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Great explanation, Walter! Helpful to all of us. Thanks very much!
Sandy, are you new to this site? Look at the MovieBytes report cards and comments section. This contest gets rave reviews from most everyone. And they have tons of "success stories" from past winners on their website. (Including Mr. John Arends, I see! Congrats, John! How do you like your new agent?)
I entered my two feature scripts last year and made the quarters with one. Hoping this year's my year. ;-)
Uh... Or yours. ;-)
I heard this contest is judged by student volunteers, and they're not even required to read the entire script. Is that true, Alex?
Kinda gives one pause...
Thanks, guys. I wasn't following that thread so I missed all the AFF info there. Sorry to raise the issue again.
Obviously Alex is a good communicator and a fine rep for his contest. Still, even though he seems like a very nice person, to be honest I'm not entirely convinced that these volunteer readers are really the best judges of our work. But as you point out, judging is always subjective anyway, so maybe the qualifications of the judges aren't that important. In the end, we're all really just looking for the folks who respond well to our work, no matter who they are. ;)
Best of luck to everyone who's entering Austin!
I hear you, Sarah, and I agree with everything you're saying. But there's another way to look at it.
I know I'm the one who raised this question (again), but Gene is right in that readers are all inevitably subjective, no matter what their credentials. And if you happen to get past the first round at Austin, presumably you would get read by people with real experience. And if you win, Austin is considered a very prestigious contest and would be a great calling card.
Also, there are a lot of small production companies in LA that use unpaid interns to screen their submissions, too, simply because they can't afford to pay readers to go through the volume of material they get.
So heck, since it's all a crapshoot anyway, why not take a shot?
Dare I ask...
Do you think he's really gone?
I don't think you have anything to worry about, Alex.
Hear, hear! I read this board pretty regularly, and don't always comment much, but I am always impressed by the kindness and insightfulness of Jean's posts.
Here's to you, Jean!
Congratulationw, Irin! Get prepared for many sleepless nights... ;)
Just got mine today, so I'm sure yours will show up soon. Awesome notes from judge BN. He pointed out several things I hadn't ever thought of. I was really debating about adding the feedback when I ordered, but I'm so glad I did!
Now, must go tackle that rewrite.....
Congrats to all of you who made it through!
Very impressive, Jean! Hope I get a chance to see your movie up on the screen one day soon! ;-)
I think it depends upon your genre. Action movie scenes tend to run shorter/clippier. Dramatic scenes tend to run longer. A teacher once told me that you need a good balance of short and long to make a movie work, and when watching the great movies, I do think that's true.
Yeah... Yet another very disorganized contest. Pity.
The Academy for New Musicals is an amazing organization which offers all sorts of services (feedback, contests, readings, seminars, etc.) to help develop and promote new musicals:
Check out their "Search for New Musicals" and "Interstate Musical Theatre Project." This might be perfect for you.
Scam site. Pure ads. But that doesn't mean the contests listed are scams. Just that the site owners are selling ad space with no real content.
Awesome news, guys! Congrats!
That's terrific, Ron! Hey, it's an even playing field now, right? So no reason you won't go all the way! :)
Irin, that's fabulous! I'm so impressed!
Just noticed this link on Done Deal and thought it should be posted here for MovieByters, as well.
This is just sickening!
Sorry, but I have no sympathy for Audrey Kelly.
Awwww, that's terrific, you guys! Congrats!!!
A .pdf is a type of file you have to create before you email your script. It's a good thing to do anytime you email your screenplay because it locks in the format you want, it always looks the same when anyone opens it, and it prevents anyone from making changes to your script.
You can do this if you've written your script in Final Draft or Movie Magic as Irin and Terry say, but you can also save your script as a .pdf file even if it's written as a Word doc. Just click on "File", then in the drop down menu click "Print", and then in the Print Window you should find a "PDF" drop down menu in the lower left corner. Click on "Save as PDF" and save the file to your desktop - or wherever. (At least, that's the way it works on my Mac, but I think it's the same on a PC.) Easy peasy once you know!
