I have read many scripts and at some point most of them feel the same because they all follow the same rules popularized by screenwriting gurus. By the same token, scripts that push boundaries can be a hit-and-miss affair because there is a fine line between scribes who break the rules because they have no clue how to write a script (although some greats scripts can come from a beginner’s mind like Usual Suspects!) and shrewd writers who take a calculated chance to break the rules to get the reader’s attention. Two proven ways to go against conventions are to make a clever use of time like in movies such as Arrival, Memento or Time Looper, or to kill what seems to be the main protagonist like in Psycho, Martyrs or Pulp Fiction. Tonal shifts, however, are harder to negotiate and I rarely come across scripts that give it a shot and I find convincing but it might be an acquired taste, I can’t think of a film with a tonal shift that I truly enjoyed and that deeply affected me. Anyway, here are 10 suggestions by Carson at Scriptshadow of how you can defy screenwriting conventions… at your own peril.