Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Reduced-Price Script Coverage & Notes!

12/6/10 - Update: YES, I am still doing notes! Rates are all still the same.  E-mail me!

"Amanda is an incredible reader. Her insight into my script was original and compelling. In fact, I just optioned it to a prominent production company. So use her!" - Tony D

"Amanda gave me excellent script coverage with my Law and Order: Criminal Intent spec. She praised the positive aspects while giving me constructive feedback about the parts of my script that weren't working without hurting my feelings or making me feel stupid--and as a sensitive person, I admire someone who can do that. She not only gave me advice on the overall structure of the script but helped me with nit-picky details that many other readers might have overlooked. I spent several hundred dollars on feedback from so-called "professional scriptwriting services" but won't make that same mistake in the future--I got better quality script notes and advice from Amanda." - Sarah M

I've really enjoyed getting all of your emails, and I'm glad to have shared some of the things I've learned about writing and the industry over the past couple years. However, I know that sometimes you guys are looking for more specific feedback on your individual scripts - so I'm introducing a reduced-price script coverage & notes service.

Why am I doing this? 1. A lot of you have been asking for my notes. 2. I know there are a bunch of services out there, but $600 is something that most aspirers just cannot afford. 3. It's kind of the off-season for tutoring, and I'm seriously running out of cash.

My rates are:
1/2-hour pilot or spec: $65
1-hour pilot or spec: $80
feature: $100

I'll bill you through PayPal and you can pay via credit card, bank account, etc.

You can compare this with Alex Epstein, who charges $600 for TV and $850 for features, or Jen Grisanti, who charges $450 for TV and $600 for features. They've worked as professionals and I'm sure they give great feedback...but that's a lot of money.

What you'll get from me: at least three pages of notes addressing the structure, plot, characters, dialogue, format, commercial viability and writing style/voice of your script. (Keep in mind I'll probably have more to say about a feature than a half-hour sitcom.) I'll also recommend any relevant scripts I think you should read or shows/films I think you should watch. Turnaround time is one week. (If I suddenly get hundreds of scripts, I may have to change that, but I think it'll be fine for now.) If you need immediate help for some kind of deadline, we can talk about an additional fee. And if you're not sure if I'm familiar with a show you're speccing, feel free to email and ask.

But Amanda, you say, you're still just an aspiring writer too. Yes, of course. That's why I'm cheap. I haven't sold anything yet. I haven't been staffed yet. But I HAVE read dozens and dozens of scripts by aspirers and professionals. The agency I worked at didn't have freelance readers, so the assistants did all the reading. I've also listened to hundreds of phone in calls in which producers and executives talked about why they liked scripts and why they didn't, why they were willing to shell out $600,000 and why they weren't.

Here's what a few people who asked for my notes had to say:

"Amanda's critique was insightful and specific. She helped me tighten the structure of my BONES spec immensely and provided a window into how industry insiders would see my script." -Rebecca S

"Amanda put into perspective everything that was weak about our feature script, but in a very positive and constructive way. With every criticism came a helpful suggestion. She is a genius script doctor and her diagnosis was the perfect cure for our story. She definitely knows the anatomy of a script and is a very valuable resource." -John L and Ishira K

"Amanda read and gave notes on a half-hour TV spec pilot I wrote. Amanda's notes were smart, constructive and detailed which helped in the finessing of the script. The script has now been optioned by a UK TV production company who work a lot with the BBC." - Kevin L

If you're interested in my coverage service, send me an email at aspiringwriterblog at gmail dot com. I will send you a release form to fill out, sign and mail or scan and email (sadly I don't have a fax machine). Don't fret about this - it's just a protective thing that happens all the time. I'm not starting this service to steal people's ideas - I have plenty of my own. :) Then I will send you a PayPal invoice, and after I see that the payment is processing, I'll start reading.

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Dan Williams said...

Hope you get lots of scripts! With your insider knowledge, you have a lot to offer, and if you help make a script that much more accessible to industry decision-makers, it's well worth it and at prices that are well affordable.

Manda said...

This is a great idea, Amanda. Best of luck with it.

Dan Williams said...

If you came across a manuscript that was really good, or you worked with a writer and brought the quality up high enough, could you take it to your former agency to ask about representation? Or suggest it to agent friends? Anyway, just a thought.

GregM said...

Good luck, Amanda. Your notes on my Reaper spec were quite helpful.

Witty Sam said...

Wow! I'll keep you in mind. I'm an Aussie living in... you guessed it AussieLand, would it be possible to still use your services? re:payment

Amanda said...

Hey Sam - Absolutely. Since I use paypal, I don't think it matters where you live. Send me an email at apendol1@yahoo.com !