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175 OF THE MOST FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS TO RESEARCH ABOUT VIDEO SCRIPTWRITING

 

         

        

 

 

175 OF THE MOST FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT VIDEO SCRIPTWRITING

© by Anne Hart

 

Your assignment for practice, if you choose to do the research, is to find current answers to the following 175 questions about writing video scripts. Another use for your scripts is to expand them and adapt them into novels, short stories, or learning materials. 

 

1. WHICH GENRE SHOULD I SELECT AS A FIRST VIDEO SCRIPT?......9

 

2. WHY SHOULD I WRITE IN CARICATURE FOR KIDS?...............10

 

3. HOW DO I PLAN A CHILDREN'S VIDEO SCRIPT?.................11

 

4. HOW CAN I GROW WITH CHILDREN'S VIDEO?.....................12

 

5. HOW DO I WRITE A SCRIPT FOR CHILDREN'S PROGRAMMING?......13

 

6. HOW CAN I PRE-SELL MY SCRIPT BEFORE I WRITE IT?..........15

 

7. WHAT THEMES IN CHILDREN'S PROGRAMMING VIDEOS HAVE THE BEST       

CHANCE OF SELLING TO A PRODUCER OR BEING FINANCED?........17

 

8. DOES THE STORY STRUCTURE SHOW A MEASURABLE RANGE OF CHANGE/

   PERSONAL GROWTH OF THE LEADING CHARACTER?...............17

 

9. HOW DO I WRITE A CHILDREN'S COMEDY SCRIPT FOR VIDEO?....18

 

10. HOW DO I PITCH MY PREMISE IN MY ONE-PAGE SYNOPSIS?.....18

 

11. HOW MANY WAYS CAN I PITCH A PREMISE?...................19

 

12. WHAT DO I PUT IN EACH PARAGRAPH OF MY ONE-PAGE

    SYNOPSIS?..............................................20

 

13. WHAT GOES INTO THE FIRST PARAGRAPH OF MY SYNOPSIS?.....22

 

14. IS THERE ANY DIFFERENCE BETWEEN WRITING FOR

    CHILDREN'S VIDEO AND WRITING FOR ADULT VIEWERS?........23

 

15. HOW DO I WRITE CHILDREN'S ANIMATION VIDEO SCRIPTS?.....24

 

16) HOW DO I WRITE AN ANIMATION PREMISE?...................26

 

17) HOW DO I SELL MY OUTLINE?..............................27

 

18) HOW DO I WRITE THE FIRST DRAFT?........................28

 

19) CAN I GET BUMPED OFF A SCRIPT?.........................29

 

20) WHAT WILL ANIMATION PAY TO WRITERS?....................30

 

21) WHERE CAN I FIND IDEAS?................................30

 

22) HOW DO WRITERS ENTER ANIMATION?........................32

 

23) THE BOOM AND THE BUST?.................................32

 

24) CAN I TELECOMMUTE IF I LIVE OUT OF TOWN?...............33

 

25) WHERE DO I START NETWORKING?...........................35

 

26) SHALL I WRITE HARD ANIMATION OR SOFT ANIMATION?........36

 

27) HOW DO I WRITE ADVENTURE/ACTION FOR VIDEO?.............37

 

28) WHY WILL THE COUNTDOWN VORTEX DETERMINE

THE STORY STRUCTURE?.......................................38

 

29) WHY SHOULD BY ACTION/ADVENTURE HAVE

A SINGLE ENDPOINT?.........................................39

 

30) WHAT KIND OF FRAMEWORK WORKS BEST ON ACTION VIDEO?.....40

 

31) DOES MY HERO HAVE AN INTERNAL MORAL GOAL?..............42

 

32) HOW  DO I WRITE COMEDY OR ROMANTIC COMEDY?..............43

 

33) WHAT IS COMEDY VIDEO?...................................46

 

34) HOW DO I WRITE FOR SITCOM?..............................48

 

35) HOW DO I WRITE SATIRE?..................................48

 

36) WHY DO I NEED CONTRAST AND MIND GAMES?..................49

 

37) HOW DO I WRITE BLACK COMEDY?............................50

 

38) HOW CAN I USE PARODY IN A BLACK COMEDY?.................51

 

39) HOW DO I WRITE FARCE FOR VIDEO?.........................51

 

40) THE LOVE STORY/HOW ARE ROMANCE NOVELS PUT ON

    VIDEO TAPE?.............................................54

 

41) HOW DO I WRITE A LOVE STORY FOR VIDEO?..................55

 

42) WHAT SHOULD I KNOW ABOUT PERSONALITY TYPES?.............56

 

43) WHAT'S THE CONFLICT ABOUT IN A LOVE STORY VIDEO?........57

 

44) WHAT ARE THE 16 PERSONALITY TYPES?......................59

 

45) WHAT SHOULD I KNOW ABOUT THE FOUR TEMPERMENTS?..........60

 

46) HOW DO I WRITE A MYSTERY/SUSPENSE OR DETECTIVE VIDEO?...61

 

