Re: Screenwriting

I'm currently researching UFO CASES for an ALIEN APOCALYPSE style of script. smile

Re: Screenwriting

If any one has any leads for production companies looking for horror scripts, I'd love to know.

For those who have no idea where to start, mandy.com or hollywoodlitsales.com are good places.

Also has anyone figured out how to solve the problem of printing PDF's on Final Draft 7 on windows 7? Basically I use cutepdf as my default printer but I can't combine my title page and my script into the one PDF. I basically have to make them into seperate PDF's.

Re: Screenwriting

I use FD7 religiously.  All you have to do is select "save as" and select "pdf" as the file type.

In order to keep it from saving with the generic title page (name of first writer here, title here, name and address here, etc) follow these steps:

Click 'Document'
'Title Page'
Do up your title page
Close the title page (not minimize -- CLOSE -- as in press X up in the corner)

Bring your script up, select File, then 'save'.  It'll save the newly typed out title page as part of the existing script rather than trying to save it as a separate document.  Then when you save the script as PDF, it automatically includes the title page.

As for script leads, sign up for the InkTip newsletter.  You'll get a couple free script leads in the newsletter every week or two (though for more you need to be a paid member of InkTip).

And check the "Scripts Wanted" thread floating around this forum; I usually post any InkTip leads asking for genre films in that thread.

Last edited by LoudLon (2011-02-20 03:35:36)

Re: Screenwriting

Thanks for that. I still have the same issue. according to the Final draft website it seems to be a problem with it running on widnows 7, but (surprisingly) Final Draft 8 will solve the problem, all I have to do is buy it now.

Re: Screenwriting

Ohhhh, Windows 7.  Okay, I missed that.  I'm on XP Pro.

Incidentally, I've tried FD8 and it's a pain in the ass.  More people revert back to FD7 than stick with FD8. 

If you're going to buy a program you'd probably be better off getting Adobe PDF Writer.  You can combine PDF files with it, so it's no big deal if your FD7 saves the script and title page as separate documents.

Last edited by LoudLon (2011-02-20 04:21:43)

Re: Screenwriting

Thanks. I got a pdf merger and it's all good.

On another note have you got any idea of what studios are buying right now? whats the trend for horror movies at the moment?? (apart from god awful remakes). I get the impression from my own research that alot are after the single room, high tension scripts so they can do it with a cheaper budget. What's your take?

Re: Screenwriting

The best piece of advice I can give you is to never bother writing to a trend, or trying to anticipate a trend.  By the time you're finished writing your script, chances are the trend's already over or studios have already cracked a whip at the pro writers they have on reserve to bang out knock-off scripts, which they in turn stockpile.

The simple truth is that no one -- be it a veteran producer or studio to the hottest new screenwriter -- can anticipate a trend.  No one knows what the Next Big Thing is going to be until the weekend box office tallies are in.  Nobody knew Saw was going to be a smash hit, and nobody was more surprised with its box office than Lion's Gate, who distributed it.  Most cases studios nervously bite their nails with every release because they're just hoping the movie breaks even.  They're just as surprised as anyone when it becomes a runaway hit.

As for the single room/high tension thing -- studios are always looking for properties they can produce on the cheap.  Fewer locations = fewer sets and actors needed = lower production cost = better chance the movie will make a profit.  But it still has to have an involving story  with interesting characters. 

There's a saying in screenwriting that if you write with money in mind, your script is doomed to fail.  So you just write your script, tell your story, and if it's good, it'll sell.

Re: Screenwriting

I don’t know about trends but I have predicted hits. When I first saw two girls one, I knew those ladies were going places


(does a cup count as a place?)

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No, the cup would be the McGuffin.

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Does anyone here have any good topic I could write about. I want to do something like a Horror/Sci-Fi but don't really have any ideas. Any ideas?

Re: Screenwriting

Does anyone know of a good site or forum, where you can get some good feedback on scripts? I have my script up on zoetrope.com, but I was hoping for something that more focuses on horror. I have found the best feedback for horror writing comes from other horror writers, not someone who feels they have the next big 'rom com'. Coverage services are a pain in the ass, I just want someone to look at it, and go that's good, bad, or ugly. Any ideas??

Re: Screenwriting

Grizzlybear wrote:

Does anyone know of a good site or forum, where you can get some good feedback on scripts? I have my script up on zoetrope.com, but I was hoping for something that more focuses on horror. I have found the best feedback for horror writing comes from other horror writers, not someone who feels they have the next big 'rom com'. Coverage services are a pain in the ass, I just want someone to look at it, and go that's good, bad, or ugly. Any ideas??

Haha, I was going to suggest Zoetrope - but you already know of it, and have summed it up perfectly. I too would like to find the sort of site you're looking for. Hopefully someone will post something useful, unlike me.

Re: Screenwriting

www.simplyscripts.com

You can submit your script, free of charge, and get feedback on it by other members, but the critiques are give and take.  Be sure to you read and critique others' scripts as well or chances are, no one will bother with yours. 

And don't get offended if anyone rips your script to shreds or is harsh in their criticism.  Honesty is the best policy when it comes to having your scripts read, and if your skin isn't thick enough to take honest criticism in this biz, you're barking up the wrong tree.

If you do submit your script there, be sure to let us know so we can check it out.  Best of luck. smile

Re: Screenwriting

Thanks I'll check it out.
I've already had one of my older scripts ripped to shreds, after crying in the corner for a while I picked myself up, realised they were right and rewrote it. Honesty is the best policy.
If I ever make it big, I'll set up a writing site for horror writers. We need it

Re: Screenwriting

Hear, hear.  I've only ever seen one site dedicated to horror screenwriting and it shut down years ago.

