Submit your Script
Are you a talented writer looking for your big break?
Want to get your script in front of producers and agents?
The MFJF Screenwriter Showcase is here to help!
Fresh voices and stories are in demand, but getting your script to the right people has never been harder, which is why we have developed the Screenwriters Showcase. My First Job in Film Pro Members now have the opportunity to move their writing talent past the company inbox and straight to the desk of the decision makers.
You don’t need an agent; you don’t have to plead with a producer to read your work as they try to scuttle out the door, all you need to be is a Pro Member of My First Job In Film.
Every quarter we will be running the Showcase to find 5 outstanding writers, who will meet with an award winning writer, producer and a talent agent to gain career advice and guidance.
Then we will distribute their work directly to the participating companies and agents in the Showcase scheme. The goal is to get you the meetings with the key decision makers who are able to take your career to the next level.
We know members of our community have what it takes, so don’t miss out on the opportunity to get feedback on your script and connect to members of the industry.
The showcase is open every quarter.
The next deadline for submission is 29th September 2017.
How can I enter my script into the showcase?
The showcase is for Pro members of My First Job In Film, so if you haven’t already, make sure you upgrade your membership subscription so that you can take part. You can do this by logging into your account, visiting the ‘My Subscription’ section and clicking the red ‘Upgrade’ button.
The scheme runs quarterly, and you can apply as you would a job opportunity, via the Jobs page. Once the deadline has passed, the shortlisting can take up to a month. So if you don’t hear anything for a few weeks, it’s because your application is being processed and your script is being read. If you do have any questions during this period, please contact us here.
Please read below the details on what you can submit, the format, and what the script readers will be assessing the scripts for.
How does the showcase work?
Stage 1: The First Sift
Due to the high volume of applications, scripts need to be filtered. Our dedicated script readers will work through all submitted work, reading the first ten pages.
Within those ten pages, the reader will be looking for potential, regardless of content, theme or style.
If you don’t make it past the first shortlist, don’t be disheartened. Your script might be strong, but the work of others might be more substantial this time, so don’t let it put you off applying again. If you would like further feedback, you can arrange a consultation with one of the script reader team, see details below.
Stage 2: Shortlisting
Those scripts that pass the initial sift will then have a further read, possibly the entire script if needed. Then the hard part begins, narrowing the list down to 5.
Once the shortlisting has been completed, we will inform everyone of the outcome and announce the names of the final 5. If anyone is looking for feedback, then they can arrange a consultation with our script reader, see below for details.
Stage 3: The Final 5
Once candidates are selected, we will arrange to meet and go over the next exciting steps. The basics are that a full report is written on your work, this and your script and CV are then forwarded to the participating agents, producers and development execs. Each screenwriter will also receive a copy of the report.
In addition, the final 5, will also meet with script writer, a producer and a talent agent to receive career advice and guidance on the next steps for their careers.
The minimum goal is for you to develop a new network of contacts and meet with leading producers and agents who can help plan your route forward. However, the ideal outcome, will be that your talent is recognised, you gain representation and start working with one of the many people you will have met via the scheme. You are now a professional screenwriter!
Feedback on your Script
We believe everyone applying to the showcase should be able to gain from the scheme, not just with the potential of finding employment but receiving the feedback necessary to improve.
If you have never submitted your work before, finding out how to make your script stronger and your characters more believable can be worth its weight in gold, therefore we have arranged for Pro Members to get personal script feedback from the script readers.
Alas, there is a fee involved, which depends on what you are looking for from the script reader. Script reading is highly skilled and time consuming job, but we have agreed a heavy discount on the normal prices for Pro Members of My First Job In Film.
If you would like feedback on your script please contact us.
Participating Companies and Agents
The Screenwriters Showcase was developed to meet the demand from the industry. We work with recognised companies who have been looking for alternative ways of finding new creative writing talent.
If you make the shortlist of the final 5, each company will be presented with your script, a report from our script reader and your CV. They will make contact with you if they wish to take things further.
There are over 100 participating companies, agencies and individuals who will receive your work.
What can I submit?
When you submit your script, consider what’s going to sell your skills as a writer. Make sure it is correctly formatted - see the FAQ's if you are unsure what this means - and only includes your very best work. You have one shot at making a great impression on the script readers, so make it count!
Please send in a one page treatment with your script, with a log line and a synopsis of the script. Keep it concise, you should be able to summarise your work in no more than one page.
Your application will be discarded if you submit:
A treatment without a script.
Any material that isn't formatted as a script such as poetry, short stories, etc.
Any other background - keep that for your CV.
Any work that isn’t yours. If this is written with another party who is not a pro member, you must have their permission to enter the showcase.
What will the script reader be looking for?
If you are compelled to write for the screen, the likelihood is you will have already built a back catalogue of work. You may have already written for the stage or radio, and you’re now looking for a route into film. Equally, you may have been writing for your enjoyment and find yourself seeking to progress as a screenwriter. What ever stage you’re at, you will need to demonstrate that you can:
Correctly format a script
Write engaging dialogue
Develop well-rounded characters
Give examples of working to a brief in your CV
Understand different genres and how to construct a narrative accordingly
If you have won awards at festivals or writing competitions within any scripted or literary medium, then be sure to list your achievements within your application.
It is highly unlikely that your 'spec' script is going to go on and be commission or optioned. Instead, the script readers are looking for talent, someone who has potential. That being said, make sure you only submit your very best work, not a work in progress.
This scheme is open to anyone, regardless of past experience. However, you must be over 18 and based in the UK.
Where this will lead you...
The goal of the Screenwriters Showcase is to fast-track your writing career! The five successful members will have a professional script reader evaluate their work, create a script report on the submitted works. Along with your CV and script, this will be sent to all the participating companies and agents. These are the decision makers, the people who may see the potential in you, see the talent in your script. We hope that meetings and representation follow, but thats all up to you!
