Professor Loren-Paul Caplin to Release New Screenwriting Book

BY Cody Beltis , September 18, 2020

Long time Adjunct Associate Professor Loren-Paul Caplin, will release his new book, Writing Compelling Dialogue for Film and TV: The Art & Craft of Raising Your Voice on Screen, on October 2, 2020. The book is available for pre-order


Writing Compelling Dialogue for Film and TV is a practical guide that provides screenwriters with a clear set of exercises, tools, and methods to raise their ability to hear and discern conversation at a more complex level, in turn allowing them to create better, more complex, and compelling dialogue. According to Caplin, the process of understanding dialogue writing begins with increasing writers’ awareness of what they hear. This book provides writers with an assortment of dialogue and language tools, techniques, and exercises and teaches them how to perceive and understand the function, intent and thematic/psychological elements that dialogue can convey about character, tone, and story. Text, subtext, voice, conflict, exposition, rhythm and style are among the many aspects covered. 


This book reminds us of the sheer joy of great dialogue and will change and enhance the way writers hear, listen to, and write dialogue, and along the way aid the writers’ confidence in their own voice allowing them to become more proficient writers of dialogue. It is an invaluable writing tool for any aspiring screenwriter who wants to improve their ability to write dialogue for film and television, as well as students, professionals, and educators.

Caplin has written scripts for many of the major studios (Fox, Paramount, Sony, Universal, Warner Bros.), Hollywood producers and Independent producers, including Laura Ziskin, Joe Roth, Robert Harris, Ben Barenholtz, and fellow faculty member, Professor Ira Deutchman. His feature film, The Lucky Ones, that he wrote/directed, premiered at Tribeca Film Festival 2003 (and distributed on DVD 2005) and his short film, The History of the World in 8 Minutes, premiered at the New Directors/New Films Festival. On TV, his short, Battle in the Erogenous Zone, which he co-wrote with John Drimmer, was on Showtime; his short film played on MetroTV. 


His play Sunday’s Child and Men in the Kitchen was produced at the Long Wharf Theater; A Subject of Childhood was produced at the WPA; The Presidents (co-written with Ron Nessen, Press Secretary to President Gerald Ford) played on PBS for a year and toured nationally. His musical Gangs (book, lyrics & music) was developed by David Merrick and Joe Roth for Paramount. His musical City Music (book, lyrics & music) was produced at the Huntington Theater, Boston and subsequently developed as Steel Town by the Public Theater, NYC. His poems have appeared in various publications including The Paris Review and Rolling Stone Magazine. He teaches screenwriting at Columbia University, The New School, Hofstra University and the Feirstein Graduate School of Cinema.