white_chairs

 

What do you see on the screen?

Nothing until you put it on the page. And then, for someone to see something while they read that page? The writing must be Visual with a capital V.

Visual Writing begins Tuesday.

There are open seats.

:::HIT THAT:::

 

workshopper makes good

June 5, 2013

 

Nancy has been making good for a while actually but this is cool I am posting it.

nancy_press

 

we have book

December 1, 2012

 

Trav_PBOOK006And the book is —

Shipping. Yay! The eBook for iPad and Nook shipped out today for all pre-orders. It will be a few days before it shows up on the Barnes & Noble and iBook sites — they are loading but there is an approval and waiting process so —

If you want the book right now, no waiting, go to the book’s website and order the book direct. And it will magically appear in your inbox before anyone else out there even has a clue. (You are so smart.)

The Kindle version of the book for Amazon is still in production, I am saying that will be coming out on or before December 15th, just to be safe. But if everything goes the way it is supposed to, that is actually shipping Tuesday. Again, it takes a few days for the book, once loaded on Amazon, to show up for sale on Amazon, but you can jump that fence by (tell me if you have heard this before) going to the book’s website and ordering the book direct. In which case, it will come to you in your email inbox. Yay!

There is no hard copy book. That is a 2013 project.

In the meantime, go get the book. Yay!

 

 

 

 

:::pre-order the book:::
:::see the book on facebook:::

 

that internet thing

September 29, 2012

 

The thing about the internet is —

No link is ever dead. Ever. Someone somewhere or some search engine somewhere still remembers an url, a page, or a link and will bring up a link to a source that ceased to exist a bazillion years ago – always. It is kind of like the speed of light and stars thing, you can be looking at this star up in the heavens and see a star – only that star ceased to exist a century ago – you can just still see it because the light is still in transit even if the star is gone.

In internet terms, the link is still showing up and visible in a search even if the page went toes up years or weeks ago.

This is why I just spent the last week of my life 24/7 placing redirects on pages in the Max web empire. Because you cannot kill urls or web pages ever. They always, always, have to have a string of links or redirects that go somewhere that exists on the web.

There is an easier way to do it. Just tell the whole site to redirect. I could do that too if I were not using two separate servers to host two separate parts of AFW to insure, if one crashes?, there is emergency back up on the other. It is kind of more important to have a back up plan than an easy out. Oh well.

Hey come see the new book page. It is nifty.

 

 

The New Screenwriter’s Survival Guide web page is up. Ooh la la. Why, you ask, does the book have a page before it is in print? Planning, my ninjas, planning. The page needs to be around long enough to get picked up by search engines and propagate so when the eBooks come out in November it has presence on the web.

Hence all this frenzy to get the art work done and the page up even though I think eBook editing and release will still take another month and a half.

Go see the :::book’s new website:::.

 

 

 

So if you are wondering —

Why I have been neglecting you, it is because I have been working my ass off sprucing up the AFW site. Last year there was a catastrophe in the forum, right while I was on the road, and the whole forum blew up — with classes in session, and the workshop in full swing. It was totally catastrophic and I built a new forum from scratch for the workshop and classes in about 48 hours, which is scary as fuck when you are on a deadline like that and class has to be up and working in 48 hours no matter what.

And then the forum just kind of stayed that way for a while, just the classes and workshop, with nothing else going on really. And a pasted in theme. And, versions of the forum kept updating and yelling at me to update, but I was like a cat clinging to a piece of wood in a stream, I wasn’t going to update, I was going to cling to my little forum and keep it going with NO MORE BLOWN UP FORUMS THAT IS ALL!

Except you cannot do that forever on the web. Stuff keeps updating and sooner or later will just stop working in newer browsers and whatnot so, the forum is updated and has a new spiffy theme.

And, the blog is updated and has a new spiffy theme — so they sort of complement each other now.

The site has a new spiffy entrance page to go with that.

And new cards and stuff are ordered for AFW that list the new upcoming classes in 2013.

Oh and also I am finalizing the last draft of the updated Screenwriter’s Survival Guide. If all goes as planned that will be ready for purchase in November and for pre-sales in October. [Cross fingers, rarely do things go as planned.]

So. Sorry for the neglect. Go see the new :::blog::: and :::forum::: they are fun.

