In TVWriter™’s never ending search to bring the truth, the whole truth, and nuthin’ but the truth to TV and film writers, TV and film fans, and just plain pop culture wackos, we’ve just discovered a website that although not new literally, definitely is new to us. And also wonderful.
We’re talking about Scriptshadow.Net, which has no idea we’ve ever visited or that we’re writing this recommendation. It’s a very complete site with lots of excellent script writing advice, script analysis, contests, and all that kind of good thing. Our favorite articles so far have been:
- How To Write a Blockbuster
- How To Write The Perfect Ending – ScriptShadow
- 10 Screenwriting Lessons You Can Learn from The Avengers!
- Oz The Great And Powerful – Script to Screen
- 10 Screenwriting Lessons You Can Learn From Fight Club! – ScriptShadow
- 10 Screenwriting Lessons You Can Learn From The Original Blockbuster – JAWS!
We already have a favorite area of the site. It’s the one called “Advice.” (Which actually is a collection of the Admins’ choice for Best of the ScreenShadow posts.)
Speaking of the Admins, we’d love to be able to tell you about them. Because we’d love to know. But the one weakness we’ve found is that the “About” page comes up empty when clicked on. Diligent “view: sourcing” via our Chrome browser did, however, reveal what’s supposed to be on it:
About Script Shadow
I was a terrible screenwriter. Like, beyond bad. I can’t tell you how many terrible screenplays I wrote. I once wrote a script about a man who was half-llama. I’m not kidding. The most frustrating thing about my failure was I didn’t know what I was doing wrong. It was obviously something, but after reading all the screenwriting books, hunting down all the screenwriter interviews, and writing until my fingers bled, there was still a big piece of the equation missing. I just couldn’t figure out what it was.
A friend of mine who’d been telling me to read scripts forever finally stuffed one in my face and told me he wasn’t leaving until I read it. It was one of those “six figure sales” that gets splashed all over the trades. I opened the script begrudgingly, preparing to be bored out of my mind, and instead had as close to a religious experience as a writer can have. Something clicked while reading that script. Screenwriting made sense to me for the first time in my life.
I began scarfing down every screenplay I could find, often digesting three or four in a single sitting. At my most insane, I was reading 56 screenplays a week (eight a day!!!). This religious learning experience was so powerful, I began formulating a plan to introduce it to aspiring screenwriters. What if I reviewed professional screenplays online, helping amateur writers learn directly from those who’d already made it? It seemed obvious. Scriptshadow was born.
To my amazement, the site gained an immediate following and quickly became one of the most popular screenwriting sites on the internet. It has since been featured in numerous publications, including Wired, The New York Times, and soon the Wall Street Journal. It’s exceeded my expectations on every level and its success has allowed me many opportunities I had only dreamed of a few years earlier.
The structure of the site is pretty straight-forward. The main focus is the script reviews, which we run three times a week, Monday through Wednesday. Thursday is usually a screenwriting article. And Friday we review an amateur screenplay. I’ll sometimes have theme weeks like “Short Scripts” week or “Christopher Nolan” week, but for the most part, it’s screenplay reviews, screenplay reviews, screenplay reviews.
At the top of the site, you’ll see a toolbar for everything else. We have the best script consultants on the web in the “Script Notes” section, available at every budget to get your latest screenplay into shape. We have artists in the “Concept Artists” section to help you create concept art or one-sheets to stand out when pitching or querying. We have “Amateur Friday,” where you can submit your script to us and, if we like the writing, it’ll be reviewed on the site. Due to the site’s visibility in the industry, a good script can get noticed by managers, agents, and producers, as has happened numerous times. We have one of the best screenwriting communities on the web in the comments section. No bitter angry dudes here. Just writers helping other writers out. And finally there’s the Scriptshadow book, which has 500 of the best screenwriting tips you’ll find, all broken down with examples from classic movies.
Moving forward, Scriptshadow’s only going to get better. The Scriptshadow Lab will make its debut in early 2013, inviting 20 of the best amateur screenwriters to participate in an innovative social screenwriting experiment. From there, we’re going to build an online social screenwriting community that should change the screenwriting landscape forever. And if everything works out, I hope to be feeding amateur screenplays (possibly yours!) into the Hollywood system on a consistent basis, putting the emphasis of films back where it’s supposed to be – on the story. It’s going to be a blast and you have a chance to get in on the ground floor. So jump into the site, read reviews, submit screenplays, and start participating. I’m glad you found the site and hope you get the most out of it. ?
The “I” here, as far as we can determine, is Carson Reeves, who’s gotten quite a bit of press, pro and con, over the years because of perceptive/controversial/helpful
/bitchy things he’s written on the original version of this site, his Script Shadow blog. Carson, TVWriter™ wants you to know that we think your site is awesome. Thanks, dood, for contributing so much!