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Chicago Screenwriters Network

Chicago Screenwriters Network


Chicago, IL
(847) 816-6604 (voice)

Web: Click here
Email: Click here

Contact: Sonny Wareham, President

Report Card

Overall: 5 stars5 stars5 stars5 stars5 stars (5.0/5.0)
Professionalism: 5 stars5 stars5 stars5 stars5 stars (5.0/5.0)
Feedback: 2 stars2 stars (1.8/5.0)
Signficance: 4 stars4 stars4 stars4 stars (4.0/5.0)
Report Cards: 4    
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To introduce Midwestern screenwriters to Hollywood production companies and representatives.

Deadline/Entry Fees

Expired. Previous Deadline: 09/01/2013

Notification: Quarterfinalists: October 5th; Semifinalists: November 1st; Finalists: November 29th.


  1. Must be over 18 years of age.
  2. Must be a resident of Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota or Wisconsin. Proof in the form of a driver’s license or utility bill must be presented upon request.
  3. In case of two or more writers, one must reside in the Midwest.
  4. Any script from the action, comedy, drama, family or horror genres will be accepted.
  5. Multiple entries are accepted, provided a signed entry form and payment is attached to each submission.
  6. Screenplays must be the original work of the author. Adaptations will not be accepted.
  7. Adaptations of works in the public domain are permissible.
  8. All screenplays must either be registered with the WGA or copyrighted by the Library of Congress.
  9. The screenplay must not have been previously optioned, sold, or produced.
  10. Absolutely no refunds.
  11. All screenplays must be in English.
  12. Screenplays, once submitted, will not be returned.
  13. Entrants retain all rights to their work.
  14. Once a draft is submitted, that is the official draft. No substitutions will be accepted.
  15. Writer understands and accepts without reservation that he/she/ is an independent contractor and CSN is not responsible for withholding any taxes or payments to any government agency, at any level, be it state, local or federal.
  16. All screenplays must fall between 90 and 120 pages.
  17. Winners of this competition grant Chicago Screenwriters Network the right to use their likeness and names for the purpose of publicity and promotions with no additional compensation. We reserve the right to promote any and all progress, development and success of the entered scripts.
  18. Agents, managers and producers are under no obligation to read, represent, option or purchase any screenplay submitted to them.
  19. Attempting to contact or influence any Chicago board members and/or readers about your entered screenplay will result in immediate disqualification.
  20. No contact information (name, email address, etc.) on the cover page. Title of your screenplay only. Under no circumstances should you include your name or contact information within the body of your script.



  • 4-day/3-night trip to L.A. (includes airfare for one and hotel)
  • Meetings with at least 1 producer, 1 manager, 1 agent and 1 consultant
  • Group includes: APA Agency, Benderspink, Lawrence Bender Productions, Periscope Entertainment, William Morris Endeavor, Madhouse Entertainment, Industry Entertainment, Original Artists, Paradigm Agency, NBC Universal’s Writers on the Verge, No BullScript Consulting
  • Final Draft 8 Software
  • VIP Package from Virtual Pitchfest (includes 10 pitches and a query letter)
  • “On the Page: the DVD” by Pilar Alessandra
  • CSN’s Crystal Star Trophy “The Sonny”
  • Your script read by CSN’s industry friends
  • Your script pitched by CSN for one year
  • Mini-Critique/30 min. phone meeting with Kathie Fong Yoneda; valued at $300


  • $250 Each
  • Your script read by CSN’s industry friends
  • Final Draft 8 Software
  • Two pitches from Virtual Pitchfest
  • “On the Page: the DVD” by Pilar Alessandra
  • Signed copy of “The Screenwriter’s Bible” by Dave Trottier
  • A plaque
  • A script consultation
  • Your script pitched by CSN for one year


  • TBD! Check back soon!

