Is your Audience Ready for your Script?
Writing a script can be one of the most rewarding tasks for any person to do. Outside of having the potential to sell the script to become a film or television series, there's a particular joy attached to doing something so difficult. Generally speaking, whenever someone finds themselves doing something as monumental as writing a script, the end factor for it is an incredible feeling.
However, like anything else, when you finish typing the last page doesn't mean you’re finished. In fact, for most screenwriters, writing the first draft was the natural part. Now, you have to edit, pitch, and try to sell your script to everyone interested. As difficult as this might sound, it's needed if you want to see your script become anything.
Luckily enough, there are enough experts in the field to point you in the right direction with your script comfortably. Whether it's who to contact, what you should edit, and guidelines for writing itself, it's never been easier to write a script. Although it's still challenging to do, there are more guides and technological advancements that make it a lot easier.
You have to ask yourself if your script is ready for an audience. Although the term audience can mean the people who will potentially watch the television series or film, it mostly means the people who will potentially buy it. Nonetheless, down below, we’re going to discuss a few points to consider to see if your script is ready for an audience.
Photo credit: Rally 'Round the Flag, Boys!
Formatting and Editing
Before anything else, you need to run through your entire script and see if it’s formatted correctly. This doesn’t just mean the pure essence of screenplay format, but if character names are spelled consistently, flashbacks and montages are written correctly, it’s in an active voice, and much more.
If you're confused about everything related to formatting, don't worry. There are a ton of guides you can look up that'll list everything you'll need to know formatting wise. No matter the specifics, be confident in your ability to adjust your script to the proper formatting correctly. Once you get the hang of it, it'll be smooth sailing for there.
Outside of proper formatting, editing is crucial for any script. Once you hit finish on the final pages, consider printing it out and walking through it with a pen. Although you can do this on a computer, reading a physical copy will help you see mistakes better. Since that’s how people are going to view your script, you might as well too.
A script is anything without a good story. Although a script can have a great story attached to it, this doesn't mean anything unless it flows appropriately. This can mean anything from having too long of an introduction, a boring midpoint, or pointless scenes that don't add anything to the story. An excellent way to think about this is to make sure every scene has conflict and advances your story forward.
As difficult as it is to think of a scene like this, it’ll help you develop a better script. Creating a scene checklist of conflict and advancements will help you rid pointless scenes. It’s possible you might have to write a lot more because of this, but a first draft is never the finishing point of a script.
Outside of the story flow, read through your characters. Does each character have goals and exciting takes on their own, or are they one dimensional? An excellent way to look at your characters is to cover up their names and read their lines. If you can tell which character is which without their names above, this will help you know if they have a unique voice.
Considering a voice is vital for any character to have, it's crucial you make sure this is done correctly. Other than reading their lines by yourself, consider bringing in a friend or relative to help you. Describe how each character acts and what their persona is, then read the lines to them. If they can somewhat guess what character is which, you'll have great voices for each of your characters.
Intro, Midpoint, Climax, Resolve
Lastly, you’re going to want to think about the introduction, midpoint, climax, and resolve of your story. Although there are other points to consider other than these four, these are all important matters for any script. Go over each and see what you can do to make all of them better and if they make sense.