"In this beautifully written and inspiring book, Claudia Johnson leads the reader through the process of writing the short film, along the way illuminating something much bigger--how to write great drama in any form. A very accessible book, well-researched and full of original thinking, Crafting Short Screenplays That Connect adds an important part to the literature of screenwriting and filmmaking, and will undoubtedly lead to some great short films."
- Linda Seger, author, Making a Good Script Great
"Crafting Short Screenplays that Connect would make a good addition to any screenwriter's library...a very accessible book for aspiring screenwriters." - Videomaker
"Whether you want to write short screenplays because you want some practice before you go the distance, or because it's an assignment for your film class, 'Crafting Short Screenplays That Connect' is for you...It is explicit in its detail and direction. What is perhaps the most unique part of this guide is the fact that it contains five short screenplays that illustrate dramatic principles she teaches."
- Jason Antebi, Done Deal (scriptsales.com)
The beauty and power of any story lies in its ability to connect to the reader, listener, or observer. Crafting Short Screenplays That Connect is the first screenwriting guide to introduce connection as an essential, although essentially overlooked, aspect of creating stories for the screen and of the screenwriting process itself. Written with clarity and humor, this book teaches the craft of writing short screenplays by guiding the student through carefully focused writing exercises of increasing length and complexity. Five award-winning student screenplays are included for illustration and inspiration.
The text is divided into three parts. Part one focuses on preparing to write by means of exercises designed to help students think more deeply about the screenwriter's purposes; their own unique vision, material and process; and finally about what screenplays are at their simplest and most profound level--a pattern of human change, created from specific moments of change--discoveries and decisions.
Part two teaches students how to craft an effective pattern of human change. It guides them through the writing and re-writing of "Five (Not So Easy) Pieces"--five short screenplays of increasing length and complexity--focusing on a specific principle of dramatic technique: The Discovery, The Decision, The Boxing Match, The Improbable Connection, and The Long Short Screenplay.
Part Three presents the five screenplays used throughout the book to illustrate the dramatic principles that have been discussed, and includes interviews with the screenwriters, a look at where they are now and what they are doing, and brief discussion of how each film evolved.
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