When I get in trouble with a story, there are only two sources to which I turn for help, and Corey is one of them.  — Paul Haggis, two-time Acadamy Award-winning screenwriter and director

 

There are two essential skill sets required for screenwriting and television writing success:

The ability to write scenes that grab a reader’s attention and make them want to keep reading, and the ability to sequence those scenes into the most compelling order (story structure). These skills are not equal.

The first skill is far more important than the second one.

Many writers believe they already write sufficiently strong scenes, characters and dialogue, and that if they could only get better at story structure they’d be able to write professional-level scripts. Unfortunately, this is too often not the case.

I recently met a producer who received 116 script submissions from writers at a pitch fest. He read the first scene or two of each script, but would only continue reading if those scenes were compelling and well written. I asked how many scripts he read beyond the first couple of scenes?

He said only two.

Which means he tossed 114 of the 116 scripts after only a few pages.

The single most important skill required for success is the ability to write original, powerful, and compelling scenes. If a writer can’t consistently do that, all the story structure in the world won’t save them. Without this ability, a writer simply has no shot.

PROFESSIONAL SCREENWRITING AND TELEVISION WRITING WORKSHOP

In this intensive eight-week workshop, we will analyze successful scenes, complete weekly writing assignments, and review participants’ work in a supportive, yet challenging environment. By working on emotional context, narrative intensity, cohesion, organic escalations, clarity, efficiency, high impact pacing, set-ups, builds and pay-offs, participants will learn the tools necessary to write and edit professional-caliber scenes essential for any successful screenplay or TV script.

Additionally, participants will learn how to develop the four essential screenwriting skill sets necessary for long-term success – writing clear and compelling professional-level conflict, strengthening and integrating both the conceptual (story) and intuitive (character) sides of writing, organic story structure, and rewriting.

COST

$495. Participants may pay by check or credit card.

LOCATION

The Professional Screenwriting and Television Writing Workshop is offered online using multi-video conference technology allowing participants to see and hear each other in real time. Writers have attended this workshop from across the US, Europe, Australia, Canada, and South Africa.

For writers living in Los Angeles, the Professional Screenwriting and Television Writing Workshop is offered at The Writers Junction, located at 1001 Colorado Avenue in Santa Monica.

ENROLLMENT

New workshop sessions tend to sell out within a few days of being announced. Enrollment priority is given to writers on the Workshop Interest List. To put yourself on this list, or if you have questions, please email Kathryn Stanley at [email protected]

ABOUT THE INSTRUCTORS

Corey Mandell is an award-winning playwright and screenwriter who has written projects for Ridley Scott, Wolfgang Petersen, Harrison Ford, Meg Ryan, Julia Roberts, John Travolta, Warner Brothers, Universal, 20th Century Fox, Fox 2000, Fox Family, Working Title, Paramount, Live Planet, Beacon Films, Touchstone, Trilogy, Radiant, Kopelson Entertainment and Walt Disney Pictures.

Corey’s students have gone on to sell or option scripts to Warner Brothers, Paramount, Sony Pictures, Fox, MGM, Disney, Universal, Showtime, FX, USA Network, NBC, HBO, MTV and AMC. Others have been staffed on such as Community, The Fosters, BonesJustified, Young and Hungry, Playing House, The Mentalist, Marvel’s Agents of Shield, Up All Night, State of Affairs, Rosewood and Treme.

Talton Wingate is an award-winning writer and professional screenwriter. He was honored for his first script Norman, named one of the “Top 10 Scripts of 2005,” alongside other screenwriting luminaries that year such as Aaron Sorkin (with Charlie Wilson’s War), Diablo Cody (with Juno), and David Benioff (with The Kite-Runner). Norman was released in 2011 as a feature film starring Richard Jenkins, Dan Byrd, Emily Van Camp and Adam Goldberg.

Talton has experience with all aspects of the business from selling specs, adapting original properties, rewriting and pitching. He has also been featured in scr(i)pt magazine. Talton is a graduate of Northwestern University’s Film Program and Creative Writing Program, where he was awarded Best Fiction Writer of 2003. He hails from Atlanta and currently resides in Los Angeles.

WHAT OTHERS ARE SAYING

Corey burrows under the accepted conventions of film structure until they collapse, revealing inviolate rules to be hollow myths.  If screenwriting is the land of fundamentalist experts, Corey is a bomb-throwing radical.  When I get in trouble with a story, there are only two sources to which I turn for help – and Corey is one of them.

— Paul Haggis, two-time Academy Award-winning screenwriter and director (Crash, Million Dollar Baby, Casino Royale)

 

As someone with years of experience in the development world I found Corey’s class to be absolutely refreshing.  He provides exercises which reinforce fundamental elements needed to create a strong screenplay.  If you are committed to becoming a better screenwriter this class can help you.

— Jennifer Soskin, Director of Development and Production at HBO films


No one, and I mean no one, is teaching what Corey is teaching.  This is the best workshop I have ever attended.  There is no way to describe how beneficial it is.  I always felt close as a screenwriter, but after taking this workshop I was able to make the necessary changes in my writing and recently sold my first script to Paramount.

— Michael Helvin, writer of The Lesser Heart


After four years, an MFA, and finally my first break into writing for television, I can say that no one — not even the best graduate programs — are teaching what Corey is, and that integrating his techniques into the day-to-day framework of my writing has been the most important variable in any success I’ve had as a screenwriter. The skills I’ve learned have become my secret weapon in the writer’s room and one of the best things that have ever happened to my career. Anyone that has the opportunity to take his courses — consider yourself one of the lucky ones. I know I do.

