Scriptwriting for the Screen  book cover
2nd Edition

Scriptwriting for the Screen

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ISBN 9780415465175
Published November 14, 2008 by Routledge
236 Pages

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Book Description

'If I was setting out as a screenwriter, this is the book I would read first and keep by me'– Melanie Harris, Producer, Crosslab Productions

'An excellent resource for students and teachers alike'– In the Picture

'...a valuable addition to every screenwriting bookshelf' – Screentalk

'This is one of the best guides to help screenwriters think visually that I have ever read' – Creative Screenwriting

'The inventive exercises in Scriptwriting for the Screen give it the potential for revitalizing the experience of even experienced scriptwriters' – ' Scope’ Online Journal of Film Studies

Scriptwriting for the Screen is an accessible guide to writing for film and television. It details the first principles of screenwriting and advises on the best way to identify and formulate a story and develop ideas in order to build a vivid, animated and entertaining script.

Scriptwriting for the Screen introduces the reader to essential skills needed to write effective drama. This edition has been updated to include new examples and an entirely new chapter on adaptation. There are examples of scripts from a wide range of films and television dramas such as Heroes, Brokeback Mountain, Coronation Street, The English Patient, Shooting The Past, Spaced, Our Friends In the North and American Beauty.

Scriptwriting for the Screen includes:

  • advice on how to visualise action and translate this into energetic writing
  • how to dramatise writing, use metaphor and deepen meaning
  • tips on how to determine the appropriate level of characterisation for different types of drama
  • practical exercises and examples which help develop technique and style
  • a section on how to trouble-shoot and sharpen dialogue
  • a guide to further reading



Charlie Moritz is a freelance scriptwriter who has written for both television and theatre. He teaches screenwriting at Manchester Metropolitan University and has also taught at the RITS School of Film and Television in Brussels.