UPDATE 19 August 2017:  ScriptHelperX now uses Local Storage, content can be edited after adding it, convert to Fountain, and uses a smarter web-to-print/PDF layout. 

I keep telling myself I’m no longer developing this, and I had started work on a much, much better replacement.  But I haven’t gotten very far with it yet in my spare time and I’ve no idea if/when it will ever be ready.  So, instead, I back-ported some of the improvements to ScriptHelperX.

If you’ve tried ScriptHelperX before, clear your browser cache before trying this update.

See Version History below for details of the changes and new features.

 


Welcome to the ScriptHelperX page. This is a utility I wrote using web technologies that is intended to help quickly put together a rough draft of a script for a video, film, or interactive project using nothing but your web browser.

Launch Script HelperLaunch ScriptHelperX

Please allow cookies and pop-ups from kmhcreative.com or it won’t work.
Desktop Browsers Only – Mobile Devices are not supported

It prompts you to enter the relevant information, then automatically puts it into proper film/video screenwriting format. While I wouldn’t use it for that screenplay you plan to submit to a major movie studio, it’s fine for hammering out script ideas, online videos, fan-fiction, or other projects that aren’t destined to win an Oscar.

I replaced the feature-limited “demo” version hosted here before with the fully functional version of ScriptHelperX, and restored the multimedia project options. So you can run it from here if you want, or you can still download it and set it up to run on your own network or website.  Safari and Firefox will let you run it directly without a server by opening the “index.htm” file.  It’s only a 1MB download:

Download Script HelperDownload ScriptHelperX

Keep in mind that I released the original ScriptHelper in 1999 and ScriptHelperX, which shares most of its core code with the original, in 2002. There were no iPhones, iPads, or Android devices back then. It was written to work in browsers like Internet Explorer 5 and Netscape Navigator 4. So using ScriptHelperX is a little like stepping back in time. If you were even alive back then you may recognize the look is similar to the last versions of Netscape’s browser – complete with the early aughts brushed-aluminum and metal buttons look.

SYSTEM REQUIREMENTS:

  • Compatible Web browser (see list below)
  • Authorize Pop-Up Windows from www.kmhcreative.com (or it won’t work)
  • Authorize Cookies from www.kmhcreative.com (or you won’t be able to save your work)

FEATURES

  • Cross-browser, cross-platform functionality (hence the “X” on the end of the name)
  • Fully editable content in Script Window, including revision color codes and highlighting.

    scriptwindow ui

    New Script Window UI

  • Automatic page and scene/panel numbering and page-break indicators
  • “Floating Palettes” for tools, entry boxes, and script preview let you put the ScriptHelperX elements where YOU want them.
  • Compose and style in Script Window (you no longer have to use the floating palettes if you don’t want to).
  • Store your work and preferences in your web browser’s Local or Session storage.
  • Easier exporting of code for further editing, including HTML source code, plain text, and Fountain format.

    format converter palette

    Script Format Converter

  • Maintain a cast list and scene list for one-button insertion in your script (no retyping names over and over, makes sure they remain consistent)

    Cast List Palette

  • “X-talk Editor” allows faster entry of back-and-forth dialogue composition between two characters.
  • Flip back and forth between editing the script cover and the script without losing your work.
  • Resume a scriptwriting session at a later date right where you left off (requires browser Local Storage)
  • Print to paper or PDF with realistic previews.

COMPATIBILITY

Browsers: Firefox, Chrome, Safari, Edge, Internet Explorer 11, and Opera

Platforms: Mac OS X 10.11.x, Windows 10, Linux 4.4.x

Note: Google Chrome and Opera require ScriptHelperX is running from a web server.

ORIGINAL COMPATIBILITY

This is mostly to just give you an idea of how old some of the code in it is:

Mac OS 8.0 – 9.6: IE 4.0, Netscape Navigator/Communicator 4.5

Windows 98/ME/XP/2K/NT: IE 5.5, Netscape Navigator/Communicator 4.78

Linux 2.2: Netscape Navigator/Communicator 4.5

The currently posted version will NOT RUN properly in any of those old browsers.  Mobile browsers are not supported.

KNOWN PROBLEMS

While there is a visual indicator of where the page-breaks should fall, the program has no method for forcing script elements in the top/bottom margins of a page to the next page.  You have to manually move them down by adding enough carriage returns.

Though the Script Window content is now editable, it will not write new content generated by a floating palettes at the insertion point.  It always appends it to the end of the script.  You can, however, manually select it, cut it, and paste it to another location in the script.

There is no way to spellcheck your entire script. Most modern browsers will prompt you with a red underline when you misspell something you’re typing in one of the entry boxes. If you do not correct the mistake then, you should copy and paste your script into a word processing program and use its document spellchecker.

