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I'm also anxiously waiting . On the 3rd they announced that because of a higher volume of entries than expected the results wouldn't be available until the end of the month. Which gives us just three more days.
My script "Motorcycle Sluts From Hell" (semi-autobiographical) tanked at Moondance, Winfemme, and Gay Cinema (the bastards) but I have a good feeling about my chances here. (Keep your fingers crossed!)
Thank you Paula, but I've never left. I normally post under the name "Randy Roberts" and, of course, "Orlanda Szabo".
They've now posted the finals, and again I've been overlooked. I'm going to E-mail them to see if there was an oversight. (I'll ask for the rest of you guys too!)
Do you have his E-mail address?
Happy birthday to Ron Main and any other former jarheads out there. (And those that aren't.) Two more days and counting.
(0311 with E 2/4 Nam-1968-69)
(I meant to say one day--but the Movybytes clock has me already into tomorrow--so, hey, we're there!)
My original sentiment was to wish all U.S. Marines ("once a Marine, always a Marine. ect.") happy birthday, which we've celebrated November 10th every year for the past 230 years. And now that Veterans Day is on Nov 11th gives us jarheads two days in a row every year for introspection.
I only allow myself these days, and the Fourth of July to be sentimental. I treat the other 362 days with as little serious thought as possible. (Everyday I try to forget something new;)
Anyway, I appreciate what was said on this thread very much. My particular military experience was especially inconsequential (no, I mean it really was--you would have had to have been there to believe it), but I am moved by the service and sacrifice of all the veterans of all the services, and of all the countries that have defended our freedoms.
Now I promise to not venture another serious thought for another seven months and three weeks! (RE my next posting, as an example)
I'm looking for writers who would read a script of mine and give me some notes--I will gratefully reciprocate for any scripts they might also need opinions on.
The script is tiltled "The Spartan". It's logline is "A Spartan warrior, the sole survivor of a battle, seeks revenge against the Athenian officer who spared him."
It is currently one of the 85 semi-finalists out of an original 1800 scripts in the Writers Network contest (with finalist results due this Tuesday). And it was also a quarter-finalist (top 200 of 2000) at Slamdance.
Yet it has not placed in other contests--and some notes from them are very critical. Some find the script actually incomprehensible!
Among the complaints: They find my protagonist's weak and unsympathetic, and his goals uncertain; they find some scenes too repetitive; and many can make no sense of the ending.
My impression is that some of them actually so hate the thing and if they could track me down they'd give me a sound beating for having written it!
I've, just in these past days, attempted to fix some of these problems. But I'm at an impass--I don't know how deep I really have to cut. (It would be a lot easier to fix if the readers were uniformly disparaging!)
Thanks for any help Jay
Hey that's great, Carolyn! Thanks so much--and I do have your e-mail. I'll be in touch.
Thanks a lot, you guys! I'll get back with you each to get your addresss, and I'll have hard copies in the mail Monday.
I tried to watch it--I tried to like it but it's just too much. Just too offensive. Everybody is afraid of offending Jews and Muslims, but nobody minds offending Christians. Probably because the other two faiths aren't as inclined to turn the other cheek.
I tried to watch it--I tried to like it but it's just too much. Just too offensive. Everybody is afraid of offending Jews and Muslims, but nobody minds offending Christians. Probably because the other two faiths aren't as inclined to turn the other cheek.
I can have a first draft completed from conception in two to three months, but it will come in at only 60-70 pages and will bear little resemblence to the final draft.
My real problem is taking that first draft and crafting a good script from in reasonable time. I've been doing this for eight years this March and only have three scripts, and an unfinished short at this point.
I obsessively keep track of actual hours writing or pondering and it's taking me 900 hours a script so far.
My great goal is to actually do a script a year. Granted that would require me to spend more time writing, less time downloading Gloria Estefan pictures, and somehow learning to create a script with fewer hours.
Does anybody else actually keep track of hours? And how long does it take you to do the final draft? (If there is such a thing?)
I met her for the second time just a couple of months ago. She came to Seattle for a signing of a children's book she wrote. I drove 300 miles the day before and then stayed at a hotel just blocks away so I could be five hours early to get a good seat.
I was so nervous I was shaking. I approached her and she was very gracious (apparently the restraining order had expired) and then I embraced her, and tried to drag her to the floor. Then they tazed me. But, otherwise, she couldn't have been nicer!
Thanks Randy. Yeah, the burn marks have nearly healed--they're just kind of ichy now. (You can't buy those kind of memories!)
BTW, there's more than one way to get thrown in jail in Seattle. (Hmmm, just a minute...what the hell did I just say? Oh well, I'm pressing on with this anyway.)
So I'm sitting on the steps of Seattle's "Town Center" at 7:45 AM Sunday morning and a car load of guys pull up to the curb just ten feet from me. They pull out a map to get their bearings and the guy in the passenger side opens his front door and starts cleaning out his floorboard by throwing crap out at the curb--fast food wrappings, cigarette butts, and stuff.
