Celebrating The Screenwriters of Summer ‘99

Celebrating The Screenwriters of Summer ‘99
Ahhhh, summer of 1999. I was a young teenager, sneakily watching R-rated movies at my friends’ houses, listening to Britney Spears, and trying to decipher adult whispers about Y2k. Were we all going to die? Meanwhile, brilliant things were happening in Hollywood. If the world had ended that year, at least we’d be leaving a bevy of fantastic films behind. That year was simply a great year for movies, so let’s relive those glory days with a recap of six of the summer ’99 cinematic greats and the s… Read this article »
Courtney Meznarich

Let’s Hear it for Zachary Rowell, SoCreate’s “So, Write Your Bills Away” Sweepstakes Winner

Let’s Hear it for Zachary Rowell, SoCreate’s “So, Write Your Bills Away” Sweepstakes Winner
From nearly 5,000 entries, we are proud to introduce you to 28-year-old Zachary Rowell, SoCreate’s “So, Write Your Bills Away” Sweepstakes winner! Over the next three months (October 2019-December 2019), we’ll pay Zachary’s bills so he can focus on writing a feature-length screenplay, instead of focusing on finances. The best part is that you get to follow along as he does it! Zachary made the risky choice to move to California two years ago from his small hometown in Texas to pursue his scre… Read this article »
Courtney Meznarich

Enter the SoCreate "So, Write Your Bills Away" Sweepstakes!

Enter the SoCreate "So, Write Your Bills Away" Sweepstakes!
Wish You Could Work Less, and Write More? We wanted to know: What do screenwriters really need to succeed? Talent, of course. Perseverance, yes. Connections, you betcha. But there's that other big thing – you know, the luxury of time to write? We know so many of you are working more than one job to make ends meet, writing during odd hours, and struggling to balance it all. Wouldn’t it be great if you just had more time? Well, we’re here for you screenwriters, and to prove it, we’re… Read this article »
Courtney Meznarich

Announcing 25 Semi-Finalists for SoCreate's "So, Write Your Bills Away" Sweepstakes

Announcing 25 Semi-Finalists for SoCreate's "So, Write Your Bills Away" Sweepstakes
DRUMROLL Please … We received nearly 5,000 entries from writers who are ready to write their bills away! Here are the top 25 semi-finalists, drawn randomly from all the entries and bonus entries. These top 25 now must submit a cover letter, letter of recommendation, and screenwriting sample for consideration. We’ll select ONE winner on August 30, who will receive $3,000 per month for 3 months to pay their bills so they can finish a 90-120 page screenplay while the writing community follows alon… Read this article »
Courtney Meznarich

Why There’s Never Been a Better Time for Screenwriters to Take Charge of Their Destiny

Why There’s Never Been a Better Time for Screenwriters to Take Charge of Their Destiny
2019 will go down in history as the year screenwriters fired their agents. But could it also go down in history as the year screenwriters finally got the respect they deserve? As someone watching from the sidelines while the WGA standoff continues, I can’t help but be proud of all of you writers who worked so hard to get an agent, only to stand by your fellow creatives and fire those people who have been your supposed lifeline to paid work. But in what you’ve lost, you seem to have found so muc… Read this article »
Courtney Meznarich

Need to Get Away? Use This Screenwriting Event as a Very Good Excuse

Need to Get Away? Use This Screenwriting Event as a Very Good Excuse
This one’s for our worn-out writer friends, and especially those of you who live within driving distance to the Central Coast of California! Here’s a chance to recharge your batteries AND learn a ton from professional screenwriters. It’s almost time for the Central Coast Writer’s Conference. Registration is now open for this three-day event, September 26-28, 2019 in beautiful San Luis Obispo. We’re biased, A) because we live here and B) because we’re big backers of this conference, but you can… Read this article »
Courtney Meznarich

