As a struggling writer I have to choose carefully when it comes to submitting my work to contests, classes or workshops. I decided to take a chance with NYWIFT (New York Women in Film & Television) because this opportunity was geared specifically to women over forty, and sounded like a fun experience. It offered the following:
The only program of its kind, The Writers Lab evolved in recognition of the absence of the female voice in narrative film, along with the dearth of support for script development. The lab offers 8 promising films by women over 40 a springboard to production.
The Lab will take place September 18-20, 2015, at Wiawaka Center for Women, on Lake George. Caroline Kaplan (Time Out of Mind, Personal Velocity), Kirsten Smith (Legally Blonde, Ten Things I Hate About You), Jessica Bendinger (Bring It On, Aquamarine), Mary Jane Skalski (Win Win, The Station Agent), Gina Prince-Bythewood (Secret Life of Bees, Beyond the Lights), Lydia Dean-Pilcher (The Lunchbox, The Reluctant Fundamentalist), Meg LeFauve (Inside Out, The Dangerous Lives of Altar Boys) will be serving as mentors, pending scheduling. Mentors advise in one-on-one meetings with additional events to inspire artists to hone their creative vision.
Fabulous, right? Well guess what, there were 3800 applicants, and the $55 I paid to get in will be funding someone else, because my script was not chosen. I hate getting my hopes up for these things, and yet if you don’t believe in your work than there is no reason to submit it. I thought (and still do) my script, Going on a Bear Hunt had something for everyone. By including a family of three generations, all going on an annual camping trip together, there are relatable characters for every age group. This movie truly could appeal to an audience of all ages. It would be a film the whole family could go to (assuming they refinanced their house to pay for movie tickets, but then that’s a whole other story) and have a good time. Thus the reason I was hopeful it would be chosen.
I knew it was a long shot as all contests are, but I allowed myself to imagine how great it would be to get a “springboard into production.” I hoped that this would finally be the break I have been looking for, but alas, I guess it wasn’t meant to be. It’s frustrating, but I will continue to work and hope that something even better is just around the corner. In the meantime, if you know of a producer looking for a light, entertaining movie that will appeal to the masses, hook a girl up!