47) SUSPENSE/ WHAT KIND OF WORLD MAKES A COMMERCIAL

SUSPENSE VIDEO?.............................................64

 

48) ABOUT WHAT SHOULD I MAKE MY DETECTIVE FEEL GUILTY?......65

 

49) WHAT DOES EVERY DETECTIVE WANT?.........................67

 

50) WHO'S THE ANTAGONIST IN A SUSPENSE VIDEO SCRIPT?........68

 

51) WHY DOES THE GANGSTER REPRESENT THE DEATH OF THE

    AMERICAN DREAM?.........................................69

 

52) HOW DO I USE MY CHARACTER'S GREATEST FEARS?.............70

 

53) HOW CAN I PLAY MY HERO AND OPPONENT OFF EACH OTHER?.....71

 

54) WHAT VALUES DOES A SUSPENSE VIDEO ATTACK?...............73

 

55) HOW DO I WRITE FOR THE HORROR GENRE?....................74

 

56) WHAT THREE POINTS ARE REQUIRED TO SELL A COMMERCIAL

    HORROR GENRE VIDEO SCRIPT?..............................76

 

57) HOW DO I PRE-SELL A HORROR GENRE VIDEO SCRIPT?..........78

 

58) WHY ARE HORROR VILLAINS BECOMING MORE SYMPATHETIC?......80

 

59) WHAT DO I NEED TO KNOW BEFORE I WRITE A HORROR VIDEO?...80

   

60) SCIENCE FICTION/

    HOW DO I WRITE A SCIENCE FICTION VIDEO?................ 85

 

61) CAN A LOW-BUDGET SCI FI VIDEO BE WRITTEN?...............86

 

62) HOW DO I FIND SCIENCE FICTION VIDEO PRODUCERS?..........86

 

63) HOW DO SCIENCE FICTION VIDEOS SELL?.....................89

 

64) HOW DO I OBTAIN THE "MOVIE RIGHTS" TO A TRUE STORY?.....91

 

65) WHICH GENRE SELLS MOST FREQUENTLY TO THE VIDEO MARKET?..94

 

66) HOW DO I WRITE A DRAMA SCRIPT FOR VIDEO?................95

 

67) IN WHAT ORDER SHOULD THE CREATIVE CONCEPTS BE ORGANIZED

    TO MAKE GOOD STORY STRUCTURE IN A DRAMA?................95

 

68) HOW DO I DRAW A STORYBOARD?............................102

 

69) HOW PRACTICAL/USEFUL IS STORY STRUCTURE IN A

    VIDEO SCRIPT?..........................................103

 

70) HOW DO I ADAPT A NOVEL TO A VIDEO SCRIPT?..............105

 

71) WHAT HAPPENS AT THE MIDPOINT OF MY SCRIPT?.............109

 

72) HOW DO I ADAPT FLASHBACK IN A NOVEL TO A SCRIPT

    FORMAT?................................................110

 

73) HOW DO I ADAPT A SLOW-MOVING BOOK TO A FAST-MOVING

    COMMERCIAL VIDEO SCRIPT?...............................110

 

74) WHEN DO I NUMBER THE SCENES OR SHOTS?..................114

 

75) WHAT IMPACT DOES THE FINAL ACT MAKE?...................114

 

76) HOW DO I GIVE AN UPBEAT ENDING TO A TRUE STORY

    I FOUND IN THE NEWSPAPER ABOUT A GRISLY MURDER?........116

 

77) HOW DO I ADAPT FROM NEWS TO SCREEN?....................117

 

78) HOW DO I CREATE A TRAILER TO PRE-SELL MY SCRIPT?.......120

 

79) WHAT'S COMMERCIAL ABOUT A VIDEO ADAPTATION THAT WOULD BE MARKETABLE TO A PRODUCER OR CABLE T.V.?....................121

 

80) HOW DO I GET THE MOVIE RIGHTS TO A TRUE STORY

    IN THE NEWS?...........................................122

 

81) HOW DO I ADAPT SOMEONE ELSE'S TRUE STORY

    TO A VIDEO SCRIPT?.....................................122

 

82) HOW DO I FICTIONALIZE FACTS?...........................126

 

83) WHAT WILL I GET PAID FOR AN ADAPTATION OR SCRIPT?......128

 

84) WHAT GUERRILLA MARKETING STRATEGIES WORK BEST?.........131

 

85) WHERE DO I MARKET MY VIDEO RIGHTS?.....................134

 

86) WHAT RIGHTS DO I HAVE ON MY VIDEO SCRIPT?..............136

 

87) HOW CAN I GET MY SCRIPT OPTIONED?......................136

 

88) WHAT ARE MY RIGHTS AS A FREELANCE SCRIPTWRITER?........138

 

89) WHICH PREMISES ARE HOT AND WHERE DO I PITCH THEM?.....139

 

90) WHERE DO I FIND THE PERFECT PLOT?.....................141

 

91) WHAT EXTRAORDINARY ACTION DOES THE HERO TAKE?.........142

 

92) DOES THE HERO APPEAL TO A WIDE AUDIENCE?..............142

 

93) WOULD THE SCRIPT BE SUITED FOR CABLE T.V.

