(NB: I have updated my mods for Celtx 2.9 here)
I can’t rave enough about this tool!
I used to use Final Draft until I chanced upon Celtx by accident one day.
I use it not only for screenplays (and the pre-production that goes with filming your own stuff), but for short stories, storyboards (an awesome new addition), radio plays, etc.
I love it because (as a geek and a programmer) I can modify it (and have done so quite a bit). You can get a copy of my celtx.jar here: Celtx.jar replacement file
All you have to do is go into your Celtx directory (normally C:\Program Files\Celtx\chrome and make a backup of celtx.jar and then replace it with my version. Celtx MUST be shut down before you do this.
Now, another very important reason is that Celtx (especially after all the fields I added) allows me to really focus on characters and create a rich background for them, and make them as real and vivid as possible, which is my foolproof way of never getting writer’s block (but that’s another post).
Also, I had created a database in Filemaker Pro to house information about the worlds I create. Celtx helped me replace that database – I would like to make some more changes, but it works well enough for now. I have a separate file where I stick all kinds of magical items, descriptions of places in my worlds, ideas for future use, etc.
I also have 2 files, one for crew and one for cast, where I stick information for all the people who run across my path, and whom I can use in future productions. This simplifies my task of finding cast and crew for productions (especially in emergencies when I don’t have time to put out a casting call).
The one thing I would love for this to work better, would be to be able to export a single or multiple records from a file into another, instead of having to copy and paste the information… I’m trying to figure out how to do this as a Celtx add-on but haven’t found enough documentation to explain the hooks I’d need… waiting for the wonderful Celtx guys to get back to me on this.
Anyway, I use Celtx for scheduling, for markups (make sure I don’t forget any props or set pieces), for printing sides for casting calls, etc.
I completely stopped using Final Draft after picking up Celtx, and I’m always thinking of ways to improve my version of Celtx — I’m very careful to mark my changes with my name so it’ll be easier to merge my changes when new versions come out.
I highly recommend it!
And if you download my mods, drop me a line and let me know what you think, and if you have any ideas.