Monday, October 29, 2012


Hello, everyone.

I got this info in an email today. It concerns a writing program in London, UK. There are also some requests from producers for screenplays. So read the following and apply if you're interested.

I wanted to alert you that you still have until 5 pm on Wednesday November 7th to enter the Channel 4 Writers Program. 

This is a writing initiative that guarantees those selected theclose attention of C4 drama department for over six months.  I think that, alongside Touchpaper's "Coming Up" program, it is one of THE UK industry entry schemes - and because it's run by a major broadcaster it costs you not a bean. 

From the website: 

"The purpose of the course is to offer 12 writers new to television drama an insight into how the industry works and to provide a "dry-run" of what it can be like to write under a television drama commission, specifically for one hour series and serial drama, and to work with them as they write an original drama script.

Writers will be expected to write an original, pilot one-hour drama series or serial episode, and 2-3 page outline/pitch for the series/serial as a whole. Each writer will be assigned a script editor, who is currently working in the industry, to guide them through this process. Writers will meet at least twice with their script editor and should complete a 2nd draft script before the 2nd weekend of the course.  Completed, 2nd draft scripts will be sent to the script editor and two other writers on the course, for workshop discussions at the second weekend."

There are two weekends in London as part of the course 

"On the first, writers, directors, producers and script editors in the industry will speak to the participants on a variety of subjects relating to writing for television, especially writing for series and serial drama.  There will also be time set aside for writers to discuss their ideas for one hour scripts with their assigned script editor.

The second weekend will be split between a reading of a section of each script by actors on the first day, and discussion and analysis of each of the twelve finished scripts in small groups on the second day, finishing with a screening/workshop and an overview of the course and of the specific requirements of Channel 4 series and serial television drama."

To enter you need to send in a script of your own devising. It must be between 25 - 135 pages in length, and can be a screenplay, a TV script, a stage play or a radio play. 

Now, before you rush off to enter, here are a couple of inside tips for you. 

The man who runs this scheme and selects the entrants is Philip Shelley. I've known him a long time, we were BBC script editors together nearly fifteen years ago, he's hired me as a writer in the past, and we've been running screenwriting seminars together for the last 18 months.  

These are some of the opinions I have heard him express about the sorts of entries he likes:
1. Basic Formatting is Key

Lay your script out so it looks like a proper screenplay. If you can't be bothered to do this, are you even in the game? And if you don't know what this like, download Celtx for free and see how that does things. I personally recommend you use Final Draft, Movie Magic, or Celtx, but whatever you do, make your work look like a professional submission. 

2. Set Out Your Stall 

Phil likes stories that open on the protagonist. That means, unless you have a very good reason for not doing so (such as you are opening a murder mystery, in which case there is a strong argument for opening on the body) you should open the story with the character whose story it is. (I have to agree - in general why would you not do this? But so many scripts don't.)

3. Be Clear 

In other words - write it as we'll see it. Help the reader. Tell him/her what we're seeing on screen. Think filmically, write dramatically. Make sure what is in your head makes it onto the page exactly as you visualise it.

4. Write Well

The script needs to be technically well written at the very basic level. You need to remove all the fog between you and your story by making sure the writing of the action directions is clear, elegant and economical. Exterminate all spelling mistakes, all clumsily phrased and poorly structured sentences. Read through your work several times, over several days, and edit it so that it's as well-written as possible.

5.  Make Him Laugh

Phil has always said that he loves a script that has a sense of humour  - and how rare they are! I agree - even in the darkest, most grand guignol stories, you can always find some humour somewhere.  Don't be afraid to lighten things occasionally. 

6. Look for the Humanity

I noticed last year that the scripts I saw him respond to were full of the realities of being human. They felt realistic, with real emotions, dilemmas, human warmth, love, and pain. That's not to say genre scripts will do badly, but be aware he likes things to have real emotional depth. 

7. Use

C4 aren't paying for this whole initiative out the goodness of their heart - they are looking for writers they can actually hire. If you're submitting ideas that would have worked best on a Sunday evening on BBC1 back in 1995 then be aware you're significantly reducing your chances. If you don't know what C4 drama is like then
spend some time on before you submit! So many shows are up there, both current and from the entire back catalogue. It's an incredible archive. 

