Nicholl 2019

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  • #31
    Re: Nicholl 2019

    Originally posted by Friday View Post
    Just out of curiosity, what do you think were the actions you took that got you over the hump. I started entering contests a year and half ago. I placed highly in the first major contest I entered, but now find myself not quite getting over the hump. Doing well enough in contests to soothe my bruised ego, but not really winning anything. I only stick to the major contests.

    I spend YEARS not placing or winning. I believed that if I worked hard enough, listened to feedback and continued to improve that I would either start seeing results or just die with a giant stack of screenplays. There's nothing else I'm really good at. I've written 22 features over the course of 18 years. I would have written 23 and tried again this year. I've also been involved with my local filmmaking community and have been writing shorts to get experience in production and what a script really is in the "real world." My last short won dozens of festival awards and was incredibly fun to write, make and take out into the world and continued to fuel my enthusiasm for the film business. There's no magic way around it. I've said it before though... I'm a middle-aged, stay at home mom, self-taught with zero industry knowledge or contacts and didn't even start writing until I was 30. My road was not easy but I stayed on it. I hope you do too.



    W

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    • #32
      Re: Nicholl 2019

      Originally posted by wenonah View Post
      I spend YEARS not placing or winning. I believed that if I worked hard enough, listened to feedback and continued to improve that I would either start seeing results or just die with a giant stack of screenplays. There's nothing else I'm really good at. I've written 22 features over the course of 18 years. I would have written 23 and tried again this year. I've also been involved with my local filmmaking community and have been writing shorts to get experience in production and what a script really is in the "real world." My last short won dozens of festival awards and was incredibly fun to write, make and take out into the world and continued to fuel my enthusiasm for the film business. There's no magic way around it. I've said it before though... I'm a middle-aged, stay at home mom, self-taught with zero industry knowledge or contacts and didn't even start writing until I was 30. My road was not easy but I stayed on it. I hope you do too.

      W
      i love that you're sharing this with us, because it's so damn hard. but knowing there's someone else who doesn't give up and has success energizes your spirit.

      thanks UpandComing and Satriales.

      Satriales-- that's how it was with my manager. i do wish i'd kept track of who he sent it to. i am hopeful that i'll find another manager.

      as a reminder to writers who sometimes fall into a temporary pit of despair, your time will come. it might not happen the way you hope or as fast as you like, but it will happen. know that in your heart.

      and once you get representation there's a whole set of new rejections you have to deal with, like i still keep the email about how Sony TV exec had his entire staff read my feature spec overnight and then met about it the next day. it was close. they considered it. they did eventually pass as there were some similar-ish TV shows that were canceled the same week. it reminds me i'm good enough.

      then when you receive your first option agreement and you just can't accept it. (i had two on two different specs) knowing you had two additional people who felt strongly about your work, but whose demands simply aren't acceptable even after going back and forth for an entire month.

      those ones hurt, too.

      and then, sometimes, you have to start all over from scratch. you have to remind yourself at those times that you are good enough, and you can't give up, just like wenonah never gave up and look-- they are now a shooting star.

      i love this site. this community.
      "Learn the rules like a pro, so you can break them like an artist,- Pablo Picasso

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      • #33
        Re: Nicholl 2019

        Originally posted by wenonah View Post
        I spend YEARS not placing or winning. I believed that if I worked hard enough, listened to feedback and continued to improve that I would either start seeing results or just die with a giant stack of screenplays. There's nothing else I'm really good at. I've written 22 features over the course of 18 years. I would have written 23 and tried again this year. I've also been involved with my local filmmaking community and have been writing shorts to get experience in production and what a script really is in the "real world." My last short won dozens of festival awards and was incredibly fun to write, make and take out into the world and continued to fuel my enthusiasm for the film business. There's no magic way around it. I've said it before though... I'm a middle-aged, stay at home mom, self-taught with zero industry knowledge or contacts and didn't even start writing until I was 30. My road was not easy but I stayed on it. I hope you do too.



        W

        One of the hardest things to deal with as a writer is having patience. Especially when I want to get where I want to be in a hurry and it feels like it's taking forever. I also have not been the greatest at handling disappointment. Outwardly, I project "can do" positive, but inwardly I am bummed when things don't go as planned. Especially when friends and family assume that once you hit at a certain percentage in some major contests, you are on your way and you kind of have to temper their expectations. That's why it's very comforting to hear your story, which is like Rocky for screenwriters. The only thing missing is you running up the steps in Philadelphia. I enjoyed reading about your story of perseverance in that article and was pleasantly surprised to see you on here two weeks later. Thanks for sharing.

