Script Writing Dos and Don'ts
A film script is like a triangle where the bottom left is the BEGINNING, the top is in the MIDDLE, and the END is at the bottom right.
The BEGINNING (also called EXPOSITION) introduces the setting and main character. He or she faces some problem which he or she will try to solve.
The MIDDLE shows how the main character tries to solve the problem. Sometimes he/she will have success, sometimes he/she will fail. At the POINT OF NO RETURN (or CLIMAX), he or she must continue and cannot turn back to the beginning. Everything before the CLIMAX is called RISING ACTION; everything after the CLIMAX is called FALLING ACTION.
The END (also called the DENOUEMENT) shows an important change in the original problem. It usually solves the problem, but sometimes it just shows that the main character has a new idea about solving it.
When writing your script:
1. DO ask yourself why your idea is interesting to others. Try to write what the main idea in 1 or 2 sentences.
2. DO create a strong main character to whom viewers can relate.
3. DO know your main character very well
4. DO know what decisions he/she would make in different situations.
5. DO make sure your dialogue is realistic and that each character has his or her own way of talking.
6. DO make sure your story has a clear beginning, middle, and end.
7. DO proofread your script a few times to make sure there are no spelling, grammar, or formatting problems. If you need to, ask someone else to proofread it, too.
If your script is about a true story,
1. DON’T be afraid to leave out some of the things that actually happened. Pick and choose the most important ones. You can invent scenes if you think they will make the story more interesting.
2. If you are the main character, DON’T be afraid to change things about yourself if you think they help the audience to understand more about the character.
3. DON’T write too much description of actions. Write just enough so that anyone reading your script can follow the story.
4. DON’T write a lot of about how a scene should look or be shot. That is the job of the director and director of photography.
5. DON’T become too attached to your script. Directors and actors always make changes. Go with them.