Skip this one, Michelle. Bad news in every way.
Unfortunately, there's actually a very long history of problems with this contest. Read through the Fade In Contest Comments here on MovieBytes and you'll see what you're dealing with.
Wow... Congrats!! You guys just keep on rockin' and rollin' with this script. It's gotta get made one day! ;)
I think you're gonna love the Conference, Don! I went last year and got so much out of it. Learned a whole lot about screenwriting, plus it's a great place to make contacts. Can't do it this year, but I'm hoping to go again next year.
You're showin' us all up, Irin. ;) CONGRATS!!
Bobbette, I think you should be a film critic. You're great!
So, like, don't you guys ever get sick of winning? ;)
BlueCat gets very mixed reviews from contestants. A lot of people have had lots of problems with that contest.
I know most say Nicholl is the best, but personally, I'm a huge fan of PAGE. They offer a good variety of awards in different genres, big cash prizes, free ezine and blog -- and the staff is truly amazing. I also ordered notes from PAGE last year, and I think the judge's comments have helped me improve my script tremendously.
Sorry, but a definite "no" from me. Any contest sponsored by Creative Screenwriting has been a disaster the past few years. Pity. Maybe one day they'll finally get their act together, but until they do - and until they prove it - don't waste your money.
I just got a MovieBytes email promoting Creative World Awards, and it seems a lot of people here really like that contest, as well. There were a whole lot of supportive quotes from people who use this forum, including this quote from Michael Raymond, who says he only recommends the Nicholl:
"Creative World Awards is a professionally run screenwriting contest that delivers on its objectives for promoting and championing the advancing screenwriters. The contest organizers displayed the sort of enthusiasm and passion that you don't often see in other contests and my participation with Creative World Awards was a very gratifying and rewarding experience. - Michael Raymond"
Is this really what you think, Michael? Did all of you guys really think this contest was that great? If so, maybe I should reconsider them.
Page now has two rounds of judging before the quarterfinalists are announced on July 1. The top 25% from the first round advance to the second round. So the message means your script is now in the second round of judging. Me, too!!
Hope I'll see you in the finals! ;-)
Guys, I emailed Jen and she says that they've been having enormous problems with their server today because of the volume. And some people using certain types of browsers are having this looping problem. They are trying to fix that now.
But I noticed that someone posted the entire list on the donedealpro.com forum, so if you can't get on the Page site, you can view it there:
I'm out, but good luck to all who made it!
Give poor Zoe a break! They said in their email announcement that she had over 1000 sets of feedback she had to email to everyone individually and she promised to have all of it sent out to us by August 1. That seems perfectly fair. Especially given the fact that other contests take three to five months to send it out, or never return it at all!!
I will say that I got Page feedback last year and it was excellent, so I'm itching to get my hands on those notes this year, too.
Oh, I see. So it sounds like the squeaky wheel gets the grease. Guess I should harrass Zoe, too.
Well, if you're actually curious about this you can always look at their pages of success stories on their website and see for yourself. Or you can read all their press releases here on Moviebytes to find the answer to your question.
Uh, "Poetist Soul"? Really??? :-\ We use our names here on Moviebytes.
Yeah, Jen always says that you really have to win their contest in order to get many requests. Although she said there have been several finalist scripts optioned by one of the judges who read them during the final round. And I personally know one semi-finalist who got signed by a manager who judged his script during the semis last year. (Woo-hoo!!) So that does happen sometimes.
But they have 30 winners, so the odds are pretty good for all who are still in the running. Good luck!
By the way, Eric, I think I was at one of those parties where you were the only guy without pants.
Not bad! ;-)
Oh, I never kiss 'n tell! You can trust me...
You guys are really on a roll. Congrats!!
Oh, sorry, James, I'm afraid my silly sense of humor's not going over too well here. We goof around a little on the Done Deal forum, but this board's pretty earnest.
Sorry if I offended you, Eric! Just joshin'!
Evie, you da bomb, girl!
Hey, I could never compete with you. ;-)
"MB HIGH, some will graduate, some will drop out, but at least they came, they saw, they conquered, says Dr. Phil-a-mean-a."
