What’s new in Story for IBC 2013

Since NAB, the Adobe Story team has been hard at work developing new features that make it easier than ever to get your scripts into production. Story’s screenwriting tools are among the very best—but the ability to create shooting schedules and production reports right from your scripts is what really sets Story apart.

When you need to get a script into production, Story can help you work more efficiently. 

Story Free includes just our screenwriting tools. To use our collaboration, scheduling and reporting tools, you need to subscribe to Story Plus. If you’re working on a large production, and need to coordinate the work of writers, schedulers, script supervisors, and directors, Story becomes even more powerful.

The good news? If you’re a Creative Cloud subscriber, Story Plus is included in your subscription, and you already have access. All you need to do to get started is point your browser at story.adobe.com, and log in using your Adobe ID.

The big news for Story at NAB was a new and far more flexible approach to breaking down a script, which we call scene-level tagging. If you haven’t had a chance to play with this powerful feature yet, you can read more about it here. At IBC, we’re highlighting a number of the new features we added in our May and September releases. Let’s take a look.

Word count

You can see the total word count for a script at the bottom of the Authoring view; if you click on the total word count, you can see the number of words of dialogue.

word count





Sticky Notes

By definition, scripts are highly structured, but sometimes you need to add some free-form annotations—so we’ve introduced the new Sticky Note feature. To add a sticky note, choose Production > Insert Sticky Note, then move it to where you want it by dragging the note’s header. Click the note to edit, move or resize it, then click away.

Here’s a sticky note in edit mode….

sticky note 1





…and here it is on the page. To edit or move the note, just click on it.

sticky note 2





Revisions enhancements

Color-coded revisions are a key part of the pre-production workflow, and we’ve made some practical enhancements here as well.

Sometimes, changes to a revision take several days to complete. Now in the Manage Production Revisions dialog box, you can choose whether Story displays the date a revision was started, or the last date that the revision was edited.

manage revisions











We also now automatically lock dialogue numbers when you start a revision.

Scheduling enhancements

Scheduling is one of the most powerful aspects of Story Plus, and we’ve introduced a number of enhancements here that make it even better.

On most productions, scripts change up until the cameras start rolling—and keeping your shooting schedule in synch with those changes can be a nightmare. Story can help make sure you don’t waste valuable time on set.

A couple of the changes we’ve made help make better use of screen real estate. You can now change the relative font size for a schedule, so you can fit more on a page (either on-screen or printed) or make the schedule easier to read from a distance. Also, you can collapse or expand days on the schedule, which makes it easier to drag and drop strips between days that aren’t adjacent.

Sync schedule enhancements: We also have changed some of the behavior when you sync a schedule. You’ve been able to choose which properties you want to sync for a while now–which is handy, because you care about different things at different points in the process.

sync schedule 2







Now, the list of changed scenes only includes scenes that have changes to the properties you selected—which makes it easier to track what’s happening or isolate a particular kind of change.

sync schedules 1











When you hover over a scene in this dialog you get a quick overview of what’s changed. Finally, you can now export all of the changes if you want to track them or review them later.

Compare schedules: If I have two units shooting at the same time, this means I can identify any conflicts for sets or actors—so I can adjust the schedule before there’s a problem. From one schedule, click the Compare option in the menu bar, then choose the schedule you want to compare it to. You can then review any conflicts, and even export the results if you like.

compare schedules







Having all of this information available makes it easy to stay on top of what’s changing, and to keep schedules in sync as scripts evolve.

Sharing and integration

Working collaboratively is at the heart of the value Story offers, and we’ve made improvements here as well. And of course, I can use the Manage Shared Projects option to unshare a project with anyone at any time.

I can now see at a glance whether someone I’ve shared the project with has accepted the invitation or not. In the screenshot below, the asterisk indicates that the invitation has not yet been accepted.

share projects








XML Export

We’ve also extended the ways you can work with the data from your Story projects. You can now export list, scene property, or schedule data as XML, so you can use the data in new ways. From the Reports list, choose one of the XML options (at the very bottom of the list), then choose which documents in that project you want to include data from. This makes it possible to take the data from your productions in entirely new directions!

XML export







Importing and exporting lists

Finally, our newest feature is the ability to import and export any of the lists you maintain in Story—locations, characters, actors, tags, and tag items. Now it’s easy to share them between productions, and with other Story users. Just click Manage Lists in the menu bar, and take it from there.

export and import lists











Exciting times

As you may have heard, Adobe Story was nominated by our friends at ITV, and has been shortlisted for the prestigious IBC Innovation Award for Content Creation. We’re looking forward to the Awards ceremony on Sunday!

Adobe Story can help any production run more smoothly, and if you’re a Creative Cloud subscriber, you already have access—plus you can use the Story panel in Premiere and Prelude to log into your scripts from within those apps as well. Make your next shoot easier—check out Adobe Story today!


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