Friday, 30 April 2010


Coming Up 2011 is now accepting applications. Deadline is 9th June 2010. All the information you need can be found here

I wrote about the scheme in the build up to last years comp, which you can read here if you so wish.

It's also worth mentioning now that The Sir Peter Ustinov Scriptwriting Award deadline is 1st July 2010. All the information you need can be found here.

I've written about this award in various rambling blogs over the last couple of years - most of which can be found here if you are interested.

Last year UK bloggers Michelle Goode and Scott Payne both made the final 10. (The last four winners have gone Brit, Aussie, Brit, Aussie - so come on people, let's lay down a marker for The Ashes and bring this back home too.)

As with last year, I will be on the jury. I will also once again happily send my script The Storyteller to anyone who wants to read it - for their own personal use. Just email me at the usual address.

My experience reading entries last year was that a badly formatted script almost certainly meant a badly written one. There's no intrinsic reason why this should be the case, I'm just telling you how I found it. So it's rather timely that Lucy has produced a pretty definitive guide to formatting issues. If you're unsure about anything, check it out. If you are sure about everything, check it out anyway. And if you still have questions feel free to email me.

Other frequently asked questions involved the 'family audience' stipulation and the length of script. In terms of the family audience, don't get too obsessed with it. My script has swearing, bit of sex, alcohol and pain killing drug abuse! Both Felicity and Claire's scripts had adult themes and bit of swearing (if I remember right.) But don't go overboard either. The script will be performed in front of a live audience - and no one wants to hear a script with swear words every other word and over the top sex or violence. I'm not saying you can't write what you want to write - but just think about whether that script is right for this competition.

In terms of the length, anything in standard screenplay format between 30-60 pages (approx) is absolutely fine.

I would also try and tell a complete story - beginning, middle and end. That doesn't mean it has to be a one off story. Pilots are accepted too. But think about the vast majority of pilots you've seen. Most have a story of the day of sorts that begins and ends, even if the wider story involving the main characters is left open.

And of course, this post can hardly end without a shameful plug for Script Reading On The Blog. If you do want me to read your entries, just please don't leave it to the last minute. For one thing, it's a nightmare for me. But for another, what's the point in paying for my feedback if you haven't got enough time to rewrite on the basis of it.

Good luck everyone!

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