— Tamara Carter, Staff Writer on HBO’s The Leftovers

 

I’ve never met a writing teacher like Corey Mandell. He can help you reach your true potential as a storyteller. What you can get from Corey, if you do the work, is a complete training in process and a path toward creative integration and mastery. I can’t recommend his classes enough to anyone serious about screenwriting or TV writing as a career.

— Jennifer Kushner, Director of Artist Development, Film Independent

 

Over the years, I’ve developed an impressive distaste for screenwriting courses. Most offer little more than paint by numbers formulas and inapplicable industry advice.  But Corey’s class is the exception to the rule.  It was a wake up call to me. Corey’s teaching method is so unique, so singular, and effective it made me wonder how I ever wrote without it.  It’s hands down the best class out there!  

— Gary Lundy, writer of A Happening of Monumental Proportions, starring Jennifer Garner and Katie Holmes

 

I read the books and took the classes but Corey’s workshop was different. Honestly, it was transformative for me. I use the tools I learned from him in every single script meeting. He reshaped the way I think about screenwriting. If you want to become a better screenwriter and you are not signed up for Corey’s class — seriously, get it together!

— Nick Weiss, co-writer and director of the Paramount movie, Drunk Wedding

 

Corey’s program represents nothing less than a paradigm shift in writing instruction and learning.  No longer does a writer have to be told, “You’re only good with concepts, but you can’t write believable dialogue.”  Or, “I love your characters, but you just aren’t good with structure.”  Corey’s idea of creative integration isn’t just revolutionary, it is fundamental to successful writing — and has never before been taught.  I can’t recommend Corey and his programs highly enough.

— Tom Nunan, former network and studio president, and Executive Producer of the Academy Award-winning Crash

 

Corey’s class was transformative and a huge paradigm shift for me. His Creative Integration method has completely changed the way I approach my work. The skills I learned in his class are now a main part of my toolbox. As a mom to three, I am very budget-conscious and can say without any reservation that his workshops were definitely worth the investment!

— Brandi Nicole Payne, writer of the HBO film, Muted

 

I’ve written 1 screenplays without any success. During that time I read every screenwriting book and attended all the seminars.  After four weeks with Corey I FINALLY knew why my scripts didn’t work, and more importantly, what to do about it.  I used everything he taught me to write a script that landed me a manager and then my first script option.  THANK YOU! 

— Monica Owens, writer of Timebends

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    

Every client I sent to work with Corey has taken great leaps and bounds. His techniques are ingenious, unique and valuable for both beginners and seasoned professionals.  I can’t recommend it enough.

— Jeff Graup, Literary Manager, Graup Entertainment

 

Corey’s unique approach has been invaluable to understanding the conceptual and intuitive aspects of writing, and has led me on a path towards creative integration of the two. Beyond the classroom, Corey’s wisdom and consultations helped me sell my current pilot, The Owen, to Universal Cable Productions. Thank you!

— Mike Dow, writer and producer on ABC’s Young & Hungry and TV Land’s Happily Divorced

 

Corey is by far the best writing teacher I’ve ever had and taught me techniques I had never heard of before or since.  After finishing his class I landed an agent and my first produced writing credit. I sill consult the notes from Corey’s class in my writing as they’ve been indispensable.

— Keith Schreier, Justified, The Good Wife

 

As a development executive with the dubious honor of having to read countless boring predictable scripts written to the same old boring predictable formulas taught by a growing number of experts who have never actually written a successful script, I am appreciative someone is finally telling the truth. Anyone serious about wanting to be a professional writer needs to take Corey’s workshop.

— Michelle Sart Tanner

 

Corey not only taught me the tools to access the dark, painful places that make up my intuitive side, he taught me how to combine the conceptual and the intuitive through Creative Integration to reach my full potential as a writer. In the room or on the page, the benefits of Corey’s workshops are immeasurable.

— Roger Grant, writer and producer on the CW’s Beauty and the Beast and NBC’s Chicago Fire


I feel as if I’ve been liberated from Story Structure Hell.  I never could fit myself into those formulas and yet felt guilty and inadequate that I was unable to make it work according to their edicts. It always felt constricting and wrong.  Thank you for showing me a sane way out.

— Jennifer Hoffman

 

Corey’s instruction is ground-breakingly brilliant. I received my MFA in Filmmaking where I took dozens of screenwriting courses.  My thesis film won the Gold Medal at the Student Academy Awards. And Corey’s class was the biggest wake up call of my life.  I have devoted tremendous time, effort, and money to the craft of screenwriting, yet Corey’s class is the best investment of them all. I’ve never witnessed such drastic improvement in my writing in just a few short weeks.

— Patrick Alexander, writer and director of Rundown

 

This is the first screenwriting class I’ve taken where I actually learned useful tools that I can take home and practice.  I continue to use these tools as a professional writer on a daily basis.  Studying with Corey was like my Masters Program.

— Diana Mendez, Staff Writer on Rosewood


After taking Corey’s seminar I had a whole new perspective on what makes a film great.  The techniques and tools he gave us applied to every client’s screenplay, regardless of genre, and I’m amazed that no one has taught this approach previously. I highly recommend people take the time to hear what he has to say and absorb it.

— Richard Demato, Literary Manager and Partner, Fuse Entertainment