Could this Screenplay Writing Tip Help You Write Faster?
I’d like to share a screenwriting tip. But it could potentially help you streamline the writing of your next sales letter (or whatever else you may be writing).
I took my first shot at writing a screenplay in my teens.
The plot revolved around a carpenter who, sadly, decided to turn into a killer. He was wanted in 17 states for murder, nine states for manslaughter, and three states to build a chest of drawers.
I've written several screenplays over the years. None, though, are where they need to be in terms of story and structure. Having decided to rewrite my last script, I searched online for some books that would help.
One was Save the Cat! The Last Book on Screenwriting That You'll Ever Need by the late Blake Snyder.
I found plenty of tips for my screenplay. But also one that I could apply to my copywriting.
Snyder describes his use of what he refers to as "The Board." It’s a simple bulletin board, which you fill up with index cards (one card per scene) to “map out” your screenplay.
This way, you have a big-picture view of your movie. If some scenes don't flow quite right or need changing, you can do so from a "big picture" point of view.
Which got me to thinking …
Would this also be beneficial when writing a promo?
It would be a natural extension of master copywriter John Forde's system for writing a promo.
John writes out each idea (complete with features and benefits) that he’s going to talk about in his sales letter on 3x5-inch cards. As he determines the order he's going to talk about them in his sales letter, he rearranges the cards accordingly.
Combining these 3x5-inch cards with a bulletin board would give you a quick visual representation of your sales letter.
I used it with a recent promo I wrote, and it worked remarkably well. It allowed me to visualize the sales letter in my mind and quickly spot ways to improve the order of the ideas presented.
Plus, it made it easy for me to track the sections of my sales letter that still needed to be written.
Overall, it cut down significantly on the time it took me to write the letter. One of the reasons for this was that it forced me to identify and organize my sales letter before I actually started writing it.
Something I didn't do but might be useful is to color code the cards to represent the 4 P's (Promise, Picture, Proof, Push). This way, you can see at a glance what elements of your promo need beefing up.
What do you think of this idea? Do you think it would help you organize your thoughts better and write faster? I'd love to hear your thoughts below.
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