Frequently Asked Questions

The information here is given for guidance only. It is not intended to be taken as specific advice for individual circumstances. It is not to be regarded as constituting legal advice and should not be relied upon as such.

Dear Jen...

I have a question about screenwriting, where do I look?
Here! You can also try my Guide for Screenwriters. You can also see a menu list on the right, which links to the other ScreenWriters Friend pages.

I have returned to bug you with more annoying questions. :) Basically.....Copyright. It's confusing us, to put it mildly - on one hand we hear that something is Copyrighted the moment you write it down, and the next we hear that we need to register it somewhere?We've had a look at Registering at the Screenwriters Guild of America, but after reading the FAQ on their website, we're confused as to that the actual benefits of doing so are. It's all very confusing :D
Yes, a confusing and frequently asked question. Basically in Britain copyright is automatic; as soon as a work is realised in actual form - such as writing it down. Registration is more insurance against copyright theft after-the-fact. Neither can actually stop someone stealing your work, but they help to assert your rights in a court of law.

Where copyright is your automatic, lawful right as author, registration is used as additional proof as part of a 'chain of evidence'. It gives your script or concept a time and date of existence in the eyes of the law. Should your copyright be breeched in the future, copyright law gives you the right to sue and registration provides a serious ally in your chain of evidence. It's like travel insurance, few people actually need it, but it's best to be safe than sorry. Although theft can be upsetting, registration gives you the opportunity to get some form of compensation if the worst happens.

The most important thing is to register BEFORE you tell anyone about the idea or pitch it as to form the chain of evidence you need proof that it was written before the 'acused' had access to it. Register, put the reg number on the cover of the script, keep good records of corresondence and notes and be prudent of who you show your material to.

More information here.

Where do you get this information from, is is gospel?
Most of the advice is here is based on my own actual hands on experience. Some of it is second-hand advice from friends and colleagues, when I have come across a difficulties myself. My professional career now spans over 15 years in several different aspects of film production. I live and work in Britain, so I have a British perspective of the film world.

Always use your common sense and get a second opinion, whether it is just advice or an evaluation of your screenplay. I may be a professional in the film industry, but I am still at the beginning of my journey of establishing myself as a professional screenwriter, so don't just blindly follow my advice, do your own research. There are plenty of great screenwriting sites out there. See my top five on the right or check out my Writers Links page for a full list.

I want to write screenplays, how do I go about it?
You will find information on how to write a screenplay on my Guide for Screenwriters page.If you are still at school you can contact Film Education at If you are looking to go to film school you can find details on my training page. For more detailson working in the film industry you can see my employment page.

I have this great idea for a film, but don't know how to write a screenplay. Can you write my screenplay for me?
Thanks for asking, but it is quite unlikely that I would have the time to write your screenplays as well as my own. It is best that you at least try yourself and you may discover a new skill in the process. Check out my Guide for Screenwriters page. Remember to register all ideas before you send them to anyone.

Can I send you my screenplay?
No, not at this time as I am very busy developing my own work. I get a great many requests and hope that in the future when I set up my own film production company, I will then be able to take on screenplay submissions. I understand the difficulty of getting started in this industry - I've been through it, which is why I set up this site to help people like yourself. I list some useful information and contacts on my Guide for Screenwriters pages. This is all I can manage with my current work commitments. Remember to copyright all ideas before you send them to anyone.

What is a LOG line?
A LOG-LINE (also sometimes refered to as a TAG-LINE or STRAP-LINE) is an advertising term which describes the film / theme in a line. For example the logline for ALIEN was "In space no-one can hear your scream", JURRASIC PARK: "An adventure 65 million years in the making", ALIENS: "This time it's war!", MARS ATTACKS: "Nice planet. We'll take it" LEON: "If you want the job done right, hire a professional", et cetera.

What is a synopsois?
A SYNOPSIS is a brief account of your story, usually one to three pages long (I recommend sticking to just one page). A brief synopsis is about 25 words to half a page long. A TREATMENT is a more indepth version of a synopsis and is around 15-20 pages long and includes selected dialogue. I personally don't use treatments and use a good strong synopsis or full script to promote my work. See my Guide for Screenwriters page for furtherdetails. Writing synopsis in various lengths is brilliant practice for your writing and understanding your basic concept.

I want to contibute to ScreenWriters' Friend
Fantastic! Contact me with how you would like to contibute and what subject you want to cover. Each contibution will be credited and the contributor will also get their own page on Jengo for their CV/Resume. Contributions must be useful information or advice. Suggested links are not counted for a contributor page.

Do you want a writing partner?
Possibly. I am already co-writing several projects, with several different writers. It may be best to get to know me better first. I have a film group which has many creative members, which you may like to join. To apply for membership, you need to write to me with why you want to join, with biography and film expierence. I also have a screenwriters group on Facebook.

Can you give me a job?
Unfortunately I'm not curently in a position to employ people. I hope that this will change in the future. When my position changes you can find out about it on my website. You can list your CV or Resume online for free - check out my film directories, networking and employment pages.

How do I find work in the film Industry?
See my employment page for details.

I want to join your Jengo Film Group.
Membership is restricted to industry professionals or regular visitors to this site. To apply for membership, you need to write to me with why you want to join, with biography and film expierence. I also have a screenwriters group on Facebook.

How and why did you start to collect this information?
More details are on my writer's home page.

HELP! I cant find what I'm looking for!
There are alphabetically listed link catagories on my Site Navigation page. If you have no luck there you can try the search engine, TheInternet Movie Database, the BritishFilm Institutes website:

I want to exchange a film link with
Wonderful! Contact Me.

What do you do?
See my biography page for details.

LEGAL DISCLAIMER:The information here is given for guidance only. It is not intended to be taken as specific advice for individual circumstances. It is not to be regarded as constituting legal advice and should not be relied upon as such.