Flexible workflows using replace script track

Replace script track and the writing tool can combine to create a more flexible workflow, without the traditional barriers between writing and production. You can use the writing tool to create your script in Descript, add b-roll, and other visuals, and overlay media as you write or when you’re finished. You can use Overdub to create a scratch track. Then, when you swap in your final recorded voiceover, Replace script track will align the new recording with all the other media you’ve added.

1. Write your script

With the writing tool, you can build segments or even an entire composition before your composition contains any audio or video content. You can type out your script using placeholder text or Overdub. You can then add scenes and arrange additional visuals and audio.

To start using the writing tool:

  1. Open or create a project.
  2. Press W or select the enable writing tool in the top left corner of your screen. To toggle off the writing tool, press Esc or select the tool's icon in the top left of the Script Editor.


  3. Start typing your script. By default, the writing tool will create placeholder text, but if you want to generate Overdub audio:
    1. Click on a speaker label and choose either a custom or stock Overdub voice. If you already have a speaker label and would like to link it to an Overdub voice, click Version_history_icon.png and select a voice from the Overdub dropdown menu.


      If you need to add a speaker label, type @ , or place your cursor in your script, select the + icon to the right and type speaker label in the text box.


  4. Once you’ve selected an Overdub voice, start typing your script and the audio will be generated, with a slight lag, as you type.

You can also add your Overdub voice and generate the Overdub audio after writing your script with placeholder text.

Playback and keyboard shortcuts when using the writing tool

While the writing tool is enabled, single letter keyboard shortcuts will not be available. Also, instead of pressing the spacebar to start/stop playback, you can use the playback controls at the bottom of the editor or press Command + S for Mac and Control + S on Windows.

The playback keyboard shortcut only changes while actively working in the script editor. If you click anywhere outside it while the writing tool is active, you can use the spacebar to start and stop playback.

2. Arrange your additional visuals or audio

Once you have written all or some of your script, you can lay out your scenes and add visual and audio layers. For a complete guide on working with scenes and media layers, please see our guide to working with scenes.

3. Using Replace script track

Before you use Replace script track, you’ll need to create or add your replacement script media. You can:

Before replacing your script track

The feature can account for occasional transcription errors or additional words you may have spoken. However, you’ll want your new script to match the old script as closely as possible before using Replace script track.

Once you have imported or recorded your new script media, you can edit it directly in Descript. You may need to remove sections that don’t match the script you are replacing, and any additional takes you made while recording.

How to use Replace script track

Once you are ready to replace your script track:

  1. Highlight the new (replacement) script media.
  2. Right-click and select Cut or Copy.
  3. Highlight the portion of written script you want to replace.
  4. Right-click the highlighted selection and choose Paste Special > Replace script track.

Your new script should replace the old one. Replace script track will keep audio and visual layers aligned even if you spoke faster or slower in your new script.


Bonus tip: Use Replace script track to swap out rough takes

This guide showed you how to replace your script after adding placeholder text or Overdub in Write mode; however, you can also use Replace script track to replace rough takes. This is great if you want to record your script and start working quickly and later replace the narration with a final, higher-quality recording.

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