20 Questions To Help Your Script

chalkboard question marks
  1. Is your concept strong enough for a feature film? 
  2. Have you written a compelling logline?
  3. Are sure who the main character is, and what they want?
  4. Is your protagonist active? Or is s/he passive?
  5. Is your antagonist strong enough?  Are the forces of antagonism powerful enough to keep putting greater and greater pressure on your main character?
  6. Are your characters easy to engage with?
  7. Are there enough obstacles for them to surmount?
  8. Is your central conflict strong enough to keep the story compelling until the end?
  9. Turning points: are they clear and present at the end of each act, and in the middle of Act 2?
  10. Are all your turning points strong enough to turn the story around in a new direction?
  11. Is your structure solid enough? Is it the best possible way for telling your story?  As William Goldman says, “the three most important things about writing screenplays are Structure, Structure and Structure.”
  12. Is your setup fast enough and succinct enough? Does it get us into the story in the first ten pages?
  13. Do you have a premise? Is your premise clear enough and is it one your story can prove?
  14. Why do we care?
  15. Are the dramatic stakes high enough?
  16. Does your resolution tie up all loose ends on both the action line and the emotional line?
  17. Does the ending pack an emotional wallop? Or is it too hasty? Or a bit ‘so what?’
  18. Is your dialogue over-written or on-the-nose, full of spoken subtext? Does it use subtext where possible?
  19. Is your big print clear, succinct, and full of images, beat by dramatic beat? Or is it cluttered with adverbs, and full of narrative summary? “Writing good big print is the succinct form of What you see, What is said, and What happens.”
  20. Who is your audience? What age are they? Are you sure you even have one?