    OR THEATRICAL FILM?...................................143

 

94) SHOULD THE BEST CHARACTER BE MALE OR FEMALE?..........144

 

95) WHAT ABOUT THE AGES OF MOST OF THE PEOPLE ATTENDING

    THEATRICAL FILMS?.....................................145

 

96) ADAPTATIONS/

    HOW DO I ADAPT A NOVEL OF 100,000 WORDS OR MORE TO A

    90-PAGE VIDEO SCRIPT OR TO A 120-PAGE SCREENPLAY?.....145

 

97) WHAT ARE THE RULES OF STORY STRUCTURE IN ADAPTATION

    FROM BOOK TO VIDEO SCRIPT?............................150

 

98) WHAT CHANGES IN THE HERO DO PRODUCERS WANT?...........159

 

99) HOW DO I WRITE A COMMERCIAL VIDEO FEATURE

    IN 20 STEPS?..........................................161

 

   

 

          175 OF THE MOST COMMONLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT VIDEO SCRIPTWRITING

 

 

1. WHICH GENRE SHOULD I SELECT AS A FIRST VIDEO SCRIPT?......9

 

2. WHY SHOULD I WRITE IN CARICATURE FOR KIDS?...............10

 

3. HOW DO I PLAN A CHILDREN'S VIDEO SCRIPT?.................11

 

4. HOW CAN I GROW WITH CHILDRENS VIDEO?.....................12

 

5. HOW DO I WRITE A SCRIPT FOR CHILDREN'S PROGRAMMING?......13

 

6. HOW CAN I PRE-SELL MY SCRIPT BEFORE I WRITE IT?..........15

 

7. WAHT THEMES IN CHILDREN'S PROGRAMMING VIDOES HAVE THE BEST        CHANCE OF SELLING TO A PRODUCER OR BEING FINANCED?........17

 

8. DOES THE STORY STRUCTURE SHOW A MEASURABLE RANGE OF CHANGE/

   PERSONAL GROWTH OF THE LEADING CHARACTER?...............17

 

9. HOW DO I WRITE A CHILDREN'S COMEDY SCRIPT FOR VIDEO?....18

 

10. HOW DO I PITCH MY PREMISE IN MY ONE-PAGE SYNOPSIS?.....18

 

11. HOW MANY WAYS CAN I PITCH A PREMISE?...................19

 

12. WHAT DO I PUT IN EACH PARAGRAPH OF MY ONE-PAGE

    SYNOPSIS?..............................................20

 

13. WHAT GOES INTO THE FIRST PARAGRAPH OF MY SYNOPSIS?.....22

 

14. IS THERE ANY DIFFERENCE BETWEEN WRITING FOR

    CHILDREN'S VIDEO AND WRITING FOR ADULT VIEWERS?........23

 

15. HOW DO I WRITE CHILDREN'S ANIMATION VIDEO SCRIPTS?.....24

 

16) HOW DO I WRITE AN ANIMATION PREMISE?...................26

 

17) HOW DO I SELL MY OUTLINE?..............................27

 

18) HOW DO I WRITE THE FIRST DRAFT?........................28

 

19) CAN I GET BUMPED OFF A SCRIPT?.........................29

 

20) WHAT WILL ANIMATION PAY TO WRITERS?....................30

 

21) WHERE CAN I FIND IDEAS?................................30

 

22) HOW DO WRITERS ENTER ANIMATION?........................32

 

23) THE BOOM AND THE BUST?.................................32

 

24) CAN I TELECOMMUTE IF I LIVE OUT OF TOWN?...............33

 

25) WHERE DO I START NETWORKING?...........................35

 

26) SHALL I WRITE HARD ANIMATION OR SOFT ANIMATION?........36

 

27) HOW DO I WRITE ADVENTURE/ACTION FOR VIDEO?.............37

 

28) WHY WILL THE COUNTDOWN VORTEX DETERMINE

THE STORY STRUCTURE?.......................................38

 

29) WHY SHOULD BY ACTION/ADVENTURE HAVE

A SINGLE ENDPOINT?.........................................39

 

30) WHAT KIND OF FRAMEWORK WORKS BEST ON ACTION VIDEO?.....40

 

31) DOES MY HERO HAVE AN INTERNAL MORAL GOAL?..............42

 

32) HOW  DO I WRITE COMEDY OR ROMANTIC COMEDY?..............43

 

33) WHAT IS COMEDY VIDEO?...................................46

 

34) HOW DO I WRITE FOR SITCOM?..............................48

 

35) HOW DO I WRITE SATIRE?..................................48

 

36) WHY DO I NEED CONTRAST AND MIND GAMES?..................49

 

37) HOW DO I WRITE BLACK COMEDY?............................50

 

38) HOW CAN I USE PARODY IN A BLACK COMEDY?.................51

 

39) HOW DO I WRITE FARCE FOR VIDEO?.........................51

 

