Last week, the focus was on preparing for the daunting yet rewarding task of editing and revising. Getting into this somewhat scary process by proofreading is this week’s focus. So get your cursor or pens ready to begin!
Proofreading is a writer’s best weapon when it comes to creating a nice clean copy for potential prospects or running into your favorite producer or filmmaker (just kidding about that part – remember to go through the proper channels).
What pesky obstacles or offenders are you trying to spot when proofreading. Here are some common ones:
- Misspelling – these common mistakes will scream at you from the screen with their antagonizing red lines. Here’s where you search and correct them.
- Homophones – these pesky annoyances will hide amongst a descriptive action or well-written dialogue until you read through the script. They sound right but look awkward.
- Punctuations – Sometimes being in the mood as a screenwriter can lead to a question mark being placed where a period is needed. This is an easy fix with a good read through.
- Capitalization – As you write and format your screenplay, it can tricky trying to keep up with all the proper names. sounds, and directions that need proper capitalization.
Besides the typical mistakes, two majors that can cause any screenwriter to almost have a mental breakdown: omissions and improper formatting.
Omissions are any writer’s worst nightmare (especially for a screenwriter). Missing dialogue. A vanished monologue. A pivotal scene going missing. Snafus like these can be a setback, but with some patience and proper planning, you’ll be able to find your way out of this mind-numbing episode.
Formatting can be another nightmare as scene directions turn into a piece of dialogue or vice versa. Scene headings becoming transitions. Floating dialogue without its proper character to say it. All you have to do is look through, see what needs some attention and correct it in the screenwriting software of your choice.
Before we move on, here are some common homophones you may run across:
- its vs. it’s
- they’re vs. there vs. their
- to vs. too vs. two
- you’re vs. your
- affect vs. effect
- then vs. than
- led vs. lead
Hopefully, Reading this post has helped you on your journey to working the bugs out in your script. But this isn’t the end of the conversation, you can leave comments below and discuss this even more with your fellow screenwriters along with myself.
Look out for part 3 of Editing and Revising later on today.