Why do you not provide the companies names?
Companies who are signed up to the scheme ask for anonymity because they do not wish to be bombarded with emails and calls. They like to use MFJF system of viewing and filtering applications as it helps simplify their hiring process. We respect their decision to remain anonymous.
Copyright for my script
The companies who support The Screenwriter Showcase are not looking for original concepts and they are unlikely to option your work. You can use the following providers who offer a script registration service.
Although you can take the best precautions on copyright your script you cannot copyright a concept/idea. You would be surprised at how often similar themes and ideas are present in the submitted scripts and it's natural for writers to feel anxious about submitting their work. If you have any questions then please get in touch so we can talk you through the process.
I haven’t received any feedback.
We know how valuable feedback, positive and constructive, is for your development. But gaining personal feedback from any job application is unlikely due to the volume of applications and the natural time it takes to write feedback for all applicants. However, we have come up with a solution, which provides the support you need via our in-house script reader. If you would like feedback from our script reader, please get in touch.
Will I get updates on the progress of my script?
We will let you know if our script doctor has shortlisted you. Equally, when your work enters the hands of another company, we will let you know. If you would like an update at any stage please do get in touch.
If I apply for the showcase, can I submit my script to other companies as well?
Yes, you can. If other opportunities arise, it would be remiss not to grasp them with both hands.
Should I provide a CV and covering letter?
You will be required to provide a CV but not a cover letter for the showcase. Some companies like to put your experience into context; others will be working on your writing. Please make sure you follow all the CV advice on the website and take advantage of our 1-2-1 CV service for pro members.
Why don’t companies accept unsolicited material?
Due to the sheer volume of submitted material, most companies do not accept scripts sent in without permission. Companies prefer to accept scripts via recommendations, already existing relationships and through agents. The other reason for not opening unsolicited material is a legal issue; production companies need to protect themselves from claims of plagiarism - especially if they have a project in development that has a similarity to the script sent in.
What format should I use to submit my work?
Please submit your work as a PDF if you are attaching to the application. If you are providing a link to your work, make sure you have provided the password if password protected.
What is a correctly formatted script?
There are many paid for and free software packages for screenwriting; such as Final Draft, Celtx or Scrivener, which will automatically format your work. If you are going to do this manually, there are some rules you should be aware of:
Font - 12-point Courier font
Spacing - 1.5 inch for the left margin, 1 inch right margin, 1 inch top and bottom margins.
Content - Approximately 55 lines per page, no matter what the paper size is. You will need to adjust the margin size. That’s not including the page number, or spaces after it.
Characters - The characters name is all in capital letters when attributed to dialogue. 3.7 inches from left side of page (2.2 from margin) so the name is in the middle and above the dialogue.
Parentheticals - Direction for the actors. EG, whether the line should be delivered sarcastically, whispered, shouted, etc. 3.1 inches from left side of page, so it sits under the character's name.
Dialogue - 2.5 inches from left side of page (1.5 from margin)
Numbering - Pages should be numbered in the top right corner, flush to the right margin, a half-inch from the top of the page. However, the first page is not numbered but the page after is numbered as 2.
What happens if my script is selected.
If you are selected within the final five, you will attend a meeting with the other finalists. During this meeting you will also meet an established screenwriter, producer and talent agent. Your script will also be distributed to our network of contacts.
What if I'm submitting a TV drama?
If you are submitting a series, you can submit the first episode and a copy of the TV bible, laying out your vision for the series.
Terms and conditions
Terms and Conditions for the Screenwriter Showcase
- All entries must be original material and not infringe on any third party rights.
- If entrants enter the showcase and choose to ignore this rule,
- My First Job in Film accepts no liability and the entrant agrees to fully indemnify My First Job in Film and their partners against any third party claim arising from the breach of the first rule.
- We will accept scripts. However, our script readers will only read the first ten pages.
- We reserve the right not to read the entire script if the script readers feel the standard of work does not meet the criteria.
- If your work is selected for the final five, a script reader will continue to read the script in its entirety.
- You must have the necessary permissions if you work is written in collaboration with another person and they are not a MFJF pro member.
- You are only allowed to submit one entry.
- We will only accept original work.
- If you script has already been produced it will be discounted.
- Work sent to the showcase does not need to be formally copyrighted, although you can look at the FAQ’s for information on script registration. Companies taking part in the showcase are not looking at the scripts for ideas, they are assessing your suitability and talent as a screenwriter.
- If your script is part of a series only submit one episode.
- We do not accept novellas, short stories, poetry or any other worked that isn’t scripted.
- We do not accept adaptations of published authors works.
- We not not accept treatments on their own, you must send in scripted material.
- You must be over 18 to submit your script.
- Any additional feedback requested from the script doctors will have a modest price attached to it.
- My First Job in Film can make the connection for you but we are not part of the contract.
- You must be able to submit your work electronically, via a link to an online portfolio or as a small PDF file. We do not accept posted materials.
- You are not allowed to submit the same piece of work twice. If you submitted the same work the previous quarter, your work will be discounted.
- You will not be allowed to amend your work once you have submitted.
- Please do not submit any video/audio content.
- If you are shortlisted, you agree to have your work forwarded to members of the industry at the discretion of My First Job in Film and our network of contacts.
- My First Job in Film reserves the right to amend these terms and conditions at any stage.
- By entering the showcase you agree to any associated marketing via print, video or any other format on the website.
- My First Job in Film reserves the right to discount any work we believe to be infringing on third party intellectual property.
- By entering the showcase you agree to adhere to the terms and conditions laid out.
- My First job in Film will distribute your work to participating companies if your script is selected.
- By entering the showcase you are not guaranteed an offer of work or employment.