Ha!! Evie, this is too funny. You ever considered being a writer?? ;-)
Oh, too cool, Eric! I was just afraid you were offended 'cause you didn't play back.
But now that our affair is out to the MB world, hey, what the heck!! I can tell all the girls how freaking amazing you are. ;-)
I mean, as a writer, of course...
You're a class act, John. Very proud and happy for you!!
Your work is really getting noticed this year, Irin! Soon we'll all be saying we knew you when... ;-)
Yeah, guys, truly!! As long as they make their announcements on time and award the prizes they promise (which not everyone does!) let's let the deadline extension thing go. The contest administrators need to pace the number of entries, they need a few more entries to make their nut, whatever... Watch their pattern year after year and you'll know exactly what they're going to do.
I do understand your frustration, Irin, and I do think they should tell you in advance if you email them asking if they're planning to extend (Zoe at PAGE did this for me), but c'mon -- this talk of lawsuits is utterly crazy!
Dan Gomez - The entry fee you pay to enter a contest is not a "deposit", it's a fee for submitting your script. If they cancel the contest and do not award the prizes, that would certainly be a legal breach, but allowing people extra time to enter is not. That's equivalent to saying that when you go to a concert that's advertized to start at 8 p.m., if the promoters allow an extra few minutes for the crowd to buy tickets and enter the theater it's some sort of legal breach.
Yeah, I'm sure you'd prefer that empty seat in front of you remained empty, but the promoters need to fill it to pay their expenses, and their are other music lovers out there who'll pay for that seat. So in that situation, would you say it's "false advertising" because the concert didn't start right at 8 p.m.? Would you say the people already in the theater should be able to leave and get a refund of their "deposit" and/or sue the promoters because everybody was allowed in the theater and the concert started a few minutes late? Puh-leeze....
And, yes, the Expo is a Conference, but there is also a screenwriting contest which is part of the Expo. Two, in fact.
Well, but now you're changing your point of contention! Personally, I agree the Expo should have allowed Irin to resubmit within a reasonable time frame. That would have been the wise and honorable thing to do, and it would have ingratiated a good customer rather than alienating him, as they have. But they have every right to extend their deadline.
Honestly, Dan, you're so out of it you don't even get that Terry was being sarcastic. 'nuff said.
Well done, Paula!! Do celebrate these victories!!
Got the letter, too. I hate writing loglines and marketing stuff, so personally, this sounds great to me!
On their website, they show two options, one with the longer synopsis and one without.
Hey, just spotted this post. Congrats, John!! That's awesome news!!
Hey, my website server's down right now, too. Wassup with that??? Wonder if these fires might have anything to do with it...
Anyhow, I notice your name on the Finalist list, Stephen. Big congrats!! Anybody else still in the game?
Oh, yes, and Irin, too! Hey, you guys are killing the contest circuit with those two scripts this year. Next year you gotta promise to sit out and give the rest of us a break. ;-)
But, seriously, hope you go all the way!
Great news, Stephen! Hope to see your movie in the theater one day soon. ;-)
Dan isn't for real, Terry. He has already proven that on another thread. Don't waste your time responding to his BS.
It's very well known and well documented on this board and others that Fade In is -- well -- at best, a very bad bet.
There are plenty of great contests out there that meet their deadlines on time and deliver their prizes as promised. Please don't waste your time and hard earned money on this one.
Honestly, I don't understand why writers keep forking their money over to disreputable contests like this. It only encourages them.
Okay, kids, looks like we're heading into contest season! What's everyone entering this year? I have a Family Film and a Drama that I'm tweaking at the moment. Planning to enter the top three: Nicholl, PAGE, and Austen. Maybe one or two more if I'm feeling flush and sassy (or if I'm drunk).
Who's my competition? Where you placing your bets?
Just checked it out. Looks like a fun site! Just what I need. Another place to hang out and avoid working on my screenplay. ;-) Ahhh, procrastination...
