The Screenwriters Colony is a residency and mentorship program dedicated to supporting the next generation of screenwriting talent. Its purpose is to offer screenwriters in the early stage of their careers a place to work and live that encourages them to find their voices and push the boundaries of their craft under the guidance of established industry professionals.
For further details check out the Frequently Asked Questions page.
Each year Screenwriters Colony brings four emerging screenwriters together for the entire month of October to live and work at the picturesque Almanack Arts Colony, perched on the edge of Nantucket’s cranberry bog conservation land. To ensure a comfortable and inspiring work environment, the October Colony is an all-expenses-paid residency. Writers are provided with round-trip transportation to Nantucket, a chef, shared car, bicycles, and private workspace.
Selected from a pool of industry-nominated candidates, the four writers-in-residence are granted ample time to generate and refine their work. With the belief that unique visions exist in every genre, and that the most dynamic group is made up of a diversity of voices, the Colony supports writers working in all genres from mainstream to independent to experimental.
On three weekends throughout the month we bring industry members to the Colony to workshop the scripts with each writer. In addition to intensive one-on-one feedback sessions, writers and mentors enjoy an informal and sociable experience over meals and island outings. Mentors are drawn from an ever-expanding pool of accomplished screenwriters, directors, producers and executives.
Our submission period opens in late March.
Our annual Screenwriters Colony: Episodic Comedy in Partnership with the Nantucket Film Festival takes place in June at Almanack Arts Colony. This collaboration provides four emerging episodic comedy writers with an immersive, all-expense paid residency and mentorship experience.
As with our October Colony for feature film writers, applications for the Episodic Comedy Colony will be accepted by industry nomination only. While on Nantucket, the selected writers will work together with our Creative Advisor, Eric Gilliland, and eminent professional industry mentors to experience the writers' room, hone their craft, and develop pilots. The Colony overlaps with the Nantucket Film Festival, allowing the writers to go from an intensive and immersive closed door experience to a public event celebrating their writing and storytelling. We open submissions for this program in late January.
Our inaugural Episodic Drama Colony aims to provide a nurturing framework and breakthrough opportunities for writers with unique voices and important stories for our times. The program will bring together four writers with industry mentors in Nosara, Costa Rica, from Monday February 25th - Friday March 15th, 2019 (18 days). The main elements of the program include: a Writers’ Room for each project comprised of fellow writers and mentors; guidance on pitching; and, as with all SWC programs, time for writing. All travel and living expenses will be covered.
As the creative explosion in the powerful new world of VR progresses, and the technology becomes available to larger audiences, we are starting to glimpse its possibilities as an artistically compelling storytelling medium. Together with META: The Art of Being There we hosted a Colony program in July 2016 dedicated to exploring narrative storytelling in Virtual Reality and examining the language of writing for this new medium.
In 2017 we partnered with Harmony Labs, Google, Sensorium Works, and Institute of Play on a Virtual Reality Action Lab to create original pieces of VR content intended to combat bullying. Learn more about that endeavor here.
We seek writers with distinct perspectives, strong on-the-page voices, and a proven commitment to their craft. In most cases, applicants are writers who have laid some of the groundwork for their careers—either through the festival circuit, paid work, meaningful representation or other professional recognition.
All genres and budgets are welcome, but the writing and storytelling should take risks. We’re much more excited by unique or problematic submissions than by polished or conventional work less likely to benefit from the Colony experience.
Applicants to the Screenwriters Colony must be nominated by an established professional working within the film industry. We seek out excellent nominees through industry recommendations, consulting with producers, screenwriters, directors, Colony alumni, festival programmers, studio executives, and film schools.
If you are an emerging writer who has not been nominated, there are two other possible paths to joining the applicant pool:
- The winner of the Nantucket Film Festival’s open submission Tony Cox Screenplay Competition is awarded one of the four spots at both the October Screenwriters Colony and the Episodic Comedy Colony. Information on applying can be found here.
- Writers who can provide a letter of recommendation from a well-established industry professional may send their nominator's contact information, a short personal bio, and a log-line for the script they'd like to develop at the Screenwriters Colony.
Due to the small nature of the program, we cannot accept applications from writing teams.
For more information about our programs and guidelines, please read our comprehensive Frequently Asked Questions. Further inquiries can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org