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Tuesday, November 01, 2016

Podcast Episode 58: Our Adventures & Mental Health


This episode is in two halves.

In the first half we talk about how we are extending our network, who we are meeting and what preparation we do. A nuts and bolts, down to earth summary of how we are making progress as writers.

In the second half we talk about keeping strong mentally. How do you take knock backs? How can you find support? What happens when you doubt yourself? Danny talks about his own personal situation a few years ago, and how he turned that around.

We mention: 

Writers block - is it real?


Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Free light leak - ghostly spooky style

Here is my latest HD light leak. As ever, available for free (and also you can watch it on YouTube) via Creative Commons, details below.

I collect all my light leaks on a special page where there are MORE FREE DOWNLOADS, so bookmark it. So far, as I upload this, they have been downloaded well over 575,000 times! And used in TV shows on NatGeo, Discovery and BBC1. As well as trailers and indie films.

This new one has a ghostly, spooky, misty kind of look. In fact it is different light streaming through ice! And there's two versions in this 1 clip.






If in your edit package you alter the speed or reverse them you can create even more different looks too.

Download here (20MB) - http://www.mediafire.com/download/0qt60iy01pa9363/Ice_2.mov

If you are using these clips for a commercial project with a budget then get in touch. I make the leaks free for non-commercial use (short films etc). Creative Commons details on the main page.

If 4K leaks are of interest to you (under the same conditions) then I have loads here.

If you want to do me a favour because of all this cool stuff - that would be great too. Cheers. A few suggestions...


If you are super kind and get something out of using these then please donate a small amount via the button below...

Thursday, September 01, 2016

Podcast Episode 57: Agent, Jean Kitson



Do you need an agent? What do they do anyway? What are YOU supposed to do anyway?
There are a lot of rumours and pieces of 'good advice' around this topic. So here we bypass all that and talk direct to Danny's agent, Jean Kitson from kitsonpress.co.uk. What she is looking for from a writer who approaches her? 

Tuesday, August 09, 2016

4K light leak wipes - free UHD download.

Here is my latest 4K light leak - or actually a set of 6 in one download!! As ever, available for free (and also you can watch it it in 4K / UHD on YouTube) via Creative Commons, details below.

I collect all my light leaks on a special page where there are MORE FREE DOWNLOADS, so bookmark it. So far, as I upload this, they have been downloaded well over 380,000 times! And used in TV shows on NatGeo, Discovery and BBC1. As well as trailers and indie films.

This new one has is a set of six different light leak wipes, all with a warm colour. All slightly different in style, but all max out at pure white allowing for a transition or cut to occur underneath.






If in your edit package you alter the speed or reverse them you can create even more different looks too.

Download here (151MB) - http://www.mediafire.com/download/4uf0vx5yu3du3nm/4K-Light_Streak_Wipe_Warm.mp4

If you are using these clips for a commercial project with a budget then get in touch. I make the leaks free for non-commercial use (short films etc). Creative Commons details on the main page.

If HD leaks are of interest to you (under the same conditions) then I have loads here.

If you want to do me a favour because of all this cool stuff - that would be great too. Cheers. A few suggestions...


If you are super kind and get something out of using these then please donate a small amount via the button below...

Thursday, August 04, 2016

Podcast Episode 56: Indie writing and directing


A lot of scriptwriters move into being a writer-director.

This has it's own challenges when it comes to developing a script. Here we talk to two old friends of ours, Dan Pringle and Suki Singh about the journey with there respective movies.

Dan's is an elevated horror / gory drama called K-Shop - out now on DVD http://amzn.to/2aSpAov and also via Amazon Prime http://amzn.to/2b5h2b1

Suki's is a psychological noir called Emulsion. He has a special edition available direct. http://www.emulsion.tv

I think what I took away from this podcast was the fact that you can still learn so much from other film makers, even if they work in other genres to you.

Sunday, July 03, 2016

4 NETWORKING TIPS - for better conversations.


"I hate networking. I don't know what to do" 
This is a common thing you hear writers say. But actually it's a common thing to hear anyone in business say. I can't tell you, in an online post like this one, what to say. It has to be your words, about you. But I can give you four tips on how to say it and what your approach to people should be like.

1 – Be normal

Take a step back and think: How do I communicate with someone else at a human level, just two professionals discussing a project? Not as a crazed, passionate, self- obsessed writer trying to impose themselves on someone they see as a walking pile of cash! If you are thinking; "how can I get them to do x" then you are already on the wrong path.

2 – Dialogue, not monologue 

Your conversations with anyone in the industry should be just that, conversations. You should be listening as much as you are talking, showing an interest in their projects as well as expounding the benefits of yours.

3 – Talk slower

The ideas you’re outlining are well known to you, so you talk through them fast. This could be coupled with the desire to just get the damn thing said quickly. This is akin to the man who decides to drive home at top speed because his brakes are broken. Slower means you look more confident and you are less likely to trip over your tongue and come across like a gabbling fool. So, yeah, slow it down.

4 – Listen, really listen

Listen to what the other person says. And that means really listen. Not listen out for the things that you want to hear and ignore the rest of it. Listen to tone and watch body language, too.


Note: This is an extract from our book, the UK Scriptwriters Survival Handbook which I co-wrote with Danny Stack. This has been one of the more popular sections, hence why I'm sharing it here. Give it a go!


Sunday, May 01, 2016

Podcast Episode 55: Mustapha Kseibati



We often get asked to feature up and coming writers and film makers in our podcast. Why? Because while it is great to hear from some of the top people in the biz, if you are a beginner to scriptwriting it can seem a million miles away from where you are now.

Mustapha Kseibati is on the way up in his career right now! He's done some top notch shorts (starring Benedit Wong and Kayvan Novak) after starting out in the music video world. It took him years of being runner and edit assistant first. So his route is one of hard graft and taking opportunities when he could - and a few gambles. But he can tell it in his own words.

Here is my own personal favourite of his. A dark comedy short with a touch of Tarantino - http://www.mustaphakseibati.com/painkiller.html

Or indeed you can watch more of his films here - http://www.mustaphakseibati.com

Painkiller short film