40) THE LOVE STORY/HOW ARE ROMANCE NOVELS PUT ON

    VIDEO TAPE?.............................................54

 

41) HOW DO I WRITE A LOVE STORY FOR VIDEO?..................55

 

42) WHAT SHOULD I KNOW ABOUT PERSONALITY TYPES?.............56

 

43) WHAT'S THE CONFLICT ABOUT IN A LOVE STORY VIDEO?........57

 

44) WHAT ARE THE 16 PERSONALITY TYPES?......................59

 

45) WHAT SHOULD I KNOW ABOUT THE FOUR TEMPERMENTS?..........60

 

46) HOW DO I WRITE A MYSTERY/SUSPENSE OR DETECTIVE VIDEO?...61

 

47) SUSPENSE/ WHAT KIND OF WORLD MAKES A COMMERCIAL

SUSPENSE VIDEO?.............................................64

 

48) ABOUT WHAT SHOULD I MAKE MY DETECTIVE FEEL GUILTY?......65

 

49) WHAT DOES EVERY DETECTIVE WANT?.........................67

 

50) WHO'S THE ANTAGONIST IN A SUSPENSE VIDEO SCRIPT?........68

 

51) WHY DOES THE GANGSTER REPRESENT THE DEATH OF THE

    AMERICAN DREAM?.........................................69

 

52) HOW DO I USE MY CHARACTER'S GREATEST FEARS?.............70

 

53) HOW CAN I PLAY MY HERO AND OPPONENT OFF EACH OTHER?.....71

 

54) WHAT VALUES DOES A SUSPENSE VIDEO ATTACK?...............73

 

55) HOW DO I WRITE FOR THE HORROR GENRE?....................74

 

56) WHAT THREE POINTS ARE REQUIRED TO SELL A COMMERCIAL

    HORROR GENRE VIDEO SCRIPT?..............................76

 

57) HOW DO I PRE-SELL A HORROR GENRE VIDEO SCRIPT?..........78

 

58) WHY ARE HORROR VILLAINS BECOMING MORE SYMPATHETIC?......80

 

59) WHAT DO I NEED TO KNOW BEFORE I WRITE A HORROR VIDEO?...80

   

60) SCIENCE FICTION/

    HOW DO I WRITE A SCIENCE FICTION VIDEO?................ 85

 

61) CAN A LOW-BUDGET SCI FI VIDEO BE WRITTEN?...............86

 

62) HOW DO I FIND SCIENCE FICTION VIDEO PRODUCERS?..........86

 

63) HOW DO SCIENCE FICTION VIDEOS SELL?.....................89

 

64) HOW DO I OBTAIN THE "MOVIE RIGHTS" TO A TRUE STORY?.....91

 

65) WHICH GENRE SELLS MOST FREQUENTLY TO THE VIDEO MARKET?..94

 

66) HOW DO I WRITE A DRAMA SCRIPT FOR VIDEO?................95

 

67) IN WHAT ORDER SHOULD THE CREATIVE CONCEPTS BE ORGANIZED

    TO MAKE GOOD STORY STRUCTURE IN A DRAMA?................95

 

68) HOW DO I DRAW A STORYBOARD?............................102

 

69) HOW PRACTICAL/USEFUL IS STORY STRUCTURE IN A

    VIDEO SCRIPT?..........................................103

 

70) HOW DO I ADAPT A NOVEL TO A VIDEO SCRIPT?..............105

 

71) WHAT HAPPENS AT THE MIDPOINT OF MY SCRIPT?.............109

 

72) HOW DO I ADAPT FLASHBACK IN A NOVEL TO A SCRIPT

    FORMAT?................................................110

 

73) HOW DO I ADAPT A SLOW-MOVING BOOK TO A FAST-MOVING

    COMMERCIAL VIDEO SCRIPT?...............................110

 

74) WHEN DO I NUMBER THE SCENES OR SHOTS?..................114

 

75) WHAT IMPACT DOES THE FINAL ACT MAKE?...................114

 

76) HOW DO I GIVE AN UPBEAT ENDING TO A TRUE STORY

    I FOUND IN THE NEWSPAPER ABOUT A GRISLY MURDER?........116

 

77) HOW DO I ADAPT FROM NEWS TO SCREEN?....................117

 

78) HOW DO I CREATE A TRAILER TO PRE-SELL MY SCRIPT?.......120

 

79) WHAT'S COMMERCIAL ABOUT A VIDEO ADAPTATION THAT WOULD BE MARKETABLE TO A PRODUCER OR CABLE T.V.?....................121

 

80) HOW DO I GET THE MOVIE RIGHTS TO A TRUE STORY

    IN THE NEWS?...........................................122

 

81) HOW DO I ADAPT SOMEONE ELSE'S TRUE STORY

    TO A VIDEO SCRIPT?.....................................122

 

82) HOW DO I FICTIONALIZE FACTS?...........................126

 

83) WHAT WILL I GET PAID FOR AN ADAPTATION OR SCRIPT?......128

 

