One easy way to cut syllables and seconds from a script: look for the words around the word OF – you can often tighten up expressions using OF.
This week subbing TV news, I subbed lines like this:
a breakthrough in the treatment of X disease
has come out in defence of Y
When I need to trim a script for a news story OR for short news promos – my eye goes to the OF expressions.
the above expressions were trimmed to:
A breakthrough treatment for X disease
(in the treatment of – becomes treatment for or in treating)
has defended Y
(has come out in defence of – becomes has defended)
When you only get 20 seconds for an LVO (Live Voice Over) or 80 seconds for a ‘package’ or 15 second for an intro – every syllable and second counts.
One tip – look for the OF expressions and tighten them up.
Here’s a link to tip 1:
(We obviously don’t use typewriters in modern TV newsroom – but the Olivetti Lettera 32 above is one of my personal collection of typewriters – and I find the mere sight of a retro typewriter often attracts writers’ attention.)