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The Art of Dramatic Writing


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Table of Contents







1. The Bone Structure

2. Environment

3. The Dialectical Approach

4. Character Growth

5. Strength of Will in a Character

6. Plot or Character -- Which?

7. Characters Plotting Their Own Play

8. Pivotal Character

9. The Antagonist

10. Orchestration

11. Unity of Opposites


1. Origin of Action

2. Cause and Effect

3. Static

4. Jumping

5. Rising

6. Movement

7. Foreshadowing Conflict

8. Point of Attack

9. Transition

10. Crisis, Climax, Resolution


1. Obligatory Scene

2. Exposition

3. Dialogue

4. Experimentation

5. The Timeliness of a Play

6. Entrances and Exits

7. Why Are Some Bad Plays Successful?

8. Melodrama

9. On Genius

10. What Is Art? -- A Dialogue

11. When You Write a Play

12. How to Get Ideas

13. Writing for Television

14. Conclusion

APPENDIX A. Plays Analyzed

APPENDIX B. How to Market Your Play

APPENDIX C. Long Runs on Broadway


About the Author

Lajos Egri was born in the city of Eger, Hungary, and wrote his first three-act play at the age of ten. For more than thirty-five years he has written and directed plays in Europe and the United States. He was director of the Egri School of Writing in New York City for many years.


Moss Hart I found Lajos Egri's book enormously interesting -- one of the best I have ever read.

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