questionmarkI have a question with regard to whether or not you should date scripts when sending them out.

Would it put someone off from looking at a script if they saw a date on the cover page that was one or two years old, (or more!) and therefore subconsciously make them think the idea is no longer “current”?

— Danni
Los Angeles

Yes, put the date on the cover. And as much as possible, try to keep it accurate and consistent. That way, when you’re talking with someone about your script, you can be assured you’re both talking about the same draft. More than once, I’ve sat down at a meeting and glanced at their script, only to realize they were looking at an old version.

That said, if you’re giving the script to someone new and important, and it’s been six months since your last revision, change the date. I don’t know about most readers, but I always tend to notice the year on the cover. Given the choice between a 2003 script and a 2005, I’ll always choose the more recent vintage. It’s a psychological thing.

And while we’re on the topic, there’s no need to put “First Draft” or “Second Revision” on the title page. The date is plenty.

Inevitably, a few days after a major revision, I’ll notice a bunch of typos. If it’s really just simple misspellings, fix them and keep the old date. If making the corrections changes page breaks and whatnot, use the new date.