Which Script Writing Software Should I Choose?
Whether you’re just dabbling in screenwriting or looking to make the next hit show, good script writing software can help you get the job done. With a few different options out there, it can be hard to know which one to go for. Here is a breakdown of the most popular platforms, including cost, and their pros and cons, so you can decide which script software is best for you.
An article on scriptwriting programs wouldn’t be complete without a mention of Final Draft. This award-winning software is used by the vast majority of professional screenwriters, including those working at Netflix, Paramount and Pixar. Many smaller production companies use it too.
It has a long list of advanced features to help streamline the scriptwriting process, including formatting, storyboarding, alternate dialogue tools, collaboration features and over 300 templates for all kinds of creative projects.
With the backing of countless pros including the likes of JJ Abrams and Guillermo Del Toro, you can rest assured you won’t get much better than Final Draft. It’s absolutely packed full of tools, allows for real-time collaboration and offers automatic backups to protect your work.
Final Draft doesn’t come cheap at $249.99 (around £183), though a 30-day free trial is available. Also, though there are other templates available, Final Draft is primarily geared towards feature film, so if you’re using it for other projects then you might find certain areas lacking.
This cloud-based software was designed to speed up and simplify video production, with a scriptwriting package that includes industry-standard formatting, storyboarding and integrated index cards. For a more in-depth look at the Celtx software, you can take a look at our full CeltX guide.
Celtx offers lots of tools and features at a comparatively low price point. It requires almost no tech know-how, with straightforward navigation and plenty of online support. It’s an ideal option for beginner screenwriters and also comes with a no-obligation free 14-day trial. Some basic scriptwriting features are also available for free.
If you just want to work on your script then many of the features may go unused. Despite being available for both desktop and mobile devices, some users report issues with glitches when working on the app. Though the subscription model is flexible, you will end up paying more than you would for a program like FinalDraft if you plan to use it in the long-term.
Focused purely on scriptwriting, WriterDuet is another cloud-based tool that allows you to customise your workflow and collaborate with others in real-time. Along with formatting and compatibility with a range of file types, WriterDuet also offers reporting and outlining tools that help bring your script to life.
WriterDuet caters to a wide range of requirements and is both intuitive and user-friendly, making it a great beginner option. As it is web-based, there’s no risk of losing your work and is great for collaborations, with a range of subscription tiers to suit your needs. While it’s not as big of a name as Final Draft, WriterDuet is also used by a number of professional screenwriters. Subscriptions start at just $5 a month (around £3.70) if paid annually.
You must be online to work collaboratively, and while you can work on three free scripts, most of the features are geared towards ‘Pro’ subscriptions at the slightly higher price point of $7.42 a month (around £5.50) if paid annually. The subscription model has the same issues as Celtx, in that it may cost you more over time.
The only completely free option on the list, this multi-platform program was designed to make scriptwriting simple. It has a screenplay editor that prompts corrections to formatting and pagination, offers import and export of a range of file types and has fun features like a database to help you name your characters.
Did we mention that it’s free? Along with zero financial commitment, Trelby is easy-to-use, reliable and can be up and running in minutes. Its system requirements are also minimal, meaning you can use it on older systems and also making it great for educational purposes and demonstrations where you’re not sure what you’ll be working with.
Some users may not enjoy working with the old-school interface, and it’s certainly not as sharp as some of its paid counterparts. Naturally, as a free product, it does not boast quite as many features as other programs on this list, though for straightforward script writing it will get the job done.
Choose The Write Script Writing Software For You
In summary, from Celtx to Final Draft, there is a great range of options to try. Our advice would be to test a few and see what works for your needs and budget. Different companies use different tools for the film & tv jobs, so see what fits.
Check out our scriptwriting techniques article if you need some help putting pen to “paper”!
Want to save money on Script Writing Software? Keep an eye on our discount codes for exclusive savings.