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critique What do you guys think of my first 10 pages?


Staff Member
OK, I'll jump in with some brief comments.

It's a decent story and fairly interesting but needs work as a screenplay.

The formatting in the first lines is wrong - introduce each character separately and capitalize their NAME the first time it's mentioned.
DO briefly describe the newsroom and characters. DON'T tell us that this will change their lives.
Sentences need a period at the end.

I don't like narrators telling me the story - that really feels like a cheat. Build that - briefly - into the dialogue.

Don't state something in the actions that the viewer will need to know, such as "Ryder is Joe's last name." The viewer won't see that, so if it's important, convey it in the dialogue.

p 6 - briefly describe George's office & who is in there.
The "your parents" dialogue should be one sentence.

p 8 - what is the noise? What does Clyde do? Where is Charlie's dead body? Is there blood on it?

p 9 - lines like "with the news on the tip of his tongue" belong in a short story/novel, not a screenplay.

Tighten it up and get rid of the narrator, and it's a decent start.

Good luck!
Whenever you're writing, keep the golden rule of screenwriting in the front of your mind - Film is a visual medium. If it isn't on the screen it doesn't happen and, consequently, doesn't belong in the script. I will append that to include the stipulation that sound is more than half of the experience. If we (the audience) can't see it and can't hear it, it doesn't exist.