A Plan to Succeed in Screenwriting in 2021

CJ Walley
19 min readDec 22, 2020

Around this time last year, I published the blog “A Plan to Succeed in Screenwriting in 2020”. I wanted to revisit this with all I have learned in the previous twelve months. Therefore, this is the same document redrafted with some new reflections. 2020 has been a strange year to say the least and its impact on the film industry so significant it will most likely be changed forever as a result. Let’s dive in — CJ

2020 has been a frustrating year for me, to say the least, but I’m hardly alone in that regard and relatively well off. Just when things got going and I had a film greenlit and ready to shoot in early summer, lockdown hit and we had to cancel indefinitely since we had a story featuring an elderly character. With the short-term future looking bleak, Shane Stanley and I fought like crazy for months to make something happen and thankfully a chance meeting in late-Sept led to a rapid development process and the production of our new action-comedy Double Threat which has now been shot. This also overlapped the release of Break Even in North America, our previous collaboration in film and my first released feature film as a screenwriter. During this time, I have expanded my role from writer to writer-producer and thus gained a tremendous amount of new insight as a result. Meanwhile, Script Revolution has continued to go from strength to strength with a multitude of partnerships forming, high-profile exposure, and regular webinar sessions with myself and Shane. Still, it’s been like running through mud compared to normal and I’ve watched entire organisations collapse as a result of all this turmoil. If 2020 feels like a year in your life you’ve had to write off, I don’t blame you.

So, let’s talk about putting a strategy together for the coming year, a strategy that should maximise your chances of breaking into the industry while maintaining a motivated mindset.

It’s Okay To Be Exhausted & Demotivated

The COVID pandemic has hit everyone hard and I don’t think we’re really going to take-in what a harrowing event we’ve been through in human history until we are on the other side. If there’s one constant I’ve seen throughout the writing community it’s that, while many have more time than ever to write, they simply can’t. Do not beat yourself up if your…

CJ Walley

Screenwriter | Film Producer | Founder of Script Revolution & Rebelle Rouser | Author of Turn & Burn