I want to plan my scenes. One reason is that it is inspiring and adds value to the final result when I generate as much as possible before I begin to write. Another reason is that writing is the hard part. It is the thing where I truly show my skill, the result that matters – and I want to spend that energy as effective as possible. I don’t think it is efficient to write the perfect scene only to realize that it does not fit the whole picture.
Celtx has index cards, but I have found them not only dull but also tricky – I had a few cards involuntarily deleted on my last feature project.
I wanted something that was more than an index card where I could add some text. I wanted to add which characters were involved, and where in the arch they were, setups for later use and so on. Visible, sortable and searchable.
What I wanted as output, was some kind of list, with all the data for each scene, which I could flip through on the bus or open on the screen while I was writing.
I found a piece of software that could do exactly this: SuperNotecard by Mindola.
It is not free. The basic version costs $29.
They have a bigger version that is also a scriptwriting tool, taking the index card to the next phase. I was not interested in this, and, therefore, didn’t look at it.
The project file is one single file, so it is easy to embed it into the Celtx project.
You could add what they call Factors that could be characters, or places, or other things, which you could connect to a card. Each Factor could have one or many Characteristics which also could be tied to a card.
This means that I can have an index card to which I connect my main character – a Factor. What is interesting in this scene is to show her background, so I also connect my main character’s characteristics “background” to the card with a note what I want to tell about it. Close to perfect for my needs.
I paid the $29.
The next thing I’m going to do is add categories, set up characters and their “characteristics”, make a “stack” of “cards” for each act and then fire away.