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Messages posted since 05/01/2014
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Topic: Fact and Information Checking

Author: S M Posted: 04/24/01 05:32 PM

Attention Screenwriters!

If you need your finished script checked for fact accuracy please visit our website at:

http://members.aol.com/faccurateco

We are professional entertainment information consultants who specialize in fact checking scripts. You may send us a copy of your script for a FREE APPRAISAL at faccurateco@aol.com

Author: Steven Karels Posted: 04/24/01 09:35 PM

Who are these guys? Oh Yeah, they're professional entertainment information consultants who specialize in fact checking scripts. Huh?

Scripts need not be factual only plausible. The original Star Trek series had many technical inaccuracies but somehow the audience over-looked them because the stories were interesting. Unless you are writing a documentary, I don't see the value. Am I missing something?

Steve

Author: Miriam Queensen Posted: 04/25/01 08:51 AM

Yes, Steven, then they put out the Nitpicker's Guides!

If you're writing an historical film this could be useful. When I wrote CLARA I spent much time on the web checking facts. I found out when kerosene lamps were introduced, then gaslight in homes. I found out what a musket was versus a rifle. I found out the lineage of the Austrian royal family. I found out when there was a railroad between Leipzig and Dresden. Things like this can help you be more authoritative and accurate when you are writing history. I don't know that I'd PAY someone to do what I enjoy doing myself, but I do see some value in it.

On the other hand, if your STORY is good, as you say, the studios would probably do that kind of fact checking themselves before production . . . Still, I wanted my story to be as accurate as I could make it.

Miriam

Author: Ashley Moye Posted: 04/25/01 10:21 AM

Buy a banner!

Author: Danial Couch Posted: 04/26/01 04:16 PM

A banner?

Author: Ashley Moye Posted: 04/27/01 07:52 PM

I'll let you wonder.

Author: Deb Havener Posted: 04/29/01 12:16 AM

I graduated from college w/ the ever-handy English degree. My professor and head of creative writing (a published author) beat it into our heads to get our facts straight. There is such a thing in the world of book publishing called a fact checker. This is actually a person who goes through the ms and checks out every detail for accuracy. Unless your story is set in a fictional town, there'd be better a Slaughter Road in Chillicothe, Ohio if you say there's one...

I can't recall the title of this popular book (a sequel -- it will come to me over the weekend, hopefully, and I'll post it), but it's an excellent example of what happens when a famous author decides to do her own editing and forgoes the fact checking. The story -- set in the sixties, uses the 1-800 number in the plotline -- and we all know the famous toll free number 1-800 didn't exist in the 1960's. This particular author rec'd a lot of criticism for not having the facts checked professionally.

So fact checkers are real and they're out there making a living. They're excellent for books -- but film and TV scripts take a lot of liberties. The decision to use one for a script is solely up to the writer, but if you write the great American novel, you can bet your last thin dime a fact checker will be attached to it at some point.