It irritated me so I turned my head away (because, what the hell, it isn't my town--I don't even live there) but he just kept throwing out more crap and more crap and so I'm starting to get steamed.
But then I reasoned with myself: Did I wait all these months and drive all these miles and spend all this money to see Gloria Estefan, or get in a fight with four Koreans.
So I tell the guy to pick up all the sh*t he just threw out, "beacause we don't do that kind of thing in Seattle." He gives me a tough guy stare while he's rattling away to his buddies in Korean to rally to his aide. But then his leg starts shaking and I knew I had him and he knew I had him, so he apologized and started picking all the crap up and throwing back into the car.
And now he's making nice so he asks me what I'm doing there and I tell him I'm waiting to see Gloria Estefan, and he says "whose Gloria Estefan?" and then they drive off and it made me mad all over again that now I wish I had kicked his ass!
Anyway, he left behind a crumpled up bill and I retrieved it. It was five bucks--so it does pay to be a good citizen after all. (Stll, next time it should be a Seattlite who does it because I don't even live there.)
RE: Terri Dickey--"...you're into 'hot' women in their late 40's..."
Well, being a card-carrying heterosexual male (there are fewer and fewer of us, thank God!) I am inclined to notice good looking women--which can certainly include women today in their late forties. Because today's late forties is more like like Marilyn Monroe and Rita Haywood's generation's mid-thirties. Remember Mrs. Robinson in The Graduate? That was a good looking middle-aged woman in 1965. I think she was 34!
It takes a woman some effort though. I read some years ago that Gloria Estefan's regimen included up to 1000 belly crunches a day--I'd like to see Ann Bancroft pull that off! (Uhh, not withstanding that she's dead.)
I, too, could do a 1000 crunches. But I'd then have to repair myself to the Mayo clinic for some extensive re-work)
I'm amazed at the rapididy and production of so many writers. I was really hoping many of you would agree that it takes a year or more a script.
Much of it has to do with work ethic (I'm light on that ethic) and raw talent, and I don't think this comes as naturally for me as some.
It takes me a long time to write something good, and yet it took Shakespeare only three or four months to write many of his great works. One of his he did in six weeks (Although I understand it was a weaker one.)
Re Terri's comments: I know it's not politically proper for me to admit I notice attractive women, and though I am occasionally ashamed of it I still am largely unrepentant.
The very fact that you could be especially attracted to wheelchair invalids, burn victims and 350 pound obese men just proves what we already know, that women are better human beings than men. (But that's why you're called women.)
And I'm serious, it's always suprised me that woman have any traffic with men at all. And as soon as they marry us they try to change us into something closer to them. (And if it wasn't for me being around to kill the occasional spider or open a jar, my wife may have come to the same conclusion.) I'm flumoxed by it all.
Technically, Robert, he didn't call you a racist. He called you a Nazi ("you and your jack-booted friends".) Although, granted, does does cover the whole gamut of hating blacks and homosexuals.
I'm with Robert. I, too, hate it when people pull out the race and homophobe cards The sexist card, too.
I'm not seeing Brokeback Mountain because I don't need to see a bunch of cowboys riding side-saddle. So that makes me a homophobe? No. Homophobia means "deathly afraid of" and most people of that ilk couldn't beat my sister. So I'm not even a little afraid
And I wasn't interested in seeing "Ray". What, then I'm a racist, too? I don't like watching chick flicks, either, so by Michael's reasoning I'm a sexist? (My wife made me see "Beaches" and "Terms of Endearment" the same month, and then I came down with a yeast infection. No more of that!)
The politically correct people who constantly pull the racist, homophobe, and sexists cards should be mocked publically everytime they pull those cards and maybe that will help them learn to behave in polite society. At least that's my prayer.
I meant "Randy". I'm defending Randy, not "Roberts". But, what the hell, I'll back up Roberts, too. Whatever issues he has. If there is a Roberts.
Wait wait wait wait! I get it Randy is Roberts! Which leads me to wonder why he uses two names. Maybe to cloud the issues, Randy??? (Or "Roberts" if you prefer?)
Okay, that does it. I'm on Michael's side now.
Michael, I'm still having problems with your definitions. I don't have an "irrational fear" of homosexuals in the slightest, as long as I'm alert, facing them and ready for any kind of trouble.
But still, say at night, on the range, I'm asleep...Is it "irrational" if I'm now a tiny bit "fearful" of being set upon by a bunch of crazed gay cowboys? I think not.
But let's not quibble, remember I'm on your side now. Let's think of something mean to say to Randy, instead.
Gays are normal in that life roughs all of us a bit before we reach maturity.
But many gays have had the same combination of problems in childhood such as molestation, absent or passive fathers and domineering mothers. So to discount the "taught" part might be a tad incorrect.
(P.S. I didn't know you get say "weiner" on this site! That really broke me up! Wonder what our friend randy will have to say about that!?)
But Z. Core (may I call you Z?) I'm not wrong. I'm right. You're wrong.