Well, good, if you're in Comedy, at least we won't be competing in PAGE. ;-)
You might want to consider Austen, too, if you have a little more dough to spend. They have a Comedy category and it's a very reputable contest - and a GREAT festival!
Yeah, I'd be really curious to hear who you know doesn't read their entries, as well! I've heard about big problems with Scriptapalooza. Apparently they just dump piles of first round scripts on the desks of busy execs and expect them to read them for free. Face it, most first round scripts are pretty bad, so the scripts usually then either don't get read by the execs, who don't have time, or they get passed on to assistant who often doesn't bother to read them either.
Susan, I've read good reviews about most of your picks, with the exception of Scriptapalooza, and also possibly Bluecat and AAA. Reviews on Bluecat are very mixed. Some people like their notes a lot, but many writers say the quality of the Bluecat notes/readers is very poor. And the Creative Screenwriting/AAA contests have been very badly mismanaged the past couple of years. Lots of missed deadlines and stuff like that. Otherwise your list looks good! (And, of course, you may still want to take a shot with Bluecat and AAA just to see what your own experience is like.)
Irin, I'm so jealous! Wanna go in 50/50 on this deal?
I don't write horror so don't have any personal experience with those horror comps, but I've read some good things about them here and elsewhere. Sounds like a good gamble. ;-) Best of luck!
Interesting! Thanks for the tip, Jim.
For anyone who doesn't know, he's referring to the forum at www.donedealpro.com. It's a great website with info about script sales and all sorts of other cool stuff.
Hear, hear, Jack!
And thanks very much for the data, Greg! Planning to get my script in before the deadline this year. We'll see if I make it. ;)
TJ, there was an earlier thread where there was some discussion of the problems with Scriptapalooza. You may want to check that out.
Movie Script started out pretty strong a couple of years ago and did some good things for a couple of people, but looks like it has really deteriorated in a lot of ways. They're now giving out tons of awards -- 6th place, 7th place, etc. -- and now there's zero prize money. And I've read complaints that they're not coming through with their promised promotions either. Personally, I'd steer clear.
BTW, there's actually a thread about the promotional issues/questions re the Movie Script contest on this board. Just scroll down the page a bit...
Okay, I'll be the one to say it... Me, I'd LOVE that grand prize. Reads are important, and Page provides them. But, hell, I could live for a year on that prize money. That's cash in the bank! And to spend that time writing? Heaven!
Y'all can diss the cash and pretend it doesn't matter, but speaking honestly, it's a big incentive to me. I only go for contests that offer a serious cash prize. Otherwise it's just a lotta hopes and hot air.
Wow, just what we need. Another a****** on this board.
It's getting waaay too nasty here.
Wonderful news, Mike!! Enjoy your victory!! Hope great things come of it for you.
I don't know if "scam" is the right word, but FilmMakers is definitely one of those "do not enter" contests. They're run by the Radmin company, and in fact they used to call it the Radmin Contest, but that company has such a bad rep and the people there have a rep for being so nasty to writers, a few years ago seems they figured out they needed to change the contest name. Unfortunately, despite the new name, their bad treatment of writers continues.
A friend of mine got an email response from them once and it was so shockingly rude, angry, and unprofessional, I could hardly believe it. There are many threads about Radmin and this contest on other boards (I don't know about here on Moviebytes). Bottom line, they're notorious for not responding to emails -- or responding in a really ugly way -- and for blowing off their winners.
This is one of those contests like Fade In whose bad practices should have made people stop entering and killed them off years ago, but unfortunately there's always a crop of new writers to exploit who haven't read any of the forums or heard about how disreputable they are. I'm very sorry this happened to you, Paul. I hope you can get your money out of them!
He's absolutely right, Janet. Believe me, this is not a contest we should be supporting.
Actually, sounds like you're in Revision Mode. I don't know which version of FD you have (I'm looking at FD8 here), but try going to the Production drop down menu and un-check Revision Mode. See if that works for you...
I think this site is quite new, Margie, so not sure how much of a track record they have. I just registered for it off the Page email, too, primarily because I wanted access to the up to date lists of agents and producers -- that alone seems worth the $25. We'll see how it goes!
