Book Review: “Writing A Blockbuster (Screenwriting Blue Books Book 14)” by William C. Martell

Writing A BlockbusterWriting A Blockbuster by William C. Martell
My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars

Screenwriting guru William C. Martell has done it again. Writing A Blockbuster is a quick, concise guide on how to, um, well, write a blockbuster. Using examples from films such as Pearl Harbor, The Mummy Returns, and Gladiator, Martell points out the components necessary to turn your idea into a spectacle-filled spec script. (My edition was originally published in 2002, which is why there aren’t more recent examples. Nonetheless, the lessons within the text are timeless.)

From coming up with so-called “trailer moments” and utilizing the “escalator of doom” to avoiding such pitfalls as overkill and “golfing goats,” Writing A Blockbuster lays out the ultimate plan for your mega-budget screen dream.

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“For Writers …” by “Guardians of the Galaxy” Writer-Director James Gunn

I’m sure you know who James Gunn is. Filmmaker. The man behind Marvel‘s insanely popular and successful Guardians of the Galaxy franchise, whose latest installment grossed $146.5 million during its opening weekend and is on track to be the fifth Marvel title to hit $1 billion at the global box office.

Yeah, you know him.

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Book Review: “Your Idea Machine (Screenwriting Blue Books Book 1)” by William C. Martell

Your Idea MachineYour Idea Machine by William C. Martell
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Yet another great, informative (and, like this review, short and quick) read from screenwriting guru William C. Martell. Your Idea Machine offers several ways that you, the Writer, can brainstorm story ideas for your screenplay (or novel or play or whatever). There are tips on where to find ideas and how to determine if they satisfy the rule of the “Two Ewes” — are they both Unique and Universal?

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Book Review: “Secrets Of Selling: Breaking In (Screenwriting Blue Books Book 20)” by William C. Martell

So, you’ve written a screenplay and now you’ve dreams of selling it. But do you even know how to get your masterpiece in front of those who matter?

Fear not, newbie. Actual screenwriter William C. Martell will guide you in Secrets of Selling: Breaking In, a handy “Blue Book” with all sorts of useful information and strategies for breaking into the notoriously difficult Hollywood film biz.

At more than 130,000 words, Martell packs this tome with topics such as how to think like a producer, writing query letters, making connections, finding a manager or agent, and even when you should run away from what seems like a good deal.

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