Prompted by my fellow screenwriter's call to look again at competitions - Caroline Farrell, see www.script.ie - I went foraging in some spare moments - yes, those 'moments' that last half an hour and when I was MEANT to be honing a script. There is some interesting stuff out there but these are not competitions for first drafts. I imagine, given most of them have a fee, that there is fierce competition and that you only send your strongest work ever.
But some of them have interesting newsletters, even if you're not at that stage yet. The BlueCat Fellini Awards, for example, just launched their 2011 competition today but they also have a newsletter that looks interesting. From today's version, I was able to download The Big Lebowski, Jerry Maguire and Forrest Gump. The excuse for letting us access these is the search for good one liners.
I'm always telling my students to read, read, read scripts... It is the best way to learn, to absorb the craft, to challenge yourself to come up with something as fresh/ different/ visually and narratively compelling...but it's hard to find time and I hate reading them off screen but now I'm inspired. (ie: My computer is now filling up with scripts I want to read!)
I will set aside time to read the first ten pages of at least three scripts today and to read at least one full script each week. I'll use it as a way to break up the writing day. Might even allow myself a coffee while I do it and I'll try to learn to enjoy reading off screen. It's too expensive to print out every script.
Anyway the BlueCat Fellini Awards are for screenplays, features and shorts. it costs $60 and you upload your script in pdf, which saves the hassle of printing and the cost of postage. Sometimes I love computers!!
For 8 and 1/2 days in January 2011, leading up to Fellini's birthday, January 20th, they will be accepting material. This is the part I like: "Each script will receive TWO ANALYSES, plus the numerical scores we use to judge your screenplay."
Five winners will be chosen and each winner will receive a MacBook Pro plus Final Draft software, or the cash equivalent. Each winner has the option to select cash for either or both prizes.
Finalists will be announced on April 15th, and the five winners will be awarded on May 15th. All analyses will be returned by April 1st.
Submissions will start to be accepted on Tuesday, January 11th at Noon.
I have no idea how hard it is to be noticed in a competition like this but there's always a chance. And a deadline is a wonderfully strong motivating force!
Might be worth a look at the website? And definitely at the newsletter!
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