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As webmaster of, I'm regularly asked how to go about selling a screenplay. Unfortunately, that's not an area in which I'm comfortable giving advice. So instead, I've come up with this list of popular books available on the subject of selling screenplays, making pitches and getting an agent. (If possible, read these books for free in a public library. If not, you can get them online now by clicking on the titles below.)

How to Sell Your Screenplay :
The Real Rules of Film & Television.

Opening the Doors
to Hollywood :
How to Sell Your Idea Story, Book,
Screenplay, Manuscript.

The Savvy Screenwriter :
How To Sell Your Screenplay
(And Yourself) Without Selling Out!.

Writing Treatments That Sell :
How to Create and Market Your
Story Ideas to the Motion Picture
and TV Industry.

The Screenwriter's Bible :
A Complete Guide to Writing,
Formatting, and Selling Your Script.

How to Write It,
How to Sell It :
Everything a Screenwriter Needs
to Know About Hollywood.

500 Ways to Beat
the Hollywood Script Reader :
Writing the Screenplay
the Reader Will Recommend.

Screen Teen Writers:
How Young Screenwriters
Can Find Success.

How Not to Write
a Screenplay:
101 Common Mistakes Most
Screenwriters Make.

Pitching Hollywood:
How to Sell Your
TV and Movie Ideas.

The Script Selling Game:
A Hollywood Insider's Look at Getting
Your Script Sold and Produced.

Breakfast with Sharks:
A Screenwriter's Guide to
Getting the Meeting, Nailing the Pitch,
Signing the Deal, and Navigating
the Murky Waters of Hollywood

The Writer Got Screwed
(But Didn't Have To) :
A Guide to the Legal and Business
Practices of Writing for the
Entertainment Industry.

The Elements of Style.
A small, basic guide to grammar,
style and writing. If you don't
already own it, buy it.

The Complete Guide
to Standard Script Formats :
The Screenplay.

The Screenwriter Within :
How to Turn the Movie
in Your Head
into a Salable Screenplay.

The Screenwriter's
Survival Guide :
Or, Guerrilla Meeting Tactics
and Other Acts of War

Complete Idiot's Guide
to Screenwriting

If you're looking for books about how to become an actor, click here.

There is also an annual screenwriting / script contest (the Nicholl Screenwriting Competition) held by the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts & Sciences. Entry is limited to those who haven't sold a script before. The prize (fellowship) is $30,000.

They have a website about the competition with all the details about the contest. And the site also gives some very good advice on how to format a script, etc. You'll find the main page at