Anyway, I didn't say it was true of all gays, or even most gays. I said many gays.
Although, actually it is true of all the gay guys I know, and I know plenty. I have several gay friends. In fact all of my friends are gay. So don't tell me about gays. Hell, my father's gay. Top that, Z! (Moron.)
P.S. Z, I only said moron because I thought it looked funny there, but I certainly meant know harm.
Vincent, you're the one being intolerant.
Making fun of gays isn't necessarily gay bashing. Making fun of blacks or whites or Indians or (God forbid) gypsies isn't necessarily racist. Anymore than making fun of men or woman is necessarily sexist. Lighten up, buddy. But is your diatribe, possibly, a sign that you are heterophobic??? I think your slip may be showing there.
BTW my father isn't really gay. (Not that there is anything wrong with it.)
And another thing. I don't actually have a lot of gay friends. Actually, I don't have any gay friends. I've tried, but for some reason they don't want to hang out with me.
I feel like a damn fool. I apologize to everyone on this site for my deception.
Maybe I need to make my own amends.
First of all, my friends are not all gay. At least maybe they're not. Although in all honesty you never saw so many swishes in your life! (I watch them like a hawk in our water aserobics classes, I can promise you!)
And my father is not gay. Not, of course, that there's anything wrong with it if he were, but it would break his heart if he even thought I could say that. In fact he's a real man's man--if he thinks he has an even half willing consort he's all over her like a bad fitting suit. Really.
And I'm at fault for confusing who called who a Nazi, and I got confused on who all the players were. But that's just me. I didn't really even have a dog in this fight. I actually thought this just a comedy thread to bring me out of my shell.
I apologize for my claim that my sister could whip most of the people of "that ilk." And as someone rightfully pointed out, I'm sure there are several queens in the New York area that could handle her easily. (On the other hand, you haven't seen my sister!)
I'm really surprised my comment of not wanting to see the movie because I didn't need to see "a bunch of cowboys riding side-saddle" didn't bring out any castigations. Same with my statement that I wasn't homophobic "as long as I'm alert, facing them, and ready for any kind of trouble". I really misread the audience there!
And, lastly, I'm not Randy Roberts. I wish-to-god I was Randy Roberts, but I'm not. I don't know who started that rumor.
So let us all put this behind us, pull our panties out of a wad, clean up our mascara-streaked faces, put on a pretty smile and stride on like the men that God made us!
I'll be the judge of that. Please send me the tape.
Terri, I understand. You gave both gave your word to each other, and appreciate that, it's almost a sacred trust. Just give me his name and number and I'll deal with him, instead.
RE "Brokeback Mountain". Yes, I don't doubt several men have seen it 3-4 times.
The "American Dream" means that in America one can occomplish any dream, no matter how big, as long as one is willing to commit to the work and sacrafices. Or, as Norman Vincent Peal famously stated, here anything your mind vividly conceives, you can achieve.
The silly postings before on your question reflect a cynical view held by Democrats who had their hats handed to them in the past two elections.
The truth is that the great majority of our presidents, senators, and great CEO's and entreprenuers have come into this world without privilege or wealth to aid them.
Z, the most recent definitive study of where all America's rich people come from was the best selling book, "The Millionare next Door"; the great majority of them coming from common families that had no wealth or influence--and now driving unassuming four year old sedans.
Bill Gates, the richest man in the world by two times over, came from a good middle-class family, but from no wealth or influence. My Seattle uncle is a long time friend of Gate's family. And my uncle is a librarian, so I suspect Gates father was too--or at least in library or college administration. (Incidentally, my uncle is now a millionare many times over through careful discipline and investments--and he drives a fifteen year old car that I'd be embarrassed to drive.)
RE: "handed them their hats". Yeah, I don't know where I got that. What does it mean? I suspect the term I was seeking was "handed them their heads" (although originally I was just going to say, "kicked their asses", but I'm trying harder to be nice now).
Me too, Z, but it was fun while it lasted, wasn't it?
Last Saturday I was present when Gonzaga-- my alma mater (and number five in the country!) played Stanford on national telivision, and Brokeback Mountain came up often among the crowd! (Mostly in chants though--I didn't get that part.) But anyway, maybe it IS a great movie after all.
BTW, before you all try to correct me, that's the way we spell "television" in Spokane. So don't start.
(And how we meld in the use of dashes and parenthesis.)
RE Tito's question--Script analysts.
Only last week I recommended Barb Doyon for her excellent value, and I will always rely on her help.
However is money is not that much of an issue I would also strongly recommend you talk with Robert Flaxman of Deep Feed-Back.
He's worked with me on three scripts. Each was really pretty terrible when I brought them to him--one was said by many to actually be incomprehensible-- but after his help they've each gone on to win contests, and from the last contest I've gained representation. (And he really deserves a co-writing credit on my one!)
There's no question he's pricey. But he spends several hours alone with your script, and then another ten or more hours on the phone with the writer going over it line by line with you. Great stuff.
