Teach Yourself Screenwriting

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Ideal for self-starters enhancing their knowledge bank, students needing further explanation, or trivia buffs.

Product Details

  • Series: Teach Yourself Series
  • Paperback: 250 pages
  • Publisher: Ntc Pub Group (February 11, 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0844231118
  • ISBN-13: 978-0844231112
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 5.5 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces

Customer Reviews

Great Screenwriting Book

 on September 13, 2012
By Gary
Frencham goes beyond explaining screenplays, the three act structure, jargon and formatting. In fact, he starts at the beginning with ideas and delves into the complexity of ideas, story building and character development with quite a clever detailed process map – a topic that is usually brushed over or briefly scoped with index cards in other screenplay books. Another feature, I really liked is he gives examples of both wrong and right formatting used in the industry. I borrowed this book a few years ago and didn’t get to read it all but wrote down the name and author as a must have on my wish list!

Screenwriting 101

 on August 25, 2016
By Francisco
Extremely useful book for the people that’s starting writing scripts, it suggests a great deal of references that are useful trough your creative process, am extremely happy with the content and what I’ve learned .

I really like teach yourself screenwriting.

 on October 4, 2015
By Leelee
I really enjoy reading the screenwriting book in my spare time. The book had arrived in good condition in the mail almost looking brand new.

Technical Writing Direction at Its Best

 on December 20, 2008
By Richard D. Persen
Teach Yourself Screenwriting is one of the best “how-to” books I have in my library. From concept to delivery, it covers every aspect of producing a viable script. I am amazed at the examples that Frensham provides his readers; they are unrivaled. This is a must-read for every budding screenwriter.


 on October 11, 2013
By Chris Alford
best thing ever need this to help writing play and script for tv and movies! thanx a million times !

All encompassing… and it fits in your back pocket

7 people found this helpful.
 on July 11, 2000
By Amazon Customer
I’ve been trying to get my hands on any and every screenwriting book I can find. I have the desire and ideas but I want to make sure I’m following the rules, and Mr. Frensham does a very good job explaining them. There are plenty of exercises to keep you busy for a long time before writing one word of screenplay. The underlying theme of the book is: THERE ARE NO SHORTCUTS! This book could easily take the place of one of the intensive week long writing classes being offered these days. The areas covered are Layout, Originating Your Ideas, Developing the Ideas, Creating Characters, Character Growth, Sequences and Scenes, Emotions, Rewrites, Assembling Portfolios, Copyrighting, Agents, Your Writing Career, The Industry, and finally an excellent Appendix of addresses for various screenwriting related topics. Out of the 22 chapters included, the shortest one at two pages is entitled THE ACTUAL WRITING, and if you read this book you will realize the actual writing of the screenplay is the least amount of work. A very, very, good book and it fits in my pocket.

Incredible Resource

2 people found this helpful.
 on November 11, 2007
By Fred Woodbridge
“Teach Yourself Screenwriting” is a compendium of all things screenwriting. Really. This book takes two pages to fully explain what other books would use a chapter for, and considering its topic, that’s incredible.

Step by Step Guide to Writing a Screenplay

 on July 30, 2013
By MacheteJason
There is now a 2011 edition of this book. I was quite impressed at the author’s ability to break down the complex task of writing a screenplay. He discusses the various components, characters, plot, etc. and how to weave them properly into a Hollywood-ready script for sale. I found the author’s advice to be very sensible and practical. For example, he points out industry conventions that must be followed to even be taken seriously at all. Since many people could use a structure and organization during their creative time, this is a good book for the budding writer. While it is geared towards novice writers, it is powerful enough to develop a professional screenplay. The author provides all the details as you follow along and do the exercises. If you follow the advice in this book you have a much better chance of getting noticed. He wisely tells you to avoid advanced technical details about camera shots and setups best left to the director. In other words, unless you are the writer AND director some things are better left out. After all, you want to sell your work not dictate how it will appear on screen. Very practical advice about working in the industry. There is a lot of good information packed into this volume (some have complained that it is not an easy read). So perhaps it’s really for journeyman writers who need more polish in their presentation. Either way you will find the help you need to get started and get going with this book.

Know the rules before you break them

5 people found this helpful.
 on April 2, 2000
By Mark Brown
In this book Frensham assumes that every novice writer is out to make millions from Hollywood. Hollywood scripts have become a formula. A formula that is often very effective but none the less a formula. However this is a great book for new writers who need to learn the rules before they start breaking them.

Very useful…

5 people found this helpful.
 on May 6, 2000
By Todd Hampton
I found the teach yourself screenwritng book to be extremely useful in my attempts to write a screen play. This is the first book that really breaks down stories into it’s smallles fragments sothat you can understand it. Throught the book the authour uses the movie Witness as a model story. What I appreciated about this book is how it explains each and every part of a story. From the inital idea to the resolution. There is also a handy appendix section that provides info on scrreenwriting books, magazines, workshops, organizations, seminars and web sites. Very useful

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