How to Write Video Scripts
that Keep Eyes Glued to the Screen!

couple on sofa concentrating on laptop screen

Here’s an odd question for you …

How much time do you think you’d spend watching a video of a watermelon exploding?

3 seconds? 10 seconds? Maybe 30 max, right? After all, it’s just one watermelon exploding … as much fun as that sounds, how long could it take?

Well, in just a moment, you’re going to discover how one exploding watermelon had the power to keep 800,000 people glued to their screens for more than 40 minutes …

Using a secret I learned from legendary video scriptwriter, Andrew Davis …

And how you can harness that same power to keep your audience hanging on your every word in every article, email, sales letter, or video script you write …

It’s all based on a writing principle called …

The Curiosity Gap

A Curiosity Gap is the space between that moment when you ask a question … and the moment when you get the satisfaction of an answer or resolution.

It’s that waiting period in-between that keeps us on the edge of our seats … building up the tension … waiting for the reveal we know is sure to come …

It’s the reason we have to watch till the very end of the Scooby Doo episode to see them unmask the villain — we have to know who was behind all the mayhem!

And for writers who master it, this Gap is one of the most powerful tools you can use to keep your audience hooked from the very first moment all the way to the end.

But there are different ways you can do this …

1. Lots of Loops

One way you can maintain the addictive tension of a good Curiosity Gap is to open more than one “loop” at a time.

The benefit of this is that you can give your audience the “payoff” of closing one of the loops and giving them that satisfaction of an answer WITHOUT leaving them so satisfied they can just stop and walk away.

Like a trail of Skittles they have to follow, each step wins them one more piece of candy as they make their way towards the jackpot at the end.

In this way, your audience is more than just hooked …

They’re HAPPY to be hooked!

Because each little Curiosity Gap they bridge is a little reward that convinces them to keep going.

2. Keep Them Guessing

What is it that’s so addictive about mystery stories like Sherlock Holmes?

Sure, there’s the Curiosity Gap that makes us want to know “Who did it?” … but in these cases, there’s an extra element involved that gets us extra excited …

And more importantly, it keeps us from simply flipping to the last page to find out the easy way …

Because in examples like this, the writer drops CLUES throughout the journey that encourage the reader to solve the mystery for themselves!

Now they’re not just reading along … they’re actively trying to puzzle it out themselves … which means they’re TWICE as invested in reading all the way to the end to find out if their theories are correct.

This is especially good to remember when you’re working with a Curiosity Gap that’s staying open for a long time …

And it’s yet another way to make sure your audience stays happily on the hook without getting bored and walking away before the reveal.

3. One Rubber Band at a Time

So exactly how did one watermelon video hold more than 800,000 people as a captive audience for more than 40 minutes?

This was a Livestream video created by Buzzfeed, and it was called:

Watch us explode this watermelon one rubber band at a time!

That’s right — over the span of 40 minutes, they slowly built up the tension (literally!) by adding one rubber band at a time around this watermelon!

Now, you know from the title of the video that they WILL explode this watermelon … but the question is — WHEN??? And what will it look like when it finally POPS?!

And so the process begins …

The Curiosity Gap stretches … and stretches …

And the longer they wait for that explosion, the more invested viewers are …

Until by the 40-minute mark, the watermelon is bulging at both ends …

There are hundreds of rubber bands stretched around it …

And people are desperately staring at their screen because it could blow any second now!!!

When video scriptwriting master, Andrew Davis, shared this exploding watermelon story on the AWAI stage during his Bootcamp Keynote, the whole room was cracking up laughing …

But we also knew right away – this Curiosity Gap secret was a BIG game-changer for writers!

You see, the key here is that you have to make your viewers a promise they want to see fulfilled …

Ask a question they desperately want the answer to …

And ultimately, you do have to fulfill that promise — give them the answer to that question …

But not right away … 😉

Instead, become a master of building addictive Curiosity Gaps into your video scripts …

Always open a new “loop” before closing the previous one …

Drop in teaser “hints” that get your viewer to engage with the narrative …

And when in doubt, make sure you close your Curiosity Gap one rubber band at a time.

Do you have any questions about getting started as a video scriptwriter? Let us know in the comments.

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Published: November 19, 2021

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