I want to add my congratulations too, Eric. (Is this the Extreme Contest you were a finalist in?) P.S.--great title
I've always understood it as Ellum explains.
Mistakes that are made so common, though, can become somewhat acceptable, and maybe this is one of them. (Or maybe not.)
"Flammable" and "enthused" are examples of words that now have a general acceptance, forced on us now by their long time misuse.
Thanks, Michelle, I stand corrected. Which means I owe each of my three children an apology for constantly correcting them (incorrectly) on this subject when they were little. Damn.
Michele, I like "volumptuous" very much and may use it from now on. A word SHOULD sound as it means. (My wife is very volumptuous, for instance!)
Maybe if enough of us use it, it may become part of accepted useage;)
Much of the writing on this thread is better than I've ever done, and maybe even better than I'm capable of doing. (Although, curiously, I still like my chances, all in all.)
Thank you all, and no, Troy, I haven't received my money yet. I'm not in a hurry, I'd probably just piss it away anyway. Really, maybe they should just keep it.
But I haven't received my agent I won either. (It would be funny if it ends up he's a Realtor! That's what I'd do if I ran the contest.)
I do have some questions for Eric, though, in case I ever get the call.
Most of us don't have representation, so how does it all work? Such as:
Is the contract for a specific period? And what is she promising to do for you?
Do you meet in person?
How often will you have contact?
Will she make arrangements for you to gain an entertainment attorney when the time comes?
Is she a manager or agent? And if she's a manager does she help you get an agent? (But if she's an agent does she help--or think--you also need a mangager?)
I've heard the commissions are 10% for an agent, 10-15 % for mangager, and 5% for the attorney. Is this so? (After taxes that suggests the writer nets something less than 45% on a big sale, if it's really that much. I might go back to bussing tables intead.)
Thanks for any info and best of luck with "I married A Porn Star".
From MovieMagic concerning characters' names:
"If you check this option then MovieMagic Screenwriter will center all character names, rather than flush left at their normal left margin. Note: This is NOT the industry standard and we highly recommend AGAINST it."
Is this so? I've always centered my characters' names between the margins of the dialogue. Have I been oblivious to this all this time?
I've got to get a script out today. I need advice on this, please!
On another matter, I know that the industry standard for some time now is to eliminate the "MORE"s and "CONT."s when dialogue is interrupted by the end of a page.
It sure seems, though, that MORE and CONT. makes for a smoother read. My script only has cause to use those helps a half dozen times in the entire script. Is this discretionary or should I absolutely eliminate them?
Thanks for any help.
Make that "...CHARACTERS' NAMES?" ;)
I'll try to see if Moviemagic allows me to change the settings. It appears that the default setting for the characters' names is hard left, to be even with the dialogue margin. And the alternative they offer is apparently centered over the dialogue.
Unless it is a software problem. This is the current MovieMagic program, and my prior one developed a serious problem.
Has anyone else had this problem or question with MovieMagic and their recommendations?
A last question: When I omit the MORE and CONT. on divided dialogue the software still places the character's name at the top of the next page over the continued dialogue (but without the CONT.) Is this the way it's suppose to be, or is it a glitch?
Thanks again for all the help.
Hey, everybody, thanks for the help.
I'm puzzled by why I had such confusion. Maybe because I've always used the default software settings, so I never studied their exact relationship on the page.
Something strange happened that changed those default settings on my computer, so I had to reconfigure them. Then I came across the weird insistance from Moviemagic's help section that the industry standard for characters' names is flush left!
Also, when I eliminated the MORE and CONT. default it left the characters' names in place on the following page, so I had to delete each one individually! Man, I'm exhausted.
Anyway, thanks again. I was racing Blue Cat's deadline for postmark today-and I did it with exactly one minute to spare.
Anybody else entered into that contest? My interest was the $5000 to the winner and $2500 to each finalist. Odds may still be a long shot, but a heck of a lot better than the lottery!
I just revisited Blue Cat's site and saw that the winner gets $10,000, and the finalists get $1500 each. (I wonder how they can afford it--this hasn't been a giant contest in the past.)
Anyway, it's, for me, maybe a moot point. I also just now discovered that I didn't include with my scripts the application forms, or the entry check. This is kicking my ass!
I'm only doing all this screenwriting stuff because I was promised it was easy. I believe I may have been misinformed. ;)
The whole concept is an insult to screenwriters. Option money in the form of stock in their company?--and an 18 month option at that? And then a purchase price of $50,000 if they exercise their option?
I've never tried to write a script that could only have a market value of $50,000. Who would do that? What would be the point. And how bad would a script have to be to sell for that little? (And if it had to be that bad to sell for that little--who could want to buy it?)
No, these guys are bottom feeders, low balling the market, and lacking the juice to really make anything happen. Bums.
Does any one know the names or had any experience with these men?
They are interested in a sit com pilot I wrote I searched for them on imdb.com and found lots on Zen as an actor, but not as a producer. And I didn't find anything on Doc (who I understand is the father of the famous Farelly's).
