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How To Plan A Screenplay

How To Plan A Screenplay

Planning a screenplay isn’t child’s play; you need to be a professional to write the script. Not every writer can write a good screenplay, and you must have a thoughtful mind, lots of time, experience writing scripts, and not be intimidated to know how to plan a screenplay. It is necessary to draw a definitive, regimented structure that could be ingrained into filmmakers, producers, and audiences how the story needs to be told.

Most professional writers who are masters at writing a script and know how to format it in the present tense are still going to find themselves struggling to keep their story on target without straying away from the plot, losing attention, and writing the right length for the script. You must have all these skills before sending your mind into planning mode to write a screenplay.

Resist The Temptation To Dive In Head First

The beginners are usually impulsive and avoid too much planning of their screenplay. Sometimes they’re not lucky enough to deliver quality work through this method. You must know that an early start may halt you after thirty pages, or the script is bloated beyond usability as a result. It would help if you answered these questions regarding what to write in the first scene heading. What would be the story’s plot, characters, and story outline? The following are the guiding steps to learn how to plan a screenplay that you need to take to make it effective.

How To Plan A Screenplay: Establish Your Premise

It is the first step you would take before writing a script. So you have to plan to distill the essence of the story into a concise and easy-to-understand premise. It usually refers to loglines and contains all the essential motivating and informational writing processes. Conceptually it would be best to think about all the characters you have in mind, their settings, central conflict, and goals. It is quite logical you have to make up your mind first about what you should write about then write it.

How To Plan A Screenplay: Spend Time With Your Characters

Characters drive a story to make it believable, and the dramatic interaction between them make it a great story. You have to make the characters engaging with a clear motive for everything they do. It will explain how they speak, how they interact, and what they want or carry within to establish the character.

-The character bio

It would be best to spend time thinking about your character’s biography by creating a character questionnaire to plot the story. You can find several templates online that can easily prompt the idea of physical description of the character, personal histories, and philosophies.

It will help you understand the talk, walk, behavior, attitude, and reaction through the story. Then it will be decided how to promote the physical appearance into a visual display for a film.

-The enneagram

It is another method used in planning the screenplay to make each character more real and believable. It is more helpful in creating characters than designing a character bios or finding out the thousands of articles for writing character development. You should keep in mind whatever you have drawn, the image or background material of the character doesn’t need to be written on the script or even referenced.

How To Plan A Screenplay: Outline Your Plot

There should be events and decisions about whether the story is abstract that carries your characters through the narrative as you know how it will perform when the screenplay is written with a well-constructed plot. Though it’s not a piece of work that serves itself. It’s just a blueprint of creative writing, technical specification and designed to turn into something more significant.

While planning a screenplay, you don’t need to describe the character’s inner thoughts or explain the whole story directly to the reader. An outline is a point-by-point breakdown of events around which your script will circulate, so it’s a blueprint of your blueprint screenplay. Show every objective that is necessary to display your thoughts or events in the story.

You can check the available online templates’ beat sheets’; they will work to plan the script and how to use them for your story. It’s up to you what level you will take your outline with the details as some writers stick to the major turning points or broader plot. Simultaneously, others prefer a highly-detailed bullet point approach—a screenwriter should know how to tackle it so choose your method wisely. The plot must be actionable from beginning to the end. Plan and write your script with confidence to make it believable for the producer, audience or filmmakers.


All you have to plan is the story’s goals, characters, and plot structure when learning how to plan your screenplay. Writing a script for a film takes effort. It’s painful, refreshing, and rewarding. Whatever you may have planned in your mind about the story, characters, and objectives will back you up every step of the way. There is nothing written in the script that cannot be changed; it’s not considered to be written in stone. You can for sure change whatever you want to in screenwriting.

Since you can reread and rewrite, the inspiration can strike at any time once you have done the first draft. Don’t be afraid of reconstructing your screenplay; whenever you feel the script must be upgraded, go ahead and modify it. The planning will still be successful if it stays on track of potential new ideas that are added later, so adjusting things accordingly won’t harm the screenplay. Its recommended not to go with the impulsive process of writing a script without a plan because it doesn’t always work and may not be good enough.

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