84) WHAT GUERRILLA MARKETING STRATEGIES WORK BEST?.........131

 

85) WHERE DO I MARKET MY VIDEO RIGHTS?.....................134

 

86) WHAT RIGHTS DO I HAVE ON MY VIDEO SCRIPT?..............136

 

87) HOW CAN I GET MY SCRIPT OPTIONED?......................136

 

88) WHAT ARE MY RIGHTS AS A FREELANCE SCRIPTWRITER?........138

 

89) WHICH PREMISES ARE HOT AND WHERE DO I PITCH THEM?.....139

 

90) WHERE DO I FIND THE PERFECT PLOT?.....................141

 

91) WHAT EXTRAORDINARY ACTION DOES THE HERO TAKE?.........142

 

92) DOES THE HERO APPEAL TO A WIDE AUDIENCE?..............142

 

93) WOULD THE SCRIPT BE SUITED FOR CABLE T.V.

    OR THEATRICAL FILM?...................................143

 

94) SHOULD THE BEST CHARACTER BE MALE OR FEMALE?..........144

 

95) WHAT ABOUT THE AGES OF MOST OF THE PEOPLE ATTENDING

    THEATRICAL FILMS?.....................................145

 

96) ADAPTATIONS/

    HOW DO I ADAPT A NOVEL OF 100,000 WORDS OR MORE TO A

    90-PAGE VIDEO SCRIPT OR TO A 120-PAGE SCREENPLAY?.....145

 

97) WHAT ARE THE RULES OF STORY STRUCTURE IN ADAPTATION

    FROM BOOK TO VIDEO SCRIPT?............................150

 

98) WHAT CHANGES IN THE HERO DO PRODUCERS WANT?...........159

 

99) HOW DO I WRITE A COMMERCIAL VIDEO FEATURE

    IN 20 STEPS?..........................................161

 

     WRITING NON-FICTION VIDEO SCRIPTS

100) HOW DO I REALLY KNOW A SCRIPT IS MARKETABLE?.........168

 

101) HOW CAN I FIND THE RIGHT FRAMEWORK?..................171

 

102) HOW DOES A NON-FICTION SCRIPT REINFORCE OTHER VISUAL

     MEDIUMS?.............................................173

 

103) WHY DO FRAMEWORKS BECOME STRUCTURES FOR FACTS?.......174

 

104) WHY DOES EACH SCENE HAVE ITS OWN FRAMEWORK

     IN A NONFICTION VIDEO SCRIPT?.........................175

 

105) WHICH FRAMEWORK WORKS BEST TO FORM A CREATIVE

     CONCEPT?..............................................176

 

106) HOW DO I WRITE AN INFOMERCIAL?........................177

 

107) HOW DO I WRITE FOR NON-BROADCAST T.V.?................193

 

108) WHAT IS DESKTOP VIDEO SCRIPTWRITING?..................196

 

109) WHEN SHOULD I USE A DOCUMENTARY STYLE?................198

 

110) HOW DO I GET INTO MEDICO-LEGAL VIDEO WRITING?.........199

 

111) HOW DO I WRITE A STOP-TAPE DISCUSSION VIDEO SCRIPT?....200

 

112) SHOULD I USE A PARODY FRAMEWORK IN A VIDEO SCRIPT?.....202

 

113) HOW CAN I USE THE INTERVIEW IN A SCRIPT?...............202

 

114) HOW CAN I RECORD A VIDEO SCRIPT IN NEWSCAST/

     NETWORK STYLE?.........................................204

 

115) WHEN SHOULD I USE THE VIDEO MAGAZINE FORMAT?...........205

 

116) HOW DO I SET UP A PANEL DISCUSSION IN A VIDEO?.........207

 

117) WHAT OPPORTUNITIES EXIST WITH INDUSTRIAL VIDEO?........208

 

118) WHAT TYPE OF VISUALS SHOULD I USE ON VIDEO TAPE?.......209

 

119) WHEN SHOULD I USE SUBJECTIVE CAMERA?...................210

 

120) HOW DO I USE SYMBOLISM AND METAPHOR?...................210

 

121) HOW DO ALL THESE FRAMEWORKS FIT TOGETHER TO

     MAKE IT COMMERCIALLY APPEALING TO A PRODUCER?..........212

 

122) WHAT ELSE CAN BE DONE WITH A VIDEO SCRIPT?.............213

 

123) DO I WRITE FOR ONE CAMERA OR THREE CAMERA VIDEO?.......214

 

124) HOW CAN I CREATE A DEMO TAPE OF MY SCRIPT?.............215

 

125) TRADE SECRETS OF COMMERCIAL FICTION FOR VIDEO/

     HOW DO I WRITE AND SELL FICTION FOR VIDEO?.............217

 

126) HOW DOES PERSONALITY TYPE DETERMINE DRAMATIC

     CONFLICT?..............................................218

 

127) WHAT EVENTS DOES AN ADAPTATION COVER?..................221

 

