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Your Screenplay Sucks: 100 Ways to Make It Great
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Your Screenplay Sucks: 100 Ways to Make It Great

4.12  ·  Rating details ·  353 Ratings  ·  35 Reviews
A lifetime member of the Writer's Guild of America who has had three feature films produced from his screenplays, Akers offers beginning writers the tools they need to get their screenplay noticed.
Kindle Edition, 287 pages
Published (first published January 1st 2008)
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Sep 25, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Abrasive title, but awesome book. If you're interested in writing or selling a screenplay, this book really is a must have. He tells you how to transform and beat your script into shape as well as letting you in on some of the little trade secrets to help you look like you're not a novice. It's also just a fun read, he's very conversational. The only down-side to it is because he is so open, he makes you really understand how difficult it is to break it into the Hollywood industry. So for any as ...more
Apr 26, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: on-writing, favorites
Your Screenplay Sucks - it's true. And here are 100 practical things you can do to fix it. Learn how to brainstorm, take apart, reassemble, and examine each of your characters one by one. There are other books to tell you about formatting and structure - this is the one to read to learn more about voice and great story. Don't be intimidated by the title. It will have you itching to hammer out a rough draft so you have text to play around with.
Carlos Marin
Sep 12, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Tiene consejos buenos, tiene otros malos, otros horrendos y muchos geniales.

Sea como sea, se convierte automáticamente en libro de consulta.

Eso es bueno.
Tara Calaby
I think my biggest issue with this was reading it right after Save the Cat, given that generally the stuff in here that is most relevant to me is also covered in StC. There's also a lot of content surrounding how to correctly format screenplays, which is, no doubt, very helpful to people writing screenplays, although it was not at all helpful to my novel-writing self. I realise that's what you get when you read books on screenplay writing craft, so I'm not saying it's a negative in a general sen ...more
Roger Mendoza
May 11, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed this book, especially since it gave me some much needed clear advice on writing a great screenplay.
Christina Green
Sep 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
One of the most comprehensive, and enjoyable to read, books on screenplays that I've read. Highly recommend.
Jul 22, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A good read, I learned many new things and gone over stuff I already knew. Worth a read if you are thinking of writing a screenplay.
Stephen Arnott
I don't know why I bought this one. I have no real interest in writing a screenplay, but I'm interested in movies and the movie business, and the title grabbed me.

This turned out to be an amusing, entertaining books that has great practical advice for anyone interested in writing a script. More than that, although some of the advice is specific to screenwriting (formatting errors, for example) much of the advice would also be valuable to a novelist.

According to the author, most professional scri
Clara Mazzi
William Akers says the very same things as Blake Snyder but in a far less nice way. "Your Screenplay Sucks" is a kind of a bad copy of Save The Cat. It's useful and right but Mr Akers likes boasting around his (small) success, loves to mark a clear difference between him and "us, the readers, the amateurs, the non-successful" at such an extent that he finishes his book recommending to consider to drop writing. Thought highly contradictory hence confusing, he keeps insisting on clarity and rigor ...more
Feb 06, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I feel like I've just been kicked so royally hard in the balls. This book blew me away. The last two chapters left something to be desired as I feel like Akers got on the highest of high horses, but the final 6 pages are literally highlighted from the top to the bottom.
Why do you write? Honestly why?
It's because YOU MUST.
And that's true of me. So fu**ing true it isn't even funny.
Tons of great tips, I would recommend this to any screenwriter who needs to be slapped with a hand that's been sitting
Troy Santel
Dec 06, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I mistakenly went to Hollywood and pitched my script without reading this book. I thought my script was pretty good until I read this book - no wonder why I never got a call back. As I read through this book, I started to get embarrassed thinking what those Hollywood execs must have thought of my script. I imagined it was passed around as a comedic email chain to all the execs and accomplished screenwriters - at least it found a way to be entertaining.

No seriously. This book was highly insightfu
Debbie Emory
May 01, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Not just for screenwriters. Writing a fiction novel? Buy this book. Writing a non-fiction novel? Buy this book. The 100 ways checklist shined a light on the holes in my work-in-progress fiction novel. It gave me tons of ideas of (to borrow from the book’s title) “how to make it great”, plus Akers is hysterical so the points will stick with you. I had to keep stoping to jot down ideas it gave me of things to add / change / improve / delete. This book gets an A+ for stirring the creative mind whil ...more
Jesse Richards
Mar 16, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was excellent, except for two caveats. One was the overemphasis on humility; he kept stressing the point that aspiring writers shouldn't be full of themselves. He did this by constantly insulting the reader. I fully agree with his point, but it was tiresome to read over and over. I got it the first time.

