1. IndianaJoan
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    IndianaJoan Contributing Member

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    Best Way to Learn Scriptwriting?

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by IndianaJoan, Oct 27, 2006.

    Ive been writing fiction forever. How do u learn the formats for this kind of writing? Any good references any of u know of?
     
  2. Darkwriter
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    Darkwriter Member

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    Hi IndianaJoan.

    There are many books on the subject of formatting scripts, as well as purpose built software. One of the available software items worth looking at is called 'Scriptsmart' and is freely available from the BBC in the UK.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/writersroom/scriptsmart/

    There are several versions of it, including one for prose.

    If you find those useful, you may want to try a fully fledged professional kit like 'Final Draft'.

    http://www.finaldraft.com/purchase/?prod=fd

    On that page there's also a Syd Field DVD. Anything at all by Syd Field would be worth the effort, he's very much an expert in Screenwriting.

    I hope these are of use for you.

    Joe
     
  3. zerobytes
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    zerobytes Contributing Member

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    I believe there are several books on the topic at Amazon.com or you can try this:

    When I was in Los Angeles I was interested in writing and shooting a short movie - my funds were a bit tight but I was interested in what was out there so I put up a posting at craigslist.com and a few other writing sites requesting treatments for short film scripts. My inbox was flooded in a day or two with tons of scripts and script treatments - I ended up working with one of the writers who had some really great stuff. It was really nice on that initial post to review several writer's works and see what was out there.

    Now, you don't want to pirate work or be dishonest by leading on other writers but the ideas can springboard a few of your own plus you get the exposure to correct format etc.

    Also, you can try Drew's Script-o-rama. It has tons of film scripts that you can peruse. Good luck, it's a great medium!

    ZB
     
  4. Spherical Time
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    Spherical Time Contributing Member

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    Also, Simply Scripts for another place to peruse scripts, including some ones that I've heard of. See if you can't find some similar scripts, and look them over.
     
  5. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    i mentor many aspiring screenwriters, so if you want format guides, a 'tools of the trade' list, info on the basics, tips from the pros, or writing help of any kind, just drop me an email...

    love and hugs, maia
    maia3maia@hotmail.com
     
  6. w176
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    w176 Contributing Member Contributor

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    First and foremost you read a lot of scripts. If you haven't read any scripts before you start to read about scripts ad the theory and practice behind it you will have a hard time to relate to the guides.
     
  7. Noya Desherbanté
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    Noya Desherbanté Senior Member

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    Read a lot of scripts - there are ones available as free PDF's on the BBC Writersroom website Darkwriter mentioned, or if you're interested in a particular genre or show you'd like to learn more about the style of, some bigger shows release books of their scripts (they're normally incredibly heavy...).

    As for software, I don't think you can do any better than Celtx. It's completely free, apart from an online service that lets you collaborate and share (but this isn't essential) - it has templates for film and TV layout, radio show, audio visual project, can accomodate storyboards and has a shooting schedule function, and it's all incredibly easy to use. I use it all the time for my Media course, and it's really second nature.
     
  8. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    while celtx is ok while you're learning and if only doing it for fun, if you want to be a professional screenwriter, it's best to invest in final draft, which is what most of the pros use...

    you can download scripts at www.script-o-rama.com and imdb's script database... but be aware that you won't find spec scripts by new writers there, only director's or shooting scripts that will include things you shouldn't, such as camera/editing directions and scene numbering, plus they will often be written less 'simply' than the 'lean and clean' style you must stick to for a spec...
     

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