There’s a ton of screenwriting books on structuring your screenplay. Almost all of them are based on the traditional three-act structure that includes the inciting incident, first plot point, the mid point, the final plot point, climax and resolution.
This approach to script structure works well enough but it is a complicated method requiring knowledge of each structural component and exactly where to place them in your screenplay.
I’ve discovered an amazingly simple method to plot and structure that seems too good to be true. Its application is effortless and it accomplishes the same goals of the traditional three act structure mentioned above. And it doesn’t burden you with having to figure out what page significant actions should occur.
You first need to rent several DVD’s that are the same genre as the script you’re writing. Then you need to take notes jotting down what happens and approximately what minute it happens on screen. You’re watching what significant structural components are appearing and where. That includes when characters are introduced, when the inciting incident occurs, where the midpoint is, etc.
When you’re done watching a few DVD’s that are the same genre as the script you’re writing, you’ll know what goes where.
- More articles by Steve Kaire
- Story Structure: The Four Act Structure
- Meet the Reader: Narrative Structure – Building a Better Drama