“Right then. Let’s review class activity, shall we? Well, well, well… What a sorry lot you are. I don’t know why I waste my time, not one of you will amount to much, NOT ONE!
Sorry… What was that? You “tried your best” – well that’s not good enough! And who was that squeaking at the back anyway? Stand up straight. Tuck your shirt in. If you dedicated more time to screenwriting and less time to chatting on the internet, perhaps one of you urchins will advance forward in some kind of contest…
…Oh you placed in the last one everyone in the Blogosphere entered? Well you didn’t win, did you? Everyone knows that’s the most important thing! Ridiculous girl. And who’s muttering on now…
…You boy! What did you say? There were 2100 entries in the last contest? So? If you were truly fabulous, you still could have made it through and you didn’t, did you? How many people made it through anyway? Everyone knows that’s the most important thing… At least until the actual result is published and the rest of the people who place are exposed as the losers they *really* are.
Now open your dictation books: write as I say it. The only thing that matters is winning screenwriting contests. Everything else is secondary–“
–Er, excuse me.
Shut it Teacher.
If you don’t get through on contests, that’s cool – you’re in good company, plenty of others don’t either.
If you do get through on contests though, again you’re in good company: lots of people do!
Sometimes a good script will end up bottom of the pile when shit floats to the top; that is true. Other times there are good reasons your script didn’t make it. Sometimes a script can even place in one contest and not even make a dent in another.
There are loads of contests, basically. Some will get you places. Others won’t.
If nothing else, a contest can give you a deadline and an opportunity to practice. Your time honing your craft is never wasted.
Stop telling yourself you’re a bad writer when you’re rejected.
And get on with it: writing, that is.
Here endeth today’s lesson.