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on July 22, 2013
Excellent well written and informative book. Don't let the "Dummies" title fool you. This book is full of good information that would would helpful to any beginning screenwriter, or veteran writer who just needs a little reaffirmation about the changes and rewards of the screenwriting process. I would recommend it to anyone in the writing field, whether they're doing a screenplay, novel, short story, etc.
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on December 5, 2008
This book is a fairly comprehensive guide to writing screenplays. You'll find tips on how to structure your screenplay, advice on how to craft compelling plots and deeper characters, instructions for formatting your script to industry standards, and finally a guide to marketing your script to Hollywood agents and producers. I was going to give this book 4 stars, but ultimately decided on 3 stars due to the author's unfortunate habit of using music metaphors to explain film industry techniques. There are two problems with this... 1) For a reader who has no experience as a composer or a performing orchestral musician, the author's use of one artform (music) to explain another (filmmaking) is completely useless as the analogy will not make any sense and only serve to further confuse the reader 2) In addition to being confusing for non-musicians, these analogies are infuriating to those of us who actually do understand music, because of the author's ignorance of the subject matter. This is most evident in one example (there are many others that I won't take the time to detail) where the author claims that a pause in dialogue is analogous to a grace note in music. She obviously has confused grace notes for rests. A grace note is a short note that precedes a written note, typically used to create an accent. A rest indicates one or more beats of silence. She is way off the mark here, and it makes her look more than a little foolish to those in the know. In summary, I would recommend this book as a starter for beginners, with a warning to ignore her attempts at analogy and focus in on those parts of the book where she explains things in a straight-forward and less colorful manner.
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on May 26, 2011
This book should be retitled "Writing a book for dummies". It concentrates WAY too much on creating a story and writer's block. If you already know how to write a decent story you're not going to like this book. It doesn't get in2 screenwriting until Chapter 15, and there are only TWO pages of screenwriting format. I was expecting at least a chapter of format, considering the title. False advertising. I'd look into other books.
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on October 22, 2015
You can find everything in here on the internet. Unless you just like books or have some other reason to prefer this to just doing standard research and googling, I wouldn't think it would be worth it to anyone. On the bright side, the info in the book matches the info you'll find online and the author explains things nicely sometimes
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on December 8, 2010
Screenwriting for dummies is a good resource that provides a lot of good, helpful information. I particularly enjoy the use of lists and clearly defined titles in each section because they make it easier to find what I'm looking for, something that's harder to do with books that are more on the anecdotal side.

Having said that, I don't like the way the book is organized. Someone who is completely inexperienced in scriptwriting might get confused trying to navigate through it. I was also quite shocked that even though there's a section about adapting other works of literature to script format, there was no mention of the legal complexities something like that might entitle.

But, all in all, Screenwriting for dummies is a good resource, but definitely not the only one that an inexperienced, aspiring screenwriting needs.
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on April 16, 2013
It basically says the same thing that any other screenwriting book will tell you but because its a "for dummies" book, it lays it out in a more friendly and predictable manner. While understanding the mechanics of screenwriting might help you, personally I think you limit yourself if you focus too much on their 3 act formula and what has to happen when. Then again, maybe by following the formula what you lack in originality you'll make up for in success. After all, Hollywood isn't exactly the land of originality anyway, it scares the heck out of studios.
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on August 20, 2013
This does the trick for the most part but if you know anything at all about decent writing, too basic.
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on June 21, 2014
All you need to know as a beginner! the book has really made it easier for me to write script! The book covers all the important parts and theories of screenwriting. I only wish it gave some tips on teleplay.
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on March 7, 2016
I love movies and have so many great ideas. I've been wanting to put them on paper and wanted to master the art of screen writing. I've been at it for about 2 years now trying to self teach myself the good and the bad of screen writing. There's a lot of random resources online, but this book is all of it wrapped up into one. It focuses on story telling, and how to develop a story, along with the intricate elements of it.

Don't pay attention to the other reviews where they complain about how the book lacks formatting a screenplay. I learned that in under an hour as screenplay software does it for you.

Great book.
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on August 15, 2012
This book is excellent. It provides encouragement to start and finish a script. It is easy to understand and the process of writing a script is clearly explained. I suspect I may use it to get started with all of my writings.
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