If you’re a new screenwriter, your goal is to get past gate keepers, avoid the trash and get your screenplay read and recommended. If you’re successful in doing this, you improve your chances of gettin your work read by producers and directors.
Writing a great screenplay takes tremendous time, effort, planning and patience.
As a new screenwriter, I want to help you avoid the trash. So here are some things that you want to consider:
1. The script needs to be in proper format: Seriously, they have software for this. You might be a new screenwriter, but you’re also a professional. Register for a free account over at Writer Duet. They pay me to promote. But I would recommend them even if they didn’t.
2. Bind your script like a professional: Go get some brass brads as soon as you possibly can. Please don’t even think about those pretty, clear binders you get at Staples. That sort of thing can be annoying and distracting.
3. Make sure you use spell check: Many readers spend their time reading mediocre scripts. That’s bad enough. Finding misspellings makes the reading experience worse.
4. Proofread your script for errors: I can’t tell you how many times I was introduced to a character named Jed, who was later named Ted – Obviously the new screenwriter chose to change character names somewhere in the story, but failed to make this change consistent throughout.
5. Keep the cover letter brief. Don’t forget the release: Make sure you remember to sign the release and agree not to sue the production company. Additionally, please do not write a long, drawn out cover letter, telling the producer why your script is going to be the next multi-million dollar blockbuster.
And here’s a bonus screenwriting tip: Please make sure your script is targeted to the correct buyer. There are lots of new screenwriters who miss opportunities because they send a science fiction screenplay to a buyer who specializes in romantic comedy. Don’t do that! And if you’d like this info, make sure you also learn how to write treatments that sell.