Featured Book of the Month
Selling Your Story in 60 Seconds: The Guaranteed Way to Get Your Screenplay or Novel Read
Michael Hauge's newest book is a bit of a departure from 99% of the screenwriting books currently on the market...and that is a good thing.
Most screenwriting books focus on how to write a screenplay and maybe devote a chapter or less on how to sell your screenplay. Every unproduced screenwriter likely has a stack of books on how to write a screenplay...but until recently there have been few options for purchasing a book devoted to selling a screenplay.
Michael Hauge's book is devoted to the art of selling a screenplay. You won't find lengthy passages on three-act structure, creating snappy dialogue, or developing your story's "theme." There are an incalculable number of books that can instruct you in these areas. The main focus of this book is on developing a pitch for your script.
Primarily a 60 second pitch. Imagine you suddenly find yourself in an elevator with Steven Spielberg and you let it slip that you are a screenwriter....the Gods are smiling on you and he asks: "So what are you working on?"
What are you going to tell him?
That happens all the time doesn't it? It's not usually Steven Spielberg, but everyone that hears that you write screenplays invariably asks: "So what is your script about?" This book helps you come up with an answer to that question and lists additional techniques to help you get your screenplay read by those in a postion to launch your career.
The book covers:
-How to Design, Practice, and Present the 60-Second Pitch
-The Cardinal Rule of Pitching
-The 10 Key Components of a Commercial Story
-The 8 Steps to a Powerful Pitch
-Targeting Your Buyers
-Securing Opportunities to Pitch
-And much more, including "The Best Pitch I Ever Heard," an exclusive collection from major film executives
The book's title suggests that the book will be about developing a 60 second verbal pitch for you story. And it does that very well. You'll discover what to include in a pitch, and maybe more importantly, what NOT to include in your pitch.
But how many pages can you write on that topic alone? And that is the hidden gem of this book. The book provides tons of useful advice and techniques on how to find the people to pitch to, how to best approach them, how to use your new techniques at pitchfest events, etc. You'll find helpful, real world techniques for developing your story for query letters, telephone pitches, and the rare elevator pitch to Steven Spielberg.
Additional time is spent in the book on how you should present yourself as a writer and the image you project. What to wear, business cards, leave behind materials, etc. You'll also learn practical advice on how to respond if the buyer says no to your pitch as well as what to say when they say yes or have questions.
The books also helps you develop a 10 second pitch as well as longer versions in addition to the 60 second pitch. There is a time and a place for each of these different pitches and you need to have all of them ready at any given time...and have them down perfectly. You never get a second chance with the buyer you are pitching if you don't bring your strongest pitch the first time.
The last 40 pages of the book contain tons of interviews with producers, agents and managers with their answers to the question: "What's the best pitch you've ever heard?" This section is full of interesting takes on the art of pitching. You'll find that what makes a great pitch for one person sometimes is exactly the opposite that another person prefers in a pitch. While sometimes contradictory to the advice given in the book, it just proves a point that there is no perfect way to pitch. Sometimes you do need to adapt based on the clues the listener is giving you. But more often than not, the advice Michael Hauge gives in this book is consistent with how the majority of the executives interviewed would like to be pitched.
We found this book to be well organized, simple and straightforward in its presentation, and the advice to be invaluable. For the low price of the book, there is no reason that you shouldn't own this book. It will return its cost the very first time you apply its techniques.
StoryPros Verdict: Recommended
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