Screenwriting: Save The Cat

While taking the course on Writing a Proposal for TV, one of the books recommended was Blake Snyder’s SAVE THE CAT –  The Last Book On Screenwriting That You’ll Ever Need.

My intention here is certainly not to write a review of the book. The guy’s got almost 5,000 ratings, 80% of them 5 stars.

But before I tell you why I am writing about Save the Cat, let me let the cat out of the bag, so to speak, and explain the title in Blake’s words:

Save the Cat is the screenwriting rule that says… it’s the scene where we meet the hero and the hero does something -like saving a cat – that defines who he is and make us, the audience, like him.

Further in the book, Blake explains his test marketing method:

I pitch to anyone who will stand still. I do it in line at Starbucks. I do it with friends and strangers. I always spill my guts when it comes to discussing what I’m working on, because:

I have no fear that anyone will steal my idea (and anyone who has that fear is an amateur and…

You find out more about your script by talking to people.

I talk to “civilians’”

Which brings me to THANK ALL OF YOU who provided me with comments, suggestions and encouragements regarding my logline (see previous post).

One comment was that the absent father may not be the best term to use. For an indebt comment on my logline you may want to read the comments posted by PRIOR.

Perhaps abandoned fathers might be a better term.

If you’re interested in writing a screenplay you might consider having a look at this book.

One last word. I am aware that taking on this project and especially talking about it places me in a vulnerable position. What if I fail (and the chances, considering my zero contacts with the business) are quite high.

I will continue to work on my logline and will also write about the other aspects of screenwriting which are the concept, the characters, genre, the setting, and the all intimidating screenwriting software which I am in the process of learning.

If anything, all this gives me material to post on my blog. 😉

27 thoughts on “Screenwriting: Save The Cat

  1. Thanks for sharing your journey with us, Carol, as you explore this new way of creating. I look forward to learning a lot from you as you move along. Thanks for the book recommendation, too. As of now, I don’t have plans for screenwriting, but you never know…

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I am in awe of screenwriting and have never contemplated it. However, I would love to create film scenes. In my mind’s eye I often see opening scenes, no words, the pictures have to tell the story and that is fascinating.


  3. First, congratulations on your new endeavor! I’m looking forward to following you on your journey. Yes, it’s not a simple goal you set yourself, but wasn’t it Wayne Gretzky who said “You miss one hundred percent of the shots you don’t take”?

    The one thing that surprised me was the open sharing of ideas: I read that some prominent authors are unwilling to review new authors’ work for fear they’ll be sued for “stealing an idea”, even if they didn’t feel they did it. Does the author of Save the Cat address why only armatures exhibit that fear?


    • No he doesn’t address that but probably it has something to do with his confidence and also his success. Who would dare plagiarized him! I am very thankful for your encouraging words. ❤
      Great quote by Gretzky. Thomas Edison said:
      "Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is always to try just one more time."


  4. Carol, this book sounds really interesting. I love that save the cat idea. I guess the most famous example might be Holly golightly’s relationship with Cat? That’s what comes to mind anyway.


  5. I’m reading Save the Cat at the moment. I’m a little like Blake Snider in that if someone asks me, and sometimes even if they don’t ask, I’m happy to tell them about my manuscript. I have a couple of reasons – it’s a way of brainstorming if I say it out loud. If there’s a scene that’s bothering me, it may become clearer where I need to change it, (I just have to remember to jot it down before I forget) and also I’m excited about my writing. And who knows, one day, the right person listening to me natter on will be an editor or agent who passes me their business card. Thank you for sharing your writing journey.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I like your attitude, Joanne about sharing your writing. This is what I am doing in posting my film proposal. It is a way of brainstorming and getting comments. Good luck with your new website.


  6. Pingback: Screenwriting: Genre, Setting, Concept | Carol Balawyder

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