More information on the program at 

Good luck!
I have a few free leads for you this week, to make up for the lack of newsletter last time. 

Remember, the only other way you'd get to see these opportunities is by paying to subscribe to the Inktip Newsletter. As a reader of the Screenwriting Newsletter you get these leads for free. 

Also note that I just pass these leads on to you and don't  personally know anything more about them - if you have any queries about them please contact Inktip direct. 

Select Services Films Inc - Seeking Traveling Musician Love Story
We are looking for completed feature-length scripts about a male musician traveling to another country and falling in love with a woman in that country.  Please note we need material where some of the US locations can be easily changed to Chicago.  

Budget will not exceed $2 million. WGA and non-WGA writers may submit.  

Our credits include "Dreams Awake," the award-winning "Room 32," and "Blood Predator."

To submit to this lead, please go to:

Enter your email address.

Copy/Paste this code: 0x5mu17f9c

NOTE: Please only submit your work if it fits what the lead is looking for exactly. If you aren't sure if your script fits, please ask InkTip first.

33 Degrees Entertainment - Seeking Indian Character Scripts
We are looking for completed feature-length family comedy scripts featuring Indian characters.  Ideally, we'd like to find scripts that feature both Indian and American characters, like "Monsoon Wedding," "Bend it like Beckham," "Slumdog Millionaire," and "Mississippi Masala" did.  We are particularly interested in seeing
submissions from writers who understand both cultural audiences, so when submitting, please tell us a little bit about your background and experience in this genre in the personal message space below.

Budget will not exceed $1million.  Only non-WGA writers should submit at this point in time.

Our credits include "9 Lives of Mara" and the upcoming "The Arrangement," which we discovered through InkTip.

To submit to this lead, please go to:

Enter your email address.

Copy/Paste this code: 1hkka2erfp

NOTE: Please only submit your work if it fits what the lead is looking for exactly. If you aren't sure if your script fits, please ask InkTip first.

Leo Films - Seeking Haunted Mansion Scripts
We are looking for completed feature-length scripts where the majority of the story takes place in a haunted mansion.  We are also open to pitches from writers who are open to a collaborative process where we'll develop such a script together.  If you are pitching a writing sample and not an actual haunted mansion script,
please say as much in the personal message space below.

Budget will not exceed $1 million.  WG and non-WG writers may submit.
For further reference, feel free to look us up on IMDb under Leo Films.

To submit to this lead, please go to:

Enter your email address.

Copy/Paste this code: z81k8pq9nw

NOTE: Please only submit your work if it fits what the lead is looking for exactly.  If you aren't sure if your script fits, please ask InkTip first.

And that's it. If you're at the LSF this weekend have a great time, and I really will try to get the Newsletter out on Wednesday next time. We'll see...

To your writing!

Go, writers! Go!

I have been getting a lot of request for loglines. I give different prices . Since I have so many requests for this service, I decided to set a single fix price.

Logline: $5.00 Flat Fee

A synopsis or summery is required. It well be used to form the logline. The logline is just one line.


Critique: $50.00 Flat Fee, 

 Includes evaluating the basis elements of a script
  •  Introduction
  •  Development
  •  Climax
  •  Conclusion
  • Character development 
  •  Mid point development
Critiques also provide suggestions for improvements and enhancement. 

Payments are made by Paypal or cashier check by mail.

Other services are at regular price.

Query Letters: $25.00 Flat Fee  

Editing: $45.00 Flat Fee
  •  Evaluating formatting to industry standards
  •  Spelling, grammar, punctuation, sentence structure, etc.

Turnaround time:

Editing: 2 weeks

Critique: 2 weeks
Query Letters: 2 weeks

Feel free to contact me at or
Feel to call me at (360) 696-4298. Ask for Frances.

I also critique and edit books. I am currently organizing the service prices for working on books. If you are interested in me critiquing or editing a novel you have written, feel free contact me.
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