Writing a Screenplay From Scratch

Posted Wednesday 01 Jul 2015

Want to get into feature film or television writing? Daunted by the idea of completing a full-length screenplay and revising it through multiple drafts?

Are you an industry professional looking to up-skill or be in a workshopping environment with structure and deadlines?

This 18-week workshop is for you!

This intensive workshop will guide writers through the basics of writing a screenplay all the way through to a completed draft that has been workshopped extensively by peers in the group.

Starting Monday 21st September 2015, 12-15 writers will meet for three hours each week for 18 weeks to learn the craft of feature film writing. By the end of the workshop, you will have completed a polished draft of a feature film script.

Each week fundamentals of the craft will be covered and four writers in the group will present one act (approximately 20- 25 pages) of their script to be workshopped.

Facilitator - Ren� Le Bas

Ren� completed his MA in Creative Writing at the Victoria University of Wellington International Institute of Modern Letters where he earned the Michael Hirschfeld Scholarship in Scriptwriting. Ren� has experience as a script editor and consultant and has worked with the Gibson Group's development team.

Ren� lead two blocks of the EAT Writers Group, one on the essential craft of rewriting and one that examined writing for genre in depth. In this workshop he will foster new voices in writing while also providing a structured environment for more established writers to hone their craft.

Teaching/Learning Methods

Primarily, this course will be workshop-based and participants will learn through critiquing each other's work and learning how to integrate feedback into their own work. There will be an examination of:

  • Narrative structure
  • Story analysis
  • Character and characterisation
  • Theme
  • Rewriting
  • Pitching
  • Market research, networking, and how to 'pitch' yourself.
  • How to give and receive feedback

The first half of each session will cover screenplay craft and exercises to improve writing. It will also cover skills and useful knowledge that will help improve one's professionalism in screenwriting. The second half will focus on workshopping the feature film scripts being written by workshop participants.


The workshop will be limited entry with only 12-15 spots available.

When and Where

Mondays, 6:30-9:30pm

21st September - 23rd November 2015 (nine sessions)

25th January - 21st March 2016 (nine sessions)

Community Room

Toi Poneke Arts Centre

61 Abel Smith Street


Entry into the Workshop

To apply you must provide a one-paragraph synopsis of the feature film idea you wish to write in the workshop and a brief bio about yourself and your career aspirations as a screenwriter.

Applications close on Friday, 28th August 2015


$350 for the full 18 sessions (this can be paid in two increments of $175)

Writers accepted into the workshop must commit to all 18 weeks of the workshop.



To register your interest and receive a detailed programme, send your synopsis and bio to Ren� Le Bas (nzscreenwriting@gmail.com).