Your No Forums Blew Up Today Adams Girl

 

sick twisted bastards

September 11, 2012

 

I had this —

Sick twisted bastard of a yoga instructor tonight.  I swear this guy used to reign over the Fifth Circle of Hell but he was too rough on people so they cast him out and he ended up at my yoga studio.  He didn’t just make us do terrible hard things, he made jokes while he was doing it and laughed because he knew how hard the things he was making us do were.

After I limped home and was licking my wounds thinking how damn hard that session was, and thinking, Yeah, but you’ll go back to that guy’s class, damn him, because no matter how hard it was, it was good —

It occurred to me that is quite possibly how my students think about me.  I’m not easy.  My classes are hard.  Some of them extremely hard.  I know it.  And I make jokes.  They are not mean or derogatory jokes, they are basically saying, Yeah, I feel your pain, but you still have to get that knee over that left ear so let’s go.  But they are still jokes.

There is a shirt, “I Survived Max Adams’ Structural Writing.” That shirt totally started out as a joke.  Except —

People who finish Structural Writing buy that shirt.  It’s not a joke any more.  That shirt has turned into some sort of medal of honor.

My students come back.  But after tonight, I wonder if it is maybe for a different reason than I used to think.  Damn.  I’m the sick twisted bastard instructor.

How did THAT happen?

Excuse me now, I have to go soak in a tub of hot water.

 


*If you do not recognize the image above, it is from Legend, Tim Curry plays a great sick twisted bastard.

*Structural Writing is only open to people who have taken previous AFW classes so don’t get all het up and try to jump in there first — I won’t let you — go look at other classes.  Like High Concept Writing and The Art of the Pitch.  Those are both coming up in a week and are good precursors.

 

flipping cars

September 5, 2012

 

 

There is this great moment in The Last Boy Scout. This car’s trunk is wired up with explosives and these two guys have to leap over a freeway embankment to escape the exploding car. And they make it, whew!

Except —

The blowing up car is blown over the side of the freeway embankment and they have to run for their lives from the spiraling churning burning blown up car.

That’s taking something to the next level. Shane Black is a master of that. It’s not enough to just out jump the exploding car and collapse, all safe from the explosion. Then you have to outrun the blown up car’s flaming carcass when it chases you down the freeway embankment.

Concept is a lot like that. And not to get all metaphoric but I am in that sort of mood, it’s not enough to just have an explosive concept that is great. You want that concept to not just explode, but chase someone down that fucking freeway embankment.

Terry Rossio wrote a pretty hot Wordplay piece on concept, The Second Concept, and keeping it going to the next level. Take a look at it.

Then if you’re ready to get serious about concept, come sign up for High Concept Writing. We flip cars pretty hard in there.

 


High Concept Writing is a six week online master class in screenwriting taught by Max Adams. High Concept Writing begins September 18th.

 

:::register:::

 

pitch frenzy

September 5, 2012

 

So here —

Is how this is going to go down.

[It always goes down like this.]

I have these two classes opening September 18th.

One is The Art of the Pitch. That’s about learning how to pitch a story so you don’t soil yourself in front of a crowd of spectators.

The other is High Concept Writing. That’s how to work on a story concept so it isn’t the first thing that popped into your head that felt clever at 2 AM on a Friday night with a few beers in you — and you just never got around to maybe bringing it up a notch — before tossing months of your life into the sand pit with it.

Both those classes start September 18th and run through October. Right about the time people start showing up at the Austin Film Festival and pitching ideas in the big pitch rally at Austin Film Festival that sounds like a gauntlet to me but I have never watched it in person because it is just too painful to me to watch people crash and burn like that.

What will invariably happen is right about the time these classes are coming to an end, someone [or several someone’s] will email me in a panic, getting geared up for the pitch event at AFF, and want me to drop everything and leap to help [with no time to do it in] with a pitch –- most likely on a concept that wasn’t thought out all that well before starting the script in the first place.

And I’ll say, Look, I teach a class on this, Why didn’t you take the class? That would have given you five to six weeks to work on the pitch with me before this came up. Or better yet, to work on the story so you had a story worth pitching here? Now you’ve got three days, who do you think I am, Anne Sullivan?

[Even Anne Sullivan got more than three days.]

And they won’t have a good answer.

Don’t be one of those people. Go sign up for the pitch class.

 

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