128) HOW DO I GET TO THE UNIVERSAL THROUGH THE CONCRETE?....222

 

129) HOW DOES THE SOCIAL SYSTEM AFFECT THE HERO?............224

 

130) HOW CAN I APPLY THE THREE PARTS OF A CREATIVE PERSON?..225

 

131) WHAT ELEMENTS OF CHANGE GO INTO A SCRIPT?..............226

 

132) HOW DOES THE HERO INFLUENCE OTHERS?....................227

 

133) HOW DO THE VALUE SYSTEMS IMPACT THE HERO?..............229

 

134) WHY CONFINE THE HERO TO A TINY SPACE

     AND WATCH HIM GROW?....................................231

 

135) DOES THE HERO'S GOAL HAVE BOX-OFFICE APPEAL?...........234

 

136) WHY DOES THE HERO AND OPPONENT NEED TO BE SIMILAR?.....236

 

     SELLING A SCRIPT TO THE VIDEO MARKET/

137) HOW MANY WAYS CAN I FIND TO PRODUCE MY SCRIPT?.........240

 

138) CAN A DISTRIBUTOR FINANCE MY SCRIPT PRODUCTION?........243

 

139) CAN WRITERS BE PRODUCERS?..............................244

 

140) HOW CAN HOME VIDEO COMPANIES FINANCE THE PRODUCTION?...245

 

141) HOW CAN I FIND A CO-PRODUCTION PARTNER?................246

 

142) WHO WILL INVEST IN MY VIDEO OR FILM?...................247

 

143) WHY SHOULD I STARTWITH CHILDREN'S VIDEO?...............248

 

144) IS THERE A FOREIGN MARKET FOR MY SCRIPTS?..............248

 

145) CAN I SELL MY ROMANCE SCRIPTS TO THE VIDEO MARKET?.....250

 

146) HOW CAN I SELL NON-FICTION CHILDEN'S VIDEO SCRIPTS?....252

 

147) IS THERE A MARKET FOR BIOGRAPHY SCRIPTS?...............253

 

148) HOW DO I TURN A VIDEO SCRIPT INTO A DIALOGUE

     WITH SOCIETY?..........................................254

 

149) HOW DO I USE STARTLING STATISTICS TO BE COMMERCIAL?....255

 

150) WILL COMPUTER SOFTWARE HELP WRITE A SCRIPT OR

     ADAPTATION?............................................257

 

151) MARKETING TOOLS/

     HOW DO I CREATE A PROFESSIONAL PRESS KIT?..............261

 

152) HOW DO I PRESENT MY KIT TO THE MEDIA?..................264

 

153) WHERE CAN I USE THE PRESS KIT?.........................265

 

154) HOW DO I CREATE A POWERFUL MEDIA HOOK?.................265

 

155) HOW DO I USE A FEAR HOOK?..............................267

 

156) HOW DOES A NEWSPAPER EDITOR RESPOND TO

     MY STORY HOOK?.........................................267

 

157) WHAT'S THE IMPACT OF A TIME-SEQUENCE HOOK

     ON THE MEDIA?..........................................268

 

158) WHEN DO I USE A POSITIVE HOOK?.........................268

 

159) WHAT DO MEDIA PROFESSIONALS EXPECT TO SEE?.............269

 

160) HOW DO I FORMAT A ONE AND TWO-HOUR VIDEO SCRIPT?.......273

 

161) WHAT ARE THE STEPS IN THE PRODUCTION PROCESS?..........276

 

162) WHAT WRITING OPPORTUNITIES EXIST IN

     DESKTOP VIDEO AND VIDEOTEXT?...........................279

 

163) WHAT VIDEO SCRIPTWRITING OPPORTUNITIES

     EXIST WITH THE GOVERNMENT?............................280

 

164) HOW DO I GET INTO TECHNICAL SCRIPTWRITING?............286

 

165) WHAT IS TELECONFERENCING?.............................288

 

166) HOW CAN I BREAK INTO SATELLITE T.V. AS A WRITER?......290

 

167) WHAT CAN WRITERS DO ON INTERACTIVE VIDEO DISCS?.......293

 

168) HOW CAN I PUT MY "WRITTEN FOR PRINT" MATERIAL

     ON VIDEO?.............................................294

 

169) HOW DO I WRITE FOR THE MUSIC VIDEO MAGAZINES?.........297

 

170) HOW CAN I WRITE FOR THE VIDEO NEWSLETTER?.............300

   

SELLING SCRIPTS TO THE FOREIGN MARKET/

171) HOW DO I SELL A SCRIPT TO JAPAN? .....................309

 

172) HOW CAN I WRITE FOR AUSTRALIAN VIDEO?.................310

 

173) CAN I SELL VIDEO SCRIPTS TO EUROPE?...................311

 

174) WHERE DO I SELL TO THE NON-ENGLISH SPEAKING

     NATIONS?..............................................312

 

175) WHAT'S THE REST OF THE WORLD MARKET LIKE FOR SCRIPTS?.314

 

THE REALITIES OF THE INTERACTIVE MULTIMEDIA MARKET

      If you've been assigned a corporate script to write, how would you like to write nonlinear fiction, drama, and nonfiction to be used for an interactive training, corporate, sales, or industrial video? Writing interactive fiction or nonfiction for compact disk

and other interactive software is all about writing alternatives

that always come back to the main story, no matter which road a

user takes.

