Screenwriting Workshop
4.6 (75 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.
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Screenwriting Workshop

Turn your idea into a screenplay worthy of being Hollywood's next hit!
Best Seller
4.6 (75 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.
847 students enrolled
Created by Dani Alcorn
Last updated 9/2017
Current price: $10 Original price: $195 Discount: 95% off
5 hours left at this price!
30-Day Money-Back Guarantee
  • 7 hours on-demand video
  • 45 Supplemental Resources
  • Full lifetime access
  • Access on mobile and TV
  • Certificate of Completion
What Will I Learn?
  • Turn Your Idea Into a Screenplay
  • Explore What Makes Movies Award Winners
  • Create a Pitch That Sells Your Idea
  • Develop Compelling Characters
  • Structure Your Screenplay
  • Learn Techniques That Make Scenes Leap Off The Page
  • Polish Your Screenplay
  • Discover Resources To Help Get Your Screenplay Noticed
View Curriculum
  • Open to all aspiring writers, young or old, experienced or just beginning

Do you have a great idea for a movie and want to turn it into a screenplay? Have you already started a screenplay and gotten stuck? Have you finished a screenplay but feel it needs polish? Screenwriting Workshop shows you how to accomplish all of these things and helps you market your work and get it onto the big screen.

In these fun and lively lessons, Dani Alcorn guides you on the path to success. You'll learn how to create and polish a screenplay step by step. Topics include:

  • Story Structure
  • Creating Compelling Characters
  • Using Archetypes to Flesh Out Character
  • The Hero's Journey
  • Creating Treatments that Sell
  • Developing the Perfect Beginning and Ending
  • Making Your Theme Resonate
  • Crafting Dialogue that Rings True
  • Creating Action that Packs a Punch
  • Controlling Pacing
  • Screenplay Formatting
  • Pitching a Great Idea
  • Designing the Perfect Logline
  • Online Resources for Screenwriters
  • Marketing Your Screenplay

Whether you're just getting started or you're an experienced screenwriter, Screenwriting Workshop helps you turn your dream into a reality.

Who is the target audience?
  • First Time Screenwriters of Any Age
  • Screenwriters with Unfinished or Unpolished Screenplays
Compare to Other Screenwriting Courses
Curriculum For This Course
51 Lectures
Exploring Modern Screenwriting
6 Lectures 41:27
Meet Dani Alcorn and enjoy an overview of the course material to come!
Preview 08:11

Why should you write screenplays, and what are the benefits?

Preview 05:01

This lesson discusses the top grossing genres and top grossing films of recent history. How useful is this information and what should you do with it?
Top Grossing Genres

This lesson offers a look at Academy Award Winning films and screenplays. Are awards really the best way to measure a film's success?
Award Winning Films

When comparing movies to television shows there are both practical differences (format, budget, production schedule, etc.) and differences in how the audience relates to the experience. The implications of these differences is discussed in this lecture. 
Movies Versus Television

This lightning fast survey of both film and television will show you how programming has changed over the years, allowing you to target your scripts at the latest trends.

A Quick History of TV and Movies
Planning Your Screenplay
9 Lectures 01:31:52

This lesson discusses where ideas come from, how to remember them, and what to do if you're stuck. Try out a fun exercise to get your creative juices flowing (see supplemental material).

Getting Ideas

This lesson is a discussion of the difference between plot (external events) and story (internal emotions) and how they are integral to creating a compelling movie. 
Elements of a Good Tale: Plot and Story

This lesson discusses themes, or what movies are really about. It shows you how to dig deeper and find the true emotional core of your script that will relate to all the other story and plot elements of your screenplay. 
Theme: What is this Movie Really About?

This lesson answers the questions: "Who's in your screenplay?" and "What will you know about them?"
Creating Compelling Characters

This lesson discusses how to create a compelling hero for your screenplay. 

This lesson discusses what good antagonists must do and gives you tips for creating despicable bad guys. 

This lesson discuses the supporting characters you'll create in your screenplay and offers suggestions for how to make them memorable. 
Supporting Characters

This lesson discusses what an archetype is, how to use them, and gives an example of a classic archetype. 

