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Focus Mode & other features we love for screenwriting

April 11, 2022
4 min read time

You want to write a television or movie script. You’ve got the spark, even the motivation… but creative writing isn’t always easy. Oftentimes, a novice writer doesn’t know where to begin or where to take their story. Even a professional scriptwriter can suffer from writer’s block and wrestle with the blank page. Fortunately, Final Draft 12 has many new tools available to help you focus and flourish during the writing process. 

Write distraction-free

Whether it’s an intrusive sound or something that’s in our main line of vision, these constant reminders of the world around us can distract a writer from focusing and losing themselves in the story. Final Draft 12 now offers Focus Mode, a feature that allows writers to enter a distraction-free workspace.

To open this distraction-free environment, click the reticle icon on the status bar. When Focus Mode is switched on, the Navigator, Ruler and Outline Editor are automatically hidden, and your document will now be full screen on your Mac monitor or maximized on your Windows monitor.

On Mac, hovering over the top of the screen will show the toolbar, giving you access to all the toolbar options. If you want Focus Mode when outside of a full screen or maximized view, keeping the Navigator, Ruler and Outline Editor hidden, go to the “Exit Full Screen” option on the Mac toolbar or restore down on the Windows document bar. On Mac, the toolbar will now hide, and Final Draft will return to its prior window state.

If you want to exit Focus Mode, simply click on the reticle icon on the status bar or press ESC, and Final Draft will now show the Navigator, Ruler and Outline Editor. Having different views for different scenarios gives the writer flexibility and the confidence to know they’ll be able to completely focus when needed.

Time-saving features

In addition to Focus Mode, there are many other features in Final Draft 12 that will greatly help you when writing a script.

SmartType cuts down on keystrokes by auto-filling commonly used names, locations and more. The Beat Board and Outline Editor allow you to do all your story planning in one place for easy access throughout the writing process. Plan set pieces, store character research, and much more. The Beat Board gives you total freedom to organize your ideas as they come to you, all within your Final Draft. The Outline Editor gives you a high-level view of your script, allowing you to easily plan and preview your structure. Insert images on title pages in the script or even in your Beat Board to help visualize your story.

You can also collaborate simultaneously with your writing partners around the corner or anywhere around the world with the real-time Collaboration feature. Track Changes to see and accept or rejects edits made by collaborators to the script and utilizing Alternate Dialogue, you can store as many different versions of lines as you can imagine, while Night Mode lets you work in an environment that’s easier on the eyes. Final Draft 12 also now allows you to import and covert a PDF file into a usable document. These tools and features are designed specifically for a writer and to help them throughout the entire writing process.

Final Draft also offers the 1-2-3 Workflow approach to further assist your writing process with Outlining tools. By utilizing the Beat Board, Outline Editor, and Outline Elements in sequence with one another, a writer will find their workload far less daunting by providing a road map and the tools to help every step of the way, from the first spark of an idea to your finished script. Watch our tutorials to help maximize Final Draft 12’s tools and features.

Final Draft remains the industry standard for screenwriting software for a reason. Listening to what novice and professional writers want most, we are always updating and including new tools and features to make your writing processing as seamless and productive as possible. Leave the formatting and distractions to us, and just focus on being creative!

Try Final Draft 12 for FREE for 30 days! Visit https://trial.finaldraft.com/ to sign up for your free trial today.

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