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Advanced Screenwriting – Mastering the Long Second Act Slog

Starts October 9

8 sessions: Wednesdays, October 9-December 4 (no class October 30), 6:30–9:30pm

You’ve completed your first draft. Now what? You’ve rewritten your opening and polished those pages until they shine. And your third act’s not bad either. But you know in your gut that 90% of what’s still wrong with your screenplay lies in that highly problematic second act. It figures. This is the place where MOST of your story happens, after all. So, what do you need to do to develop and sustain a sense of real momentum? How do you manage the care and the feeding of subplots, making sure all the while that they support and enhance your primary storyline, but without overshadowing it?

This course provides an engaging, interactive workshop environment where you’ll learn to diagnose, evaluate, and fix problems with your second act so that it becomes the strongest part of your screenplay, rather than its weakest link. Take your learning from FilmNorth’s Elements of Screenwriting to the next level, and hone your skills and your movie. Students are strongly encouraged to come to class with a finished screenplay, with the minimum requirement of having at least one act completed.

Tuition: $320 regular/$240 member/$180 low-income

David Grant is a Twin Cities-based screenwriter and playwright. As a playwright, he has been commissioned to write new work for the Minnesota Science Museum, the Minnesota Historical Society, Mixed Blood Theater, VocalEssence, The Playwrights’ Center, and Great American History Theatre. As a screenwriter, he has written drama for Twin Cities Public Television, Russell Simmons’ Def Pictures, HBO New York, Davis Entertainment, and the Showtime Network. Grant has been a recipient of screenwriting fellowships from the Minnesota State Arts Board and the McKnight Foundation, and was a finalist for the 1999 Gordon Parks Award and the Heathcote Arts Foundation Fellowship at the Independent Feature Film Market in New York for his screenplay Trouble. He has taught screenwriting at The Loft, Playwrights’ Center, and S.A.S.E., as well as basic writing skills for The Center for Non-Profit Management at the University of St. Thomas. Grant is a graduate of Antioch College and president emeritus of Screenwriters’ Workshop, member of The Loft board of directors, a core alumnus member of The Playwrights’ Center, and a member of the Writers’ Guild of America, West.

Class Registration Guidelines & Cancellation Policy

  • Space is assigned on a first-come basis. Registrations must include payment in full. Registrations are accepted after registration deadlines if space is available.
  • If minimum enrollment has not been reached by 5 days prior to the start date of a class, FilmNorth may cancel it, in which case registrants will immediately be notified and receive a full refund within 5 business days. A check will be issued for registrations that were paid in cash. In lieu of a refund, students have the option of applying their tuition to another class in the same calendar year.
  • For those wishing to cancel a registration prior to the class registration deadline, 100% of the tuition will be refunded minus a $25 administrative fee. For registration cancellations received after the registration deadline but prior to the first class session, 50% of the tuition will be refunded minus a $25 administrative fee. As of a class start date, no refunds or credits/exchanges will be given.
  • Tuition is not prorated for missed class sessions.




October 9 @ 6:30 pm
December 4 @ 9:30 pm
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David Grant
Registration Deadline
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Class count or Info
8 sessions: Wednesdays, October 9-December 4 (no class October 30), 6:30–9:30pm