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Has anyone written a 'found footage' script? I'm curious about formating. How does it work for a spec script? Or are there any sites anyone could directing me to? Thanks

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If anyone cares (I don't, myself lol ) my very first completed screenplay is due to be featured as "Featured Screenplay of the Month" this January at www.simplyscripts.com

SEE! A hackneyed story which doesn't know if it wants to be a drama or a thriller!

SEE! Gross over-writing!

SEE! Clumsy attempts to be profound!

SEE! Lop-sided arguments both pro- and anti-organized religion!

The script is a train wreck, but was a great learning experience.  I look back at it now and see it as how not to write a screenplay -- despite the fact that it was a finalist in the 2005 Shriekfest screenplay competition. lol

Last edited by LoudLon (2011-11-30 17:22:50)

Re: Screenwriting

Since I've got a little time I'll throw in my personal experiences of working on scripts.

As far as programs, I’ve used Final Draft (currently have FD8) and Movie Magic Screenwriter 6. I personally prefer MMS6 as the layout feels a bit more user friendly to me. FD isn’t a bad program, just a bit more tasking at times.

Starting out with a short script is always a good way to get a handle on things. I’ve written several short film scripts (10-30 pages short) that gave me a nice handle on how to get a story across in the script format.  I’ve written one feature length script (it’s 94 pages in MM and 100 some odd pages in FD) that was for a project that fell apart.  I started a second draft but I’ve not finished it yet.  It’s not a bad script, but the first draft is just that, a first draft. I was trying to sort out a lot of different elements and writing a slasher is a lot harder than it seems (writing interesting death scenes is easy, its everything else that’s hard)

I was lucky enough to get that script critiqued by Victor Miller (screenwriter of Friday the 13th) and with the time away from the script that I’ve had (it’s been nearly a year I think) I can’t say I don’t agree with the majority of his points. One of his points (about giving the audience hints about who the killer is) I completely disagreed with, as the story is more giallo influenced than just slasher.

As far as motivation goes, nothing will motivate you other than yourself. I had a deadline to finish this thing and it passed me by several times. At this point I haven’t even touched my second draft since February of this year, and even now just thinking about it I start dreading it.

Writing a screenplay, especially a feature is hard. It’s one of the hardest things I’ve ever undertaken as a writer, and I’ve learned (through working on said screenplay) just how miserable it actually is to try and make a story go for 80-90 pages (it’s waaaaaaaaaaaay harder than it seems) let alone trying to balance out characters and situations and make things not sound utterly stupid.

I’ll probably sit back down and start hashing it out again, maybe tackle it from a new angle. At this point, if it never gets made (which at the moment it looks that way) at least I wrote the damn thing and that alone is an achievement.  Now I just need to polish it up, send it back out and start working on another one.

Re: Screenwriting

LoudLon wrote:

If anyone cares (I don't, myself lol ) my very first completed screenplay is due to be featured as "Featured Screenplay of the Month" this January at www.simplyscripts.com

SEE! A hackneyed story which doesn't know if it wants to be a drama or a thriller!

SEE! Gross over-writing!

SEE! Clumsy attempts to be profound!

SEE! Lop-sided arguments both pro- and anti-organized religion!

The script is a train wreck, but was a great learning experience.  I look back at it now and see it as how not to write a screenplay -- despite the fact that it was a finalist in the 2005 Shriekfest screenplay competition. lol

please link to it when it comes out.

Re: Screenwriting

I actually just gave that script a polish and submitted it to a prodco advertising for scripts wanted last week.  We'll see how it goes.

Re: Screenwriting

Keep us updated.  I'd love to see you make some money so you could pay me back for that cheeseburger I bought for you on Tuesday.  tongue

Re: Screenwriting

TiM the Zombie wrote:

Awesome thread, guys.  I was actually going to ask Meh if we could start a filmmaking/screenwriting thread to discuss the shit, but it looks like my prayers were answered.  Thanks a heap.  Anywho, onto the discussion...

First off, as Lon pointed out, formatting is very important.  And what better way to nail formatting than with a screenwriting program!  Costly?  I think not!  I've been promoting this program ever since I joined this community and I honestly feel it's up there with Final Draft, Sophocoles, and what have you.  It's called Celtx and it's FREE!  Check it out:

www.celtx.com

Also, have you guys heard of the new program titled "iscript"?  If so, what's your take on it?  Honestly, I think it defeats the purpose.  Scripts are supposed to be read, not heard!

I'm done...

i signed up to the celtx sight and i don't really like the layout of the sight.  it's kind of weird.  they are selling programs but the "basic" version gives you a free online workspace?  if there's a way to download the program i'd like to do that.  otherwise i'm not gonna try it anymore.  sorry i'm not trying to be negative i just don't really get it.

Last edited by groovygoolies (2012-12-24 10:51:18)

Re: Screenwriting

can anyone tell me how they downloaded it?

Re: Screenwriting

It wasn't always like that.  I'm not sure when they started requiring sign-up and only having it online but several years ago when I first tried it, it was a stand-alone application that didn't require any sign-up and you didn't have be online to use it.

Personally I use Final Draft 7 and have no complaints.  But if you're looking for a free screenwriting program, I've heard good things about Trelby.

Last edited by LoudLon (2012-12-24 11:32:55)

Re: Screenwriting

thanks.  i'll check it out.