How to write a script for an audio or video presentation

We often receive script at Audiobag that just needs a tiny bit of tweaking before we go into our sound booth to record it. We don’t mind editing it. In fact, it’s our job to help our customers sound their best. So we look over the script, change a word here or there if necessary, get our customer’s approval on any major changes, and then we head into the room that’s so quiet it actually hurts our ears (okay, I’m exaggerating).

A common mistake people make when writing script for a presentation is writing for a reading audience instead of a listening audience. You can write a better script if you just pretend you’re talking to someone in person. For example, you can turn this lengthy podcast opener: “Welcome to our podcast — a show that is about how to write script that will sparkle” into a smoother, slightly shorter version: “Welcome to our podcast — a show about how to write script that sparkles.”

Here’s another example of script that needs a little work: “Podcasting from Central Texas, welcome to Audiobag — a show that is all about sounding your best. Today we will discuss audio techniques that will give you a clean sound, production music that is suited for the topic, and writing script that will flow better.”

Let’s revise the above script to the following: “Podcasting from Central Texas, welcome to Audiobag — a show about sounding your best. Today we’ll discuss audio techniques that give you a clean sound, production music that’s suited for the topic, and writing script that flows better.” Not only does the revised script flow better, it also makes a short and sweet podcast intro. We believe the fewer words you use, the better.

In summary: omit words you don’t need, turn words into contractions (ex: “that is” into “that’s”), write like you talk, and use a little poetic license. So what if it’s not perfect grammar? Script that people hear (instead of read) can be informal. By the way, I wrote this piece using informal writing just so you’ll know what I’m talking about. You cool with that?

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