My Page Awards "Success" Story.

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  • My Page Awards "Success" Story.

    For the 2011 Page Awards contest, I entered a script on the very first day submissions was open. This is a spec script that has been through a heavy development process from Page 1, totaling about 8 rewrites. During the submission process, it has been sent to approximately 40 people in the film industry. These range from the literary agency assistant all the way up to studio execs at Paramount, Fox, etc. Though I received rejections such as "We can't do this genre right now", or "It's not really my thing", EVERY single person who read it, LOVED it. Not like, not think it's great, but LOVED it. It also led to a ton of meetings, phone calls, and Skype sessions.

    So, based on their reaction, I thought it would fair well in this contest. Boy was I wrong. It didn't even break into the top 10% of all entries. The day I find out that it doesn't qualify to the quarter-finals, is the same day I receive an email from an independent producer. We've been swapping emails, phone calls, and ideas for the last month or so. Finally we clicked on something and made a deal. While it's not a huge six-figure assignment, it is 2x more than the Page Awards prize.

    I've been read twice by Page judges - Round 1 and Round 2. While I'm extremely happy for my new assignment and not really disappointed in this failure, I'm curious to the reader's qualifications. Did I get a professional reader with experience in this industry, or did I get a single mom from Iowa cashing in an extra $10 for flipping through the first five pages? How do so many people in the industry love the script, and one person rank it lower than another 100 scripts?

    My first manager told me, "Never enter a contest, because you don't write contest winning material". I guess he was right.

    Good luck to all of the other entrants left in the contest.

  • #2
    Re: My Page Awards "Success" Story.

    Curious: in that script that is so beloved by the studios, is there the word "humility" anywhere in it?

    Every reader is subjective. As your own experience with your submissions indicate, and as Page explained themselves, even finals placing scripts have not made the cut the next year.

    Best of luck on your assignment.

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    • #3
      Re: My Page Awards "Success" Story.

      I applied to a writing program and was rejected. Without changing a single word, I resubmitted the next year and got in. Dude, it all depends on the reader. Some readers respond to your material and some don't. Don't take this business personally.

      Good luck!
      www.cheapskate-a-holic.com Release your inner cheapskate!!

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      • #4
        Re: My Page Awards "Success" Story.

        Originally posted by meemee2000 View Post
        Dude, it all depends on the reader. Some readers respond to your material and some don't.
        You can replace 'reader' with 'person.'

        It's all subjective. Congratulations on finding someone who believes in your work -- that's the key to any kind of success as a writer.

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        • #5
          Re: My Page Awards "Success" Story.

          Actually, I always get the opposite advice. Don't ever submit your scripts to production companies, agents or managers. ALWAYS enter your scripts in competitions. I always thought it worked out very well for me, as I have an enormous ego based on my performances in these competitions.


          Am I doing something wrong?





          .

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          • #6
            Re: My Page Awards "Success" Story.

            You might be overrating the industry. I'm sure there are many people in the industry who loved Salt, Avatar, Inception, Star Trek, and The Town. All of these I thought were average to below average in terms of writing.

            I would look at it this way, you made the first cut, correct? That means it was quality. If you had a very quality script that did not make the top 25% then I would question the readers. But if you made it through that first cut, then after that it just comes down to the taste of the reader who you got on the second read. And that's how it will always be with contests that have thousands of entries.

            I'm sure I'd select several of my old students' screenplays over Avatar if I was blindly reading them in a contest. But that's me.
            Quato Lives!

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            • #7
              Re: My Page Awards "Success" Story.

              Gotta say MCuk, for someone so new to this forum, you have an almost admirably egregious attitude. Some might even regard it as arrogance. It's gonna really alienate you in a networking, it's-who-you-know industry.

              First of all, despite your thinly-veiled, almost passive-aggressive attempt to impugn the reputation of the PAGE contest, they remain one of the best contests out there (second only to Nicholl). And, though you have been successful in I assume optioning your script, I take their verdict over that of this phantom independent producer you mentioned. If your script didn't advance, subjective though it is, maybe it isn't very good.

              Either way, that you assume the fact your wonderful opus didn't advance is due to being read by a single mom is not only arrogant beyond belief, but nicely offensive to single moms into the bargain. An upbringing that I spewed forth from.

