The Only Screenwriting Rule Worth Following: Plant and Payoff

This post is by Jason Hellerman from No Film School

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There are many screenwriting rules out there. They’re all bullshit, except one. If you plant it early, you better pay it off later.

I love to write. It’s so freeing and when you’re having a good time writing, nothing feels better. Writing is alchemy. More often than not, you’re creating something from nothing. Sure, there are days when the Writer’s Block gets bad, and times when you need to really dig into the beats of your story to get things right, but it’s all about the journey.

The only thing I hate about writing is how everyone tries to tell you what’s important. There are so many “rules” out there that if you wind up following them you’ll get a garbled mess.

There’s only one rule in all of screenwriting: If you plant an idea you need to pay it off.

That’s it.

Now let’s learn why that matters.

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