The other problem was the formatting ... he used lots of excerpts, which was great, but they were set in the same font as the regular text. So, at times it was hard to tell whether the
Feb 15, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I've heard a lot of similar advice, but this book was organized in a way that resonated with me. While it points out what someone might be doing wrong in the writing of a screenplay, it gives very helpful suggestions.

I recommend any screenwriter trying to launch their career to read this book. Chances are you'll find a tip that will unlock a part of the process of screenwriting that was previously unknown to you. It did for me.

Writers must persevere! And use their spell check!
Jason Hough
Feb 27, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Runs the gamut of screenplay writing tips: from your story and characters all the way to what kind of chads you should use to bind your finished masterpiece.

I probably enjoyed the second half the most, which covered revisions. He includes lots of before-and-after examples, and explains why the changes were made. Many of the examples are his own work.

I will keep this on my shelf next to Denny Flynn's "How NOT to Write a Screenplay".
Marti Young
Apr 19, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book is full of nuggets of knowledge to stop you from falling into the pitfalls of mistakes that so many other screenwriters find themselves plummeting... When I write my scripts, I keep this and Blake Snyder's SAVE THE CAT by my side for instant reference. And guess what? My movies get made! Aces on the content... Every aspiring screenwriter needs this book, and I tell them so when they send me scripts to provide coverage.
L R Davis
This laugh out loud funny treatise on the various mistakes made by novice screenwriters is a must for any screenwriter to put all in perspective.

Worthwhile investment in a writer's library. Good checklist for the details to be adhered to by someone who wants to have a screenplay read by someone who might produce it. Or if you want a laugh at the peculiarities of the business.

Akers has lots of good advice for the budding screenwriter, but needs greater structure, overall. He repeats the same points a few too many times. True, repetition is the soul of good pedagogy, but he would have a stronger book with more method to the repetition. Still, overall this is a worthy read, and a must for beginners, since Akers has much industry experience to share.
Apr 10, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
An very good book on writing... but an excellent book on rewriting. Not just for beginners, this book is a good reminder to anyone who writes screenplays of what's important and, more importantly, what isn't.
Jan 12, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is my screenwriting bible! It is always on hand whenever I am writing or rewriting a screenplay at any given time. A wonderful companion to help you through the trouble times, at whatever stage you are writing.
Feb 23, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Some very good advice here. This isn't so much a "how to" book as it is a checklist to compare your work against. I wouldn't say it's the best book on the market for writers, but you could do a lot worse.
Mary Ann
I'd like to say it was such a good book, I couldn't put it down. But this would be untrue. I put it down many times in order to fix my screenplay.
Feb 28, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
THE best 'writing' book I have read.
Jan 27, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: screenwriting
I love this book. I frequently leaf through it when I need a break from outlining or editing. It has a lot of good tips in it, and it's a fun way to improve your writing!
Jazz Virk
Mar 07, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: screenwriting
Best book to check off 100 important points for your creative writing. Script saver.
Oct 21, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Fun to read and applicable to novelists/fiction writers as well.
Amit Bolakani
Dec 02, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I really liked this book. It taught me a lot about screenwriting and I would call it a must read.
Courtney Sheets
Dec 31, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Extremely helpful. A little tough love which is needed many times in a writing career. A must for any aspiring writer.
Therese Gilardi
Jan 08, 2012 rated it really liked it
a lot of practical advice, you have to love his seven (sixteen) deadly sins.
Jan 27, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: wordy, bought, 2013
Funny and informative with good examples from movies you've actually seen.
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“Structure 19. You worried about structure when you came up with your story! If you did, I’m sorry. You missed some of the most joyous moments in writing. Character and story come first. Before anything. Certainly before all that Act One, Two, and Three crapola. When you’re teasing out your story, make lots of notes. Think out loud. Talk to a tape recorder. Make more notes. Fill up oceans of 3x5 cards. Write on yellow legal pads. Write on white legal pads. Scribble on napkins or beer coasters. Write down cool stuff for characters to do that may never find its way into the movie. Make notes and more notes and more notes, but do not trouble yourself with structure. Screw structure. Have fun. Structure is for later. For now, just let your incredibly creative mind run free. Make notes about character and plot and story and funny moments and locations you’d like to visit. Tape record dialogue for your” 0 likes
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