The 10-Week Screenplay
with Professional Screenwriter & UCLA MFA professor Michael Colleary
“Resistance is always lying and always full of shit.” — The War of Art
Is This You?
- Do you have a story to tell, but don’t know where to start?
- Do you walk out of a movie theater and think, “I could do that!”
- Have you tried to write a screenplay, but find yourself overwhelmed by the task?
- Have you stopped writing because you’ve become discouraged?
- Would you like to learn how to write a screenplay, but film school isn’t an option?
- Do you want to take your screenwriting skill set to the next level?
- There’s no shortage of books and videos and webinars and seminars devoted to screenwriting.
The internet has ushered in an era of peak screenplay study. You can easily spend hour after hour, day after day, listening to podcasts, reading blogs, subscribing to newsletters and scanning message boards.
But for all the vital information to be mined from this ever-growing motherlode, learning has a fundamental limitation:
It’s passive. It’s reactive. And, it’s sneaky.
Because seeking out that magic shortcut can make you feel like you’re being productive.
But it’s not writing. Only writing is writing. Everything else is stalling.
With me … you’re gonna write. And write. And write some more.
Michael Colleary/Screenwriter & Kickass Bootcamp Drill Sergeant
“Among the most serious – and common – mistakes writers make is to expose their screenplays before they’re truly ready.
“Nothing better could happen to writers than to have Michael Colleary review their pages and provide notes prior to submission to agents, managers, and producers.
“This is true not only for the first-time writers, but also for seasoned professionals, even those who have development deals with production entities, writers smart enough to have Michael ask the hard questions before the producers ask them.
“I have worked closely with Michael Colleary now for over 30 years, first as my student, and now as my longtime friend and colleague. That we regularly engage him to teach advanced classes in UCLA’s graduate screenwriting program represents eloquent testimony to the nosebleed-high regard in which he is held by all of our faculty.
“Michael Colleary is an approachable, gentle taskmaster with a keen eye for what is superfluous, the roiling, swirling paraphernalia that burdens scripts when writers inevitably get in our own way, blocking our narratives, suffocating our chances for success with a particular project or an entire career.
“Rarely do I encounter a script consultant with chops as strong as Michael’s. Never have I met one who is stronger.”
There Are Two Options for Working with Michael
Are You a Sand Surfer?
This is what I mean: When I hit 30, I decided that – since I lived in Santa Monica – I should learn how to surf.
So I did what every over-educated suburban kid from New Jersey would do – I hired a teacher.
Joel was from Malibu. He’d surfed all over the world. I met up with him at Zuma Beach, and for two hours Joel showed me how to pick a wave, how to paddle, how to hold the rails and how to pop up into a sideways crouch without tipping the board.
Turns out, sure is easy. In no time I could stand up every single time without losing my balance. Soon I was walking all over the deck and never wiped out once. First lesson – and I was on my way to surfing greatness.
One small problem though. I did all that with my surfboard safely on the beach.
Once I got it into the water?
I never did become much of a surfer, but I’m grateful for that lesson – because it taught me something about screenwriting.
Learning isn’t doing. As Nike so portentously declared, “You’ve got to just do it!”