Short post today. Being why I've called it a bite-sized tip.
Look at the script you're working on.
Ask yourself - and be honest - is it HIGH CONCEPT?
What is High Concept?
Pretty simple - High Concept is something that can be explained really easily.
It's also where STORY is more important than the CHARACTERS.
Here's a test.
Someone says, what's your story about?
How do you describe it?
1) Can you say it succinctly in ten words? Such as - A young boy has the power to see dead people - The Sixth Sense.
2) Or do you start by saying, well, it's about this girl, and she has trouble with her mother, but then she gets to college, and she discovers...
Do the 'what's your story about?' test.
If you fall into category 2 then you don't have a high concept story.
That means you have a DRAMA.
Now there's nothing wrong with dramas - it's just that you have a far higher chance of selling your script if it's high concept.
But don't worry - or think that your drama has been a waste of time. Quite the opposite. You've been working on an EMOTIONAL story for the past - however long - that's great. It should mean you have well-developed characters and a story with a heart.
Now it's time to take that well-constructed drama and find a HIGH CONCEPT setting.
One way to do this is to change your story's genre.
How would your drama play out if it were a HORROR, or a THRILLER, or a SCI-FI?
They're the three genres that sell the best.
Sure, this will require a re-write from page 1 - but writing the new THRILLER or HORROR, or SCI-FI won't be as difficult because you've already developed your characters for so long in your drama.
The bite-sized take away from today is to aim for HIGH CONCEPT.
Because that's what sells.
Take the drama you've been working on and re-write it in a high concept genre.