Jim's pretty hands on. I'm sure after your post here he made SURE you got an intelligent review the second time around.
Might be a good strategy for all of us, eh? ;-)
Peter's never posted here before. Nice of him to stop by -- or a paid endorsement?
Forgive my cynicism, but hmmm...
What other contests have you entered, Peter? Have you won any others?
Yes, from what I understand this is one of those things that can go either way in a spec script. Don't worry. No industry reader is going to pass on your script either way. Like everyone else says, just be consistent.
Also, just FYI, I talked to an industry reader yesterday who says that it's now becoming acceptable to bold face and underscore slug lines! Apparently a lot of producers really love it because it makes the script much easier to read and the story easier to track.
Not sure I'd personally do that yet, though, as some industry readers and contest judges would probably mark you down for it if they're not up on the latest trends. And nobody's going to mark you down if you do it the standard way.
Well, I guess you didn't have such a positive experience in those two other contests you entered because you didn't place in them, eh? Almost any contest you win is going to be a better experience than a contest you don't win. ;-)
YAY!!! Two out of my three entries have advanced, as well.
Best of luck to all!
They announce the QF's in just two weeks, so we don't have too long to wait, thank heaven...
I asked about that, as well, Michael, but Page doesn't post Round 2 on their website. They save that for the Quarterfinals.
They got 4400 entries this year, so over 1000 scripts advanced to Round 2. Not that we shouldn't still celebrate -- but there are a lot of scripts still in the running...
That is beautifully said, Jenny! I hope you will participate in our discussions often. You sound like a lovely person.
Anybody else read this article in today's issue of LOGLINE? Very funny...
I've heard the same warnings, guys. Steer clear.
Congratulations, Ron! Is this your very first script? That's awesome!
Hey, that's awesome, Ron! Care to share any webisodes with us???
Here is the direct quote from Margaux's original blog, in which she says that she "immediately" passed if she didn't like the title page, and she was adversely influenced by the "wrong" address:
"Of the 75 I read last night, I advanced 20 to the next round, which was actually more generous than I should have been. What can I say, I'm a bit of a pushover.
So, what were the deal breakers? (Always makes me think of Liz Lemon.)
I had a few things pop up last night that immediately made me pass on a script:
1. Incorrectly formatted title page.
Yes, some people do interesting things with their title font, which I am not a total hardass about. But things like:
A GREAT BIG ADVENTURE: A Screenplay by Anonymous Writer
Really? You put '':A screenplay'' next to the title. ?? What did you think I thought I was reading?
I will admit it. I take into consideration what address you put down on the title. I don't automatically pass if you're from Hong Kong, but I do weigh that in my options. Often people not from LA or NY are the ones that have the most formatting mistakes, write the least commerical stories, and often set their stories in weird, distant locations that make it hard to consider pitching this to managers, or let alone, to get an audience engaged. I don't need every script to be a detective thriller set in San Francisco, but understand, if you set your movie in the Australian outback, it better be really ****ing good.
The flip side of that is: If you put an LA address on your title page, and you can't format a script correctly, you are donezo. Seriously, if you live in LA where screenplays line every recycling bin in town, and you STILL don't know how to properly format a script, your days are numbered my friend. So, I expect the bar to be that much higher for people who live within spitting distance of the industry.
The solution? Email and phone number, and leave it at that. Who needs your physical address anymore? Also, I always find that a little odd. Like some agent is going to show up at your doorstep screaming about how great your script is? Not likely to happen." ETCETERA....
You're right, David, I don't think highly of most contests. I'm a suspicious bastard, and I've had some bad experiences and heard some very negative things about some of them.
As far as Austin goes, I did indeed believe it was one of the top contests. I had read and heard as much. I subsequently learned that the judges are unpaid and inexperienced, which made me call that contest into question. Just as you should call this contest into question.
Having "credibility" does not mean sticking to the same opinion come hell or high water. If you get additional information or learn something new about a subject, it's only wise to reconsider your opinion -- and even potentially change your mind.
