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View Full Version : Black List gave me an 8 Ball. What next?


karmapol1ce
06-26-2014, 05:39 PM
ladies and gents of the done deal message boards:

firstly, i wanted to thank you and just say that i've been frequenting your forum for quite a bit of time before purchasing a membership and joining. i have really enjoyed reading everyone's insights into both the craft and business of screenwriting. there have been a number of articles posted, value in comments and posts that have been enormously helpful, and for that i am enormously grateful.

that said, i finally have something of my own to share and add to the conversation. i've been involved in the creation of art for a long time, both in writing of fiction and music, the producing of short films (just for the hell of it) and have always wanted to write a screenplay. i just finished my first one, and then stumbled onto the black list doing random research for a short i entered in festivals. to be perfectly, honest, i didn't know what i was doing, probably shouldn't have entered it, and didn't have any expectations- i just really wanted someone (anyone) to actually read the thing i'd written. i bought an eval just to ensure that very thing would happen.

my first score came back at 8 with a "This script has the potential to be the domestic answer to the impossible" and "Ultimately, the project has significant commercial potential in the indie space." " Then I got a very nice email from the Black List saying they were going to give me a free evaluation, and that my script in competing for an overall 8 would be ranked in the top 5% of the site. I screenshot their letter, and put it on my socials (i live in Los Angeles), and before the day was done, a number of producers and a manager had asked for the script.

and this, my comrades, is where i beseech your help and expertise. This being my first foray into this version of the entertainment business, it would seem to me that this would be exciting news, but just the very beginning of work that would need to be done on this endeavor. ultimately, ratings are nice- but i'd love to get this script made (wouldn't we all?). in the meantime, i've just moved on to writing the next script with the best of intentions of finishing by end of summer- act 1 completed, but kind of terrible so far.



so a few questions-


- do these scores matter at all to industry folk? i don't want to mention this as being any sort of deal if no one actually cares.

- with these potential producers, do i need a manager?
- on that front, is it better to have a manager overall?
- should i enter any scriptwriting competitions or is the black list enough?
- is there anything else you would recommend doing?

i really appreciate all of your insights, and look forward to being a participating member (instead of lurking) member of your community.

Why One
06-26-2014, 07:06 PM
In my opinion, the scores are mere validation that the script is worth checking out. If people read it and dig it, you'll be on their radars and they'll want to reach out to you.

When that happens, here are the scenarios you'll likely encounter:

Producers:
They love the script and they want to discuss. You'll meet face-to-face and it'll go one or two ways:
1) They want to make it. They might want some changes here and there before moving forward and send it out to peeps. It might be sent out to other producers, executives, talent, or reps. They might want to package it and take it to a studio to sell it. (best)
2) They like it and think you're a great writer with a great voice but they (don't think it's an easy sell, people aren't making these types of movies, too many of these stories going around, there's another script like this already). However they're interested in what you're working on and want to bounce some ideas that they think has potential in the market. There you might end up doing free spec work. After you've specced for free it'll either go to step 1, or you repeat step 2 because what you've just written isn't working anymore, or contact will fizzle out because they've moved on (common).

Managers:
They love the script and they want to discuss. You'll meet face-to-face and it'll go one in three ways:
1) They want to sell it. They might want some changes here and there before moving forward and send it out to peeps. It might be sent out to producers, executives, talent, or other reps. They might want to package it and take it to a studio to sell it. (best)
2) They want to send it out and get you to meet people. These people are usually producers and executives. If they respond to the script, it'll be either step 1 with the producers, or step 2 with the producers (common), or paid version of step 2 with the producers (not as common but at least you're a pro now).
3) They like it and think you're a great writer with a great voice but they (don't think it's an easy sell, people aren't making these types of stories, too many of these stories going around, there's another script like this already). However they're interested in what you're working on and want to bounce some ideas that they think has potential in the market. There you might end up doing free spec work. After you've specced for free it'll either go to step 1 or 2 with the manager, or you repeat step 3 because what you've just written isn't working anymore, or contact will fizzle out because they've lost interest (most common).

No, you don't need managers before meeting with producers. Usually managers connect you with producers. If you're unrepped, producers may connect you with reps.

You can enter competitions if you want but IMO all it will do is do what getting an 8 on the BL has already done for you. Maybe with different or more peeps if it's a big contest like the Nicholl.

Re: if is there anything else I'd recommend doing? Crack open a whiskey and dig in. Once they reach out to you the marathon has started for you. Your mileage may vary. But be prepared for the long haul.

Good luck!

karmapol1ce
06-27-2014, 02:41 PM
thanks for the super-detailed response.

it's amazing to me the depth of questions on this board- with everyone in so many varying statuses- people's scripts being optioned, bought, etc.

so i guess it's just wait it out for a bit and see if anything sticks?

i went on a hike this morning and found out from a friend that the script made the top list on the front page of the site. that felt pretty nice.

additionally, you like whiskey AND scripts? we should hang out!

