I like to give each of my acts a "title" to help me focus on what that part of the story is supposed to be doing. Think of each of your acts as a chapter in a book and give each a chapter title... think of this chapter title as the "mission statement" for that act. This will keep your story flowing by making sure each scene belongs in that act... and not an earlier act or a later act. Each section of your script will have a goal, and the protagonist will be focused on attaining that goal.

Act One of "The Matrix" is Neo learns about The Matrix.
The first half of Act Two is Neo Training to be the Chosen One.
The second half of Act Two is The Matrix attacks.
Act Three is Neo to the rescue... he IS the Chosen One.

Since each segment has a goal, each segment will have a beginning, middle and end. The first half of The Matrix's Act Two is all about Neo training to be the chosen one. So that segment will end with a scene that shows the end of Neo's training. Morpheus believes he is ready to see the Oracle and be confirmed as the Chosen One. That scene is the Mid-Point of the story... Do you remember what happens?

Giving each act a title can help you stay focused on the story and character goals in that segment of the script.

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On October 17, 1931 mobster Al Capone was convicted of income tax evasion and sentenced to 11 years in prison. What happens when the most powerful criminal kingpin in the world moves in to your prison? Do the guards do what the Warden says, or what the King Of The Cellblock says? Who really runs the prison?

Blue Books

Blue Book #7: CREATING STRONG PROTAGONISTS is filled with dozens of tips and techniques. Screenplays are about characters in conflict. Characters in emotional turmoil. Strong protagonists who can find solutions to difficult problems in 90-120 minutes. Learn to write strong protagonists!

For more information about Bill's book SECRETS OF ACTION SCREENWRITING click there.

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