Adapting Novel to Screenplay

Turn Your Novel Into Hollywood's Next Bestseller!
5.0 (4 ratings)
Instead of using a simple lifetime average, Udemy calculates a
course's star rating by considering a number of different factors
such as the number of ratings, the age of ratings, and the
likelihood of fraudulent ratings.
110 students enrolled
89% off
Coupon valid until Mar 1, 2017 7:59 AM UTC
Take This Course
  • Lectures 12
  • Length 3 hours
  • Skill Level All Levels
  • Languages English
  • Includes Lifetime access
    30 day money back guarantee!
    Available on iOS and Android
    Certificate of Completion
Wishlisted Wishlist

How taking a course works


Find online courses made by experts from around the world.


Take your courses with you and learn anywhere, anytime.


Learn and practice real-world skills and achieve your goals.

About This Course

Published 3/2013 English

Course Description

Do you have a novel or an idea for a novel that would make a great movie? Has someone asked you to adapt their novel or short story for television or the movies? This course shows you how to create and market a screenplay based upon a book. You'll discover how to take that prose and turn it into a script, using:

  • Story Structure
  • Character Building
  • Settings
  • Conflict
  • Suspense
  • Mystery
  • Dialogue

Screenplays have different requirements from novels. They are more visual, and your characters need to keep active and immersed in conflict. We'll use an actual project to give you real examples of the decisions we made in adapting a novel to a screenplay.

The accompanying e-textbook (free with Amazon Prime) contains the complete novel, plus the first and final drafts of the screenplay. You'll be able to follow along in the book and the screenplay, to see what we changed, and why we changed it.

You'll also learn:

  • The Do's and Don'ts of screenplays
  • Screenplay formatting
  • To Develop a Pitch, Logline and Synopsis
  • How to Market Your Screenplay

Whether you're a first time screenwriter or are looking for techniques to polish your skills, this course will give you all the tools you need to adapt any novel into a potential Hollywood blockbuster. Enroll now!

What are the requirements?

  • Open to all aspiring writers, young or old, experienced or just getting started

What am I going to get from this course?

  • Turn Your Novel Into a Screenplay
  • Structure Your Plot
  • Build Characters
  • Develop Settings
  • Create Conflict, Suspense and Mystery
  • Write Realistic Dialogue
  • Format Your Screenplay
  • Develop a Pitch, Logline and Synopsis
  • Market Your Screenplay

Who is the target audience?

  • Authors With All Levels of Experience
  • Authors with novels, complete or in process
  • Anyone who dreams of getting their idea for a movie produced

What you get with this course?

Not for you? No problem.
30 day money back guarantee.

Forever yours.
Lifetime access.

Learn on the go.
Desktop, iOS and Android.

Get rewarded.
Certificate of completion.


Section 1: Screenplay Writing Tools
Meet Steve and Dani Alcorn, and discover what you'll learn in this course.
What is an adaptation, and what is the difference between "based on" and "inspired by"? This lecture shows you.
We often use the terms plot and story interchangeably, but they are very different things. Here's why.
Character development is the basis of all great fiction. This lecture shows you how to develop characters for novels and screenplays, and how they are different.
Three act structure is used for both novels and screenplays, but they are slightly different. In this lecture we compare them, and show you an easy way to develop your structure using checkpoints.
Let's looks at how a screenplay is formatted, examine the uses for each section, and discover tools for easily formatting a screenplay.
In this lecture we explore the ways you can use dialogue in novels and screenplays, examine the differences, and look at tools for sharpening your dialogue.
These techniques for creating conflict, suspense and mystery will keep readers turning pages, and viewers glued to their seats.
Section 2: The Adaptation Process
Let's look at the structure of the novel Everything In Its Path, so we can understand what was involved in converting it to a screenplay.
This comprehensive lesson discusses all the decisions we made in adapting a novel into a screenplay. We'll take you through the process step by step, and explain our reasoning.
Follow these strategies to find an agent to represent your screenplay.
Next steps you can follow to continue learning and collaborate with others.

Students Who Viewed This Course Also Viewed

  • Loading
  • Loading
  • Loading

Instructor Biography

Steve Alcorn, Published Author and Educator

Steve Alcorn is a theme park designer, author, teacher, and the founder of Writing Academy. His novels include mysteries, young adult stories, historic fiction and romance. His is also the author of How to Fix Your Novel.

Steve has helped more than 20,000 aspiring writers structure their novels, through the online learning programs of 1500 colleges and universities worldwide. Many of his students are now published authors, and you can be, too!

Instructor Biography

Dani Alcorn, Author and Screenwriter

Dani is the author of the Young Adult novel The Last Telepath, and three screenplays: 

  • A Quintessence of Dust, a science fiction riff on what would happen if Hamlet met Bladerunner
  • How to Catch an Englishman, a romantic comedy about moving overseas in search of an eligible bachelor
  • Do No Harm, a drama that explores the ethical choices facing a heart surgeon when her personal and professional lives collide
Dani graduated Summa Cum Laude from Northwestern University, where she majored in Psychology and Radio, Television, & Film.

Ready to start learning?
Take This Course