Frequently Asked Questions
WHAT IS SCREENWRITERS COLONY?
Screenwriters Colony is a non-profit retreat program for screenwriters. Part residency, part mentorship, our programs bring together four writers who live and work in a beautiful, inspiring location (Nantucket or Costa Rica) with all needs accommodated to provide the time and space for intensive writing and workshopping with industry mentors.
WHAT IS THE OCTOBER COLONY?
The October Colony is our flagship program for four feature film screenplay writers who live at Almanack Arts Colony on Nantucket for the entire month of October each year. On three weekends throughout the month we bring established industry mentors to the island to workshop scripts and share meals and outings with the writers.
WHAT IS THE EPISODIC COMEDY COLONY?
The Episodic Comedy Colony is a program in partnership with the Nantucket Film Festival for four writers of original 30-minute scripted serial comedy. Writers work together with eminent industry professionals to develop their comedy pilot scripts, experience the Writers’ Room, and develop pitches. White Heron Theatre Company presents scenes from each pilot in a staged reading at the film festival.
WHAT IS THE EPISODIC DRAMA COLONY?
Like our other programs, this new endeavor aims to provide a nurturing framework and breakthrough opportunities for four writers with unique voices and important stories for our times. Our inaugural program ran for 18 days from February 25th – March 15th and brought together four writers with industry mentors in Nosara, Costa Rica. 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.
WHAT DOES IT COST TO APPLY TO AND ATTEND THE SCREENWRITERS COLONY?
Application is free and all expenses are paid, including travel, shared use of a car, bicycles, and meals cooked by a private chef.
HOW CAN I APPLY FOR THE COLONY?
Application is not an open process. Writers must be nominated by a recognized industry professional in order to apply.
WHAT IS INVOLVED IN THE APPLICATION PROCESS?
Nominees are asked to submit a screenplay and completed application including a bio and personal statement.
WHAT IS THE APPLICATION AND SELECTION TIMELINE?
The deadline to apply for our upcoming OCTOBER COLONY is JUNE 10, 2019. We start reading immediately and make selections throughout the evaluation period, so early submissions are recommended. Our final decisions are announced in early August.
For the EPISODIC COMEDY COLONY our call for nominations will begin in early February with a final deadline of early March.
Our next EPISODIC DRAMA COLONY will take place in early 2020 and we will announce our application timeline closer to the date.
GENERAL INFORMATION AND SUBMISSION GUIDELINES:
We seek writers early enough in their career that the Colony will have a meaningful impact on their creative and professional growth, but not so early that they haven’t established the proven ability to build an audience and the necessary commitment to forge a life as a writer for the screen. In other words, a writer who’s already had three features produced is probably too far along, while a writer who hasn’t yet established her/himself (with well-received festival work, legitimate representation, paid writing work, or the like) is probably not far along enough.
Writers must be able to spend the entire duration of the program in Nantucket or Costa Rica. The immersion of participating in the full Colony program is vital to the experience.
For our evaluation process we require the feature screenplay or pilot script for the show you intend to work on at the Colony. We prefer complete, promising drafts, but will accept unfinished scripts that are at least half written and accompanied by a full detailed outline.
Screenwriters Colony seeks writers with projects in various stages of development that can benefit from the dedicated time, space, and mentorship our programs offer. We welcome early drafts of works in progress, as well as screenplays closer to the finish line as long as the writer still feels there is significant work to be done.
Adaptations are acceptable.
In the case of co-written projects, we can only consider ONE member of the writing team for the residency, and your application should include clarification of the division of labor as part of the application.
Candidates need not be focused on a writing career to the exclusion of directing or other pursuits, but should demonstrate an unmistakable devotion to the process, craft and art of writing for the screen.
We don’t favor any genre or style of project over another. We’re open to “mainstream” and “indie” and projects anywhere on the artistic spectrum. What matters to us is finding writers with unique voices, points of view, and the potential to contribute powerful stories to society. If the submitted project feels like something we’ve seen a hundred times before, whether from Hollywood or Park City, we’re unlikely to be enthused. We look forward to receiving and reading the stories for screen you are most passionate about telling!