An Oscar-Winning Screenwriter and a Playwright Walk into SoCreate …

An Oscar-Winning Screenwriter and a Playwright Walk into SoCreate …
… but it’s no joke! The only punchline here is in the wise words that two-time 2019 Oscar-Winning Screenwriter Nick Vallelonga (The Green Book) and popular playwright Kenny D’Aquila bestowed upon us during a recent visit to SoCreate’s headquarters in San Luis Obispo. They gave us a ton of a great feedback on the SoCreate Screenwriting Platform and taught us a few tricks of the trade while they were here (more videos on that later). We were honored to host these two partners in crime. Unorganized… Read this article »
Courtney Meznarich

SoCreate Founder Justin Couto Featured on Script2Screen Podcast

SoCreate Founder Justin Couto Featured on Script2Screen Podcast
Our Founder and CEO Justin Couto recently took to the airwaves to tell SoCreate’s story and explain our vision to Script2Screen host Alan Mehanna. You’ll typically hear upbeat and positive film and TV reviews on the show, but Alan features other interesting characters in the film industry every now and then, so we were honored to be interviewed about SoCreate!   Below, you’ll find the podcast transcript.  Listen to the podcast and subscribe to SCRIPT2SCREEN here. Alan has a master’s in scree… Read this article »
Courtney Meznarich

Writers Vallelonga & D'Aquila: Chip Away at Your Script Until It Looks Like 2 Oscars

Writers Vallelonga & D'Aquila: Chip Away at Your Script Until It Looks Like 2 Oscars
It’s hard to give titles to Nick Vallonga and Kenny D’Aquila. For our purposes here, we’ll call them screenwriters, but this pair is multi-talented. You can barely stand next to them and NOT be inspired to do something creative. You probably know Vallelonga from his two-time Oscar win at the 2019 Academy Awards (no big deal!), both for Best Original Screenplay and Best Picture for “Green Book.” The film is based on the true story of Vallelonga’s father Tony Lip, who toured the south with fame… Read this article »
Courtney Meznarich

“Don’t be precious,” and More Advice from Screenwriter Adam G. Simon

“Don’t be precious,” and More Advice from Screenwriter Adam G. Simon
From Hollywood to Pakistan, screenwriters from around the globe tuned in to our Instagram Story to ask screenwriter Adam G. Simon questions about how to get their screenwriting careers off the ground.   “I love contributing because no one really helped me,” he told the writing community. “I want more people to succeed. I want more people in. I want more people creating ideas. Before I broke in, I had negative 150 dollars in my bank account and a bag of scripts. It put me in a position where I h… Read this article »
Courtney Meznarich

How Much Money Does a Screenwriter Make? We Asked 5 Professional Writers

How Much Money Does a Screenwriter Make? We Asked 5 Professional Writers
For most, writing is less of a job and more of a passion. But wouldn’t it be ideal if we could all make a living in a field that we are passionate about? It’s not impossible to get paid to do what you love, if you’re willing to accept the reality: there’s not much stability for writers who choose this path. We asked five expert writers how much money the average writer can expect to earn. The answer? Well, it’s as diverse as the backgrounds of our experts. Per the Writers Guild of America Wes… Read this article »
Courtney Meznarich

Writer Jonathan Maberry Talks Finding Representation

Writer Jonathan Maberry Talks Finding Representation
As a New York Times best-selling author and five-time Bram Stoker Award winner, Jonathan Maberry is an encyclopedia of knowledge when it comes to the storytelling business. He’s written comic books, magazine articles, plays, anthologies, novels and more. And while he wouldn’t call himself a screenwriter, this writer does have onscreen projects in the works. V-Wars, based on Jonathan’s best-selling franchise by the same name, is headed for Netflix this year. And Alcon Entertainment just bought th… Read this article »
Courtney Meznarich

Say What?! Screenwriting Terms and Meanings

Say What?! Screenwriting Terms and Meanings
Expert screenwriters say one of the best ways to learn to write a screenplay is to read screenplays that have been produced. You may come across some unfamiliar terms while doing this, especially if you’re new to the craft. We’ve put together a quick read for you to refer to when you come across a word or acronym you don’t understand. These are also good to know when you dive into your screenplay masterpiece, of course! ActionShowing through action is generally better than telling through dia… Read this article »
Courtney Meznarich