Disclaimer: Jack was on my computer and using my log-in. (Yes, he's a horrible curmudgeon, but he's mine.) I did not write that last post, and although I agree with much of what he says, I don't want credit or blame for it and I don't want to get involved in this brouhaha....
You are in so much s**t right now, don't even talk to me.
Good luck, Stephen!! Those are pretty good odds!
Stephen's right, DJ. It's all about who's judging your script. Don't ever let one person's opinion discourage you.
I didn't enter this contest, so I'm very happy to be able to whole-heartedly support all of you! ;-)
Best of luck to everyone still in the running!!
You know, with all the storm clouds surrounding this contest, there may well be a silver lining (pun intended). I bet Julie's going to work extra hard to promote her winners this year and make sure good things happen for them. Right, Julie?
Best of luck to you, Stephen, and to anyone else on this board who's still in the running!
Excellent thread, Stephen!
So, only six years and 6000 hours to go...
Hmm... Better stock up on coffee. ;-)
Well, excuuuuse me! I didn't advance in this contest so guess I didn't have the "right" to post here either.
I'm not sure Frederick wants people to be excluded from contributing to threads based on how well they do in contests. It is, after all, his message board.
Do you have a policy on this, Frederick?
How wonderful, girls! We should start a club. ;-)
James, I am so impressed!! That's really wonderful news. I hope you're celebrating these small victories? Step by step, it's breakthroughs like this that will take you where you want to be.
One of ours made the cut, too. Woo-hoo!!! Congrats to Jage, Irin, and everyone else who made it through!
It seems like this is one of the few contests that actually CAN help launch your career. At least, I'm hoping so, since we're still in the running this year. :)
If you take a look at their Facebook page, you'll see this post near the top.
CONGRATS!! to Tiffany FitzHenry, whose 2009 PAGE Drama Finalist JERRY AT THE CEMETERY has been optioned by Hana Road Productions. Tiffany writes "I was optioned only after, and because of exposure from, the PAGE Awards." We look forward to seeing your script hit the screen, Tiffany!
Good point, Janet. I never thought of it that way.
On the other hand, I would be happy to have that second chance if mine was one of the scripts that was cut by the first round judge. Hmmm....
Well done, James! You know what they say, "write what you know!" :)
That's wonderful news, Susan!! Good luck in this next round!!
I second Eric's post. ;-)
Congratulations, Irin, Stephen et al! That's fabulous news.
I think you're exactly right, Irin. Seems there are several of these management companies that are trying to run contests just to cover their reading fees. Despite what they say in their hype, you're basically just paying to be read and judged by one management company. This started with the Filmmakers contest (which used to openly be called the Radmin Company contest), and looks like more and more management companies are trying to do this.
Well said, Stephen. I was particularly appalled by the extra fee required by trackingb for consideration by one specific management company. Say, what??? Isn't that the whole reason why we enter contests in the first place -- hoping to win (or place) and get consideration by management companies, agencies and prodcos? Why charge the extra fee on top of the already rather steep entry fee, just so that ONE particular management company will look at your script?
Great info, John! Thanks!
Good for you, Paula! Best of luck to you!
Let us know how it goes, won't you?
Good luck to everyone who has advanced! We'll be rooting for you!
If you're going to write an ad and post it on a forum, you really need to be more subtle about it. We're not stupid here. We see right through stuff like this.
I suggest you contact Frederick and purchase an ad on MovieBytes like all the other contest coordinators do.
Kids, if Peter were honestly a regular member of this community wanting to share information about his win, that would be one thing. He's only even posted on this board a couple of times, specifically to start threads promoting this one particular contest. That doesn't send up red flags to you guys? Whatevah....
I guess that Andrea Albin is a coordinator who uses this board to post ads for her contest, so, heck, why not Peter, too? Free ad space! What could be better?
Congrats, Stephen -- and anyone else still in the race!
Julie has finally done the right thing, and I hope this very classy move will turn things around for her.
WOW!! Lots of MBers in the running. Best of luck, you guys!
