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Don't Make These Common Mistakes while Screenwriting

Screenwriting is wildly different from writing a novel or true-story book. It is a different medium and needs to be treated as such. It is a very difficult form that few authors are able to master. 

With this in mind, here are a few of common mistakes stated by Nadel Paris of new screenwriters. Hopefully, this article will help you to avoid them and make your script or book into a movie more enticing to Hollywood.


STARTING TOO LATE - Novels can and often do start at a leisurely pace, with scene descriptions, character backgrounds, etc. Because screenplays generally run a maximum of 120 pages, much of which is white space, a screenplay has to get moving sooner.


UNNECESSARY DESCRIPTION - Screenplay description is minimalist, just enough to tell the reader where we are and a general tone of the place. Leave the rest up to the director and/or art director.


STATING THE OBVIOUS - one tendency of beginning screenwriters is to have characters state what we just witnessed on the screen. For example, if we are watching a track meet and John crosses the finish line first, it is unnecessary and boring to have a character say "John won the race."


FORMAT - Screenplays must conform to a strict format, for purposes of shooting. The first thing a producer or Hollywood Reader (whose job it is to read scripts for their bosses) does is check the format. If it's wrong, even a little, they throw away the script without further attention.


LENGTH - Feature Film scripts are usually 90 - 120 pages, though close to 100 is usually preferred. The reason is that one page of a screenplay is considered to translate into one minute of screen time. Industry execs will generally not read a script that is of improper length.


TOO MUCH DIALOGUE - One big newbie mistake is to write page after page of dialogue. Movies are primarily a visual medium. There should be a good balance of dialogue and physical action, favoring action. Action does not necessarily mean gun fights and car chases. It means the characters are doing something.


Ms. Nadel Paris is a screenwriter, published author, recording artist, musician, music producer, songwriter and a dancer.

Nadel and her staff have been the driving factor towards personal growth for children for years working with them in voice placement, voice projection.

To read more please click here

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