This might not be what you want to hear at all, but your first screenplay or full length script is likely to be rubbish, and so is your second script, and your third attempt at a full length screenplay…
And you will not know the scripts are rubbish, un-shootable, and lacking in drama, authenticity, and just simply badly written.
You’ll need someone else to tell you, to read the script from the perspective of a seasoned professional screenwriter. A real pro script consultant will be able to tell you what works in the script, what doesn’t and what your strengths and weaknesses as a script writer are.
Your script might not work, but there may be elements of the script that do work, and it *may* be that with a rewrite the script can be improved and maybe even become a successful bit of drama . But, you’ll need to get that advice from someone with experience, who can tell you what elements need attention, and how to fix and improve the script.
A script consultant is like any other consultant in business. You go to them for guidance and advice, because they have already been there and done that.
When I started as a screenwriter over 25 years ago I used a script consultant who was a working professional with years and years of experience. He gave me one piece of advice that I still use, and that I still consider whenever I set out to write a script. That advice has stayed with me and helped me with my career as a script writer, and the specific advice I was given could have only come from someone who knew the business and knew inside out how script writing works. That advice, from a professional script writer for hire, has been priceless for my career (that’s what I paid him for).
If you’re looking for a professional script doctor or script editor, you’ll find plenty of people online who claim to offer these services. So, how do you choose who will give you the best script coverage?
It’s simple really, and it has two steps.
- Check the person has credits on the IMDb as a script writer or script consultant ( my broadcast credits on the IMDb are here).
- Check the veracity of the credits. You should be looking for someone with a track record with major broadcasters like the BBC/ITV/CH4/Netflix.
A good script consultant is someone who can help you build your script writing career. One script at a time, over a long period, because that’s what it takes to break into script writing.
Matthew Cooper has been a script writer for hire, UK Script editor and script doctor for over 20 years. He’s written for most of the UK soaps, including writing award winning episodes of Emmerdale, EastEnders, Hollyoaks and Family Affairs and has been BAFTA shortlisted and Royal Television Society nominated as a script writer. He’s also a leading UK script consultant. You can find some of his broadcast credits on the IMDb. You can get in touch with Matthew on email@example.com or hire him on Peopleperhour
His directorial debut, the rubber reality horror thriller Markham will be released in 2020.