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Writing & Selling Thriller Screenplays (Writing & Selling Screenplays) Paperback – April 1, 2014

4.4 out of 5 stars 5 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Lucy V. Hay is a novelist, script editor, and script reader, and one of the founding organizers of the London Screenwriters' Festival.
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Product Details

  • Series: Writing & Selling Screenplays
  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Oldcastle Books (April 1, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1842439715
  • ISBN-13: 978-1842439715
  • Product Dimensions: 5 x 0.7 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,519,738 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition
Lucy Hay's Writing & Selling Thriller Screenplays was an absolute godsend for my thriller rewrite as I ventured into this genre.

Once immersed, the reader can tell that this is a book written by someone who truly loves film and has immersed herself in the thriller genre. Ms. Hay basically saves you hours of analysis and research -- she does it for you by breaking it down in this wonderful book that I can't gush enough about. I've worn its edges, marked up and highlighted throughout.

In Part One, she breaks down what defines a thriller (it's definitely not horror and explains why sometimes there is overlap) and its sub-genres. Issues that one finds in thrillers, so hopefully you don't do the same while writing your spec. I think there's a breakdown of at least 35-40 different male protagonist characters that you find in thrillers along with a number of female and child characters that pop up in thrillers. She doesn't leave out how secondary characters can play an effective role in thrillers and shouldn't be neglected in development. Basically, part one lays down the foundation of what constitutes a thriller and offers a great boilerplate for you to begin your draft.

Part Two focuses on the actual writing of the thriller,the nuts and bolts -- the building blocks so to speak. The three C's - Clarity, Conflict & Characters are delved into in depth. They are the primary elements of the thriller genre. Great focus on creating a thriller logline, with examples from current films as well as outlining and why it's a vital requirement in creating not only a thriller but in all screenplays. Great dialogue regarding tone, your opening page, the first ten pages and set up. I mean...good, good stuff.
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Format: Paperback
If you haven't read many or any screenwriting books, this would be a great one to start with. It goes over many topics about the screenwriting process. If you've already read a ton of screenwriting books, it doesn't give much new information... but what it does include will make you take a good hard look at your thriller script to see "is it really thrilling? What sub-genre is it? How can I pump this up to it's full potential as a thriller?" ... The writing of the book flows well and is easy to understand. There are certain parts where it becomes quite clear the writer is based in the UK, but most of what she writes applies to the genre no matter where you are based. In truth, I wish it had more information about finding the market for your thriller... but sadly the "selling" portion is a little light and generic. Not many new avenues are mentioned or discussed. A little too much time was spent on the production side, rather than finding a producer in the first place.
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Format: Paperback
'Writing & Selling Thriller Screenplays' is a 223 page paperback, with index, arranged in three parts.

The first settles the question of "What is a thriller?" Lucy breaks the thriller genre into 22 sub-genres, and explains and illustrates each with examples. Then she analyses thrillers from the point-of-view of the protagonist, and comes up with eight common male protagonists in thrillers, and ten female equivalents. That's a total of forty different ways to slice up the thriller pie. If you want to write one, you need to have a grip on this stuff.

Part two addresses the business of writing your thriller screenplay. Please note: this has nothing to do with outlining formulas or beat sheets or any of those aids other people have written about so ably. The "writing of" section covers tools which are frequently underrated by newbie writers: premise, logline and story outline. What elements will you find in the logline of a marketable screenplay? This book tells you, with real life illustrations. Screenplays are about conflict, but how much conflict is enough? When does your protagonist move from flight to fight? How do you bring your story to a resolution? Everyone knows that the first ten pages of a screenplay are vital in grabbing a reader's attention, but what are the traps to avoid? They're listed here.

Part three is all about getting ready to sell your screenplay. As someone who has been asked for feedback on screenplays in the past, I know that many newbie writers have no idea of how to handle it. Lucy provides five questions the writer should ask about feedback that will put a boundary in place and help them maintain their equilibrium.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I am not getting to know about the screenplays.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Great book - learned a lot! Lucy Hay really knows her stuff.!
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