Raise The Stakes

Raise The Stakes

There’s a great article from Gideon’s Screenwriting Tips called “25 Ways to Raise the Stakes in Your Script.” See the full article here:

Writers must explain how not achieving their goals will affect the characters, not only physically, but emotionally and spiritually too. It needs to be deeply personal.Some ways to raise the stakes for your main characters by examining the repercussions if they fail:

  1. They lose the respect of their close family and friends
  2. They lose respect for themselves
  3. They lose the respect of those who depend on them
  4. They damage a professional relationship that relies on the success of the mission
  5. They will lose a bet
  6. An embarrassing misunderstanding will occur
  7. Deep emotional pain and turmoil will result
  8. They will be forced to confront their biggest fear
  9. Their belief sand moral compass are challenged
  10. A meeting or deeply wanted connection will be missed
  11. A closely-held secret is revealed
  12. A lie will prevail while the truth will be hidden
  13. A war or deep conflict will start
  14. Someone will die or be seriously injured
  15. They must sacrifice an innocent person
  16. They cause harm to somebody else
  17. They will be banished from their homeland
  18. They are forced to give up something valuable
  19. They underestimate the cost of their goal
  20. They take an unnecessary risk
  21. They are forced to change their plan or their goal
  22. A meeting or deeply wanted connection will be missed
  23. Their plan will be severely set back
  24. A villain will escape or be be set free
  25. Justice will be miscarried

BONUS LINK! Another good article on raising stakes here:

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