Moving on to the next level of Under Angels, here’s a look at “The Board” as of 04.17.2011, based on Blake Snyder’s story crafting system. After creating index cards for 32 scenes and each of the 15 story beats, I picked up a cork board and sectioned it off into four logical rows separated by blue tape. I then applied cards to the board. The rows are broken down as follows:
First Row: Act I; ends with the ‘Break into Two’ beat at Page 25.
Second Row: Act II first half; ends with the ‘Midpoint’ beat at Page 55.
Third Row: Act II second half; ends with the ‘Break into Three’ beat at Page 85.
Fourth Row: Act III.
I’m a big fan of Save the Cat; it’s the best system I’ve ever seen for building solid story structure. The basic idea is that every great story contains 15 beats; in the rigid form of a screenplay, these beats fall on specific pages (minutes).
A blank version of Blake Snyder’s legendary beat sheet — now known as the “BS2” — is as follows:
1. Opening Image (1):
2. Theme Stated (5):
3. Set-Up (1-10):
4. Catalyst (12):
5. Debate (12-25):
6. Break into Two (25)
7. B Story (30):
8. Fun and Games (30-55):
9. Midpoint (55):
10. Bad Guys Close In (55-75):
11. All Is Lost (75):
12. Dark Night of the Soul (75-85):
13. Break into Three (85):
14. Finale (85-110):
15. Final Image (110):
For an explanation of each beat, check this out.