Trackinb Contest

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  • Re: Trackinb Contest

    Originally posted by nojustice View Post
    "I think there's a formula to screenwriting, and there certainly is, and anybody who says there isn't is either kidding themselves or lying to you..."

    He's on a tangent with all that, there isn't a formula to screenwriting.
    Of course there's a formula for screenwriting.

    It's the anti-hype. It's hype-less. It's without hype. It's where hype goes to die.

    Only someone who didn't understand what the formula was would say there wasn't a formula.
    Aiming for mediocrity and falling well short =)

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    • Re: Trackinb Contest

      You seem to very quickly want to overlook that I'm actually not alone. David Steinberg has been telling you to avoid them as well.

      But let's say 20,000 scripts are submitted to contests each year. Nicholl gets 6000 alone, so 20,000 all up is a reasonable estimate. We'll only count from 1992, when the internet got up and running, so over 20 years, that's 400,000 scripts submitted.

      Greg has given 2 examples of scripts he felt wouldn't have been produced any other way, which of course is subjective, because I think Season of the Witch is the one that wouldn't have stood a chance, but still, that's 1 in 200,000. And I'm saying 1 in 8 film school students go on to have successful careers in the film industry, because that's what I was told when I went to film school.

      But you're obviously pinning your hopes on this, so go ahead, knock yourselves out.

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      • Re: Trackinb Contest

        Originally posted by nojustice View Post
        You seem to very quickly want to overlook that I'm actually not alone. David Steinberg has been telling you to avoid them as well.
        False. he said not to in your hopes of success on a competition win.
        Which is common sense. Just like not pinning your future on winning the lottery.


        But let's say 20,000 scripts are submitted to contests each year. Nicholl gets 6000 alone, so 20,000 all up is a reasonable estimate. We'll only count from 1992, when the internet got up and running, so over 20 years, that's 400,000 scripts submitted.
        And how many of those 6000 Nicholl entrants each year do you really think are of pro quality? Then factor in Nicholl favours "artistic" scripts over commercial (Arlington Road being one of the exceptions to the rule) and that Hollywood, understandably, favours the commercial. Then factor in how hard it is to get even a commercial script made and your figures have lost a shedload of zeros.

        And seeing as you like stats so much, I'll see your 20,000 competition entries per year with the 50,000+ scripts that are registered each year. Registered and hawked around in the manner you advocate as the only way forward. By your logic, even the people who fo whjat you advise are kidding themselves and buying into the hype.

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        • Re: Trackinb Contest

          David's exact words were "none of which offer much promise, just a lot of false hope."


          Originally posted by SundownInRetreat View Post

          And how many of those 6000 Nicholl entrants each year do you really think are of pro quality?
          Probably not many. Mostly because they develop in isolation. And those few who are accomplished don't actually need a contest to move forward. They just need to go out and find people. That's the point. Everyone else is being exploited. And by the looks of it, not only do they not mind being exploited, they do so in the hope that one day they'll be the ones doing the exploiting. Which is sort of a further twist in the madness, to catalyze it into a solid attitude. Unfortunately that will only take them further from success.

          Learn how to write well, and go out and find people. That's how everyone else gets there. Be creative. Perseverance plays a big part in it, and patience. And a lot of hard work. But nothing leads to anything unless you go out and find people.

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          • Re: Trackinb Contest

            ahem...
            Originally posted by BurningWorld View Post
            What script?

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            • Re: Trackinb Contest

              Originally posted by nojustice View Post
              They just need to go out and find people. That's the point. Everyone else is being exploited.
              You know winning the Nicholl carries weight and will aid queries, don't say otherwise. You also know that the Insider delivers on getting the powers-that-be to take an interest in you. Again, even you cannot deny this so how is it exploitation?

              None promise a pro career, sale or mega money. If they did then you'd have some grounds. They offer opportunity, that's it. The same opportunity you could get by grafting but this is guaranteed and fast - unlike the could option which could take years or never.

              But as for getting out there - no one believes winning a competition guarantees success - if they do then more fool them - and no one says you shouldn't get out there and graft and network. However, what you're advocating is essentially cold call sales so go to salesman, from office furniture to recruitment, who vies for attention amongst a host of others, who try varied pitches to inundated and jaded clients and tell them that being sought out by a client who's heard positives about you and is interested in doing business with you is not preferable to slugging it out in the trenches.

              They live for that. It's the entire essence of networking and grafting - which is what you're saying they should do. Then end result is to get interest so they can pitch their services. Yet you're moaning about competitions that deliver on a platter this very opportunity.

              So tell the cold call salemen to forgo the golden opportunity to have what they're working for and to continue blasting query letters, hoping the gatekeeper is paying attention, and not knowing if your service is even what they are looking for and watch them laugh. Or stare blankly in disbelief.

              You've probably heard heard that most business is built through recommendations and you may even have hired someone based on word of mouth rather than try an unknown source. So why you denouce it all over scriptwriting is bizarre but anyway, am done.

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              • Re: Trackinb Contest

                I can't understand the argument at the end (and surely it will be the end) of this thread. The possible avenues to success that are being discussed here are not mutually exclusive, so why rule any of them out? It takes only a few minutes and a few bucks to enter a screenplay contest. Yes, that's part of the reason why a large portion of the scripts entered in any contest are submitted by writers who probably aren't ready, drawn by the false hope of a quick and easy path. But for writers who ARE ready, particularly those living outside LA, good results in top contests (most notably, Nicholl) can make a big difference. They did for me. You can't prove a negative; you can't conclusively demonstrate that a writer who found success after placing in a contest wouldn't have done just as well -- or better -- without the contest. But there's no doubt in my mind that my ability to leverage contest results was instrumental in opening the doors and getting the reads that led to representation. Even if I never option or sell a script, or see one of my movies on the screen, that will remain true. All you can ask for is a chance, and I believe that now I have one. I intend to make the most of it.
                Last edited by Aspirant; 02-25-2012, 07:27 AM.

