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Old 03-06-2019, 08:16 AM   #1
pedramyz
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Is script polish considered cheating?

I was checking out scriptexpress.com and they provide a script polish for 600$. The amount of change the original script undergoes is unbelievable. Here is the example they've posted on their page :

https://www.hollywoodscriptexpress.c...sh-compare.png

One of the most important things in writing a good script is having a strong voice. and it is highly looked for by contest judges. and this service does that for you . I've already asked reputable screenwriting contests and they said as long as they don't alter your story in any way and you are still considered the sole author of your screenplay, hiring an editor won't disqualify you, in fact we encourage you to do it. How is that possible ? I mean the polished script doesn't at all represent the voice of the writer in his/her original script. How is it that they don't get any credit for this?

Last edited by pedramyz; 03-06-2019 at 08:20 AM.
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Old 03-06-2019, 10:55 AM   #2
directorik
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All screenplays are polished and rewritten. There are writers who make
big money doing uncredited “polishes”. Carry Fisher was considered one
of the best. Shane Black, Charlie Kaufman, Robert Towne and even
Tarantino all get paid very well to do uncredited polishes and rewrites.
Quote:
Originally Posted by pedramyz View Post
One of the most important things in writing a good script is having a strong voice.
Not necessarily true. Important for that first sale, maybe, certainly very
important to writing teachers and as you point out contest judges. However
there are only a handful of screenwriters who really have a strong voice.

I would strongly advice NOT paying an unknown writer to do a polish on a
spec script. But there are many writers offering this service. That link only
shows someone correcting format errors and offering suggestions – not
what is generally called a polish. That could be called editing. I do that kind
of help for new writers occasionally. Nothing cheating about that kind of help.
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Old 03-06-2019, 11:54 AM   #3
pedramyz
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Quote:
Originally Posted by directorik View Post
That link only
shows someone correcting format errors and offering suggestions – not
what is generally called a polish.
The descriptions have been completely changed to a lot more succinct and smooth sentences ( new words and sentences are added to better describe what the original writer was going for ) . Is this a natural part of the editing?
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Old 03-06-2019, 02:08 PM   #4
directorik
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pedramyz View Post
The descriptions have been completely changed to a lot more succinct and smooth sentences ( new words and sentences are added to better describe what the original writer was going for ) . Is this a natural part of the editing?
It is.

However, if you are more comfortable with polish that's fine.
Perhaps the voice of the writer has been altered. That becomes
the writers choice. As you have pointed out, doing a polish like
the example you gave doesn't violate any contest rules.
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