Script Format

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Synonyms: screenplay format
See also: dialogue-only
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Script Format is a style of fanwork that utilizes the style of a playwright.

It is a kind of fanwork that is fairly unpopular, as well as one that has been banned on many fanwork archives. See List of Content Banned by Archives.

Challenges of the Style

A fan in 1992 wrote about fanwork he'd written in this style:

The story you are about to read, Going Home, has been written in the form of a theatrical play. If you have never read a play before, you will find Going Home a very different -- and perhaps challenging, experience.

Plays are meant to be performed, not read, and playwrights tell their stories very differently from the way novelists do.

In a novel, the writer tells the reader everything. Using thousands of printed words, he describes how characters look, what they they think, how they feel, how they say the words they speak; he describes the setting of the story, explains the circumstances; he describes, in detail, the world his characters inhabit. And if the writer does his job well, the result of all this description and attention to detail is that as he reads, the reader re envisions the story in his own mind exactly as it existed in the writer's imagination.

Plays are very different. When writing, the playwright envisions his story as clearly as any novelist does, but, by choosing to write a play, the playwright also chooses to work within his limitation; he must tell his story in terms of what the audience can hear and see.[1]

Some Fan Comments

From 2010:
Well, I'd already known about fan fic. I used to spend hours reading Daria fic in high school (on, of all places). But that had only been an amusing diversion. It was nothing like what I encountered when I stumbled upon The Gossamer Project. At first, I had a bizarre fic preference: they had to be in screenplay format. I mean, duh, it's a TV show, right? I was confused by all these fics written in prose, but they seemed to make up the majority of what was published. Though reluctant at first, I started reading them. Before long, I found that I wouldn't even touch a fic in screenplay format. [2]

Script Adaptions of Fanworks

  • A Kanera screenplay segment of "Troposphere" by amaximinalist, a screenplay version of a portion of Troposphere by Emma Grant. amaximinalist comments: "The goal of these screenplays is not to copy the prose exactly, but rather keep the fidelity of the original prose while making fluid changes according to writing for the visual medium of film." (Star Wars: Rebels, 2016)
  • Lived: A Screenplay by Amy-Grace Rogis, a screenplay version of Lived by Amanda Dupuis. Amy's comments: "Let it be known now that I asked for permission from Llama to turn Lived into a screenplay for my film class. I haven't finished it yet, due to it taking longer than I originally planned, but I turned in what I do have done and I got an A-. You can read what I have and I'll be adding to it as I go. Please keep in mind that this does NOT have Hanson in it and that you really shouldn't go changing people's stories unless you get permission first. Enjoy!" (Hanson, 2001)

External Links


  1. ^ James Ide, Foreward to the zine Going Home, published in 1992. (Scan from the zine.)
  2. ^ Don't Watch It Alone: My Wild Ride Through the X-Files Fandom by littlegreen42