The Savvy Screenwriter How to Sell Your Screenplay (and Yourself) Without Selling Out!

Susan Kouguell

St. Martin's Griffin



Trade Paperback

288 Pages



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The Savvy Screenwriter explains the film industry and reveals what aspiring screenwriters want and need to know.  From finding and working with agents, to insights about story analysts and movie executives, to understanding option agreements, to providing samples for queries, synopses, treatments, loglines, and outlines, to pitching, Susan Kouguell knows what works and what doesn't, and gives practical advice on getting your screenplay sold.


Praise for The Savvy Screenwriter

"A remarkably comprehensive, enjoyably irreverent, and practical guide to the realities of the film marketplace."—Jeremy Pikser, Academy Award® Nominee for Best Screenplay, Bullworth
"Kouguell's blunt and honest approach provides a sobering, insightful guide to the realities of the marketplace."—Scr(i)pt magazine
"A savvy book by a savvy writer and educator, written with clarity and wit, providing worthy insights into the diverse challenges confronting screenwriters . . . truly a worthy new contribution to the literature."—Richard Walter, UCLA Screenwriting Chairman
"With a sense of humor and intimate knowledge of how the system works, Kouguell explains a difficult and perplexing process in language writers can understand."—Screenwriter magazine
"The book is concise, well structured, objective—and a bit humbling."—MovieMaker magazine
"With a sense of humor and intimate knowledge of how the system works, Kouguell explains a difficult and perplexing process in language writers can understand."—New York Screenwriter Monthly
"Her thesis—that savvy screenwriters will do better than ignorant or misinformed ones—shines."—Creative Screenwriting Magazine

Reviews from Goodreads



Read an Excerpt

Chapter One

Empower Yourself

Bravo! You've completed your screenplay. Now what?

Forewarned is forearmed. You need to be ready for what lies ahead.

The Savvy Screenwriter reveals what's in store for you. It demystifies the film business and tells you what you really want and need to know ... how to sell your screenplay and yourself without selling out.

Whether your goal is to write for independent or Hollywood films, The Savvy Screenwriter will help you to gain an understanding of how the industry works and what it expects from you and your screenplay. A savvy
Read the full excerpt


  • Susan Kouguell

  • Susan Kouguell is an award-winning screenwriter and filmmaker, and associate producer.  As chairperson of Su-City Pictures East, she works as a screenplay and post-production consultant with a client base of more than 1,000 writers, filmmakers, production companies, agents, and studios including Miramax, Warner Bros., and Fine Line Features.  Kouguell teaches at Tufts University and Screenwriters Online, and presents screenwriting seminars nationwide.