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Screenwriting Tips

Expert screenwriting tips by working screenwriters



The Stakes: Set Them High

We too frequently read non-pro screenplays that fall into the trap of having stakes that simply are not set high enough, or ones we don't care about because the script doesn't emote well to the reader.

Those are fundamental mistakes and you should try your utmost to avoid them.

It's crucial that your screenplay either contains stakes that are very significant or stakes that the reader really cares about (ie they emote well to them).

Schindler's List combined both high stakes and writing that emoted well.

Cameron Crowe received an Academy Award for Almost Face. Schindler's List should have but didn't.

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