This lesson explores Joseph Campbell's idea of the "monomyth" and details the Hero's Journey.
The Hero's Journey
Structuring Your Screenplay
11 Lectures 01:50:43
This lesson gives step by step instructions for how to write a great logline and pitch for your screenplay. 
Loglines and Pitches

This lesson uses Susan Dennard's 11 Key Elements to show you how to write a clear and concise synopsis of your screenplay.

This lesson provides a quick introduction to the theory of story structure and introduces the topics that follow in the next several lessons. 
Introduction to Structure

An overview of Four Act Structure. This lesson includes a Quick Reference Guide and a Test Drive with helpful questions about each element of each act to help you think about structuring your original screenplay idea.

Four Act Structure

This lesson introduces the nine story structuring checkpoints of three act structure. 
Three Act Structure

This lesson is an in depth look at the story structure checkpoints of Act 1: the Hook, Backstory, and Trigger. 
Act 1

This lesson provides and in depth look at the story structure checkpoints of Act 2: the Crisis, Struggle, and Epiphany. 
Act 2

This lesson takes an in depth look at the story structure checkpoints of Act 3: the Plan, Climax, and Resolution.
Act 3

This lesson explores beginnings and endings including common techniques and examples from great screenplays. 
Beginnings and Endings

Discover the different types of scenes, and what to do--and not do--to make them great.

This lesson discusses two types of roadmaps that will help get you from page 1 to page 120 of your screenplay: the treatment and the outline. 
Treatments and Outlines
Writing Your Screenplay
10 Lectures 01:19:23
This lesson provides a quick rundown of FinalDraft and Celtx.
A Word on Screenwriting Software

Discover the four elements that make up a screenplay, and how they are used.
How To Format A Screenplay

These common formatting issues may seem tricky, but they're simple when you know how.
Formatting Specifics

Celtx is powerful and free screenwriting software. Here's how to use it.

Using Celtx

Here's how to write a great screenplay and make sure the director films it the way you imagined it, all without breaking any rules.
Great Screenwriting: What Belongs and What Doesn't

This lesson explores how to make your characters sound like real and interesting people.
Writing Great Dialogue

Minimize descriptions while maximizing the impact of your action lines, and your script will be much more commercial. Here's how.

Writing Great Action/Description

In a movie it's easy to recognize and keep track of a large number of characters. But in a script it's hard to keep track of a large number of character names. This lesson shows you how to make those characters memorable, which will help you sell your script.
Writing Great Character Introductions

A well paced movie is fun to watch. Here are some examples of pacing problems and successes, and some tips for controlling your own screenplay's pacing.

Follow these six techniques and you will finish your first draft.
Tips For Completing Your Screenplay
Polishing Your Screenplay
3 Lectures 36:46

Workshopping your screenplay is a vital (and often eye-opening) experience.

The Importance of Workshops

These specific strategies will take your first draft to a whole new level.


Because they're your main selling tools, it's essential to revisit your logline and pitch after you've finished your screenplay.

Revisiting the Logline/Pitch
Film Analyses
8 Lectures 27:25

One of the best ways to learn to write great screenplays is to watch great movies.

Introduction To Film Analyses

Analysis of The Shawshank Redemption

Drama: The Shawshank Redemption

Analysis of The Silence of the Lambs.

Thriller: The Silence of the Lambs

Analysis of Lion King.

Family: The Lion King

Analysis of You've Got Mail

Romantic Comedy: You've Got Mail

This is a brief synopsis and analysis of TiMER (2009). Main topic: character wants versus character needs.

Romantic Comedy: TiMER
2 pages

Analysis of Spiderman.

Superhero: Spiderman (2002)

Analysis of The 5th Element

Science Fiction: The 5th Element
Getting Your Screenplay Noticed
4 Lectures 21:08

Agents, Managers, Contests and Contacts are all great approaches to selling your screenplay. Here's the inside scoop on all of them.

How To Get Your Screenplay Out There

These valuable online resources will help you get your screenplay into the right hands.

Online Resources for Screenwriters

Now that you've completed the course, here are some ways you can stay involved, and further develop your screenwriting skills.
Preview 1 page

Thanks for taking this journey with me, and Happy Writing!

Preview 01:41
About the Instructor
Dani Alcorn
4.5 Average rating
235 Reviews
2,906 Students
5 Courses
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.