Earlier this year my husband and I participated in the NYC Midnight Screenwriter’s Challenge and much to our surprise we ended the competition at 3rd place! The challenge was broken up into 3 rounds, and in each round writers were put into groups of about 20-25 writers each. The top 5 screenplays from each group went onto the next round of the competition.
It was a pretty great challenge, each round was different, and we never knew what genre or character we were going to be assigned until each round began. I honestly didn’t think that our first round screenplay (14 pages I think?) was good at all, but somehow we managed to get through that round in 5th place – which was the last place a screenplay could be in to advance to the next round. Our second round screenplay was a little better and we ended it in 2nd place. Once we completed our 3rd and final round screenplay (5 pages) in about 3 hours, I knew we were doomed. I had no hopes at all of finishing in the top 5 – but somehow we actually finished in 3rd place! Even if we hadn’t placed at all we both had a really great time writing and working together, and have plans to do this more often in the future for full length screenplays.
Starting Friday the NYC Midnight folks are hosting another challenge – Short Screenplay Challenge 2011. From the sound of it its going to be a little different than the Screenwriter’s Challenge. There are 4 rounds and everyone competes in the first two rounds. Each screenplay is 5 pages long and there are 2 days to complete each screenplay. There will be an assigned genre, location, and object. It will be interesting to see how this challenge will be different from the previous challenge. I’m nervous about how we will do, but no matter what we will at least have 2 more short screenplays to add to our collection.