structure techniques. Learn the finite differences — and the overlap — between genres. Find your tone. Honor your voice. Figure out your style. Leave the class with a whole new set of tools to replicate this process over and over at home on each new project.
Which screenplay contests are worth entering? And why? How can you best assess new contests? Are there niche contests? Which of your scripts would be best suited to which contests? Is there a difference between a contest-winning writing sample versus a produce-able script? How can you parlay a win (or even an ancient placement) into career traction? Should you volunteer to read? Can you get paid to read? What do their coverages and feedback look like? And how can you get your hands on them and use them to further your career? Learn how to capitalize on contests as yet another tool in your arsenal.