You know what's really sad about all this is that if -- instead of running from the truth, getting defensive and attacking people -- if Julie had just stood up and taken responsibility from the beginning, I doubt she ever would've had to give out all these refunds. If she had just said from the get go that that Margaux was in the wrong and it wasn't how she (Julie) wanted her contest judged, and if she said she would personally review those 75 scripts herself, this whole broohaha would likely have been over before it ever began. I think most people would have appreciated her honesty and her taking quick responsibility and fixing the problem. It actually would have impressed people and solidified her following, instead of what's happened.
We human beings love to forgive someone who admits making a mistake and asks forgiveness. Witness all the cheatin', alcoholic, drug-addled stars in Hollywood who ask for the public's forgiveness over and over again. People love 'em for it! And in this case, it wasn't even Julie's mistake -- at least, not directly. It was a mistake made by someone who works for her. Ironically, if she'd handled it better, she actually would've come out the hero.
Let me be clear, I'm not ragging on her at all right now. I really feel kind of sorry for her.
The problem is the entry fees really start to add up. And of course, some are more reputable than others...
She has a really interesting page about entering contests. It starts like this, with a nice plug for MovieBytes:
"First, the resource:
Go. Look. Learn.
Now, I am the last human being on planet earth to tell you not to enter screenwriting contests. I've won six of them. I won enough in screenwriting contests to pay the rent last year. In Brentwood.
But allow me to be the first person on planet earth to tell you to be careful about entering screenwriting contests. I want you to enter the right contests for the right reasons.
Here's why I think you are entering contests:
1. Exposure. 2. Exposure. 3. Exposure.
Here's why you should be entering contests:
1. Exposure. 2. Notes and Judgment. 3. Support."
It's long so I won't quote the whole thing here, but it's definitely worth reading.
Congrats on the new job, L.J.! It's very wise of you to save some money before you move to L.A. It can be an expensive place to live. But it's great you're making the move when you're young!
My best friend does freelance copywriting and makes very good money doing it. I think it's a great way for a writer to make a living, and potentially work for yourself from home, but I don't think it will help you become a screenwriter. That's a whole different thing.
Wow, the way this is going, soon you'll be seeing your name in Variety and the Hollywood Reporter! How awesome is that?? Congrats, Heather!
Omigosh, I just got back from our trip to the desert and discovered this horrible mess I made!! I'm so sorry for the confusion!
Chris and I have known each other since college. In fact, I was the one who introduced both her and my husband to MovieBytes. Whenever Chris flies down to LA, she stays with us and I let her use my desktop to check her gmail and use the web. The other night when I sat down at my computer I didn't realize she was also logged on to MB although I should have noticed because she uses a different browser). But when I saw the MovieBytes page and read Janet's post I just automatically responded without even thinking to check the log-in. So both Chris's post in this thread and another post written immediately afterwards were actually typed by me, not her. It's not her fault, it's mine!
Yes, Chris and I are good friends and we do support each other. We've worked on projects together, we've discussed screenwriting at length, and also our experiences with contests, and yes, we do think a lot alike. But believe me, we strongly disagree at times! And we are certainly not ''pseudos'' like ''David Barkley.''
I sincerely apologize for my screw-up, Janet. But if I am an ''instigator'' it's only in that I will speak up when I see something that I think is wrong or questionable, despite the fact that some people may attack me for what I say.
I think contests should be held to certain standards. I think it's wrong for contest judges to judge a script based on reading two or three pages. I think it's wrong for contests to postpone making their announcements month after month and not even notify us. I think it's wrong for contests not to deliver their promised prizes. I think contests that are run by individual management companies simply to defray their reading costs should be called into question. I think contests that charge high entry fees and offer zero prize money should be called into question. Etc& And I think those are very real and honest points!
Janet, you used to have a ''Do Not Enter'' thread here, which I personally thought was very valuable and a very good service to provide to screenwriters. I wish you would keep that going. It's important for writers to know which contests are questionable.
And Chris, I honestly did not mean to put words in your mouth! I'm so sorry!
Honestly, ''David Barkley'' I don't care what you think. You're not real, anyway.
