First Review of “Bag Of Tricks”

Of course I am in the middle of a thousand things right now. Having just completed two back-to-back weekend seminars and now only two weeks away from flying to Munich and Moscow. But when you receive your first review on a book you’ve written, somehow the brakes go on, you start to spin out of control and eventually you hope that everything comes to a screeching halt before you hit a tree.

I’ve had a wide variety of reviews of my work over the years (theater, film, television, books, etc.) so I am pretty much used to the totally unpredictable nature of this process. Might make a good blog, sharing stories about reviews and critics.  Regardless, this one is great. Great not because it is positive, but great because Erin V. got it. I kind of like the idea that I don’t know if Erin is
male or female, makes the review more generic, universal somehow. But he/she got what the book was about. Erin understood the subtext and the tone and the intention. What more could a writer ask for.

So, time for you read the review. And, if you read the book, write your own review and post it on

Here’s Erin V’s review:

The Film Director’s Bag of Tricks Review By Erin V.

Author of The Director’s Journey [1999], and Directing Feature Films [2004], Mark W. Travis again gets the working relationships between directors, writers, and actors right.  It’s a collaborative business, so knowing how to work together and respect each others work is essential and these tips just make it a whole lot easier.

These are ways to help directors, writers, and actors to communicate their needs better.  Writers should read it, actors should read it, but most of all, directors have to read this one.  It’s not about tricking everyone to do what you want, but about finding the tools needed to make the film everyone can be proud of.

The information here is told with a wonderful perspective (actually making for an engaging read), and to top it all off, in the last chapter we get six interviews with other directors, each telling their own perspective on the art of directing.  This is one that will be picked up for reference again and again.

And check out Erin’s blog at:

Cheers, have a great day.


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