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                • Re: Trackinb Contest

                  Originally posted by nojustice View Post
                  This is just going in circles.

                  1 in 8 people who go to film school end up with a successful career. So your chances of a career suddenly increase by 25,000%

                  1 in 8 who go to film school have a successful career doing what? Certainly not working in film. If you are talking about working in film, I say maybe 1 in 800, but not 1 in 8.


                  And by the way, I went to film school...

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                  • Re: Trackinb Contest

                    Originally posted by nojustice View Post
                    David's exact words were "none of which offer much promise, just a lot of false hope."
                    To quote scriptshadow: "Don’t use them (screenplay competitions) to try and get that impossible win. Use them to keep yourself writing."

                    There are other benefits in entering a contest, you seem to focus your energy on the negative: not winning. We know our odds when entering, we know only a few get exposure, after all it is a competition. The whole movie industry is competition: pitching, getting the lead role, getting that writing gig, being #1 in the box-office...

                    If you passionate enough, you should try all the keys that might open a door for you, that includes screenplay competitions. Hopping to win one, doesn't mean we put all our hopes in it. Not winning one, doesn't mean it was a waste of time.

                    Don't be the page-half-empty writer.

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                    • Re: Trackinb Contest

                      Originally posted by SundownInRetreat View Post
                      Then factor in Nicholl favours "artistic" scripts over commercial (Arlington Road being one of the exceptions to the rule) and that Hollywood, understandably, favours the commercial.
                      I'm sure Greg Beal would tell you this is false. He's had to disprove that theory in every thread that's ever been focused on Nicholl.

                      It's a myth. They look for the best writers... no matter what they've written.

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                      • Re: Trackinb Contest

                        I like how EVERYBODY started out disagreeing about one thing or another and now after No Justice (AKA Farnsworth) went off on his jealous girlfriend style rant, we're all united under one cause.

                        And that cause is: No Justice is an idiot....the Donald Rumsfeld of donedeal.

                        There are no WMD's dude!
                        "I hate to break it to you but there is no big lie. There is no system. The universe is indifferent.- - Don Draper

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                        • Re: Trackinb Contest

                          I was thinking the same thing, Joe.

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                          • Re: Trackinb Contest

                            Yes, the pink bunny has definitely jumped the stage. The last few pages of this thread have been the epitome of non-sequitur and belong in the Basics section of the forum.
                            Last edited by AlexNoa; 02-25-2012, 09:39 AM.

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                            • Re: Trackinb Contest

                              Guys, I'm not farnworth, but I'll put an end to the suspense by staying out of the discussion if it's causing you so much hate. All the best to you all.

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                              • Re: Trackinb Contest

                                I'm embarrassed that I spent the last hour wading through 20+ pages of this $#!T swamp.

                                If I had to sum it up in one line: Sh!t or get off the pot.

                                Either enter or don't, that is your choice. Frankly if you don't enter, that is BETTER for those people who decide to take that leap of faith. And I say faith because you are believing but not seeing. Yeah, you don't know The Insider, you don't know who is on his staff, where he lives, how he runs his contest -- hell I don't even know and I was a finalist AND I've asked. He told me he rather not divulge those details, and I'm okay with that because whatever the hell he is doing, works.

                                I entered my script on the very last day possible, hesitant of whether I could beat out hundreds of other people. But I said, "screw it, why not?" and thank god I decided to do that. Best $65 dollars or whatever it was that I spent in my life. There are people who buy lottery tickets every day or week, knowing the miniscule odds, and knowing all they do is pick random numbers from a cage with no control over the process whatsoever -- all to win that big prize. The great thing about writing contests, you can actually control what you write and how good it is, crazy I know!

                                As for why everyone shares the same rep... it's because those on the panel get the first reads. They all have to read so when they sit down at the dinner THEY vote for who places first, second, third, and so on. Insider does not pick who places in what position -- the agents, managers, execs, etc do that. My (ex) manager who signed me from the contest reached out to me the day after I found out I placed. So he had a chance to read and offer to rep me before anyone else in Hollywood could have, I mean he had to read anyways for the dinner. The Insider does send your script to other reps IF those on the panel haven't extended an offer of representation. Some do, some don't.

                                My agent is on that same panel (though he wasn't back when I placed). And had I not entered Tracking B, got my manager, and he got me my agent, well hell, I'd probably be rep-less at this point in my life.

                                As for where the money goes? I don't know? If you enter Nicholl and that money goes to prizes and you aren't one of the winners, are you okay knowing your money went in another writer's pocket? I'm sure The Insider pays his staff and keeps some of it for his troubles. The contest is a long process. Maybe he buys everyone dinner when they meet -- it's pointless to speculate. If you want to know where your money is, keep it in your pocket.

                                You have two choices. Enter the contest and take your chances. Or don't, and give those writers who believe in their material or are willing to dish out the money a better chance.

                                Here's a fact that I do know, you miss 100% of the shots you don't take.
                                Quack.

                                Writer on a cable drama.

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