You know, it's so funny that you keep asking about my husband. What, do you miss him now? Dude, you're the one who drove him away, not me. He hasn't visited this forum in months. He left during the whole big Silver Screenwriting broohaha back in July, when in the midst of an argument with him you wrote: ''You've got at least two personalities, Jack. Hey, maybe you're David Barkley.'' L.J. responded ''Oh the drama! Haha, David accusing Jack of being David.'' It was all too bizarre.
As I recall, Jack's response to that whole thing was something like: ''WTF am I doing wasting my time having an argument with someone who isn't even a real person - and who's now claiming to be me? This is f-ing absurd!'' He was totally turned off and hasn't been back here since. Like Dan Gomez and other "pseudos" before you, you've driven lots of good people away from MB. Obviously that's exactly what you intend.
I'm pretty sure I know who you really are. As they say on DoneDealPro: ''You've never met a contest you don't like.'' There's a strong pattern in when and where your posts appear on this board, and a pattern in who you support and agree with, too. But I have no proof, so in case I'm wrong, I wouldn't want to slander someone's good name.
Whoever he is, believe me, ''David Barkley'' is NOT my husband. Jack is a skeptic and a curmudgeon (and he would be the first to admit it), while ''David Barkley'' is an apologist and a bully. He attacks others and accuses everyone else of the things he's guilty of himself, primarily to try to drive them away and to divert attention from what he's doing himself. Typical bully tactics.
I married the curmudgeon. The bully belongs to some other lucky lady or gent.
Ah, "David," the only people who are back at each other's throats are you and Janet posting rants against me and the lovely Marjory. Nobody else wants or dares to get involved. I don't blame them!
Marjory, I thank you for your defense, and everything you say is absolutely true. But as you see, no one can say anything against a contest or in support of Chris or Jack or me without "David" attacking them. The irony is, contrary to what he says, you obviously DID read his past posts!
The two contests he mentions that he has so heroically defended are a brand new one run by a management company out of Florida with some very fishy rules. And also Julie and her Silver Screenwriting contest, which we all know about at this point and there's no point rehashing.
You're very good at what you do, "David." You should be a lawyer. I'm sure you'd be quite successful at it. You have achieved what you wanted here, and I will now depart this board, as so many other people have. In my case, it's because it's not worth my time or energy to have to defend myself when I ask a reasonable question about the legitimacy of a contest or point out problems with the way certain contests are run.
I do think that's one of the best things we can do for our fellow writers on this board -- to warn them about some of these contests and the way they are operated. Either based on our own first-hand experiences, which I have always based my comments on, or on potential problems we spot in their contest rules or on their website.
But anyone who risks doing so is immediately going to be attacked by this pit bull called "David Barkley" and find themselves accused of all sorts of fictional crimes and misdemeanors. Again, typical bully tactics.
For the record, some of the contests I've CHOSEN to criticize that I, like many others, have had very bad experiences with: Fade In, Filmmakers, Scriptapalooza and the Creative Screenwriting/AAA/Expo contests. On the flip side, Nicholl is by far the most influential and important -- a "must enter." Page is my favorite -- I love the way they run things. Austin's great, and the fellowships like Sundance and Disney are also very influential. Also, some of the other smaller or specialty contests like Slamdance and Shriekfest and Kairos are terrific depending upon what type of material you write.
There are so many contests out there to choose from, and no, "David" they aren't all equally good! When you choose which ones to enter, I think you need to do your due diligence, read the contest scorecards and comment sections here at MB, and talk with friends to get information. Or perhaps check out other forums. Unfortunately, critical thought is being silenced here on this board.
Marjory and Janet, you have both been the victim of David's attacks, as well. I hope you will keep speaking your minds as long as you post here and not be cowed by him. For me, I've found another forum to hang out at where I feel more comfortable posting my opinions.
I've really enjoyed my conversations and exchanges with all of you "real" MBers over the past couple of years, and it's been a lot of fun to share the ups and downs of this business with you. I wish all of you the very best of luck in your careers and in your lives!
And "David" -- I think you need to get a life.
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