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Ask the Professor
"Ask Professor Wordsmith" is a screenwriting blog that offers tips to assist you in your screenwriting career.  You can also ask questions about the film industry, or share a comment.

Ask Professor Wordsmith

When's The Right Time To Seek Out Representation

by John Madormo on 02/11/19

Writers are never sure when to solicit the services of an agent or manager.  Should you contact them when you have a pitch ready, a synopsis ready, or a script completely done?  You never want to make contact with an agency before the script is completely done...and for that matter, when the script is your very best effort.

Here's an recent article from that helps with this decision.


Confessions of a Studio Script Reader

by John Madormo on 09/03/18

Here's a great article for aspiring screenwriters.  If you've ever been fortunate enough to have had a studio/production company request one of your screenplays, you always wonder how it will be received by a studio reader.  Do they actually read the entire script or do they just skim it?  Are they looking for a great script or are they looking for reasons to eliminate them?  This article by Ken Miyamoto answers these questions.

Is Social Media An Appropriate Way to Connect with Industry Professionals?

by John Madormo on 08/25/18

There are several ways to connect with industry professionals.  Perhaps the best way is to subscribe to IMDB Pro.  That site is filled with contact info for companies and individuals.  But, of course, that will cost you $19.99 per month.  What about making contact through Facebook or Twitter or LinkedIn or other social media options?  Ken Miyamoto of Screencraft offers some suggestions about using social media platforms to network with industry professionals in this article.

How Screenwriters Can Be Attractive To Producers

by John Madormo on 08/23/18

Have you ever wondered how you can make yourself more attractive to agents, managers, and producers?  Here's an interesting article that will help answer some of those questions.  It's an interview with Adam Harris Engelhard of Mailroom LA.  He makes some really great points.  Enjoy.  - John Madormo

Seven Ways Screenwriters Can Create Better Character Empathy

by John Madormo on 08/17/18

Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines empathy as: "the action of understanding, being aware of, being sensitive to, and vicariously experiencing the feelings, thoughts, and experience of another of either the past or present without having the feelings, thoughts, and experiences fully communicated in an objectively explicit matter." 

One of most important things you can create in your screenplays is empathy for your characters.  Without it, the reader/viewer can never be fully invested.  An audience member should be able to feel the same emotions that your characters experience.  When your hero is clinging to a cliff hundreds of feet above rocks and raging waters, your audience should sense that same danger.  Their hearts should race in the same manner as your hero.

Creating empathy is critical to any successful screenplay.  Ken Miyamoto, a writer with Screencraft, points out Seven Ways Screenwriters Can Create Better Character Empathy.