      The interactive marketplace combines video, text, sound, graphics, and animation on computer software for home entertainment, learning, or a combination of learning as entertainment.

FILLING THE NEED FOR WRITERS IN THE INTERACTIVE MULTIMEDIA MARKET

      When you write for compact disk interactive (CD‑I), you need to write alternative plot lines to your story or script. In CD‑I the readers who are computer users must choose from all the possible alternatives to the pathways and endings of the story. CD‑I fiction, for example doesn't progress in sequential order. Your alternative plot lines needs to have a separate development for each plot possibility.  One story becomes many. However, you don't want too many paths to the end of the story.         

    Interaction is the focus of the experience. So you have to create one plot that provides the action in a cumulative way by using branches that return to the same outcome or basic plot. You need to create diversion and diversity among your alternatives.

      The details and illustrations of your script or story are short text captions like in comic books, or simply short text statements or experiences illustrated by multimedia pictures and sound. 

      Your outcome must always come back to later events regardless of which of the many alternatives your reader/user chooses.  The software user will chose different branches. However none of those many alternatives will change later events. There will not be any alternative worlds.

      The whole idea of writing fiction for interactive disk on computer is to create a story using video, pictures, sound, art, and story text coming together in a multimedia experience which provides 1) alternative branches along the road to the story's paths; 2) the same events later in the story leading to 3) the same ending of the story or a finite number of endings.

   Interactive stories and scripts may let the user choose many alternatives that ultimately lead to the same later events and outcome. Adventure, escape, learning, entertainment, or alternatives create the ideas behind the experiences. Alternatives as a goal, and alternatives in branches or possible solutions that result in the same outcome of the story are used. This holds true whether you're writing for interactive literature, instructional courseware, games, animation, or adventure.

      One of the greatest needs in the interactive multimedia marketplace is for writers. The employment opportunities for writers in interactive multimedia are software driven. Writers bring conventional and unconventional narrative forms to software games and books on discs, drives, streaming, or various types of interactive media that appears as technology moves forward.

      When a writer creates a script (usually in screenplay format) for the interactive computer game market, the key point of the script focuses on opening up and exploring an evolving new language and stays open. This new language is called interactive or hypermedia. It's also referred to as writing hypertext.

      Writers in the interactive multimedia market work closely with computer game designers. Together, both the designer and the writer are always looking where the technology can go. Designers and writers collaborate with the software engineer and the hardware engineer to push boundaries and conventions.

      The interactive software company usually hires writers to create these interactive games and story adventures. The writer writes modules. The format varies. Some interactive software companies ask writers to write in magazine format. Others require screenplay script format. Those who hire writers look for tone and segment experience in story writing.

      Children's programming is big at this time. Writers are hired to write modules and change script by adding ideas. Working closely with designers, the writer and designer together add help messages and prompting. Then voice over is added to the script.

      The writer is the most important employee in the interactive market. Interactive multimedia needs character-driven stories and scripts to go with the technical staff.

WHAT ARE THE SKILLS NEEDED TO WRITE FOR THE INTERACTIVE MULTIMEDIA MARKET?

      Writers who write scripts for the computer game field of interactive multimedia, which is currently the largest buyer, come in basically with a mastery of scriptwriting and short story skills, but have one key difference that separates them from the print story writer, screenwriter, or novelist.

      Computer interactive multimedia writers must think effectively in three dimensions. They must create a flow chart and think in terms of a flow chart.

HOW THE INTERACTIVE MULTIMEDIA SCRIPT IS WRITTEN

      First the writer visualizes the script as a flow chart with branching between the stops on a flow chart.  The script is visualized as if it were a computer game.

      Whether the script is for a video game, a computer game, or an interactive combination of both, the writer asks, "What's my character going to do next?" The writer has to work closely with the technical computer people to make sure the dialogue on the screen is in sync on the screen text. The animated characters mouth may have to move in sync with the text. Lip sync with text is important in computer games. One example is in the computer game "Where in the USA Is Carmen Sandiego?"

      Writing alternative plots is known as branching. It's important because the player always has to make choices in a computer game or any interactive media. The writer is going to hear voices on the computer screen. Therefore, the writer must put in cues. In "Where in the USA Is Carmen Sandiego," for example, Mr. Halperin, the writer, wrote in 506 cues in dialect.

      In the different platforms such as CDI, CD-ROM, interactive movies, writers become designers and designers become writers. The writer becomes grounded in story telling. Character and dialogue are only 30 percent of the software. Everything else is design. A writer can convert a script to other platforms. For example, CD-ROM can be converted to CDI.

      The writer begins by creating a flow chart in order to design that three dimensionality to the script. You have to know your different authoring systems. You have different options.