Long scripts may not save properly. There is a limit, which varies by browser, for how much data can be saved in Local Storage (typically the limit is about 10MB, but it uses Javascript to save the data, which is UTF-16 and therefore consumes 2 bytes per character, so the effective storage limit is cut in half).  Internet Explorer will not warn you if Local Storage is full.

For security reasons Javascript is not able to save files to your local drive.  In order to save a local copy of your work you will need to either use the EXPORT options to save as a Web Archive, the PRINT option to save a hardcopy or PDF file, or the CONVERT option – which requires you to copy and paste the contents into a text file in another app.

VERSION HISTORY

X (2017.08)
* Changed ScriptWindow to contentEditable
* ScriptWindow now has a toolbar for editing text
* Added “activity spinner” to blank so users know it’s actually doing something
* Added format converter for HTML, Fountain, and Plain Text
* Improved Printer Friendly output
* Added visual indicator of page length so you know where breaks will be.
* Optional automatic page numbering
* Now saves to Local/Session Storage instead of using Cookies
* Fixed Cast List save that wasn’t working
* added Debug toggle for dev purposes
* switched script window masthead to pure CSS (got rid of old, low-res images)
* swapped ancient browser sniffer for newer one
* dropped browser detect for Netscape
* finally actually moved all the scripts into a sub-folder
* eliminated “e-mail” option from menubar (it only worked if you have an e-mail client installed)
* check whether offline or not for Chrome and Opera (because webapp doesn’t work offline in those).
* Added Comic Book scriptwriting tips to user Manual.
* Fixed issue with Firefox not printing with styles applied
* Fixed issue with IE not printing with correct page size or borders
* Switched all DOCTYPEs to HTML5 and character-encoding to UTF-8
* Added link to user manual to index page
* Dropped support for “legacy” browsers

X (2016) – fixed code that was preventing it from working in modern browsers, got rid of annoying confirm alerts on every action, changed from EULA online to TOU and Privacy notice. Added the “Links” and “Menus” options back in for multimedia projects. Fixed the printing issue by opening just the script content in a new window. Updated user manual information. Video/Multimedia covers now allow you to change the Project Header text.

X (2011) – fixed some typos, uploaded it to website archive.

X (2003) – removed the multimedia project options because they seemed to confuse people and wasn’t very well documented. Focused program on scripts intended to be printed out rather than read online.

X (2002) – original release of cross-browser, cross-platform version with floating palettes. Added X-Talk (aka “cross talk”) feature that makes back-and-forth dialog between two characters easier as it auto-prompts you for the next character’s dialog. Added save feature using browser cookies.

X (2001) – unreleased version added feature to export, e-mail, or print scripts directly, redesigned UI inspired by Netscape Communicator. Added Scene and Character lists for easy, consistent insertion. Added more options for multimedia/interactive projects.

2.0 (2000) – “Silver Edition” Changed frame orientation to move InputBar to a sidebar position. Eliminated the ugly <FORM> buttons and replaced them with custom designed buttons. Added a custom background. User Manual is now available throughout and opens in its own window so it doesn’t over-write the scripting project. Re-wrote manual to reflect changes. Added a version check feature to the offline version. There are also three new buttons at the bottom of ScriptHelper that give you one click access to detailed information on how you can export your script.

1.4 – 1.9 (2000) – unreleased internal development/test versions.

1.3 (2000) – “Green Edition” – Fixes to tab order in all the input fields so that the submit button would always be the final item. User manual edited to clarify some points.

1.3 (2000) – “Tan Edition” Added VOICE selections to DIALOGUE form and changed “Stage Direction” label to “Parenthetical”, also a BEAT option to the write script menu choices, added INTERCUT options to TRANSITIONS, changed submit buttons so they don’t activate when you hit [RETURN] or [ENTER] (to prevent accidental submissions), added style-sheet specifications so all text is written in Courier 12 pt. font. “Atmosphere” parameter option added to SLUGLINE form. Submission of some elements now automatically prompts entry of information for next section. About and Manual sections revised. The layout for the Corporate Video Project cover sheet was also re-designed and the input form now allows you to select whether or not it writes a fax number into the layout. Also added were options for creating HTML links in script pages for any that will be primarily viewed with a browser.

1.2 (1999) – Added Style selection to HEADER generation, automatic conversions to upper or lowercase, reformatted tables for greater consistency, combined CHARACTER and DIALOGUE options into a single form.

1.1 (1999) – Added Corporate Style scripting options, Instruction Page, Multimedia transition options, split NEW PAGE into the HEADER and NEW options. Added drop-down menus with lists of appropriate entries to some sections.

1.0 (1999) – Original version for Film Style scripting only, no instruction page, mostly empty fields that required user to pretty much already know what should be entered into them.

Despite recent updates I am no longer actively developing this project.