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Write Your Way into Animation and Games: Create a Writing Career in Animation and Games 1st Edition

4.5 out of 5 stars 19 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0240813431
ISBN-10: 024081343X
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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Based in Los Angeles, California. Christy Marx is a writer, story editor, series developer, game designer, and interactive writer. Her many credits include: Babylon 5 and the Twilight Zone; 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea; He-Man; X-Men Evolution; Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles; Lord of the Rings; Elfquest; and more.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 424 pages
  • Publisher: Focal Press; 1 edition (March 4, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 024081343X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0240813431
  • Product Dimensions: 7.6 x 0.8 x 9.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.9 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #249,764 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Write Your Way Into Animation and Games: Create a Writing Career in Animation and Games is a book that contains pieces from several other books printed by Focal Press, as well as some new material written by Christy Marx to tie everything together. The title says the book covers both animation and games, which it does; however, only the first nine chapters actually cover animation. The remaining seventeen chapters focus on writing for games. But it should be noted that there are times in the game writing section where concepts from the animation section are referenced, so the animation portion does need to be included.

The animation portion of the book contains writings by two writers: Christy Marx (who has nearly 30 years of experience developing, story editing and writing animation series and features) and Jean Ann Wright (whose experience includes work with Hanna-Barbera, working as a freelance animation writer, and having her own business as an animation preproduction consultant). Both of these women provide great insight into the basics of writing for animation, as well as providing information on writing structure, character development, and information and advice for anyone who wants to try to break into the animation scriptwriting business. While some of the information provided by both of these women overlap somewhat, it turns out that one of them may only give a brief mention to a concept, while the other provides more in-depth information to flesh out the basic concept. As I read this section, I felt that both writers' information was very helpful and useful for an aspiring animation scriptwriter.
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Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Before I can properly apply the book (which is textbook format, though a lot more interesting and fun than normal textbooks) here's a little background. I'm a lifelong writer, just now getting serious about publication, with an abiding passion for film (particularly animation) and video games. While I'm not bad on the designing end of the spectrum, writing is definitely my stronger suit. I researched screenwriting and animation writing in my teens, but, figuring I'd learn all this in film school (all of which accepted me, none of which helped me pay) I never took it seriously.

Fast-forward a few years. I'm still in love with writing; it's still a creative pursuit at which I excel (assuming I work very hard and polish each piece); I still love film, but that expensive hobby understandably got pushed onto a back burner. A few weeks ago, I began to wonder seriously, not idly as I've done for years, about what I could do to write for animation and games. Coincidentally, I stumbled across this book.

"Write Your Way into Animation and Games" is a fabulous resource for beginners, and even intermediates depending on what you're looking for. I was frustrated by the first chapters, which cover screenwriting basics and how to craft a simple story. I read them anyway (in case skipping would cause me to miss something). And I have to say, the advice is clear, concise, brief, thorough, and necessary. It was material I'm highly familiar with, but once I banished the "been through this before" conceit, the refresher did very well for me. I'd urge anyone not actually working in animation (not that you'd be picking up this book if you were) to please go over it. It's a little irritating at times, but the information is still valuable.
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Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
This book, which strikes me more as a combination of a textbook and a memoir (a la how-I-got-into-show-business vein), covers all of the basics of writing an animated film and certain types of electronic games. It does a good job of presenting in a very down-to-earth and comprehensive fashion all of the basic terms, the general structure of the animated story (whether geared for TV or live action film) and the more typical simulated game, and the key elements of any script associated with them. The book also adequately shows how writing scripts for animation and gaming is similar to and most important, different from the more typical screenwriting associated with movies and TV.

The authors go to great length in their discussion of the care and feeding of editors and producers. Make no mistake- this is probably the most important element of writing for these types of media. That said, along these lines, based on a careful reading of this book, my key impressions of this kind of writing are as follows:

1. Script writing for these media in particular is very cookie-cutter in both approach and execution. But then, all commercial writing is this way.
2. Work within these media feeds off of collaboration and socializing. In this way, it's very unlike writing for magazines or publishing the book, which is more of a solitary process. In the latter media, the writer has the option of interaction with others and has some control over the process and the final product. In contrast, with animation and gaming, social interaction and collaboration is a requirement. Additionally, writers in the medium often find numerous constraints imposed upon them, and typically have much less control of the process and little or no control over the final product.
3.
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