PROSPERITY can be yours!

Introducing the new industry standard in scriptwriting software.

Published March 25, 1999 12:50PM (EST)

Congratulations on purchasing PROSPERITY! your new screen-writing software! PROSPERITY guarantees you'll be writing the next
Hollywood blockbuster in 19 days or less! Remember: When your film is
produced we guarantee a box-office return of no less than $100 million.
If not, simply return your software with proof of purchase for a full

The makers of PROSPERITY! have worked closely with the creative
departments of major film studios to help develop our patented nine-step system. All you have to do is have fun writing while the software
follows our nine simple steps for you!

1) Length. No script can be longer than 110 pages. If your script attempts to go longer, the software will immediately begin deleting scenes from within the script that seem unworthy. Also, lead characters may become suddenly ill, die or be executed by the software so their stories don't drag on endlessly. Love stories, too, will be quickly resolved, subplots will be condensed and themes collapsed.

2) The Hero. If your hero isn't introduced, likable and established by Page 2, the software will shut down and turn off your computer.

3) Avoid Wordiness. No speech by any character may go over five lines. If you attempt a speech that goes over five lines of dialogue, new supporting characters will be created to siphon off this "excess" or "baggage" dialogue.

4) Structure. Act I must end halfway through Page 29, and Act II on the bottom of Page 78. If you attempt to go one sentence over these cutoff points, the software will lock you out of all copies of your work and you'll have to start again. Remember, this is only to help you
focus and attend to the task at hand: your script!

5) Be original. But when creating your stories, always keep your ideas easy to understand. If you attempt anything too unusual or "unique" in your stories a large WARNING box will appear at the center of your screen with a countdown timer of five minutes. If the oddity you're creating isn't smoothed out and "normalized" within that time, personal areas of your hard drive will be erased. Most notably the nostalgic stuff you haven't backed up, like love letters and personal journal entries. Once again, we're only doing this to help YOU focus!

6) Original voices. Every character must have a different voice. But nothing too weird or unexpected. And no improper grammar. Also, no cursing or fragmented speech. This is writing software, after all, and English rules do apply. And don't worry if you can't spell, have poor syntax or can only write the so-called "street talk." Our
software will clean up your messy dialogue just moments after your
initial keystrokes. You can rest easy knowing that each character will
sound statistically average regardless of their background!

7) Keep it clean. PROSPERITY! comes with the advanced MPAA rating system interface. As you write, your scenes will be rated. Remember, a blockbuster requires a rating of PG-13 or less! Too much R or X material and the software will immediately take corrective action.
Vulgar language will be sweetened, violence softened and sex removed.
Think of the time you will save avoiding the lengthy rejection process
of your bawdy, rude, disgusting and offensive script. Let US help YOU.

8) Relax. When writing a script it is crucial not to get wrapped up in all the so-called "rules" of writing. You must feel free and use your instincts! If not, it will be impossible to "have fun." If you are not having fun, an ALARM will sound. It will be impossible to shut off this alarm until you have relaxed completely and started having fun with your writing. The software will judge when you are having fun by the quality of your dialogue and scene construction. The friendly reminder: RELAX IMMEDIATELY AND HAVE FUN TO DISENGAGE ALARM will fill your screen until you do loosen up and stop wasting your own time.

9) Now go write! But not for too long at a stretch. Carpal Tunnel Syndrome and eyestrain are severe deterrents to writing. So, to avoid costly liability litigation, we have designed our software to lock up if you write for over two hours and 20 minutes. We believe good health is more important than any so-called "inspirational breakthroughs." Concurrently, if you don't write for longer than an eight-hour period, the program will begin deleting financial records on your computer to help encourage you to return to that keyboard and stick with it!

So start that script! Make a mint! Prosperity can be yours now that
PROSPERITY! is yours!

By Philip Morton

Screenwriter Philip Morton used Final Draft. to co-write the 1997 film "Fire Down Below," starring Steven Seagal. This article originally appeared in the Writers Guild of America's West monthly journal, Written By.

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