Also, they've asked me to send them my bio. I'm hesitant to disclose more than I have to; I would especially like to avoid disclosing my age, at this juncture.
Can I get away with primarily focusing on my writing experience, and avoid the rest of the flotsum and jetsam of my misspent youth? And middle age?
Thanks for any help.
Thanks, Randy--Yeah, I'm going to only send them info that is directly pertinent to my writing. It makes for a thin bio, but why would any one need to know our prior jobs or prior inclinations?
Much of this is not as it seems. (If you get my drift.)
Think it through, Dave.
I wish you the very best!
I just got a lengthy critique back from a contest and their recommendations would require a nearly page one re-write. I just found "Blue Ribbon Scripts" (blueribbonscripts.com) that offers a $25.00 consultaion from your choice of several mentors. Everything's done on pdf file, and the mentors vary from having experience as Hollywood readers to only having done well in a contest.
Still, for a second opinion (or in my case the eighth or tenth!) I think it is a good deal, and others might want to consider it who also need to do this on the cheap.
P.S. My mention of the lengthy critique I just received is my now need to learn if their recomendations have merit. Hence my need for more opinions.
I'm just waiting for the time that I get notes back that say "don't change a damn word or comma--it's a masterpiece just as it is!" and then I won't have to go through this constant questioning of the validity of others' recommedations;)
"...but has trouble getting past the fact that he's suing her." Funny stuff, Terry. It's really Woody Allen good.
I don't think she was real; I don't think the 93 year old woman was real; I don't think the guy who died the lingering death with a brain tumor was real; I don't think Pinky the Lesbian was real; and I don't think another half dozen (with a couple of them still with us) are real.
I'm not even that sure about myself, truth be known.
You're really a Marxist? I wouldn't think Marxists would be very funny.
No, no, the Marx Brothers! Your right, Eric--she WOULD be funny!
There's a Moviebytes contest link near the top of this page that will lead you to all of the short script contests. You'll note that some of the large feature contests, such as Scriptapolooza, also have a shorts section.
I have a short that has done well in contests, and I've seen little marketing benefit from it.
Your mother joined you on patrols in Viet Nam? They wouldn't have allowed that in my unit.
Com'on. Now you have to tell it all;)
Francis, there's probably more more opportunities to break into the business if Spanish is your first language and English your second, than the other way around.
As an example, Universal (among others) have committed millions of dollars to develop Spanish language television and movie projects for the burgeoning Latino market here and abroad. And I'm certain there are far fewer newbies capable of exploiting that opportunity than there is in the standard Hollywood market.
My e-mail address can be found in my profile. If you're really who you say you are (forgive us, but we have lots of posers; you could just as likely be from Lima, Ohio than Lima, Peru) you can send me a post and I'll give you some specific info.
I wasn't originally going to respond to this because I didn't want to appear as boasting (and, that appearence, frankly, is always a little hard for me to pull off) but my script, "Semper Fi" is currently a semi-finalist at Nicholl, with the finalists to be announced in the next month.
It's a funny thing about contests. Sometimes this script can't make the top twenty percent cut in a contest, and yet here it is in the top two and a half percent.
It just shows how subjective any art form is, and how hard it is to sometimes get past that first reader--sometimes they may only read the first few pages and not get it, or sometimes the script may be given to a reader who doesn't share the same sensibilities as the writer (such as a reader stuck with an action adventure who, herself, may write romance dramas.)
And sometimes the contests may be predudiced against certain genres. This is the third time "Semper Fi", an action adventure, has advanced at Nicholl (I keep tweeking it--I'm too lazy to actually write new scripts). And yet it's never advanced at Austin--a contest of the same size, and yet with qualifications much more lenient to make the first two cuts.
Austin will be announcing their quaterfinals this week. If it fails there again, my fouth time!, I think it may show that character dramas have a better shot there than the normal Hollywood fare. (And then, of course, I think they owe me, and many others like me, our money back;)
Best luck to everyone else for Austin.
Damn! I didn't pull that first line off very good. I screwed it up. I'll keep working on it and get back with you. But then again, it may be too much work--maybe somebody could help me with it.
Thanks guys, but as I've admitted before, Semper Fi is about a subject done to death, replete with an unsympathetic and passive protagonist with undefined goals and no apparent antagonists, and lots of mysoginism, along with a tasteless joke about having sex with a rock ape (although, in truth, it's hard to make a tasteful joke about having sex with a rock ape), so if this script can make it in a contest then any script has a shot.
I didn't have to wait long for the Austin results. Just an hour ago I got the envelope--my script didn't advance into the second round. I was already prepared; the day before I got a rejection from them on a different action adventure script that has done well elsewhere.
And I really think this proves my theory, that Austin is fairly genre specific for what they are looking for. After all, this isn't a Hollywood centered contest (hence the name "Austin") so we shouldn't be surprised.
Still, sour grapes aside, I'd rather make it in Hollywood thant Texas, so I'm not trying them again.
Did anybody else make their first cut?
I'd recommend Robert Flaxman of "Deep Feedback".
