Friday, April 15, 2005

Writing: Software

This is one of the few questions I get asked I can answer unreservedly. I prefer Movie Magic Screenwriter over Final Draft. I've used both.

This is not to slag Final Draft. But I've found that Movie Magic is more stable, has many more production-friendly elements to it that are easier to find, and its shortcuts just fit my style better. Also, being able to flip scripts between my office PC and my Powerbook versions with no software formatting hinks is beautiful.

One new piece of software that looks interesting is SceneWriter Pro. I've got the free download, will check it out this weekend.

There are, of course, several free/shareware formatting programs. Google will get you there quickly. I was sent Celtx, which isn't bad (although I'm not sure if they're going pro or not, the site seems different). There are a ton of templates for MS Word, like this one. Again, Google is your friend.

For outlining -- white, thin-ruled pad and colored pens. Over the weekend, I'll go more into this (hopefully with a scan), but for me, that's the organic pen-to-paper hindbrain creativity section of the process. There are programs, but I've tried most of them and found them ... excessive. They tend to layer meaning after meaning, text layer upon text layer on every beat -- while for me, the outline is where you see of your story actually works as a script.

Mileage, as always, may vary.


Bill Cunningham said...

Interesting. Looking forward to seeing your "colored pens" at work.

I'm a Writer's Boot Camp guy so I tend to use those outlining tools, and I like notebooks. A bunch of ideas, dialogue, etc.. gets thrown into one, then on review I start to link some of the bits up.

Different strokes for different folks...

geoff said...

Thanks for the heads-up on Celtx (downloading it now). I've had an eye out for some kinda freebie alternative to FD for a while. I could never get the hang of Word templates.

Bug-Eyed Earl said...

Damn, again I feel like an idiot. I wrote to you thanking you for recommending FD after trying it when it was the wrong one.

I haven't been the same since I started working at 4 in the morning.

At least I didn't pay for it. I alwas try before I buy. I'll give Movie Magic Screenwriter a shot now.

spyscribe said...

Hey John, if I'd known you were a Movie Magic person I wouldn't have sent you the friggin' .pdf.

I love that program.

alex hren said...

That’s right, this website is one of the top 12,000 most viewed in FUCKING PAKISTAN.
Why? Because they are the “English speaking writers” this fucked up company hires. I have also found evidence that suggests they have other writers in India and the Philippines. I know of a couple of companies that offer real English writers and I thought was one of them. Turns out they’re just a bunch of liars.

The scam is real. They are thieves who could care less about you. Maybe you’ve had a couple decent papers from them. But sleep well knowing that they will take any measure to screw you over.

That’s enough. Rant’s over. Fuck you,


Reviewed by Sean Evans on March 25,2013 – Rating: 1.0
Miserable experience.They ripped me off for $600 for a dissertation and refuse to give me my money back.”
Taylor on June 4, 2013 at 10:52 PM said:
You are right. I have been debating with them for at least a month now, trying to get my refunds, it’s because the writer can’t even write shit or follow the prompt. Claimed to be “professional” yeah right. They also claimed that they refunded my money already by just clearing out my balance. However, the email I received from money bookers still saying I was charged on that date. They lied & keep on saying “your refunds should be in 4-6.” i waited & after 2 weeks, still nothing. I keep on checking back even though they closed my inquiry many times. I mean, I only uploaded $55 for the balance, but I didn’t use it. The money isn’t that a big deal, it’s just the writers & their service is poorly done. I cancelled the writer because 1. Passed deadline 2. The paper was off topic, completely vague, lacks development & much more. 3. way different from U.S writing style 4. Busy schedule & I just want to try how this service work. Personally, i definitely to not recommend this service.

Reply ↓
admin on June 20, 2013 at 9:42 PM said:
Thanks for your feedback, I’m glad to see that I’m not the only one.

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