Screenplay: Formatting

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There are always debates about how to format your screenplays. In most cases the goal is to cut down on characters to speed up the reading process. There are two areas that are considered “formatting.”

Margins

The first is the overall format of the script in terms of margins and lining spacing. We recommend you avoid writing a script either too short or too long that would require any adjustments from the default state of the editing software. If you use tools like FinalDraft, you should be fine. And remember, it’s alright to have a shorter script. Those that have to read your story actually like to get shorter concepts from time to time so they can get in and out of your scripts without long 120 page dives.

So our advice is to allow your software to do its thing. Products like FinalDraft have features that compress or expand your script into any page length you need, however. Remember that the professionals can see this cheat instantly. They don’t like to spend one more second than they have to to finish reviewing your script.

Mores and Continues

You might be familiar with “mores” and “continues” when reading older scripts or viewing screenwriting software defaults. Our recommendation is to turn both of these notations off. The reason being is that the professionals rarely get lost in your script due to formatting issues. Mores and Continues are used to help the reader realize who is continuing to speak and what content continued from the previous page. They know, so don’t concern yourself with this.

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