He's pricey, but he helped me considerably on a comedy. He has a great sense of humor, and is considered one of the industry's very top consultants, regardless of genre.
I'm a veteran of dozens of contests, and the one thing I've learned is that there is very little marketing benefits to them.
I've been a finalist in several contests that promised Hollywood attention, and have, with few exceptions never received a call.
I've twice won contests, including a fairly major one, and still no calls.
But the one exception--and it's a big exception-- is Nicholl. I'm a semi-finalist in this year's contest; the results were let out a few days ago and I've already sixteen inquiries, with more, hopefully, still coming.
In fact, the only time I've received multiple calls prior to Nichol this year was when I gained the quarter-finals in Nichol a few years ago! So in my opinion Nichol is number one--and there isn't a number two or three or four or...etc.
On the otherhand I have gained a lot of benefits from the other contests. Many, including the excellent "Red Inkworks", provides helpful notes for improving your script. And the contest are a great testing ground for how well your script stands up to the competion (i.e. how much more work it needs.)
But if I seem a little cynical about contests other than Nichol, it may be because the last contest I won has still not paid me the $1000 they owe me, nor have yet delivered the agent they promised me. It's been nine months.
Who really thinks Betty's real, raise your hands. I have to take a count here--I just don't believe this.
Terry, I don't know if there's anything wrong complaining about posers. I'm still miffed about the guy with the brain tumor whose postings became more and more unintelligable as the tumor spead--until he was finally dead. (A poser.)
Or that sweet 92 year lady--who was so active on this board--until, of course, she was dead. (Another poser.)
Or what about the poor young street urchin who was attempting to write a screenplay as she was living in a box. I always wondered where the hell she plugged in her laptop--and how she kept her paper dry. (Poser.)
Anyway, them and lots more--wasting our time--making us care, if for at least briefly. And so this brings me to Debbie.
How did she happen to choose us?--we're better known as a source for contest information. And, also, doesn't she write well? Most civilians don't--which nearly guarantees that she, herself, is a writer. But if she's a writer, how come she doesn't understand her husband"s passion for writing? And why bring this question to us in the first place? Couldn't she simply ask him why he writes--cut out us middle men?
But lastly, I recognize a style used here before by some of those mentioned before; a judicious use of capitalizing certain rants for emphasis. It's almost as good as a fingerprint!
Sure, there's a chance she could be real. But the odds are maybe 10%. If that. (IMHO)
Oops, by "Debbie" I meant "Betsey". (Although maybe she is Debbie by now.)
I second what Jim says. I've e-mailed Barb a number of times and she's always responded, and always very quickly.
The problem is not on her end.
Oops--I meant what Eric said!
Thanks, John, I'm going to look into it.
This brings up question I have. I just received my first HCD--the one for prod cos.
Many of them don't state a submission policy at all, and a few state that they do accept solicitations. However, the majority advise: "no unsolicited submissions." Which would suggest that queries aren't going to be accepted.
Yet sometimes it says: "No unsolicited submissions, e-mail queries only."
I presume, then, that the companies that are only saying "no submissions" may be speaking of unsolicited scripts and may be open for queries. But do you think it would be wise to call and ask for a verification of the query policy--or should we simply go ahead and e-mail the query to them?
What is the experience of others on this board?
Here's the deal, we don't have "posers".
What we have is one member who has wasted our time over the several years with a couple of dozen phony personalities--usually two or three going at once, and sometimes on the same thread.
Of course there's always a possibility we're dealing with a real person. But, still, if I were a betting man...
Bill's not a boy.
I'm waiting too! I was a quarter finalist one year and got a half dozen script requests. Last year I made the semi's and got eighteen requests!--the last one coming in just a month ago. Yet I've twice actually won other contests and never received even one call for a script.
There's lots of reasons for entering contests, and I enter a lot of them, but for actual market penetration Nichol stands alone.
The notification is by mail and the whole process is kinda fun because you have to read half way down the page to learn if you're in or not.
I don't think I've actually ever read the whole letter--but I've wadded and torn a lot of them up! ;)
Yahoo! I got letters back from both of my scripts and each has a gold Oscar on the envelope! (I've chosen not to read them in case the emblem doesn't mean I've made the quarters;)
Well that's just great! So with Jennifer's new info I was tempted to look into each envelope (BIG mistake!) and I neither of my scripts advanced! Well...what the hell.
The funny thing is that both of my scripts had previously advanced--one of them three times, including to the semi-finals last year. And I've since polished them, so they should be at least marginally better than last year.
So this is the solace I offer myself and to all others who didn't make the quarter-finals: If you make the their first cut it means you've got a really good script. But if you don't make it it doesn't necessarily mean you don't still have a really good script. Judging is just that subjective--and it's especially hard to get past the first round readers. (The bastards;)
Best of luck to everyone else.
The thing is, Nicholl's quarter-finalists are the top 5%, while Page's quarter-finalists (along with Extreme and a few others) are the top 25%.
