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Indiewire's Ultimate Guide for Screenwriters

By Indiewire | Indiewire November 3, 2015 at 11:19AM

Want to be a working screenwriter? Study up.
Nicolas Cage in "Adaptation"
Nicolas Cage in "Adaptation"

We know it already: Everyone's got a script. But does everyone have a good script? Check out these tips for honing your script into something worth making, and best of luck getting your words onto the big screen!  All of the below stories were published in 2015 and we'll continue to update links so you might want to bookmark this page.

7 Things to Do Before You Submit Your Screenplay Anywhere: Some of these things may sound pretty obvious, but you'd be surprised by how many people neglect to do them. Read this before you even think of submitting your screenplay.

Free Scripts! Download 2016 Oscar Contenders 'Straight Outta Brooklyn,' 'Ex Machina,' 'Trainwreck' and More: For aspiring screenwriters, these scripts amount to a free screenwriting class. In studying the language, structure and pacing of the original and adapted screenplays, you'll see how story is carefully plotted and learn how strong characters are developed. 

The 10 Most Common Reasons Why Scripts are Rejected: Would you believe that 98 percent of spec scripts are dead on arrival? Here's how to make sure that yours isn't one of them.

Attention, Screenwriters: Read This and Stop Procrastinating: You could write a great script...if only you could stop procrastinating. For many writers, sticking to a writing schedule is a difficult battle against doubt, anxiety and good old procrastination–a fight they far too often lose. Read this for tips on how to stop procrastinating and start writing.

Why Story Structure Formulas Don't Work: An award-winning playwright and screenwriter explains why you shouldn't follow the rules.

7 Best Screenwriting Apps for iPhone: You still need to do the heavy lifting, but these apps might help.

Screenwriting Essentials in Infographic Form: You have an awesome idea for a screenplay, but don't know where to begin. This infographic might point you in the right direction.

5 Questions You Were Too Afraid to Ask About Being a Screenwriter: For those hoping to break in, the world of screenwriting can seem like a black box. Unless you know industry insiders or have an agent, your first screenplay's journey from Final Draft to production will be an unparalleled challenge. That's why screenwriting organization The Black List teamed up with Film Society of Lincoln Center in New York to answer your burning questions. 

Attention, Screenwriters: 4 Tips to Help You Find Your Story: In a guest post from Faren Humes, a writer, director, and educator from Miami who recently participated in the Sundance Institute Screenwriters Intensive | Miami, she discusses how to create robust characters and authentic stories.

Attention, Screenwriters: 5 Lessons from the Film Independent Screenwriting Lab: In a guest post, Film Independent Screenwriting Fellow Rachel Goldberg shares some tips from the Screenwriting Lab.

Lessons from the Sundance Screenwriters Lab: Award-winning documentary director Yung Chang shares his experience at the January Screenwriters Lab.

READ MORE: 'House of Cards' Screenwriter Beau Willimon Thinks Writing Is Like 'Grabbing at the Cosmic'

This article is related to: Filmmaker Toolkit: Screenwriting

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