Screenwriting : Script formatting by Charlie Allenson

Charlie Allenson

Script formatting

Formatting question -- I got some terrific notes from a script I submitted to the Page project. It was pretty well received. The humor/dialog and main character arc were highlighted. The biggest problem was in my formatting. That leaves me puzzled. Not disagreeing, just puzzled. I was under the impression that Final Draft automatically set up the correct format. Obviously I must have some important points along the way. Any thoughts? Solutions? Hellllppp. Thanks.

Danny Manus

Without knowing the actual problems they pointed out, it's hard to know .FD does basic formatting, but you have to click on the right elements to use in the right places, spacing and capitalizations are things they don't always do for you. It could be many things...

Sylvia Marie Llewellyn

I would ask the people at Page to clarify what specifically they were referring to.

Jacqueline Hicks

I agree. If you do a cut and paste of a page, we'll be better abel to tell you what was probably the issue.

James Gale

Final Draft also has lots of different format templates to choose from. e.g. Half-hour sitcom, Warner Bros Screenplay, BBC Screenplay.

Sylvia Marie Llewellyn

I just bought FD9.... can't wait to use it on my next script.

Charlie Allenson

Hey - thanks to everyone. I re-read to notes several times and have switched from FD to Movie Magic Screen Writing which seems to be easier to format. Thanks again and god luck to all.

Phillip "Le Raconteur" Hardy

I wouldn't rely on script formatting software alone. Without understanding things as simple as formatting a telephone conversation, you could be dinged for formatting errors. For a good understanding of formatting questions, I recommend reading "The Hollywood Standard" by Chris Riley. However, there are plenty of great books and websites with lots of formatting info. Congrats on your positive coverage from Page.

Charlie Allenson

Hi Phillip - many thanks.

Phillip "Le Raconteur" Hardy

U bet!

Adam Strange

This book is great but I've seen tons of terribly formatted scripts on the black list. http://www.amazon.com/The-Hollywood-Standard-Complete-Authoritative/dp/1...

Mary Winborn

Final Draft drove me nuts. I cant ever seem to make it work for me.

Robert Dan O'Neill

Hi Charlie, check this one: ProofMySpec.com All the best to you! Bob :)

Charlie Allenson

Hi Robert. Many thanks for the suggestion. Seems like there are more books on formatting than uninhabitable planets in the universe.

Charlie Allenson

Alle -- I beg to differ. I've been to most of them on vacation. All lot look like New Joisey.

Mary Winborn

Hi Dan. Do pro's ever use a script coverage services? So far, I paid a screenwriter ( I grew up with) to train me for about a year. She sold stuff in the 90's and stressed clean scripts ,formatting, grabbing attention on first 1-10 pages. I also participated in several mass hookup, internet based classes with The Guru and etc, also did script project on Screenwriting U. But I still am looking for as much perfection as I can stand, and want the best, less expensive coverage. I just dont trust myself. Scriptapalooza and Smart Girls look good. Dan, anyone? Many thanks.,

Danny Manus

Mary, I'd be happy to work with you. You can checkout my services, or site, and reputation. And I'm not very expensive. If it means anything, Stage 32 has brought me on to do 2 Webinars already, so I must know a little sumthin... hehe Email me if you have any questions.

Ami Brown

Yeah I bet you've just gotten the wrong elements, or used dialog formatting for the whole thing. I know it can be confusing too and a little complicated the first time.

William Martell

Most likely, it read like a novel rather than a screenplay. You can have the "where things go" format perfect and have problems with the "how those things are written" part.

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