I'm rooting for you, Laquaeta. It may be that the rejection letters were sent out first.
(Sorry I so misspelled your name. You can imagine what my scripts look like;)
P.S.--Scriptapalooza is announcing their quarter-finalists at 8 P.M. Eastern Standard Time. I got one more shot!
Good luck to everybody
Has anyone heard from them? They've changed their finalist announcement day several times and are now well past the last date.
They're suppose to be among the good guys but they haven't responded to my e-mail inquiry.
Thanks, I don't know how I missed it.
They're pretty generous in this first round with something like the top forty percent making the cut. The next round will be the telling one.
I think this cut brings it down to the top 10 or 15 per cent, but interestingly, this isn't even the quarter-finals yet. And I'm in favor of that--I think there should be more uniformity to what placing and advancing in contests mean. Some contests make it too easy to place and it delutes the meaning of the honor.
Thanks, Martin, I stand corrected. (I'm not really very good at math. I skipped second grade when they covered subtraction;)
I never thought of quarter-finals representing that and maybe that's what it's suppose to mean. But Nicholl's quarter-finaists are the top five percent and I think the other contests should follow suit. At least get it down to the top 10% or so, so it really means something.(IMHO)
Understanding that ScritSavvy responds to scripts with animals I inserted a tasteless joke about having sex with a rock ape. I haven't heard from them yet but I'm expecting the very best. (Wish me luck!)
They actually HATE animals?? I'm screwed.
I think you've used this persona up, Ben.
Great job, Jean! I wish you the best.
If you have good two scripts you're ready to go. But the impression I get from my experience is that both agents and managers will not be reading your scripts to determine you're a good writer, but rather to see if you've got something they think they can sell.
There's difference there, so obviously your chances increase proportionately with each good script you have.
BTW, I have a T.V. pilot script and I've found little interest from managers and agents who've shown interest in my feature scripts, so I'd advise you not to waste the time on pilots--at least for the purpose of gaining representation. (IMHO)
Linda, I'm really impressed amazed that you wrote the script in two weeks! How did you do it?--did you already have an outline, or at least know the story? No kidding, it takes me longer than that to write a good ransom letter!
I'm constantly amazed at creativity and drive so many fellow scribes have. I don't seem to be as naturally gift. It's my real weakness.
Congratulations on all of you success.
forgodsake, I just re-read my post and it's nearly incoherant with typos! I can't even write an E-mail anymore. I'm quitting. I'll never trouble any of you again.
That's a hard break--I know it would knock the wind out of me. Maybe you can use this something out of this that will get even further.
There is a W. Clement Stone quote: "within every adversity lies the seed of an equivalent or greater benefit." I hope it really turns out well for you.
Yeah, and who knows if Ellum is even real, but in any case he (she?)was a dozen or more other personas, including a street urchin (who probably died), a ninety year old woman (who did die), a man suffering a brain tumor (another unfortunate death), and Ellum himself (who also showed up..."dead").
At the rate we're going Frederick may be the only one alive by the end of another year--and I'm really not that sure about him!
And in the meantime the same poser is still with us, wasting our time.
Has anybody heard from them? They were to have announced preliminary results on the first, and didn't. (At least I don't think they did.)
They had a good Moviebytes report card but they haven't responded to my e-mail. Not especially a good sign. If I've been blown out of the tub on this one I may quit doing these things entirely.
There is so much competition and it's really a crap shoot. I won a fairly substantial contest and since then the same script can't make even the first cut in any anybody elses. (Did they possible give me first place as a practical joke?)
I even sent this script to my local state competition in Seattle and couldn't place. And they had, what?, maybe a couple dozen scripts to compete against?
By the way, about Seattle. I went to an art festival in their Pioneer Square, and one revered piece was a plate of food shellacked and nailed to a wall!
And outside I joined a crowd staring three stories up at a guy at a window with his back to the crowd, buck naked and covered in blue paint. Everybody seemed to think it was some kind of important performance art--I think it was just some guy wanted to show his blue ass to the crowd. (Needless to say, these people are all Democrats.) How could these people even field a professional football team? And they're judging me?
I've done a lot of contests, and even with good results I've gained little benefit. (I may decide from now on to just throw the money out my car window. That way I could cut way down on postage;)
Anyway, sorry for my rant.
A time to count our blessings! Happy Thanksgiving to all.
Congratulations and best of luck, Danny.
Connie, I had missed an earlier thread about your accident and am so sorry to hear about it.
I'll say a prayer for your recovery, and I wish you the best.
I wish you all a merry Christmas and may God bless you.
Congratulations to both of you guys. I hope that in this next year great things come out these successes.
Yes, I believe you've said too much. Sorry;)
Terry, pick up a paper some time! It's not the Quakers sawing off innocent peoples' heads and taking down the Trade Center after all.
This whole bigot label is thrown around too easily to silence legitimate issues. I don't think you should do it, it's unbecoming.
I'm often amazed (dismayed) by how frequently a select few on this board turn a simple screenwriting forum into an attack against Bush and/or America. If this were a cooking class they'd be doing the same thing!
