Video Production: How to write a video script

Writing is a medium unto itself.  Yet, writing serves two masters at all times, both the story or idea it is conveying and the medium it is designed for.  In the case of script writing, the story must be shared but, in preparation of the visual medium.  That is the case whether the script is for a speaker of an event, a dramatic work, or an amalgamation of interviews crafted for the theme of a documentary.  Each is a style of the same art but, the page is the vehicle to bring about the show…

Stringline Pictures - Video Script 1There’s more than one style of script and there is more than one voice each style can share.  From the classic screenplay, to the two column shooting script to the ad hoc design of selecting sound bites after shooting for a documentary, it is about using the right tool for the job.

TIME TO GET TO WORK

Now that you have the toolbox out, you just need the idea for the story whether that be a tale of far away lands, your latest and greatest product or, the instructional on how to put on socks.  The toughest part is deciding…

But you have an idea, or you wouldn’t have thought that you needed to write a script!  The next part is ask yourself; who is your audience?  What is their frame of mind?  What is the personality, the voice of a script that will concisely answer their questions, deliver information, entertain, or leave an impression?  That is the mission of your written word, made in spectacular technicolor – or grainy black and white.  But we’re getting ahead of our selves…

I’m not talking about that voice in your head, you need to call doctor Finkelstein.  I’m not talking about the voice from under the bed, get a night light.  I’m not talking about the NBC reality TV show.  Never thought you’d miss Simon Cowell did ya?  No, I’m talking about the manner in which your script sets the tone for delivery of your story.  Just as you can be compassionate, sly, funny, sarcastic, angry, frustrated and gracious, so can your script.  It’s really about knowing first your message and then crafting it for your audience.  Done wrong, its what Hollywood calls a flop.  Done well and you have accolades for all of time!  Or at least a private sense of accomplishment to a job well done.  Put your script on the fridge next to your kids spelling test.  Someone always has to set the bar…

DON’T FORGET TO SCRIPT THE VISUALS

Once written, you pair your thoughts with images.  That could be interviews, b-roll, animation, graphics and a thank you at the end to mom.  She would like that sort or thing and you really aught to call her more often…

Stringline Pictures - Video Script 2If all of this sounds like a lot of work, that’s because it is.  Hopefully you find it to be labor of love!  It is not without its pitfalls and
critiques because remember, everyone’s a critic…  but, that too is part of being a scriptwriter.  That’s part of being an artist of any kind really.
In review, if you have an idea, pick the right script format for the video you intend to make.  Know who your intended audience is and then choose the voice that best reaches them.  After that, it’s all about letting the words tell the story of the pictures in your genius!

So, if you have a script that’s ready for production we would love to read it.  If you have a script needing some word-smithing, we’re here to help and sometimes even seasoned pros need a little help from a “script doctor”.  Then again, if all you have is an idea and that’s where all videos start, we would love to help you make that idea a script, a video and a reality.