Art Work

Eight Secrets to Writing Screenplays that Sell

screenwriting

The first thing you need to realize when you begin is that the audience is fickle, the smash last week or last month could easily be this week’s dud.

Today we live in an instant gratification society and at most, you have three maybe five minutes to grab and keep their attention, how do you do that you might be asking, well this is how Bill Wilder a very famous writer and director explained it.

For those of you who don’t know who Billy Wilder was, he was an Austrian-born American filmmaker, screenwriter, producer, artist, and journalist, whose career spanned more than 50 years and 60 films.

The Golden Rules:

  • The audience is fickle. Grab ‘em by the throat and never let ‘em go.
  • Develop a clean line of action for your leading character. Know where you’re going.
  • The more subtle and elegant you are in hiding your plot points, the better you are as a writer.
  • If you have a problem with the third act, the real problem is in the first act.
  • A tip from Lubitsch: Let the audience add up two plus two. They’ll love you forever.
  • In doing voice-overs, be careful not to describe what the audience already sees. Add to what they’re seeing.
  • The event that occurs at the second act curtain triggers the end of the movie.
  • The third act must build, build, build in tempo and action until the last event, and then—that’s it. Don’t hang around.
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Best Free Screenwriting Software

 

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If you are new to screenwriting and you’re still trying to figure out the format and the whole process I invite you to check out some of the free Screenwriting software posted below.

It’s all free and will give you the basic tools you’ll need to help improve your writing experience, I’ve tried several of them and found that not having to worry about getting the format just right helped me focus more on writing.

Try them out and find the one you feel most comfortable with and then if you decide you would like to upgrade to the full program you’ll know what you’re getting.

 

 

Final Draft – In terms of script writing software, there aren’t many programs more professional than Final Draft. Final Draft is a highly accomplished script writing tool created specifically for writing movie scripts, television episodes, and stage plays. It allows you to concentrate on the writing. You don’t have to learn about script formatting Final Draft automatically formats your script to industry standards so all you have to do is write.

Movie Magic – This software automatically formats while you write so you can focus on what you’re writing, not where it goes on the page. In addition, it formats for television, stage, novels and comic book scripts so you will have an all-in-one package for virtually any story you would like to write. Using a massive set of features made to make the rewriting process quick and simple.

Celtix – Celtx offers both screenwriting and pre-production processes, in a software program that includes ‘full-feature script writing with media rich pre-production support. Celtix is also well suited for those that would like to collaborate from a distance since it has an online editing tool. Celtx also helps you format your script. Celtx isn’t Final Draft, but it is free and that’s got to be a positive for struggling writers who can’t or aren’t willing to shell out a couple hundred dollars.