              I also remember a post from you talking of how you wouldn't help anyone or impart wisdom (what a overwhelming loss) on the basis that you don't want to help anyone else get an assignment you may both be vying for in the future. Frankly I can't begin to voice how much that attitude stinks.

              Bottom line, you didn't advance because the script didn't click with the qualified reader in this case. As everyone always says, it's entirely subjective. Interesting though that, despite being rejected by Fox and Paramount, you question your rejection by PAGE. I hope your script character logic doesn't match your own in any way.

              All that said, I wish you luck with the assignment. I hope, as someone else has mentioned, through the process you learn some humility. Then maybe some day you'll realize that casting libelous barbs about a contest, based on nothing more than hurt pride, is not only juvenile and arrogant in the extreme, but detrimental to how you develop and how others perceive you.

              Peace... out.
              Last edited by Harbinger; 07-19-2011, 10:59 AM.

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              • #8
                Re: My Page Awards "Success" Story.

                I agree 100% with what Harbinger said, but I do feel the need to say that Harbinger did very well in Page. Just making the usual disclaimer is all. Carry on.

                By the way, Mcuk, your real name's not Jason is it?

                HH

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                • #9
                  Re: My Page Awards "Success" Story.

                  Originally posted by haroldhecuba View Post
                  I agree 100% with what Harbinger said, but I do feel the need to say that Harbinger did very well in Page. Just making the usual disclaimer is all. Carry on.

                  By the way, Mcuk, your real name's not Jason is it?

                  HH
                  Well..... I don't like to talk about that...... *cough*

                  I'll be the first, as I have been in the past, to admit I have an element of bias. But it's not just me stating the professionalism of PAGE here.

                  But yes... I'm definitely biased. Gotta lot of love for PAGE. But to put it into perspective, I was in the last 100 of the cut for Nicholl, but didn't get past the first stage. Still got a lot of love for Nicholl.

                  Just one of those things.

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                  • #10
                    Re: My Page Awards "Success" Story.

                    I entered my family comedy in Austin and it didn't make it into the next round. I didn't care cos by that time it was optioned (and eventually produced by Showtime). You just never know.
                    http://www.pjmcilvaine.com/

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                    • #11
                      Re: My Page Awards "Success" Story.

                      maybe single mom's from iowa can't understand "low english".

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                      • #12
                        Re: My Page Awards "Success" Story.

                        Originally posted by MCuk View Post
                        "We can't do this genre right now", or "It's not really my thing", EVERY single person who read it, LOVED it. Not like, not think it's great, but LOVED it. It also led to a ton of meetings, phone calls, and Skype sessions.
                        I took this as a joke at first glance. A JOKE.

                        Far be it from Hollywood to blow smoke up anyone's rear.

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                        • #13
                          Re: My Page Awards "Success" Story.

                          Originally posted by MCuk View Post
                          Though I received rejections such as "We can't do this genre right now", or "It's not really my thing", EVERY single person who read it, LOVED it. Not like, not think it's great, but LOVED it. It also led to a ton of meetings, phone calls, and Skype sessions.

                          No offense, but if every single person loved it, EXCEPT Page, then maybe you should have this produced already.


                          If I had a dime for every time my screenplays outperformed in competitions people who get their scripts read all over Hollywood, I would be a rich man.


                          Ninety percent of making it in Hollywood is, who you know. The last ten percent is for us clucks who (hopefully) have enough talent to be recognized by the major competitons and the slight chance that this will draw attention to us. Evidently the original poster, who has tons of meetings all over Hollywood, knows some very important people.


                          .
                          Last edited by KenRichards; 07-19-2011, 02:04 PM.

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                          • #14
                            Re: My Page Awards "Success" Story.

                            I'm not going to blast MCuk for sharing his viewpoint. Thanks for sharing.

                            As others have posted, contest placings can be soooo subjective. You could have an amazing action script, but if your reader hates that genre, you're probably not gonna progress in that contest. Or maybe they love action/sci-fi and your script is a drama one. Some readers will plough on regardless and try to be objective, others won't...

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                            • #15
                              Re: My Page Awards "Success" Story.

                              (No reader worth sht cares about genre. If they're that unprofessional, then the contest is a joke from the start. The reader-doesn't-like-genre thing is an excuse peddled by screenwriters who get bad coverage. "Well, she just doesn't like action scripts." Really, really, trust me: that's not it. Your script just isn't that good.)

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