So one doesn't have to be a trained psychologist (which of course I am, if twenty years in real estate dealing with nutjobs everyday counts for anything) to recognize that they're not really railing at Bush or America at all, but rather at giant bugaboos of their past that still haunt them.
And I can predict with these patients what each of their underlying problems are. My success rate is 100% (I'm like some kind of savant!)
My door is open--for private or public consultation.
Yours truly, Dr. Williams
There's nobody in my waiting room? What-in-hell is going on? Don't you people want to get better? Do you think my G.E.D. stands for nothing?! Come on, step up.
Okay, that does it, I'm outta here.
I tried to help but, as the Holy Book point out, "a prophet has no respect in his own country". How true, how true. Looks like I'll have extend my help to those who know me LESS well.
BTW Terry, with the sincere hope that this doesn't aggravate further your symptoms, McCain is right--we wouldn't have lost in Viet Nam if we had not lost the public support.
I was there in 1969 and all I know is "we were WAY ahead when I left".
Damn. I see I still have a lot of work to do here. But, nobody said mental health would be easy.
Terry, I went to Viet Nam as an agent of the C.I.A. and attempted to move among the natives unnoticed by squinting, but I was soon found out and sent home.
But what are you really asking? Have you come back because you're wanting my diagnosis? Because I am ready.
And is that why you've returned, Paula? I have yours ready too. That is, if you too are ready.
I rest my case
Ron, you probably did back up your case admirably. I likely have ADD and, frankly, never read any of your missives--they just seemed to use a too many words for me.
If you've come for my help I'm afraid I'll disapoint. My specialty (gift?) is cognative therapy--what laymen might call "talking it out", "shooting the bull", or "chewing the fat". My real estate license doesn't allow me to prescibe pharmacuticals, which I suspect is what you are in more need of.
I would recommend you start with your family physician--if you feel uncomfortable discussing your core problem just show him this paperwork and he should fix you right up. And then pick up the best selling book by Dinesh D'Souza, WHAT'S SO GREAT ABOUT AMERICA, and we'll see about getting your citizenship restored.
And Terry...I never said I was in Viet Nam! Which makes me all the more concerned--and all the more anxious to give you my diagnosis. Are you ready?
Boy is my face red! But Paula, you're going to have to wait your turn until I take care of Terry. (Just don't worry--I've got some good stuff for you.)
And Ron, I'm sorry, I didn't see you in the room. I'm keeping good thoughts for you, buddy.
...and yes, I did correctly guess you don't use any "meds".
Tery, you're back! Thank goodness!
Through careful study of my various nuances and shaded meanings you have correctly guessed that I did serve in Viet Nam, in some capacity in 1969! You have a gift, my friend.
Now I'll give you another hint: I was a member of an elite unit historian Steven Ambrose called "the finest fighting force in the world"; the branch of service you boys in the U.S Army aspired to be more like.
But enough about me, we're here for you. let me find my paperwork and we can get started.
Please, Terry, let's not quibble on what I said, you said. I'm here to help you, not argue on the correct spelling of shephard, forgodsake!
So, ready? Here's my diagnosis; P.T.S.D.
And I don't mean that woman's thing, that post pardum something-or-other, I mean "Post Traumatic Stress Disorder". And--I'll show you how good I am--I've determined your rating at 70% disabled, with a rider that, based on your anger, qualifies you for benefits at 100% for unemployability.
All kidding aside (because I only meant all of my foolishness before now for pure levity) but I am not in any way diminishing your great service and sacrifice for America. I very much appreciate who you are and what you've done, but I'm just saying that your bitterness has a cause that is beyond normal, rational considerations. And my 'diagnosis" is right on.
Paula, you're next. I just have to move a decimal or two and I should be ready, when you're ready.
hey terry, I didn't see that last post of yours befor my last or I wouldn't have sent it. I absolutely didn't know you got that banged up or I wouldn't have said anything. I swear to God I wouldn't have, and you have every right to feel how you do.
Terry, I sent you a personal e-mail and I hope you got it. Please let me know if you didn't.
And for anyone else looking on, I described to Terry my less-than-admirable service as a rifleman with Echo Co. 2nd Battalion, Fourth Marines in Viet Nam. Ironically, I have all of my limbs in tact and it is I who is rated fully disabled by PTSD and not him.
Terry has much more right to his feelings about war than do I--although I'm sure that both of our opinions about it all were shaped primarily by that damn experience.
I was irked by all of the anti-Bush/ American statements and attempted to mock those of that opinion with humor. I was kinda making fun of my self too by playing the fool, but regardless my motives were mean spirited.
I'm a Christian and realize now how out of place all of my foolishness was. What I've taken away from this is that it is always wrong--whether one is an advocate of any specific faith or not--to purposely say anything that would anger or hurt someone's feelings.
I apologize to you all. And I really think we should stay away from politics as much as possible on this board. I won't be tempted to be an asshole again--but somebody else might;)
Best wishes to all,
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