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        • #34
          Re: Nicholl 2019

          Originally posted by finalact4 View Post
          i'm hesitant to tell this story, but i think women need to hear it--

          i will say, one thing that happened that i thought was the most disappointing. i was invited to a location set where they were filming a pilot and it was amazing. i really learned a lot just watching the actors, director and crew.

          i met one of the actors and we chatted about passion for our craft and how he got started and how i got started. a real nice, professional feeling conversation.

          it took me like 3 1/2 hours to get there, including a ferry, and after i left to go home, i got a call from my manager saying that the actor was really impressed with me and wanted to know if i would come back for to have dinner with him.

          i mean, he was trying to play it off like it was all innocent and funny, but he kept coming back around to getting me to travel back. this actor was in a very famous movie in the 80s, so he's like my father's age. i'd just spent almost 7 hours traveling. ugh.

          i finally had to say, "tell him i've got a boyfriend." he was pushing pretty hard and i felt very uncomfortable and when he pushed one last time, "so it's a no?" i said firmly, "yes, it's a no." i don't think i've ever been so insulted. i've dealt with that kind of **** my whole life. i learned a very good lesson, i think. i'll be more up front this next time with my expectations. i know he just wanted to make the actor happy, but damn, i'm not a ****ing booty call.

          anyway, i'm hoping this is a good year. right now i'm fortunate enough to be writing full time. not sure how long it will last, but busting my ass everyday to get as much writing in as possible.

          good luck to all.
          Just wear any of these to the set next time: MsFABulous
          "Go to the edge of the cliff and jump off. Build your wings on the way down.- - Ray Bradbury

          Comment


          • #35
            Re: Nicholl 2019

            Originally posted by wenonah View Post
            I spend YEARS not placing or winning. I believed that if I worked hard enough, listened to feedback and continued to improve that I would either start seeing results or just die with a giant stack of screenplays. There's nothing else I'm really good at. I've written 22 features over the course of 18 years. I would have written 23 and tried again this year. I've also been involved with my local filmmaking community and have been writing shorts to get experience in production and what a script really is in the "real world." My last short won dozens of festival awards and was incredibly fun to write, make and take out into the world and continued to fuel my enthusiasm for the film business. There's no magic way around it. I've said it before though... I'm a middle-aged, stay at home mom, self-taught with zero industry knowledge or contacts and didn't even start writing until I was 30. My road was not easy but I stayed on it. I hope you do too.



            W
            +1
            "Go to the edge of the cliff and jump off. Build your wings on the way down.- - Ray Bradbury

            Comment


            • #36
              Re: Nicholl 2019

              Originally posted by Iceman View Post
              What type of script does Nicholl prefer?
              Like everyone else in the movie industry and in the audience, they just want a script with a good story well told.
              Last edited by TigerFang; 03-06-2019, 07:28 AM.
              "Go to the edge of the cliff and jump off. Build your wings on the way down.- - Ray Bradbury

              Comment


              • #37
                Re: Nicholl 2019

                Originally posted by TigerFang View Post
                Just wear any of these to the set next time: MsFABulous
                yes, i believe that would do the trick. hilarious!
                "Learn the rules like a pro, so you can break them like an artist,- Pablo Picasso

                Comment


                • #38
                  Re: Nicholl 2019

                  Originally posted by wenonah View Post
                  I spend YEARS not placing or winning. I believed that if I worked hard enough, listened to feedback and continued to improve that I would either start seeing results or just die with a giant stack of screenplays. There's nothing else I'm really good at. I've written 22 features over the course of 18 years. I would have written 23 and tried again this year. I've also been involved with my local filmmaking community and have been writing shorts to get experience in production and what a script really is in the "real world." My last short won dozens of festival awards and was incredibly fun to write, make and take out into the world and continued to fuel my enthusiasm for the film business. There's no magic way around it. I've said it before though... I'm a middle-aged, stay at home mom, self-taught with zero industry knowledge or contacts and didn't even start writing until I was 30. My road was not easy but I stayed on it. I hope you do too.

                  W
                  Love hearing this! Congrats on your success so far.

                  Comment


                  • #39
                    Re: Nicholl 2019

                    Originally posted by wenonah View Post
                    I spend YEARS not placing or winning. I believed that if I worked hard enough, listened to feedback and continued to improve that I would either start seeing results or just die with a giant stack of screenplays. There's nothing else I'm really good at. I've written 22 features over the course of 18 years. I would have written 23 and tried again this year. I've also been involved with my local filmmaking community and have been writing shorts to get experience in production and what a script really is in the "real world." My last short won dozens of festival awards and was incredibly fun to write, make and take out into the world and continued to fuel my enthusiasm for the film business. There's no magic way around it. I've said it before though... I'm a middle-aged, stay at home mom, self-taught with zero industry knowledge or contacts and didn't even start writing until I was 30. My road was not easy but I stayed on it. I hope you do too.



