Hey fellow screenwriters! Are you ready for another year of petrifying “submit” clicks? Yep, it’s that most wonderful time of the year, again.
If you haven’t done the search for what deadlines are approaching, let me share what I’ve learned. Here are 10 of the more prominent competitions:
The one I think all screenwriters dream of winning is the prestigious Nicholl Fellowship, which is for features only. The early deadline is March 7 ($45). I’d also recommend following them on Facebook as they share reader comments throughout the competition. It’s always fun to wonder if that lovely review is about your work.
The Austin Film Festival is also garnering a reputation for its screenwriting competition in both feature (with the added perk of being genre specific) and teleplay (including specs) categories. The early deadline is March 31 ($45). You can follow them on Twitter.
PAGE International is already open and the regular deadline is fast approaching – February 17 ($49). This is for features only, but they’ve also branched out into being genre specific as well. They’re on both Facebook and Twitter if you’re interested in keeping up with the latest.
I entered my pilot in Scriptapalooza‘s TV competition, which reopens April 15, but the feature category, again, has been accepting since the beginning of the year. The regular deadline is March 10 ($55). You can follow them on both Facebook and Twitter, but they also have a mailing list that will keep you current.
I may have entered my pilot into this one, it’s all sort of a blur at the moment, so I have to double check. How terrible is that?! Script Pipeline offers a number of competitions to choose from, such as their First Look and Great Idea (both TV and feature) contests, in addition to the TV and feature competitions – which share the same date and fee for their early entry, March 1 ($50). They also have a mailing list and are on all social media.
Finish Line is another competition that offers both feature and TV categories, and has received positive endorsement from the film community. Their early deadline is, again, fast approaching – February 17 ($40), but if you’re like me, procrastinating on that final polish/rewrite, a more “reasonable” regular deadline is April 28 ($45). You can follow them on Twitter.
Screencraft not only offers valuable information via their blog, they have a wonderful setup in their competition department – it’s genre specific! The deadlines are scattered throughout the year, so I would highly recommend joining the mailing list to stay up to date. Currently they are accepting submissions for Sci-fi and Fantasy features. Early deadline is February 16 ($39). They’re on all social media as well.
Final Draft just announced that they’ll be ready to accept submissions for 2017’s Big Break starting February 22. They have both feature and TV categories, but the entry fee section has not been updated on their site yet (early fee last year was $40). And of course, they’re on all social media too.
BlueCat is another site I recommend following for their useful advice via their blog, in addition to their newsletter and social media accounts. Their competition is open for features, shorts, TV, and plays. The early deadline is March 1 and fees vary depending on the entry. Features – $45 Shorts – $35 Pilots – $40 Plays – $30
Finally, there is the Sundance Institute‘s Screenwriters Lab which is not open yet for submissions for 2018, but if you have a script that is Sundance Film Festival material, get it ready! Last year the application period was from March 15 – May 3. I would love to take part in the Lab, but sadly, I don’t think any of my material is small budget. 😉
So get those screenplays “submission season ready” and let’s go after our dreams! Happy Writing!