5 Characteristics of an Effective Treatment


antique typewriter keysTerry Rossio lists 5 characteristics of an effective treatment (for pitching a project)

  1. Covers character, plot, setting, theme.
  2. Clarifies the intent of the writer.
  3. Can contain character descriptions, a synopsis, or statements on theme and tone.
  4. May use bits of key dialog.
  5. [For screenplay treatments:] Attempts to convey the filmgoing experience through to the story’s end.

Via WordPlay

Have you written an effective treatment? How does your screenplay, TV or literary treatment measure up?

What else would you add to this list?


This article is the sixth installment in a series on writing treatments. The previous installment is How to Write a Treatment in Ten Steps. Coming up next week is How Long Should a Treatment Be? If you don’t want to miss an installment, sign up for our newsletter!