Each finalist will receive one of the following books from Michael Wiese Productions:

  • STORYLINE by Jen Grisanti
  • THE SCRIPT-SELLING GAME by Kathie Fong Yoneda
  • STORY SOLUTION by Eric Edson
  • TALK THE TALK by Penny Penniston (a Chicagoan)

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News: Chicago Screenwriters Network

Chicago Screenwriters Network Announces 2012 Officers and Directors

The Chicago Screenwriters Network has announced their new President and Vice-President as well as their new board of directors.

Colin Costello, a former advertising creative director/copywriter, and now a screenwriter, was elected President from 2012 - 2014. Christina Wollerman, who currently works at Leo Burnett, was also elected Vice-President of the volunteer organization.

"We have some very big shoes to fill," said the new president. "But as a group we are very excited to take the organization to new levels. We have new challenges and new ideas." Wollerman added, "I’m extremely honored to be chosen as Vice- President of CSN. I have studied its history and am scared and proud to now be an integral part of it."

Colin worked in the advertising industry as a creative director, writing and helping develop award-winning campaigns for clients such as Gatorade, Budweiser, McDonalds, Nike, Toyota and Fox Sports. He also helped launch Spike Lee’s ad agency, SpikeDDB. His first feature, "A Miami Tail," starring rapper, Trina, was released by Lions Gate in 2003.

Before coming to Leo Burnett, Christina was an actor in New York City, where she performed in over twenty staged productions. In 2002, she founded the multiaward winning Invisible City Theater Company. Since coming to Chicago, she has focused much of her energy on screenwriting.

Joining them will be Julie Glassman, an advertising copywriter and novelist, as treasurer. She is joined by Judy Alexander, who has come aboard as secretary. Judy enjoys being a part of a homegrown community of creative and thoughtprovoking minds that CSN offers.

Rounding out the rest of the board of directors is an exciting group, consisting of:

Linda Frothingham who will join the board as VP of Events and Speakers. Linda is an accomplished artist, writer and entrepreneur and is owner of Frothingham Communications, a marketing and creative service company.

Rick Watkins and Michael Kandarev will be CSN's VPs of Contest. Rick is a current board member and has a bachelor's degree in theater. He is a founding member of the MECCA Performing Arts Troupe where he was a playwright and actor. He has written a number of screenplays which have placed in the Austin and Slamdance contest finals. Mike is a graduate of both UCLA's Professional Program in screenwriting and The Second City's writing program. He recently started "Angry Chow Writing" helping writers take their writing to the next level.

Michael DeRosa is a returning board member and has managed and/or developed IT projects for almost twenty years in his day job. He will be CSN's "web guy." He is also a formally trained screenwriter with two completed featurelength scripts to date.

Denise O'Neal and Leyla Arsan will be VP’s of Communications. Denise is a current board member and has been screenwriting for a number of years with four finished scripts under her belt. She is a published freelance writer with articles appearing in For the Record, a weekly medical journal and Mushroom Printing an online rant publication. Leyla has an impressive resume which would take a few pages to fill but she is a native Chicagoan, a lifestyle marketer, social media strategist, event producer, and blogger with a thirst for new media, technology and pop culture. Leyla’s integrated marketing/communications experience started at DDB Chicago where she worked on event marketing, promotional marketing and music sponsorship campaigns for Fortune 500 brands.

Last but not least, Rosa Antoniou comes aboard as VP of Education. Rosa spent 8 years as an advertising producer at agencies such as Bayer and Bess and Burrell. She also produced a sitcom pilot called "With Friends Like These."

CSN members and the public will have a chance to meet Colin, Christina and the rest of the CSN board at their monthly meeting, this Sunday, December 4th at The Lincoln Diner. For more information, go to

Updated: 11/30/2011
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Interviews: Chicago Screenwriters Network

MovieBytes Interview:Screenwriter Russell Meyer

An interview with screenwriter Russell Meyer regarding the Chicago Screenwriters Writing Competition.

Updated: 12/28/2009
Contest Winner? Let's talk. If you've finished first, second, or third in the Chicago Screenwriters Network, MovieBytes would like to interview you.