Thursday, January 17, 2019

Stealing Hollywood workshops in the Highlands and Caribbean!!

I'm thrilled to be able to announce two Stealing Hollywood intensive workshops, both in settings that could jump start anyone's creativity.

March 23-24: Highlands Writing Intensive

For my UK friends (and other Scotophiles), I'm doing a weekend intensive in the Highlands, on the gorgeous, unique grounds of the Pagoda in Grantown-on-Spey. You can stay the whole weekend on site in a lodge with indoor swimming pool, or there are day pass options as well.

Information and registration

November 3-10: Eastern Caribbean Writing Cruise

Join me on the luxury liner Allure of the Seas for a writing retreat/Caribbean cruise!

Cruising Writers is hosting this seven-day cruise to St. Kitts and St. Thomas, with a two-day workshop and individual problem-solving sessions, Q and A sessions, and of course shore excursions and all the amenities that the Allure has to offer. Check out the Cruising Writers website for information, itinerary and registration.

About the workshops:

                             STEALING HOLLYWOOD: Screenwriting Tricks for Authors

Award-winning author/screenwriter Alexandra Sokoloff's internationally acclaimed Screenwriting Tricks for Authors story structure workshops and workbooks use movies to teach authors and screenwriters essential film structure and visual storytelling techniques, and have helped hundreds of aspiring authors to publishing deals and professional authors to craft better books.

This two-day masterclass will illuminate the Three-Act, Eight-Sequence structure of film writing and how to use it to plot your book idea and/or rewrite your novel to make it the best book it can be - and have the most fun you’ve ever had doing it!


Hour 1: The Three-Act, Eight Sequence Structure

In the first hour to hour and a half of the workshop we’ll cover the basics of the Three-Act, Eight-Sequence story structure of film and television and how/why it’s so useful to translate it to writing novels.

Even die-hard pantsers quickly grasp that this is a rhythm of storytelling they’re intimately familiar with, from all the tens of thousands of movies and TV shows we’ve seen in our lifetimes (scary, isn’t it?).
Even more than that, editors, agents and our readers subconsciously EXPECT this rhythm/story pattern. So if we authors don’t deliver, a reader quickly gets uncomfortable that there’s something wrong. We all know this pattern. I’m just putting names to the steps and making it all conscious.

Also in this introductory hour or two I break down the concept of Setpiece Scenes – one of the most useful visual storytelling tricks we can steal from movies.

And I go over The Index Card Method/Story Structure Grid method of plotting (or rewriting/emergency help if you’re a pantser!).

For the rest of the day we’ll go through ALL the Key Story Elements of each Act, and how every one of these 20+ elements appears in approximately the same act, no matter what genre the writer is working with. I’ll tailor examples to your genre and movie preferences.

-       Elements of Act I
-       Elements of Act II: part 1
-       Elements of Act II: part 2
-       Elements of Act III


On Day 2 we put what we’ve learned into action with a Movie Screening. We’ll watch a movie while I talk through it, pointing out all the Key Story Elements and how they work, along with Filmmaking Tricks that authors can steal for their books. This fun and hugely helpful session locks in the story structure concepts and teaches authors to use their favorite movies as writing guides.

For the rest of the day we’ll go further into the story elements as well as focus more in-depth on visual techniques. The workshops are very interactive, with questions encouraged throughout.

Get ready for the journey of a writing lifetime! 


All the information on this blog and more, including full story structure breakdowns of various movies, is available in my Screenwriting Tricks for Authors workbooks.  e format, just $3.99 and $2.99; print 13.99.

                                      STEALING HOLLYWOOD

This new workbook updates all the text in the first Screenwriting Tricks for Authors ebook with all the many tricks I’ve learned over my last few years of writing and teaching—and doubles the material of the first book, as well as adding six more full story breakdowns.


STEALING HOLLYWOOD print, all countries 


Writing Love is a shorter version of the workbook, using examples from love stories, romantic suspense, and romantic comedy - available in e formats for just $2.99.

Smashwords (includes online viewing and pdf file)


Barnes & Noble/Nook

Amazon UK

Amazon DE


You can also sign up to get free movie breakdowns here:


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