Arc Studio covers the whole flow from season outline, to episode outline, to episode treatment, to episode script.
The best part is that everything stays connected and consistent: As you flesh out your episode outline, it will reflect the additions in the season outline. And as you tweak your character backstory in the season bible, these changes will trickle down to the notes that you have available while writing your script.
Follow this guide to get a quick overview over the whole process:
Step 1: Start a new project with a season outline & bible
The season outline & bible is a central repository for all notes on:
- Season arcs / storylines
- Recurring characters
- The season’s key beats, organized per episode
How to get started with an episodic project:
- Go to the Desk, then: Projects > New Project
- Give your project a name and be sure to activate the “season bible”.
- Click on the pre-created “Series Outline & Bible” to start writing
- Bonus mission: before jumping in, you could add collaborators that have access to the whole project by selecting “Manage Members”
Step 2: Collect story elements
Story elements are characters, storylines, and locations. You can collect information on these elements, that will be available to all writers as they flesh out the episode outlines and write the scripts.
- Click “Story Elements” to open the sidebar
- Add Storylines, Characters, and Locations
- Add a title, and some notes below, e.g. notes on the overall character arc, or thematic issues for storylines. You can also assign colors to characters and storylines, as well as INT/EXT for scenes. Characters take a script name, which is how they should show up in the written script in dialogue elements.
- You can also upload inspirational images: Just drag/drop them into the image window.
Step 3: Start season outline
With a few core story elements in place, you can start your season outline.
- Select the number of episodes closest to your target (you can add and remove later, of course).
- Name your first Ep (or all of them – or keep that for later):
- Add the first beat
- Add a title, then hit return, which will take you to the note field.
- Add a short note of what will happen in that beat, then hit “#”.
- This will open the tagging-menu, where you can use the up/down arrow keys to select storylines and characters, and the → right arrow to tag/untag them.d
- Add more key beats. This can be as detailed as you want, e.g. just one beat per season arc and a monster-of-the-week beat, or it can entail all the beats of that episode.
Step 4: Create episode scripts
Once you’re happy with your season outline, turn each episode column into an episode script:
Back at the Desk, this will create one script per column, with
From the bible, you can access these scripts through the link icon in each episode column:
Step 5: Start outlining episode 1
Inside the episode script, you can flesh out the story of that episode, starting with the key beats from the season outline.
You can jump back to the Bible using the green button at the top of the window. Back in the bible, you will find the updated season outline, with the newly added beats.
Step 6: Start writing episode 1
When you start writing your script, you can open the navigation sidebar, to find all the material you collected during outlining to reference as you turn your beats into scenes.
You will also notice that the autocompleter in your script uses locations and character from the beat board.