LRic54
06-30-2014, 11:48 PM
I just got an 8 also and made it onto the top list! Congrats and good luck! Had a few downloads but no contact so far. I thought that we get a copy of the weekly email, but I didn't? Is that incorrect? Or did it not get included?

karmapol1ce
07-01-2014, 08:45 PM
Congrats to you too! I continue to be astounded by the quality of writers on this forum.

Had 8 "industry" downloads. I didn't get an email, but didn't even notice the top list thing at all. we'll see what happens with it all.

i've had three producers reach out to me in the last week. but no "action" yet.

EdFury
07-01-2014, 10:10 PM
Here's what you do. You take that 8 and you use it to spur yourself on the write more, because at least one person in the industry thinks you're on the right track. Don't sit and wait for your script to sell from this experience because the odds are it won't. If you do, consider it a huge unexpected bonus.

You may, if everything comes together, get a manager out of it. I hope so. But like I said, take that 8 as confirmation of your ability and keep at it.

LRic54
07-01-2014, 10:56 PM
Here's what you do. You take that 8 and you use it to spur yourself on the write more, because at least one person in the industry thinks you're on the right track. Don't sit and wait for your script to sell from this experience because the odds are it won't. If you do, consider it a huge unexpected bonus.

You may, if everything comes together, get a manager out of it. I hope so. But like I said, take that 8 as confirmation of your ability and keep at it.

Thanks! I am. I actually have a manager, so my aim for this was partially to get traction in features, since my manager is focusing on TV and a TV specialist. So now the features guy at the company is reading, so if he came on board that would be great, and I"d be very happy with the result.

karmapol1ce
07-02-2014, 10:45 AM
Here's what you do. You take that 8 and you use it to spur yourself on the write more, because at least one person in the industry thinks you're on the right track. Don't sit and wait for your script to sell from this experience because the odds are it won't. If you do, consider it a huge unexpected bonus.

You may, if everything comes together, get a manager out of it. I hope so. But like I said, take that 8 as confirmation of your ability and keep at it.

Haha, if only it were easy enough to where the first thing you do makes you a HUGE success! thanks for this advice. I'm already through the first act of script two. Rough going, because I'm being slightly more ambitious (in storytelling) with this one.

and a manager would be lovely. that said, someone kind of big in the production world asked for my script yesterday saying that she would like to read it. I sent it over with my heart racing. Don't know if she actually will.

karmapol1ce
09-18-2014, 05:42 AM
hey guys… been a minute and just wanted to update you, and thank you for your help and best wishes via private message.

i signed with ICM a few weeks ago. :)

writing my second script today from a cafe in Berlin. lots of love to all of you.

NYNEX
09-18-2014, 10:50 AM
hey guys… been a minute and just wanted to update you, and thank you for your help and best wishes via private message.

i signed with ICM a few weeks ago. :)

writing my second script today from a cafe in Berlin. lots of love to all of you.

Congrats!

slupo
09-18-2014, 11:16 AM
hey guys… been a minute and just wanted to update you, and thank you for your help and best wishes via private message.

i signed with ICM a few weeks ago. :)

writing my second script today from a cafe in Berlin. lots of love to all of you.

Congratulations! Woot!

Juno Styles
09-18-2014, 11:45 AM
hey guys… been a minute and just wanted to update you, and thank you for your help and best wishes via private message.

i signed with ICM a few weeks ago. :)

writing my second script today from a cafe in Berlin. lots of love to all of you.

Get em!

UpandComing
09-18-2014, 12:07 PM
ICM -- that's awesome!! Congratulations!!

jcpdoc
09-18-2014, 12:59 PM
Das ist fantastisch!

scripto80
09-18-2014, 01:35 PM
Congrats!!

omovie
09-18-2014, 02:22 PM
hey guys… been a minute and just wanted to update you, and thank you for your help and best wishes via private message.

i signed with ICM a few weeks ago. :)

writing my second script today from a cafe in Berlin. lots of love to all of you.
that's fantastic. I had serious doubts about the blacklist and, in all honesty, didn't think think it was very worthwhile, but it looks like I'm wrong. All the best.

LauriD
09-21-2014, 07:09 AM
hey guys… been a minute and just wanted to update you, and thank you for your help and best wishes via private message.

i signed with ICM a few weeks ago. :)

writing my second script today from a cafe in Berlin. lots of love to all of you.

Awesome! Good for you! Was this directly because of your BL experience? If so, you should tell Franklin.

finalact4
09-22-2014, 10:47 AM
NICE!

karmapol1ce
10-07-2014, 09:34 AM
Awesome! Good for you! Was this directly because of your BL experience? If so, you should tell Franklin.

i wouldn't say that it was directly because of the blacklist. but i can say that because of the high score on the blacklist- my (amazing) friend group became mobilized and took me seriously as a writer.

it took all of that and a lot of luck, and the right agent finding me.

been a whirlwind. took 15 meetings in 4 days last week in LA. big names, big offices. very crazy.

nativeson
10-07-2014, 05:25 PM
Cool :)