Made the Top !5 - Industry Insider Contest - Sheldon Turner

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  • Made the Top !5 - Industry Insider Contest - Sheldon Turner

    Hello all:

    So, I didn't make the top ten, but I did make the top 15 (five honorable mentions).

    Some of you may recall that I posted the original 5 pages of The Devil's Elbow in the Anonymous Script pages a while back. I received some great feed back from writers on this board as well as from my writer's group. And after rewriting it several times, I submitted the pages.

    I wanted to offer my experience to those who might be considering entering this competition. I entered because I was really interested in the development package with is its 'reward' for making the top ten. But if you really believe you can deliver the goods, I'd like to recommend you consider the strategy I took.

    If you enter early enough, you can pay $10 extra to receive feedback. This is offered as an industry standard assessment. It also provides, what I consider, very helpful constructive criticism.

    I entered early enough that I was sent my review back a few weeks before the close of the actual contest and below are the results of that draft:

    These are the possible scores: POOR FAIR GOOD EXCELLENT
    CONCEPT - excellent
    PLOT - excellent
    PACING/STRUCTURE - good
    FORMAT - excellent
    CHARACTER - excellent
    DIALOGUE - excellent
    OVERALL - excellent

    Then, out of a PASS, RECOMMEND, CONSIDER it received a CONSIDER and was placed in the pool in which the top ten would be selected. They said that I could chose to leave my submission as is, or submit new pages. I felt the overall notes were valid and set out to rewrite the pages and (at a reduced, but additional cost) I submitted the revised pages prior to the deadline.

    Now, if you think you can get into the top ten, I would recommend this approach if the reward has enough value for you, because it's a steep price to pay for 15 pages, clocking in at $90. You just have to keep in mind that at the top it's going to be (and should be) a close horse race.

    Below are the final 15 pages I submitted if anyone's interested in reading them. I plan to continue to write the entire script when I complete my rewrite of another spec I'm working on.

    Genre: Crime/thriller
    Title: The Devil's Elbow
    Original Logline: this will change as I set out to write my spec.
    A corrupt detective with one month left to live tries to make all the wrongs right in a wobbly road to redemption, becoming the cop - and the person - they always wanted to be in the process.

    Pitch: In the vein of D.O.A.

    It would've been cool to meet Sheldon Turner and meet with Benderspink, ah well, so it goes.

    And, of course, a heartfelt congratulations to the top ten finalists and the other four honorable mentions.

    Cheers,
    FA4

    Here's a dropbox link: https://www.dropbox.com/s/ac0jo9ne0r...ow05.24.14.txt

    I just have to say I'm pretty smitten with myself for figuring out how to create a Dropbox link all by myself-- there's still hope!
    Last edited by finalact4; 05-24-2014, 09:33 AM.
    "Learn the rules like a pro, so you can break them like an artist,- Pablo Picasso

  • #2
    Re: Made the Top !5 - Industry Insider Contest - Sheldon Turner

    Congrats on making the top 15!

    Late Night Writer

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    • #3
      Re: Made the Top !5 - Industry Insider Contest - Sheldon Turner

      Congrats, finalact4! Pretty awesome!
      "I love being a writer. What I can't stand is the paperwork.-- Peter De Vries

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      • #4
        Re: Made the Top !5 - Industry Insider Contest - Sheldon Turner

        I liked your pages, but why did they grade you on concept? It's Sheldon's concept.

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        • #5
          Re: Made the Top !5 - Industry Insider Contest - Sheldon Turner

          @LateNightWriter, @UpandComing, @MrZero-- thanks guys, appreciate the comments.

          Originally posted by MrZero View Post
          I liked your pages, but why did they grade you on concept? It's Sheldon's concept.
          @MrZero, they deliberately make the logline vague and generic, so that there are a million ways you can express it. The idea is to demonstrate what you can do with the premise to make it your own, make it unique, and make it compelling.

          A Detective can be a traditional cop, a homicide detective, a DEA agent, insurance investigator, a futuristic border agent, ICC investigator, or even the local PTA president. The point is that nothing has to be literal, right? Writers have to be creative. Think beyond the literal words.

          One month to live-- depending on your story the character could have a disease like cancer, or be poisoned (as in my story), or have a hit out on him from a mob boss that wants to keep him from exposing some kind of secret, or maybe in a futuristic world of population control you're only allowed to live until your fortieth birthday and then your body and brain are recycled.

          Same with the corruption-- is he a murderer, embezzling money, stealing drugs, set up innocent people, being on the payroll of an international crime organization that kidnaps Americans and sells them into the sex trade.

          Endless possibilities.

          Ultimately, the logline will need to be changed to better suit each writer's story.

          It's a jumping off point.

          And I think it's an important skill to have-- to be able to take an idea, anyone's idea, and execute it into a well told story. That's what's expected. I think it's as important as being able to develop your own ideas.

          Best,
          FA4
          "Learn the rules like a pro, so you can break them like an artist,- Pablo Picasso

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          • #6
            Re: Made the Top !5 - Industry Insider Contest - Sheldon Turner

            I'm late to the party. but congrats anyway!

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            • #7
              Re: Made the Top !5 - Industry Insider Contest - Sheldon Turner

              Originally posted by bill the scholar View Post
              I'm late to the party. but congrats anyway!
              Thanks, bill the scholar.
              "Learn the rules like a pro, so you can break them like an artist,- Pablo Picasso

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              • #8
                Re: Made the Top !5 - Industry Insider Contest - Sheldon Turner

                You da man.

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                • #9
                  Re: Made the Top !5 - Industry Insider Contest - Sheldon Turner

                  Congratulations! I made the top 15 of the Susannah Grant round - never did finish that script but I might someday. I didn't get feedback so I'm just going to pretend those were my scores, too.

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                  • #10
                    Re: Made the Top !5 - Industry Insider Contest - Sheldon Turner

                    Originally posted by bmcthomas View Post
                    Congratulations! I made the top 15 of the Susannah Grant round - never did finish that script but I might someday. I didn't get feedback so I'm just going to pretend those were my scores, too.
                    @nariveson - thanks!

                    @bmcthomas, right bachatcha, as far as the scores go-- it was the best $10 I've ever spent
                    FA4

                    Oh, and I am going to finish the spec next. I like the premise.
                    "Learn the rules like a pro, so you can break them like an artist,- Pablo Picasso

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