      Lip sync is done by a database on the computer screen. Text, animation, music, text, and voice are all created in a database. The script becomes a database itself that can be changed. The goal is to use computer games or interactive multimedia books to teach, and mainly, to teach children as well as entertain at the same time to hold attention spans.

       The goal of writing computer game scripts is to find a way to teach children (and adult players) all about something in their environment or an imaginary environment. An average computer game database contains about 62 pages of scriptwriting. The script may contain 90 pages of script to get a 20 minute computer game.

      Scripts, however, are not feature length. When writing a script for film, a feature length script runs 85 to 130 pages. A twenty minute computer game or interactive multimedia script requires 1 1/2 hours of script, that's ninety pages of script. You are going to have to write three times the length of a feature film script to get a computer game or interactive multimedia script.

      Your twenty-minute computer game script will run ninety pages of single space screenplay format script. Scripts for computer games are not feature length at the finish.

      A computer game lasts about twenty minutes. Therefore, twenty minutes is the length that works best in interactive multimedia scripts. It's assumed that most computer game players will not sit still for more than 20 minutes to play.

      The text on the screen may have on the average 34 pages of text or visual clues or other information given to the players, who are usually children, but can be anyone interested. The player always has options, therefore the multimedia industry is about always finding alternatives.

      Your purpose as a script writer of computer games or books on CD-ROM, or other interactive media is to give information and offer alternate routes to locate the information by going through information. If you are writing a script for CD-ROM, it's important to know that writers fill up 680 megabytes of information on that disk. Out of the 680 megabytes of information on a CD-ROM disk, perhpas 600 of those megabytes will be filled with the story or game text, pictures, and sound. Only 3/4ths of the screen is used.

       As the script progresses, the writer keeps writing in information onto a database. The information is filled in from a written document. Prototype information on a software floppy disk is sent to the writer by the company producing the software.

      Writers work in the form of a database to create a script for a computer game or for interactive multimedia. The writer creates fields in interactive multimedia.

      On the actual computer screen, in many computer games, only three-fourths of the screen is used. A pathway is used to develop a screenplay for computer games. One-third of the pathway is used as the interactive piece.

      The writer starts at the beginning to make the script database as deep as possible. The story becomes deeper as the game becomes more complex. It's easier to cut back than to add on later. Scripts usually are cut back, but rarely added on to. A typical example would be to write twelve modules and then cut back to six modules.

      The six modules would be implanted within the twelve modules in the case where you don't have room for twelve modules. Your scripts are very visual, very game-market oriented because the game market is hot right now.

      Laser disks (compact disks) are optical technology that take synthesized voices for computer games. The writer as computer game designer needs to know that the player on the other end is using a home computer, usually an IBM PC or a Macintosh with a sound system to play the game. That's all you need to write the script as well.

      The write creates the interactive script in screenplay format as if it were a teleplay or screenplay. There's only one difference. The screenplay format contains key numbers instead of scene numbers.

      As the writer keys the key numbers onto each scene of the script, the computer programmer working closely with the interactive scriptwriter uses those key numbers to key into the computer program. The best advice programmers give interactive script writers is to think three dimensional and write in screenplay format.

      Writers reconstruct movie scenes frame by frame. It's called interleaving. The script must be balanced with the software. The audio must be balanced with the video using compact disk interactive technology.

      Interactive scripts are written based on an outline. Writers must move away from the linear page, think in three dimensions, and fill in dialogue, internal logic, and environment. Interactive multimedia scripts emphasize collaboration with technicians in order to customize the games or stories on software. Each individual designer develops, embellishes, and fills in blanks in a database.

      The writer creates the characters, and the character-driven story or game is the key. The dialogue is designed next, and the writer becomes involved in the design, navigation, and flow of the program. The outline looks like a flow chart rather than a screenplay at first. The screenplay becomes a database. By collaborating closely with the programmer, engineer, artist, and other technicians, the computer game or novel on CD-ROM is created as interactive, with text, music, animation, voice sound, and branching pathways as narrative choices in the story or game.

      The writer visualizes and creates a map of the computer game cell by cell. A cell is part of a computer program. The term, cell, comes from reference to animation cells or one drawing among many. A cell or program may have text, animation, art, sound of music or voice over, or photographs.

      Photographs and sound are put on the CDI disk. Quality is the goal. The writer's goal is to create characters and control environments. For example, there may be 25 key environments with charcters indigenous to any region in the computer game format.

       Writers must get involved in the design process in writing scripts for computer games and compact disk interactive media. The writer creates dialogue and describes environments. Then the dialogue and environments are revised. The script proceeds to go to the visual artist and then to the software programmers. Finally, the software goes to the software engineers to be tested.

      The computer game player is trying to develop skills and agility by playing the game written by scriptwriters. All the encounters are built around teaching about the characters, their environment, and developing the player's and characters skill and agility.

      How do you break into scriptwriting for the computer game industry or for interactive multimedia in general? A writer needs to get in from a side angle. You need to acquire expertise in one genre of writing.