Consultants & Classes
Paul W. CooperProfessional Screenplay Analysis - $265
28 years experience - over 60 produced credits
3 Emmy Awards
The Writers Guild Award
The Humanitas Prize
University Instructor, Writing for Film and Television
On April 14, 1976 I received a call from Paramount Studios informing me that Michael Landon had bought my spec script for "Little House on the Prairie." Since that date I have been a Hollywood "Working" Writer. I've acquired over 60 TV credits, written a bunch of movies for cable and received critical acclaim for my feature motion picture. I've been rewarded with 3 Emmys (5 nominations), the Humanitas Prize (2 nominations) and 1 Writers Guild Award (4 nominations). The Western Writers of America honored me with their Spur Award and my movie won Best Picture at a number of prestigious film festivals. I currently have several television and motion picture projects in development. I was awarded the Writers Guild Award in 2004 for my script "The Maldonado Miracle" produced and directed by Salma Hayek and starring Peter Fonda, Mare Winningham and Ruben Blades. And I have taught Writing for Film and Television at Pepperdine University.
So now you're asking, if he's such a busy "working writer," how's he have time to read and analyze peoples' screenplays? Answer is, I love to read, I love to write, I love to critique and I love to teach. And no matter how busy I am there's always time to read a new screenplay and give an eager screenwriter the benefit of what it's taken me years of practical experience to learn.
Here's what I'll do.
I'll read your screenplay and write an in-depth analysis and review. I'll find those specific reasons why your script doesn't work (assuming, of course, your script doesn't work). I'll cover everything pertinent regarding the mechanics, formatting and story content. I'll provide you with script/page notes and offer specific suggestions to improve your story. We can discuss it on the phone, if you like, and I'll help you with a one-page synopsis and the all-important agent query letter. And I'll do all of this in a very professional and (you'll appreciate this) compassionate manner. Everything we discuss will be kept strictly confidential and you will retain sole ownership of the material at all times. My job isn't to cut your legs off.
I'm going to give you the tools you need to be the best writer you can be.
My philosophy is keep it simple, Jack. There are three crucial questions that must be asked concerning any story. If you know the questions and can answer them correctly with regards to your story, then you will have your premise and understand the reasons for your screenplay's strengths and weaknesses. Some folk go into theory and 9 to 24 Act structure, myth creation and thematic whatzit. Makes me dizzy. I simply show you why your story works or fails. You probably have too many words and not enough story. Your script is packed with story stoppers -- I will seek out and kill them. We'll discuss in length your structure, pacing, characterization and the all-important dialogue. Earl Hamner, creator of "The Waltons" and "Falcon Crest", told me that after a character speaks 16 words, the audience stops listening.
So now you're convinced. You're willing to peel off some skins and hand your baby over to a pro.
But which pro?
There are a lot of us "industry professionals" out here. Many, I suspect, are very good. But ask them for their credits. Find out just how many scripts they've actually written (and sold). Most of these professionals are readers, not writers. Some will charge you $350 up to $850 and more.
My fee is $265 U.S. For screenplays greater than 120 pages, add $2.00 per page over 120 pages. My turnaround time is usually 5-7 days. Not weeks.
Take my MINI COURSE IN SCREENWRITING. It's packed with valuable information you must know in order to write a viable screenplay and it's FREE! Just write me and ask for it. I'll e-mail it to you.
Contact me by e-mail for further information or to let me know your material is on its way.
1. Your screenplay
2. Money Order payable to Paul W. Cooper
3. SASE for return of your materials (use a flat rate priority
TO: Paul W. Cooper
3669 Orange Ct.
Simi Valley, CA 93063