Want to learn the key tactics and strategies of screenwriting?
Never has so much excellent television drama been produced across the world – and binge-watching has become the not-so-secret addiction of millions. This has put pressure on producers and broadcasters to produce more and more content.
And that has reminded every producer of the crucial need for skilled and dedicated writers able to develop new ideas and tell their unique stories.
All About Writing’s Screenwriting Crash Course, starting on 6 July, will equip aspirant scriptwriters with the essential skills of writing for the screen, from writing compelling dialogue, to thinking visually; from devising the killer opening scene to creating memorable characters. Click here for the full course outline.
Questions? Have a look at our FAQs below, and if you don’t find the answer please send us an email and we’ll respond asap.
Content is king in the world of television – and writers with talent and skill who want to break into the industry have never had a better chance of doing so. The industry needs you and your unique stories!
So sign up today to learn the tactics and strategies of master screenwriting.
Screenwriting Crash Course FAQs
Why a ‘crash’ course?
We call it a crash course because it’s a short, intensive plunge into the basic principles of screenwriting.
Why should I do the Screenwriting Crash Course?
If you are passionately interested in film and television, or want to know more about how movies go from script to screen, or if you’re interested in writing generally, this is a useful course. Screenwriting can give you invaluable tools that can apply to fiction writing, playwriting, or documentary making.
Many experienced writers from varied disciplines such as theatre, journalism, documentary making, novelists etc, and even people who don’t usually write, such as scientists and lawyers, have done and enjoyed our courses. If you have an interest in writing and/or film, then the course is an enlightening and fun way to explore the subject.
You say it’s practical, what do you mean by that? Wouldn’t something more theoretical give you a better overview?
Film theory is all very well, if you aim to be a theorist, critic or academic. In our experience of the industry, university courses are good for theory, but do not necessarily prepare you for the more practical aspects of making movies. We of course look at theory, but we also apply it to the actual making of movies.
Film making is a surprisingly practical art, as is screenwriting. Our hands on, interactive approach, and our sets of exercises and assignments, demonstrate the theoretical principles, but also teach you how to apply them.
What qualifies you to teach it?
There are two of us teaching this course. We, Michele Rowe and Richard Beynon, designed the course together focussing on what we, after long careers in the industry, feel are the key sills needed to write scripts and understand the screenwriting process.
I, Michele Rowe, am an experienced screenwriter of many years, having worked first as a researcher on documentaries, before moving to television drama and feature films. I have written scripts for local and international producers, and have worked as a story originator, head writer, script editor and mentor.
I am the author of two internationally published crime novels. I have won numerous awards for my work. I am passionate about movies and writing, and years spent in writer’s rooms have equipped me with the analytical tools to assess fellow writer’s work. I am encouraging and supportive of creative processes. I understand the vulnerabilities of writers and know how to encourage them to do their best work.
And I, Richard Beynon, studied English literature at university in South Africa and the UK, and started my writing career in journalism. From there I moved on to writing documentaries, sitcoms and dramas. I’ve written well over 1000 television scripts and worked on the story teams, and been the head writer on a number of South Africa’s daily dramas and soaps, winning regular awards over the years. I have been consulted on story development for over twenty years and have a finely trained. I have trained and mentored many beginner scriptwriters as well as radio drama writers. For many years I ran my own production company which qives me further insight into the practicalities of translating a script to the screen. I have lectured in film writing at Wits University.
Together with author Jo-Anne Richards, I started All About Writing in 2007. I have wide experience in devising and running courses on all aspects of writing., and in mentoring and coaching writers of fiction and non-fiction whether for the screen or page. Jo-Anne and I are trusted associates of a number of South African publishers.
What’s the most fun thing about the Crash Course?
Finding out more about the making of movies, and perhaps , even more importantly, about yourself. It’s a very creative process.
You will write and submit your own exercises, which is stimulating, challenging and a lot of fun. You get one on one feedback and professional notes on your submissions, just as if you were writing for the movies, and you’ll receive a lot of one on one attention.
What’s the hardest part?
That depends entirely on you. Every participant has different strengths and weaknesses. The hardest part, perhaps, is getting the courage to just jump in and commit yourself to exploring your own creativity.
I currently work in another area of the industry (wardrobe), how could the Screenwriting Crash Course help me up my game?
One of our most creative students came from a wardrobe background. She wrote a wonderfully imaginative treatment for a feature, based on her experience as a wardrobe superviser. Often movie people are unfamiliar with other disciplines in the industry. I learned so much about screenwriting by spending time in an edit suite, and being on set with directors and camera people.
Whether you want to be a producer, director, actor, writer, production designer or cinematographer, it really is essential that you know how to read and understand a script.
No matter what work you do in the industry, we can guarantee that this course will be enlightening. Our course has been very well received, and most of all enjoyed by people who know very little, and even, a great deal about movies.
Will the course help me to get into writing for a TV show?
The course does not guarantee you a job, or a break into the industry. That is entirely up to your determination and drive. But it will give you a deeper understanding of the process, where you are suited or have an aptitude for it, and what strengths you could bring to the industry.
I feel nervous to read out my exercises in the class, can I skip that part?
The course is run online, and does not require that you read out your work. You submit written exercises which we comment on with sets of notes.
I have no writing experience at all, can I do the course?
You do not need to have writing experience to sign up for the Crash Course. If you can write an email you can do the course. Many inexperienced participants surprise themselves by what they manage to produce on the course.
My dream is to write a feature film, and I did media studies at university, would this course be too basic for me?
The course is not insubstantial, in fact there is a considerable amount of material, and it is accessible at whatever level you choose to engage with it. You will be reading script excerpts, watching movies, as well as writing . We also recommend extra reading and viewing, and it is up to participants to engage with the course on whatever level suits them.
We have had experienced industry producers who have been surprised by how much they have learned on the course.
If we didn’t answer your question, please send us an email and we’ll respond asap.