Signed with a literary manager
"Build yourself a supportive community. Writing is mostly a slog: it’s lonely, and frustrating, and the majority of the time you will fail at it. That’s just the nature of writing, and yes we do it because we love it, but it’s still quite difficult. Trying to enter the world of screenwriting as a journalist, I have had a lot of catching up to do and ScreenCraft has tremendously helped with that. From advice on what a query letter should look like to what I should include in my bio, I have found it hugely helpful to have the ScreenCraft team hold my hand through this early stage in my career. They facilitated introductions with development executives, agents, and managers that I would never have been able to secure on my own."
Chris Webster & James King optioned their pilot AMERICAN ALLIGATOR to executive producer + showrunner, David Knoller, who they met as one of the jurors of the competition.
"Chris: The funny thing is, AMERICAN ALLIGATOR actually came about precisely because I did want to quit. It was the summer of 2019, I hadn’t worked as an actor in two years and I was thirty-two. My mother and father had both just passed away and basically nothing seemed to be going right. I wrote a script out of that pain and realised I had no-one to send it to who would care, other than my dear old friend James back in England. I sent it to him, he read it, and told me what I already knew – that it was good but far too angry and sad to ever be commercial. I was at a really low ebb, and so my wife called James and told him he should come over to California and that he and I should write something together. And guess what? He did! He flew out two weeks later, pitched me American Alligator, and we just got started on that. After that my luck changed. James: Winning the competition has been enormously helpful to us in terms of gaining exposure for the project and providing us with networking opportunities. Neha Dutta and Tom Devers and the whole ScreenCraft team have been so supportive and encouraging –– setting up general meetings for us with David Knoller and Crystal Holt from AMC. David Knoller expressed an interest in coming on board the project right at the start of our very first general meeting, which was amazing but also very surreal and completely caught us off-guard. He’d been an instrumental figure in so many of the shows that we’d grown up with and been inspired by –– FREAKS AND GEEKS, BIG LOVE, CARNIVALE –– that to hear he wanted to be involved in our project was unreal. But he was super passionate, sincere and confident that the show would sell and just wanted to help out in any way he could."
Signed with literary managers at Zero Gravity
"Winning the Grand Prize in the Screencraft Pilot Competition this year really sealed the deal for me as a writer ready to break in. Suddenly I was getting read and taking meetings like crazy. It's truly been the crowning jewel of my achievements this year. [The team] was active and mindful in curating the list of managers to reach out to. [They] really helped me navigate through it all to land with Zero Gravity and I couldn't be more thrilled at all the exciting things on the horizon."
Developing a pitch with an executive who is working with HBO
"You don’t need permission to follow your instincts. And if other writers out there are reading this now, YOU DON’T NEED PERMISSION. I did a lot of research on contests in the early days, thinking it would be a good way to assess my skill level and Screencraft had a lot going for it. The way Screencraft breaks out genre to compare apples to apples, the quality of judges, the access winners get to industry professionals, and the quality of notes. While contests may not be for everyone, they’ve been a key factor in understanding which of my skills needed sharpening. "
Hired to write an episode of THE FLASH
"Don't worry about your dream being risky or impractical. People really do make it in this industry. When I moved to LA to start my writing career, I knew zero people in the industry. So when I took the traditional mailroom route, I felt like I was the only person around without any connections. Even when I wrote something I was proud of, I often felt like it was wasting away on my hard drive with nobody to read. I had been submitting to competitions for years now with some success, but I was particularly excited to enter ScreenCraft because of the genre-specific categories (horror, family, etc.) Plus, their partnership with Coverfly was exciting."
Signed with a literary manager at Code Entertainment.
"Every time you get a “no,” it stings a little. My first year in LA, I submitted to a bunch of jobs, fellowships, contests, and film festivals, only to get nothing but rejections. There were times when I felt insane for giving up a good job back home and moving here, where I knew nobody. I didn’t have a steady job for the first two years I lived here and was just scraping by on savings and odd gigs. It was tough. But in the process, I learned a lot about what the industry is looking for. I now keep an Excel spreadsheet of contests, jobs, festivals, and opportunities that I apply to. I mark rejections in red, wins and finalist placements in blue. In 2020, I applied to about 200 different opportunities in total. And while I ended up with a lot of redlines on my spreadsheet, I’m getting more and more blues and that keeps me going. The competition has been very helpful because my finalist placement gave me the confidence to reach out to managers, and to friends who could recommend me to managers, to help take the next step in my career. I was able to have a few meetings, and signed with a management company. "
August 12 | by Ken Miyamoto
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The winners will be chosen based on the following criteria:
In addition to the scoring criteria for the script, ScreenCraft may conduct interviews and send questionnaires to learn more about the entrant, their voice, perspective, and goals to help identify the winning projects. Top scripts are ready by the industry jury who votes for their favorite scripts at their sole discretion.
Criteria for Winners and Finalists: