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Complete amateur seeks advice (1 Viewer)


Senior Member
Hi, my name's Aimee Friedland and I am an aspiring writer. Lately I have taken great interest in filmmaking, and, in particular, screenwriting. As my, little, knowledge of writing lies in the 'short stories' and 'academic' realms, would anyone be so kind as to offer some "useful" links which would be beneficial for an amateur like me?


Linton Robinson

Senior Member
Maia knows absolutely nothing about screenplays. She just likes having pets. And getting people's emails.

There are forums and sites that specialize in screenwriting.

I'll send you a personal message.
Last edited:

Linton Robinson

Senior Member
On second thought, what the hell?

The top peer review sites (upload your script, people review it, you review others') are Zoetrope.com and Triggerstreet.com
It's best to know how to write a script before you put them up there.
Search the MSN and Yahoo groups for screenwriters groups to try out first.
Absolutewrite.com is a good writing site with some experienced people on it they have a screenwriting forum among all their others.

http://www.wga.org/ This site has resources for learning...and the format you should use in scripts

http://www.screenwriting.info/index.shtml there are MANY tutorials on script writing on the web

http://www.keepwriting.com/ more on format

http://dvshop.ca/dvcafe/writing/beginners.html This site is EXTREMELY useful...includes some free templates to convert your MS windows into a fortmatting program.

http://www.celtx.com/ this is a very good free formatting program

Moviebytes is very helpful in many ways http://www.moviebytes.com/index.cfm

Okay, screenwriting has more format, technique and basic skill than other forms of writing. You learn it by trying it out, and reading what people say on tutorials and forums.

I'd suggest writing a scene or two in format, then posting it on newbie groups for comments. Like this one

or this one


(You need a yahoo email account to join them. Not a bad thing to have anyway)

Then try doing something a little longer, as you start learning more about how structure of screenplays works. Yes, download free scripts and read them. You also get practice reading scripts on triggerstreet and zoetrope, the premiere screenwriting groups. Free membership. If you join zoetrope, send me a "zmail".

Once you can produce a entire script (and Zoetrope has an area for short scripts...and there are contests and markets for 10 minute scripts) post it for review and see how it goes.

If you are interested in TV writing, it's a little different. Try tvwriting.com forums and info

Good luck


Senior Member
the single biggest peice of advice that i can give you is this.

Don't give up. Is it possible to get a script optioned without an agent, yes but its not easy unless a trustworthy person is recommending you.

Remember, Agents only get paid if they get your script optioned (remember Movie scripts are never "sold" they are always optioned). Therefore they will not represent you if they do not think they can get your script optioned.

Also you have to work at it, get to know people in the indusrty and get your stuff out there for other people to see (remember the "trustworthy source"?).

No one is going to gift wrap it for you and say "Oh your a writer, let me be your agent...". You will have to prove to them that you deserve to be their client.

Also the first time, or the first six times your script gets shot down, maybe only twean it a little, but remember just because one person says scrap it, doesn't mean it is total garbage. Different people have different tastes in movies. If i write the next great action flick but try to get it optioned by sya Reese Witherspoon's production company, chances are i am going to get turned down, get what i am saying?

Or if its an action flick and the agent reviewing it happens to be a female that only likes romantic comedies Adam Sandler style, i will probably get rejected. Remember if they dont like the movie, they won't be passionate in trying to get it optioned, and chances are they will not be able to. Which means chances are they wont try and will just reject you...

Linton Robinson

Senior Member
(remember Movie scripts are never "sold" they are always optioned

Rather obviously incorrect.

Diego, tvwriter.com

If you are on Zoetrope, join my office for a collection of files on TV writing. (They're scarce lil suckers, but I found them all by googling...hint, hint :)


Senior Member
I've already been to TV writer.com...

Is there a way you can send me those files by e-mail?

I've scoured google a lot.


Senior Member
why not just put it up here in the forums?

because i have so much in the way of info/tips/site links that i send out as attachments to those who need it, that i wouldn't have time or the space to put it all up here... and anyone who wants the stuff by email can just drop me a line...

btw, i have to keep lin on ignore, because he seems bent on carrying out some sort of vendetta against me and it's bad for my blood pressure to read his rude and too-often outright lying posts... so, i don't know what he's saying here, but for the record, i do mentor lots of apiring screenwriters [among other writer breeds], have done so for years...

one who first asked for help is still with me 5 years later... and many others have been around for several years, as well... not that i'm that bad at helping them, it's just that they still find my advice/help useful and pop back whenever they need an opinion or an answer... or help with a new project... and it's all free, so i don't make these offers to take advantage of anyone or just because i'm lonely and need friends...

hugs, maia
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