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Five Star Reviews: The Screenwriter's Survival Guide: Do's & Don'ts to Get Your Screenplay Read, Sold, and Produced

Some of Our Favorite Reviews

Absolutely excellent book. When I walked into meetings in Hollywood, I knew what to do, what to expect, and how to handle it, thanks to the first edition of Max’s book. I would strongly recommend any screenwriter to grab this book and commit it to memory; Max knows what she’s talking about. ~ Toni McGee Causey

As a professional writer and now talent manager, I can honestly say two things: 1) there are too many books on the subject of screenwriting and 2) this is the only book anyone should pick up. ~ Gremlin257

I’ve been working as a screenwriter in Hollywood since 1991, so presumably I should already know all of this stuff. And I do. Well, pretty much. But even so, I found it inspiring and remarkably helpful (not to mention interesting, witty and fun). ~ Thomas C. Smith

Sample Chapter: The New Screenwriter's Survival Guide: Do's & Don'ts to Get Your Screenplay Read


Chapter 8: Writer Speak vs. Mogul Speak
~ by Max Adams

Writers and “movie makers” speak different languages. If you don’t know this, it can get surreal holding a conversation with someone who is using writer terms, but is not a writer, because you are both using the same terms, you are simply using them to mean different things. I’ll give you an example:

When writers talk about tone — it is wistful, it is dark, it is suspenseful, it is eerie — writers tend to describe work in terms of an emotion evoked by the piece. They are telling you the flavor of the piece in their heads, in an emotional context.

When a movie maker asks you tone, like an executive or a producer, and this applies to agents too, they mean, “What movie that made a lot of money at the box office is this like?”

If you don’t know this — It is going to be hard to sell any pitches because a studio executive will ask you about tone and he will want to hear it is “Men In Black” in tone, while you will be saying, “It is suspenseful and fun.”


When The Single Screenwriter isn’t doing her own writing or hot blog posts, she does book trailers. Yeah, didn’t know that did you? Go see….



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We also endorse and recommend these other books:

“This is an accessible, smart, funny, insightful book that I would and  will recommend to all scribes who come my way.”

~ Richard Walter, UCLA Screenwriting Chairman

“Before you even think of marketing your script, read this book and  change your screenwriting life.”

~ David Trottier, The Screenwriter’s Bible

The New Screenwriter's Survival Guide: Do's & Don'ts to Get Your Screenplay Read, Sold, and Produced

The New Screenwriter’s Survival Guide

The New Screenwriter’s Survival Guide is 65 smart chapters covering everything from guerrilla meeting tactics to finding (or firing) your agent, from maintaining “voice” to pitching and getting paid, from how to feed your entertainment attorney to how to stay friends with your guild — and producer. And much much more.

The screenwriter crowned “Red Hot Adams” by Variety who has been there, done that, and lived to talk about it tells you how to get read, get sold, and get produced. And, more importantly, how to stay alive while you’re doing it.



“Every writer should have Max Adams’ advice in their arsenal.”

~ Jeanne Veillette Bowerman, Script Magazine

Max Adams, Screewriter & Author


MAX ADAMS is an author, sometimes actress and model, and award winning screenwriter. Which means she knows how she’s supposed to put her makeup on, she just usually doesn’t since most of her days are spent with bed hair in front of a hostile computer.