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Script Writing for Newscasts. February, 25, 2014. Objective. You will learn about the specialized skill of broadcast news script writing. Take notes on the following Power Point presentation to file in the “production” section your notebook . Broadcast stories will….

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Presentation Transcript
objective
Objective

You will learn about the specialized skill of broadcast news script writing.

slide3
Take notes on the following Power Point presentation to file in the “production” section your notebook .
broadcast stories will
Broadcast stories will…

Be shorter and simpler than print stories

Use present tense, active voice

Sound more conversational

Use “don’t” rather than “do not”

Start with an attention-getting “hook,”

broadcast leads
Broadcast leads…

5W/1H leads don’t work

Too much info at once

Too hard to hear

Too hard for an announcer to read

Use “soft” leads instead

Throw-away lead

Angle lead

throwaway lead
Throwaway lead

Vacationers driving around the country this summer are likely to find lots of detours.

The American Automobile Association says road repairs and construction are going on all over the nation.

angle lead hook
Angle Lead (hook)

Planning to drive on your vacation this year? Get ready for lots of detours.

The American Automobile Association says road repairs and construction are going on all over the nation.

some things to remember
Some Things to Remember

Keep your sentences short

Keep subjects and verbs close together

Avoid introductory clauses

quote attribution
Quote Attribution

Broadcast writers should avoid two common print formats:

putting the attribution after a quote or statement

identifying people by age, job title, etc.

It’s usually better to paraphrase quotes

quote attribution1
Quote Attribution

Listeners/viewers can’t see “quote marks”

Use direct quotes only when it’s important to repeat someone’s exact words.

quote attribution2
Quote Attribution

RIGHT:

The director of emergency disaster relief said all victims of the Florida hurricane are now back in permanent housing.

quote attribution3
Quote Attribution

WRONG:

“Victims of the Florida hurricane are all back in permanent housing,” said Scott Smith, director of emergency disaster relief.

broadcast copy guidelines
Broadcast Copy Guidelines

Double-space

CAPITALIZE EVERYTHING

Use an easy-to-read typewriter-style font (like Courier or Arial)

broadcast copy guideline
Broadcast Copy Guideline

Put a slugline at the top left of each page

Vacation Detours

30 seconds

Scripts are always in a dual column format

sample tv spot script
SAMPLE TV Spot Script

30 Apr 06

Name_______________________________

Internet resource

Class__________

30 seconds

Page 1

Kill Date: 31 Dec 06

Exercise # _______

VIDEO

(LS) STUDENT AT COMPUTER

(01:35)

(MS) COMPUTER MONITOR SCREEN

(02:05)

(CU) STUDENT TYPING ON COMPUTER (LIGHTING CHANGES TO RED)

(03:00)

(CU) KEYBOARD

(03:43)

(ECU) COMPUTER SCREEN

(04:15)

AUDIO

MUSIC: UP & UNDER ANNOUNCER

LOOKING FOR INFORMATION? CHECK OUT THE INTERNET.

BUT BEWARE ... SOME INTERNET INFORMATION IS OFF LIMITS.

DON’T VENTURE INTO THE DARK SIDE OF THE INTERNET, ESPECIALLY TO HOME PAGES WITH SEXUALLY EXPLICIT MATERIAL.

YOU MAY BE ABLE TO GAIN ACCESS TO THESE SITES, BUT THE COMMANDANT HAS PLACED THEM OFF LIMITS.

ALL DINFOS COMPUTERS KEEP A LOG OF THE SITES YOU VISIT ... A LOG OFFICIALS COULD USE TO TRACK YOU DOWN.

(MORE)

sample tv spot script1
SAMPLE TV Spot Script

30 Apr 06

Name_______________________________

Internet resource

Class__________

30 seconds

Page 1

Kill Date: 31 Dec 06

Exercise # _______

VIDEO

(CU) STUDENT’S FACE (STRIP LIGHTING ON FACE) (04:37)

(CU) COMPUTER MONITOR (PICTURE BLURS AND TURNS TO STATIC)

(05:12)

AUDIO

(MORE)

BE SURE TO PULL THE PLUG ON BAD NET SURFING HABITS ...

BEFORE SOMEONE PULLS THE PLUG ON YOU. KNOW AND OBEY DINFOS INTERNET RULES.

MUSIC: FADE UP AND OUT TO TIME

# # #

broadcast guidelines
Broadcast Guidelines

Omit datelines

Work the location into the lead

Use an end mark (- 30 -) or (# # #) to clearly designate the end of the story

Time = Length

20 seconds = 5 lines (45 words)

30 seconds = 8 lines (65 words)

60 seconds = 16 lines (125 words)

punctuation
Punctuation

Avoid complex punctuation

Listeners/viewers can’t see it!

Punctuation is only there to help the announcer read the story

Commas (,) and periods (.)

Ellipses (…) and dashes (--)

Quotation marks (“__”)

Question marks (?)

complex punctuation
Complex Punctuation

colons (:)

semicolons (;)

percentage signs (%)

dollar signs ($)

ampersands (&)

unconventional punctuation
Unconventional punctuation

Use ellipses (…) to indicate dramatic timing, like a long pause.

Example:

While workers were arriving early this morning … a deafening explosion shook the plant.”

using abbreviations
Using Abbreviations

Eliminate most abbreviations (even AP Style abbreviations for states)

Use only well-known abbreviations, like C-I-A and NASA.

Don't use abbreviations unless you want them to be read as abbreviations

using numbers
Using Numbers

Numbers can be hard to follow, so try to avoid using them

If you do need to use numbers in your broadcast copy…

Spell out numbers under 12

Use numerals for 12 to 999

Write “one thousand” instead of 1,000

using numbers1
Using Numbers

Simplify complex numbers.

Round numbers off

Use modifiers such as…approximately, almost, more than, about

Example:

$2,001,859.00 becomes “slightly more than two (m) million-dollars.”

more on numbers
More on numbers

Spell out the symbols for dollars and cents

29-dollars or 60-cents

Write fractions as words and hyphenate them

two-thirds

Use hyphens to link related numbers

“For more information, call 1-800-5-5-5-1-2-1-2”

time references
Time references

Use present tense

Avoid repeating “today” – say “early this morning,” or “this afternoon” instead

Use terms that listeners can relate to

Example: “One lane of the freeway will be closed during the morning rush hour.”

names titles
Names & Titles

Use the title before the name

If the title is long, break it up or shorten it

Never begin sentences with a name

If the person is well-known, like President Bush, you can omit the first name