Every two or three weeks, I usually get email from readers wanting to know more about my experience with Terra Firma Films' Emerging Writers Program. I haven't posted much about it at all, and given how I'm prone to rant on about a variety of things, it may seem odd that I'm silent on the matter.
I didn't want to speak prematurely until I'd experienced the program in its entirety. Over the past few weeks, I've been working hard as I approach one of the program's big milestones: completing my full-length feature script, and getting major notes for a rewrite. Next month I plan to ask the kind folks at Terra Firma if they'd be comfortable with me posting my own personal experiences here. I may even ask if they'll submit to a quick Q&A that may enlighten you further.
Like their website says, the program is structured around a writing workshop that runs for several months, during which each writer pitches, outlines, writes, and rewrites a feature screenplay. We're also introduced to various agents, managers, producers, and other screenwriters. In informal chat sessions, they tell us where they're from, how they got into the business, and what it's like when they work with writers. The advice is honest and blunt and very useful.
Suffice to say it's a Very Good Thing that a major studio is encouraging one of its shingles to foster new writers so they'll know the ropes and produce good work. I sincerely hope that other studios follow this example. And of course it will help if Terra Firma workshop graduates go on to bigger and better things, which I assure you we're all hell-bent on doing.
If you're an LA-based screenwriter, there is no question that you should apply. This program is free of charge and the information, feedback, and contacts I'm getting are priceless. From what I understand, Terra Firma reads submissions year-round, and they keep close watch on those who submit more than once.
So look at their website, fill out the application (and write a really good limerick), and submit the best, strongest chunk of screenplay you've ever penned.
More later. Promise.