Formatting – To Begin

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Your FIRST IMAGE goes right here. Make it something visually interesting and that sets the TONE of the piece. CAPS anything that needs to stand out including SOUND, but don’t go crazy with them. Be descriptive, yet concise.

By now one should probably have introduced some CHARACTERS, which should always include some description of their physical appearance, age, and what they are currently doing. Remember to CAP their names only the first time they appear.

If you have more than one character in a scene, really think about their entrance. Try to connect it to some kind of action that will advance the story in some way.

Note here that my actions blocks are four line or less. As a general rule that is the MAX length for an action block. Try breaking up the action into different CAMERA SHOTS. This technique makes reading easier and implies direction.

Let’s puts all these rules together now.



To establish. The building is in decay, with many windows broken and graffiti tags on all sides. A rat scuttles out of the ally nearby.


JENNY, mid-twenties but looks about a hundred is tweeking on coke and rummaging around the various piles of junk in the room looking for something.

A RAT jumps down from the window sill and makes its way across the room.

Jenny, muttering incoherently to herself does not notice the rat as it runs into the pile of trash and clothes that she is tearing apart.

The rat pops up on top of the pile. Just then, Jenny’s hand comes down on it unexpectedly. She SHRIEKS, and the rat SQUEEKS and wiggles to get free.

End Scene.

Author: hollywouldink

I'm a visual writer and teacher currently getting my MFA in Writing for the Screen & Stage at Northwestern University. Sarah Lawrence undergrad. Writer for movies, TV, theater, and literature.

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