Granada Nights

Screenwriting books are Bullshit

The question of which screenwriting book is the best keeps coming up. I read a lot of books since 1998 when I started out in writing and I’ve come to the conclusion that most of them are bullshit. You don’t need them.  They may actually be more harm to you than you think.

Sure, most break down how the popular screenplay has worked by identifying key qualities that many commercially successful screenplays share, codifying a language that has been adopted by creative executives in both film and television. And there might be something of tangible value to be gained by interacting with this material, either in book form or at one of the seminars. But for someone who wants to be an artist, a creator, an architect of an original vision, the best book to read on screenwriting is no book at all. The best seminar is no seminar at all.

“To me, the writer wants to get as many outside voices OUT of his/her head as possible. Experts win by getting us to be dependent on their view of the world. They win when they get to frame the discussion, when they get to tell you there’s a right way and a wrong way to think about the game, whatever the game is. Because that makes you dependent on them. If they have the secret rules, then you need them if you want to get ahead. ” Brian Koppelman

The truth is, you don’t.

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