Where should I spend my money?

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  • Where should I spend my money?

    I've read a lot of conflicting information about various tracking boards, blacklist, etc.

    I have two completed screenplays that I'd like to get some professional reads on before querying the masses, but I'm not sure where the best bang for the buck is.

    Advise/suggestions?

  • #2
    Re: Where should I spend my money?

    I think blacklist is great for industry type reads and feedback...

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Where should I spend my money?

      If you want professionals reading your script and giving you honest feedback on where your work stands take a look here:

      http://messageboard.donedealpro.com/...ad.php?t=78365
      If a woman has to choose between catching a fly ball and saving an infant's life, she will choose to save the infant's life without even considering if there are men on base.
      Dave Barry

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      • #4
        Re: Where should I spend my money?

        Originally posted by Centurio View Post
        If you want professionals reading your script and giving you honest feedback on where your work stands take a look here:

        http://messageboard.donedealpro.com/...ad.php?t=78365
        Both are helpful. A good place to start.

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Where should I spend my money?

          Shamelessly tooting my own horn... my perspective is a buyer's perspective. http://messageboard.donedealpro.com/...ad.php?t=67168
          ScriptGal
          Screenplay Consultation & Analysis
          Fifteen Years Development Experience
          http://www.scriptgal.com/

          Discount for DD Members!

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          • #6
            Re: Where should I spend my money?

            Joining the toots. I also give script feedback and many people have found it useful. Samples here:

            http://lauridonahue.com/services/feedback/
            "People who work in Hollywood are the ones who didn't quit." -- Lawrence Kasdan

            Please visit my website and blog: www.lauridonahue.com.

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            • #7
              Re: Where should I spend my money?

              I think it was Danny Mancus. Marcus? Manus....I don't remember his last name but he's a script consultant, anyway, (correction. it was Corey Mandell)

              he said that when he first started out he tracked down a couple of industry readers and paid them up front (under the table. no middle man) to cover his script like they would if they were doing it for their boss -- that way he got ACTUAL COVERAGE without risk of anyone seeing it -- other than himself.


              ***but ScriptGal and LauriD are also a good route to take but that goes w/o saying.
              Last edited by bjamin; 03-13-2015, 10:59 AM. Reason: ***

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              • #8
                Re: Where should I spend my money?

                David Trottier, author of The Screenwriter's Bible, does script consulting. He's a good teacher and has years of experience. You can check out his site here: http://www.keepwriting.com/
                GirlinGray

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                • #9
                  Re: Where should I spend my money?

                  I personally use the Happy Writers, as I think their coverage is the best, but all of the suggestions mentioned are great. Danny Manus is a great consultant as well.

                  Best of luck!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Where should I spend my money?

                    I would use a coverage service over The Black List. It's costs a little more but worth it. You will pay someone who will really take the time to read your material and offer constructive notes. The readers at the Black List seem underpaid and over worked and it shows in the coverage. They don't really give constructive notes, it's more of briefly what works and what doesn't (in their opinion). Just my two cents. I would say also giving it to other screenwriter friends is also invaluable.

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                    • #11
                      Re: Where should I spend my money?

                      ExtHollywoodDay is a solid reader . A lot of readers have read for a film company. Not too many analysts in his price range have sold stuff, which is why I first went with him many moons ago.

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                      • #12
                        Re: Where should I spend my money?

                        Therapy.
                        Dinner.
                        A new couch.

                        All of these are better uses of money to me.

                        You could hire your favorite writers in Hollywood to be a script consultant, but unless David Koepp writers your spec for you, he can't make you a pro writer. Diablo Cody can tell you how she did it, but she can't take your POS and make it Juno esque.

                        Michael Jordan can teach how for a week how to shoot better free throws, but you'll never be in the NBA just because of that...

                        My point is I've done all these things.... but if Script Consultant A loves it, so what? Do they give it to a manager?

                        I've been there too guys. I've made these mistakes. One script consultant did pass my script to a real manager which opened my eyes to the true way to break in... write a great script and query reps...

                        You need to get reads from peers. That's the best way. Other writers give the best advice.

                        I haven't looked at prices for consultants, but I've seen 50 to 5000 dollars. think about.

                        Like most writers I've spent more money than I've made from writing. It's a bad cycle to break. You think, if I show this person or that I can make it...

                        From instance I did well on trackingb contest website, but before I could even use it, I got a manager form querying... proves my point.. by the time someone can help you from one of these services it means your spec is ready and that you can help yourself just by asking reps to read it...

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Where should I spend my money?

                          The Black List isn't for coverage. I mean, they arent' there to give you detailed notes.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Where should I spend my money?

                            I believe in doing whatever it takes to improve your screenplay-- and good feedback is paramount. I guess the answer to this question really depends on where you are with your craft. If you're writing at the professional level already then your path might be different than that of someone who's still developing their craft.

                            I've used all of these:
                            -- Script consultants, hundreds of dollars and months on a waiting list
                            -- Paid another writer, some feed back was helpful, some wasn't, some even offensive
                            -- Contests, never received a single request because of a contest, but did use it when querying
                            -- Except for the Industry Insider Contest. That contest you can purchase feedback from a reader before submitting your final draft. And those notes are offered from an industry perspective.
                            -- My professional writer's group (we're accepting applications, btw)
                            -- Other really good writers
                            -- The Black List

                            By far, and I mean by leaps and bounds, are my close writer friends that I respect and admire, my writer's group and The Black List.

                            The thing you have to remember, is that the notes are only as good as the person giving them. We all have strengths and weaknesses, and our notes are a reflection of those very same strengths and weaknesses.

                            I believe that when you are able, as much as possible, to set aside your ego and pride, that those are the moments when feedback helps you the most. You come to learn, based on your style, experience and vision, which notes to ignore and which ones really push you to do better work.

                            I like The Black List, because the notes are provided in the context of an industry person's eyes. And I'm not talking about the numbers, I'm talking about the actual content of the feedback. Those readers have a perspective of what the industry wants.

                            You're not competing against other amateurs, you're competing against the professionals in the market, and to me, no contest can compare to that. And you really need to understand where you stand in relationship to the industry, because we've all (I think) sent out material before it's really been ready.

                            And, this is just my opinion and my experience, but to me there is a huge difference between getting a 7 on the Black List and 8s and 9s. My recent spec is 10 times better than the previous draft.

                            But you also need peer feedback, imo, because if you're lucky enough to get someone who is willing to really give it to you straight and challenge you, then you can elevate the material quite a bit. And that means you have to be willing to try to help them as much as they help you. At least that's been my experience.

                            I don't have a answer, but try different aspects, and over time, trial and error you'll find the path that works best for you.
                            Best,
                            FA4
                            "Learn the rules like a pro, so you can break them like an artist,- Pablo Picasso

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                            • #15
                              Re: Where should I spend my money?

                              I'd strongly recommend against using the Black List for coverage as that's not what it was designed for. The best way to see where your script measures up would be to get actual coverage from studio readers (pay under the table) and ask them to rate the script however they'd rate them if they were to submit the report to their bosses.

                              Originally posted by jsay View Post
                              I think blacklist is great for industry type reads and feedback...

                              Comment

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