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Old 10-18-2019, 09:03 PM   #1
Megunticook
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Default What do you make of this query response?

A manager I queried today about a feature film screenplay responded with a polite offer to read my script for $295. My instinctive reaction is to just cross him off my list and move on.

Anybody think I should consider this?

After several dozen queries to agents, managers, and a handful of producers I've had zero response (other than a few who said they can't consider unsolicited material). A couple years ago an agent at CAA sent me their standard release after I contacted them upon the recommendation of one of their clients, but I don't think they ever read my screenplay. In any case I never heard back. Since the recent troubles began last spring I've been steering well clear of anyone who hasn't signed the WGA agreement.

I get the sense that this is an extremely bad time to be doing this.

Still early in the game for me. Not sure I'm ready to start forking over hundreds of dollars just for a read.

One question in my mind: if I'm a successful manager or agent, am I really going to bother with charging desperate would-be writers for a read?

Thinking I should move on but am open to being persuaded otherwise.
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Old 10-18-2019, 09:10 PM   #2
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Default Re: What do you make of this query response?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ed Geis View Post
Anybody think I should consider this?
No. Absolutely not. Never. Ever.
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Old 10-18-2019, 09:17 PM   #3
Megunticook
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Default Re: What do you make of this query response?

Thanks for confirming my instincts.
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Old 10-18-2019, 09:58 PM   #4
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Default Re: What do you make of this query response?

Say hello to Scott for us.
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Old 10-18-2019, 11:33 PM   #5
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Default Re: What do you make of this query response?

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Originally Posted by Satriales View Post
Say hello to Scott for us.
Scott Carr read several scripts of mine and never asked for a reading fee even after he started that practice, a practice which is hard to defend. But clearly contraction of the feature business has hurt more than just writers.

But Chris Sablan, formerly an agent at Original Artists, now managing at his company Avenue 220, offered expensive private coaching when I queried him last year. The thing is my former managers had sent him a script of mine several years ago when they were trying to land me an agent (because they shared a client with him), but even when I mentioned my old managers and their referral, he still blew me off since I wasn't going to pony up for his coaching. Thanks Chris!
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Old 10-19-2019, 06:15 PM   #6
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Default Re: What do you make of this query response?

Who have you been sending your queries to? Have you been taking the time to research each person, or are you just blasting them out?

If the former, and after a few dozen you're still not getting any responses, have someone review your query letter. We all can use perspective on this part. If after revision on the letter from experts you still aren't getting responses, then your script (idea) must not be hitting home with people.

If you feel the script is great, well written, but the logline does not do it justice, consider entering it into a high-level competition that caters to that genre, or post it on the Blacklist site perhaps.

Also, you should consider sending queries directly to producers who specialize in that genre. You don't have to have an agent or manager.
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Old 10-24-2019, 04:45 PM   #7
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Default Re: What do you make of this query response?

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Originally Posted by Vango View Post
Who have you been sending your queries to? Have you been taking the time to research each person, or are you just blasting them out?
I try to be somewhat targeted, look people up on IMDB and Google, but sometimes it's just a matter of trying to pick the most likely fit at a given organization.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Vango View Post
If the former, and after a few dozen you're still not getting any responses, have someone review your query letter. We all can use perspective on this part. If after revision on the letter from experts you still aren't getting responses, then your script (idea) must not be hitting home with people.
I've asked for advice on loglines and queries, and looked at a lot of examples. Certainly possible people just aren't responding to the idea, but I think I just need to connect with the right person at the right time. From what I hear right now things are pretty impossible for new writers. But I'm going out there anyway...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Vango View Post
If you feel the script is great, well written, but the logline does not do it justice, consider entering it into a high-level competition that caters to that genre, or post it on the Blacklist site perhaps.
I've done one contest, maybe I should do more.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Vango View Post
Also, you should consider sending queries directly to producers who specialize in that genre. You don't have to have an agent or manager.
I've done that some and will do more, most of the time I hear nothing back or when I do they say they can't accept any unsolicited work.

I'll keep at it!
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Old 10-24-2019, 08:09 PM   #8
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Default Re: What do you make of this query response?

Ed, I couldn't find any posting, by you, concerning a logline, on the Logline Query letters forum.

So what is your logline? Or if you want you can bump it up on the Logline forum.

Thanks and good luck.
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Old 10-25-2019, 02:45 PM   #9
Megunticook
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Default Re: What do you make of this query response?

After an Arab refugee and his daughter move in across the street, a working-class man finds his prejudice challenged by an unlikely friendship. When dark and dangerous threats close in he ends up risking everything to help them.

That's the latest version.

I add in the query that it's a character-driven story that builds toward a suspenseful climax. I don't get into these details, but the last 30 minutes or so of the screenplay is a pursuit that culminates in high action. But for the most part it's a drama.
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Old 10-25-2019, 03:11 PM   #10
Satriales
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Default Re: What do you make of this query response?

I don’t think you will get many reads off of this query. It’s vague and doesn’t create any sort of stakes or tell us what it is about.

An Arab refugee and his daughter must team up with their prejudiced neighbor to ________ . GRAN TORINO meets THE PURGE. Or 10 CLOVERFIELD LANE. Or something like that.

I don’t know what that the _____ is, but make it unique and commercial. Otherwise wait until Nicholl and hope you’re a savant.
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