About The Booklist
This blog is a companion to our podcast site
We're a couple of screenwriters trying to make our way in the wilds of Hollywood, stumbling humbly along between brilliant success and crushing defeat.
We've long promised a list of recommended reading for our listeners, and, somehow, Sam dumped it on me, Jim, to put it up. So I'm go to start this, thinking it may become an evolving, ongoing attempt to share books we found inspirational to our writing process -- whether or not they're explicitly about screenwriting.
First, I want to state my bias about screenwriting books (Sam will chime in with his own preamble, I suspect).
I think they suck.
Most are blatantly opportunistic attempts to hoover money out of the wallets of people who have dreams. I can't wait until I become jaded and bitter enough to write my own.
Seriously, though, writing about how to write is like writing a book about playing jazz piano. Yeah, you can do it; yeah, you can describe the process of creativity; yeah, others can probably learn some things along the way. But does reading that stuff REALLY make you a jazz pianist? No. You have to play piano, a lot, preferably under the tutelage of more advanced performers. As we've tried to convey in our podcasts, there's just no substitute for experience. Writers are people who write.
All of that said, I'm just as hungry today as I ever was for tips and stories about making it out here. Anything I can stuff into my brain that teaches me something or just gives me the fortitude to bang away for one more day.
My curmudgeonly ranting aside, there are books out there that are useful -- or entertaining at least. So here goes...