                    W
                    I am so impressed. You are really an inspiration and I hope many amazing things come your way. Thanks for sharing.

                    Comment


                    • #40
                      Re: Nicholl 2019

                      2018 Nicholl Screenwriting Awards: The speaker’s introduction is excellent, and the awardee’s speech is moving.

                      Go Into The Story Interview: Wenonah Wilms: Good words on screenwriting by which to abide.

                      Creative Screenwriting.” — An article worth the read.

                      (happily disregard all instances where article author Brianne Logan confuses the past tense of the verb “to lead” with a malleable, toxic metal, atomic number 82, symbol “Pb” or “Plumbum”)

                      Sage advice for anyone writing to enter the Academy Nicholl Fellowships in Screenwriting competition.
                      Last edited by TigerFang; 03-06-2019, 09:03 AM.
                      "Go to the edge of the cliff and jump off. Build your wings on the way down.- - Ray Bradbury

                      Comment


                      • #41
                        Re: Nicholl 2019

                        Originally posted by TigerFang View Post
                        2018 Nicholl Screenwriting Awards: The speaker's introduction is excellent, and the awardee's speech is moving.

                        Go Into The Story Interview: Wenonah Wilms: Good words on screenwriting by which to abide.

                        "Creative Screenwriting.- - An article worth the read.

                        (happily disregard all instances where article author Brianne Logan confuses the past tense of the verb "to lead- with a malleable, toxic metal, atomic number 82, symbol "Pb- or "Plumbum-)

                        Sage advice for anyone writing to enter the Academy Nicholl Fellowships in Screenwriting competition.
                        very moving. you made me cry, girl. i'm from a small town about 90 min from Minneapolis. i'm so happy for you, wenonah. your grandmother is proud of you, too!
                        "Learn the rules like a pro, so you can break them like an artist,- Pablo Picasso

                        Comment


                        • #42
                          Re: Nicholl 2019

                          Originally posted by finalact4 View Post
                          very moving. you made me cry, girl. i'm from a small town about 90 min from Minneapolis. i'm so happy for you, wenonah. your grandmother is proud of you, too!

                          Thank you! I freaking cry when I watch that video too, haha! I've never in my whole life been so nervous. I'm one of those people that would choose death over public speaking but knew that I was honoring my grandmother and that gave me the courage. Very surreal. I'm also terrible at interviews and it's been totally hard to put myself out there in that way. I don't feel like I have anything special to say and I'm the queen of "foot in mouth" syndrome but I understand it's part of the deal at this point. I'm most happy just putting my head down and writing and leaving the phone unanswered.

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                          • #43
                            Re: Nicholl 2019

                            Let's let Wenonah get back to work, and bring this thread back on track:

                            I just sank $62 (the $45 entrance fee, plus the conversion for my sad Canadian dollar up here) for a single submission.

                            I have a detailed database that, for regular submissions, counts UP the days (1, 2, 3... eg. 107 now, for my subs to MonkeyPaw last November), and counts DOWN the days for contest-type submissions. To do that, I needed an announcement date, so I put July-22-19 as the possible quarter-finalist announcement. (Nicholl is typically bit earlier than their professed July-30 broadcast.)

                            Thus, for this sorry database record, it presently displays -137 and will hereafter count all... the... way... down... to -2, -1, 0.

                            Ain't technology a great distraction, though?
                            Last edited by catcon; 03-09-2019, 08:52 AM.

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                            • #44
                              Re: Nicholl 2019

                              They recently posted two 'reminders' of the next deadline... I wonder if they're getting as many submissions as usual (around 7000, by the May deadline)?

                              There does appear to be a scarcity of Reader Comments on the FB page, this time around. Maybe about ten so far.

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                              • #45
                                Re: Nicholl 2019

                                As for the type of scripts that do better in this contest,

                                -female protagonist who struggles against an oppressive, male dominated society.
                                -pro #metoo #timesup
                                -may be kind of boring but speaks to important 'social issues' (liberal leaning)

                                It didn't used to be this way befor the current Program Director Swicord took over. It used to be about screenwriting talent, now Swicord turned it into a social issues contest and she even states, screenwriting ability is not the number 1 criteria.

                                The Nicholl website says for years submissions have been 70/30 male/female. But in recent years the winners have been 80/20 female/male. Most of the winning scripts are the types of movies that are 'socially important', but not the types of movies audiences line up to go see because they're awesome.

                                I guarantee this years winners will be mostly female protagonist stories and most by female writers, tuning the fact of 70/30 male/female submissions upside down. They gets not a dime from me. I write stuff the masses actually want to see.

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