4 Common Dialogue Problems in a Script

4 Common Dialogue Problems in a Script
Screenplays are meant to be taut, precise, almost effortless reads. But there are common dialogue problems that muddy a screenplay’s purity, leaving your reader trudging through page after page of gobbledygook. Luckily these issues are easy to spot during a rewrite. Take a read through four common dialogue problems that you can probably find (and fix) right now. 1. Fluffy Dialogue We recently wrapped the SoCreate “Get Writing” One-Page Screenplay Competition, and the results are fascinating. W… Read this article »
Courtney Meznarich

How a Homeless PA Inspired Filmmaker Noel Braham to Write Screenplays That Matter

How a Homeless PA Inspired Filmmaker Noel Braham to Write Screenplays That Matter
Filmmaker Noel Braham was wrapping up a night of production on his second short, The Millennial, when he was confronted with a story that gripped him at the heart. The inspiration was sitting right there. “I had a production assistant helping me out pro-bono … working tirelessly, without complaining. The guy was amazing to work with.” Braham offered to drive the PA home, and at first, the PA declined. “He said just drop me off at the train station, and I said no, I’m going to give you a ride ba… Read this article »
Courtney Meznarich

Acts, Scenes, and Sequences - How Long Should Each Be in a Traditional Screenplay?

Acts, Scenes, and Sequences - How Long Should Each Be in a Traditional Screenplay?
If I had to name my favorite adage, it’s that rules are for breaking (most of them - speed limits are exempt!), but you must know the rules before you can break them. So, keep that in mind as you read through what I’d call “guidelines” to the timing of acts, scenes, and sequences in a screenplay. There’s a good reason for these guidelines, though (just like speed limits 😊) so don’t stray too far off the mark or you might pay for it later. Let’s start from the top. A 90-110-page screenplay is s… Read this article »
Courtney Meznarich

Calling All Screenwriters: Help Us Help You!

Calling All Screenwriters: Help Us Help You!
Hey screenwriters, beginners to experts! We want to know more about you. How can we provide better content and better support where and when you need it? Help us make the SoCreate Screenwriting Platform and Community the best it can be by filling out the survey below. Your individual answers will be kept private, and your name will be anonymous. Thanks in advance for being part of our mission to revolutionize screenwriting! Read this article »
Courtney Meznarich

Producer David Alpert on How to Take the Weird and Make It Great

Producer David Alpert on How to Take the Weird and Make It Great
Somewhere between selling 6,000 comic books a month as a high school student, and producing the mega-hit The Walking Dead, David Alpert has learned a thing or two about “Taking the Weird and Making it Great.” And he shared those lessons at a tell-all evening of the same title during a recent visit to San Luis Obispo County. The event was the first in a series of Creative Chats at Studios on the Park in Paso Robles. While best known for The Walking Dead franchise, Alpert also found success produ… Read this article »
Courtney Meznarich

SoCreate Shoutout to the Sunday Script Club

SoCreate Shoutout to the Sunday Script Club
The first bullet on SoCreate’s list of values is “always put the writer first.” We do our best every day to support writers, encourage you, help you, and celebrate you. And, when we come across a writer who’s doing the same for other writers, we can’t wait to shout it from the rooftops! This month, I discovered Sharmini M’s “Sunday Script Club,” and I just had to share. Not only is her material educational and collaborative, but it’s also a visual way to delve into scriptwriting that I’ve yet… Read this article »
Courtney Meznarich

SLO International Film Fest Brings in Big Talent in 2019

SLO International Film Fest Brings in Big Talent in 2019
Movies Matter! For 25 years, the San Luis Obispo International Film Festival has been singing that tune, and 2019 will be no different. For the fest’s silver celebration, organizers are bringing in films that address politics, environment, women’s rights, and more. “We aren’t saving the world,” said Executive Director Wendy Lewis, “but we are definitely impacting the way audiences see the world.” And that sentiment is what keeps SoCreate going back year after year, as both sponsor and guest of S… Read this article »
Courtney Meznarich