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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

What is a Reader?
What is Coverage?
Why should I get my script covered by The Screenplay Mechanic?
How do I get a Consider? 
So will The Screenplay Mechanic Pass on my script?
So how does Coverage help me?
Can I get more in-depth analysis on my script?
Does the Mechanic offer telephone consultation?


What is a Reader?
 
The “studio reader” is arguably the most important person you have to convince of your vision.  If you send your script to an agent, manager, production company, or a studio, no one will read a single page until it passes through the hands of a Reader or Story Analyst.  These are often union or freelance positions.  Some less scrupulous (or cheap) companies will exploit interns.  Sad, but true.  If your script receives a “CONSIDER” in the reader’s report (referred to as “Coverage”) it will go higher within the company.  An agent, exec, or producer will then read it.  If your script receives a “PASS” it will be discarded or recycled.  No one else will read it. 

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What is Coverage?

A 4-page report.  The first page lists all the basic information (title, locale, genre, etc.), a logline, a comments summary, and a “box score.”  The next 2 pages will contain a synopsis.  The last page is the comments page.  Here, the reader will comment on the various elements of the script (character, plot, dialogue) and make a recommendation. 

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faq

Why should I get my script “covered” by The Screenplay Mechanic?

Coverage is a great way to get honest feedback on your script from someone with real knowledge about material.  You can let your wife, boyfriend, mother, or best buddy read your script, but will they give you an unbiased opinion?  The Screenplay Mechanic has read over 3000 screenplays and written coverage on every single one of them.  Before you blow your one shot with the Spielbergs or Jacksons of Hollywood, why not spend a few bucks and run your script by someone who knows what those guys are looking for?  Why not get the same report on your script that you would get if it went to Fox, WB, Universal, etc.?  Feedback is crucial for a writer. 

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How do I get a “Consider?”

Screenwriting is incredibly difficult.  It’s easier to become an actor and get on television.  The first and often hardest step is getting a good recommendation for your script.  Studios often tell their readers to “Consider” a script ONLY if they would be willing to invest their own money to make it.  So you’ve written a cinematic masterpiece – would you spend $60 million out of your own pocket to get it produced?  Do you think you would make that money back?  If the reader says no to either, the script is a “Pass.” 

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So will The Screenplay Mechanic “Pass” on my script?

There’s a very good chance.  Yes.  It helps no one if every script is awarded a “Consider” if it isn’t ready or solid enough to warrant a studio’s serious attention.  However, forget the recommendation.  As a screenwriter you should never take coverage personally.  Remember, you are getting one person’s opinion.  A valuable opinion from a fresh set of professional eyes reading your script.  If the reader believes your script is brilliant and ready for Hollywood, it will earn a “Consider.”  If it needs work or The Screenplay Mechanic doesn’t personally think it’s ready, it could earn a “Pass.”

Be aware that you can also receive a “Consider W/ Reservations.”  This recommendation is given to a script with some very strong elements but cause for concern.  Perhaps it needs a little more work or the basic premise has real potential.     

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So how does Coverage help me?

Again, it’s one person’s professional opinion.  It’s tough getting feedback on the script your wrote.  It may have taken you months to write, but it takes someone an hour, sometimes 2 or 3 hours, to actually read.  That’s a big favor to ask.  Hollywood executives, producers, actors certainly won’t read it.  Not without coverage.  So pay The Screenplay Mechanic to read your screenplay.  He’ll tell you what he thinks and give you constructive criticism.  Maybe the Mechanic will love the script, give it a “Consider” and you’ll have studio-style coverage to show around or include with your query letters.  Above all else, it’s real, sincere feedback and that’s a priceless tool for any writer.

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Can I get more in-depth analysis on my script?

Yes.  The Screenplay Mechanic also offers “Development Notes.”  Projects which are set-up at studios undergo development, sometimes for months or even years.  During this time, creative executives will work with writers and help them perfect and polish the script.  To help the writer, creative teams and analysts will write Development Notes. 

The Mechanic offers a standard 6-8 pages of notes, covering all aspects of the script.  The concept, characters, plot, dialogue, pacing, marketability, everything will be analyzed to determined the strengths and weaknesses in the material.  Structural, formatting, and grammatical notes are often included.  Notes are an essential tool for the writer who has an early draft, or for someone seeking advice on how to fix or improve their story.

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