Lew Hunter's Screenwriting 434
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Frequently Asked Questions

1. Why should I sign up for a workshop? Can’t I just do it on my own?
2. What are the actual dates of the Colonies?
3. If I want to stay longer may I?
4. What if I want to take a day or two to travel to one of the near cities for sightseeing? Will I be permitted to do so?
5. What is the nearest airport?
6. How many people are expected to attend the Colony?
7. How do you decide which workshop a student is assigned to?
8. May I choose the workshop I want to be in?
9. What if I’m a raw beginner and have very limited writing experience? Will I be admitted?
10. What if I’m an experienced or professional writer; will I feel challenged by the writing level?
11. What if I don’t finish my script at the Colony?
12. If I finish my script or get close to completion, what happens next?
13. Why do I have to submit a script as part of the application process?
14. It seems like there are a lot of activities and social events, I’m not sure I want to participate in all of them. I might want to spend every spare moment writing, is that all right?
15. Do I have to complete a full script?
16. I’m afraid I’m not good enough, will I be humiliated?
17. What if I want to leave early? Or just take off for a weekend?
18. What should I bring?
19. How do I sign up?

1. Why should I sign up for a workshop? Can’t I just do it on my own?

It’s true that there are books and CD-ROMs available to take you through the steps of writing a screenplay, in fact most of them are really wonderful. But screenwriting is a medium of paradox. The marketplace seems to shift and change, yet there are elements of storytelling and screenwriting that remain constant. This workshop will help you as a writer to make decisions that will be an asset to your work and career. This is also one of the rare workshops that focuses on the writing itself. You will be in daily feedback groups working on your screenplay. You will receive immediate feedback on the work you generate. You will be encouraged to grow as a writer and to think professionally as you tackle your script.

2. What are the actual dates of the Colonies?

Click here: Colonies 2010

3. If I want to stay longer may I?

Absolutely, but whether you come early or stay later, it will be your financial responsibility. It will also be your responsibility to make those plans independent of the Colony.

4. What if I want to take a day or two to travel to one of the near cities for sightseeing? Will I be permitted to do so?

You are free to come and go as you please. We do not have restrictions of any sorts on the students who attend the Colony. We will provide the weekend off, so that students have time to work on their writing in a focused manner, but that time can easily be used for traveling if it is your preference. The only thing we ask, is that as a courtesy you let us know your timetable and your destination. Otherwise, we might worry about you.

5. What is the nearest airport?

US Colonies:

Omaha or Lincoln Airport, Nebraska.

6. How many people are expected to attend the Colony?

We have open positions for twenty students. Those students will be then be assigned to a workshop, one beginner and one advanced. So the workshops will have 10 students each. The lecture is open to all the students and we will meet as one group. This provides for an open forum so that we can all benefit from questions that are asked or discussions that provide further information and illumination. You must be flexible, because we often have visitors to the Colony. Local writers, filmmakers and academics will often drop in for a day or more because of our reputation. Reporters from the press and the local T.V. news will often drop in and interview the participants and the professors. It goes with the territory.

7. How do you decide which workshop a student is assigned to?

The decision is based on past history with the student, and with the writing skill that is demonstrated on the writing sample in the application packet.

8. May I choose the workshop I want to be in?

No.

9. What if I’m a raw beginner and have very limited writing experience? Will I be admitted?

The point of the Colony is to learn. Lew Hunter has vast experience with all levels of writers. The most important thing any student can bring to the Colony Workshop is a willingness and receptiveness to the learning process.

10. What if I’m an experienced or professional writer; will I feel challenged by the writing level?

Each student should compete against himself or herself, but the feedback will be at a professional critique level. Our past roster of students demonstrates that professional writers not only thrive, but often find the writing experience a kick start to their career.

11. What if I don’t finish my script at the Colony?

If you look at the main page, our goal for each student is to finish a Step-Outline (scene outline) and the first 30 pages of a script. If you go beyond that, we’re thrilled and will encourage and support your writing. If you don’t quite make the goal, we will work with you to see how we can help get you on track. To be honest, it is a difficult assignment for even the most experienced writer to complete an entire screenplay in a two-week period. We occasionally have a writer who will complete his or her script in that timeframe, and we are always overwhelmed and amazed and absolutely thrilled.

12. If I finish my script or get close to completion, what happens next?

Lew Hunter will provide a night of open discussion and information about the industry and how to make in-roads into the industry using this script and future scripts as your calling card. It is scheduled on the syllabus.

13. Why do I have to submit a script as part of the application process?

There are two sections to the Colony and we want same-skill level people to be grouped together when possible. We also want to know that our participants are coming into the Colony with a high level writing ability.

14. It seems like there are a lot of activities and social events, I’m not sure I want to participate in all of them. I might want to spend every spare moment writing, is that all right?

All activities and events are optional. Even the Colony sessions and seminar sessions are optional. You will be encouraged to participate, however, because feedback, networking, schmoozing, and socializing with other writers are all part of the process that will help you grow.

15. Do I have to complete a full script?

Naturally you will be encouraged to write the most pages possible. But it’s unrealistic to believe that a full draft will be completed. It is our goal to have each participant complete a step-outline and the first act (first 30 pages) of the script.

16. I’m afraid I’m not good enough, will I be humiliated?

First and foremost, we are here to learn. So each writer will be encouraged and respected.

17. What if I want to leave early? Or just take off for a weekend?

Your schedule is up to you. Your actions are not monitored or judged. If you feel you want to take off for a day or two, that’s absolutely fine. We would request that you let someone know, however, so that we don’t worry about you.
It must be said, however, that the focus of the Colony is on writing and any illegal or illicit activities will be dealt with by immediate expulsion from the colony without refund of payment. You may unwind in moderation with beer or wine, but please, no hard liquor.

18. What should I bring?

A laptop. Notebook and pencils. Paper. Casual summer clothes..or Autumn..depending on which Colony you select. Toiletries. Swimsuit. Bug repellant. If you forget something, there are places to shop nearby.

19. How do I sign up?

Click onto the application, fill it out and submit it with a writing sample.

For more information, call Lew: (402) 879-3617