THE PEOPLE’S PILOT ONLINE WRITING CONTEST HAS BEEN CANCELLED

by Larry Brody

Some of you have gotten in touch to remind me that for the past several years the PEOPLE’S PILOT has opened on June 1st and to ask if an opening date has been set for PEOPLE’S PILOT 2020.

I hate having to say this, but there won’t be an opening date this year, and right now it looks as though the competition that has become synonymous with  TVWriter™ to many people probably won’t be back for quite awhile, if ever.

The following notice, which I posted on the PP landing page yesterday (at both https://peoplespilot.com and https://tvwriter.com/contests-the-peoples-pilot/) hits the salient points:

The PEOPLE’S PILOT Writing Contest has been helping new TV & film writers get the recognition they deserve for 20 years.

The current cultural, medical, and financial climates, however, have made it impossible for TVWriter™ to continue with the PP.

We believe it is imperative to correct the political, ethical, business, and public health problems that have caused so much recent suffering, and are channeling the energy formerly used for running our signature competition to that end.

We look forward to the day when The People’s Pilot can return. In the meantime, please be aware that:

For me, this is a very sad announcement.

I created the PP and have overseen 28 different runnings of the contest over the past 20 years. (For 4 of those years the PP was so popular we held it every six months.) This is the end of an era in my life.

The stresses all of us in the U.S. have been subjected to for the past three and a half + years have been affecting me more and more recently, probably because of my age and its attendant illnesses, including a recent battle with cancer.

No, I’m not going to die from that cancer. I had surgery four months ago, and the ever-able Dr. Dimitri Kuznetsov, got it all.

But these days I’m much more aware of the fact that I’m 75 years old and mortal as hell. And as a writer who spent most of my working life writing and/or producing TV shows like Police Story, Hawaii Five-0, The Streets of San Francisco, and on and on, I find myself wondering how much I’ve contributed to the glorification of guns and violence and general bullshit machismo that has and is causing so much harm.

I’ve been doing an overabundance of overthinking lately, and the regret that’s caused, combined with the fact that over the years PEOPLE’S PILOT has taken more time, effort, and toil than everything I do regarding TVWriter™ has brought me back to the primary feeling of my young adulthood – “It’s time to make this world a better place!”

But how do I do that when I have so much less energy than I did when I was that young man?

Since starting TVWriter™ in 1997 and completing the break from active TV work that I began in the early ’90s, I’ve dedicated myself to helping new writers master their craft and create meaningful and fulfilling written work.  This has become as important to me as my own writing was.

The way I see it, the thing I do best in my life these days is the teaching, mentoring, consulting thing. So that’s what TVWriter™ and I are going to concentrate on from now on.

Well, that and the actual living my life in a way that allows me to spend more time with my family and those I love.

Oh, and speaking of spending my time, I am now facing the fact that no matter how much I would like to get all of the PEOPLE’S PILOT 2019 Feedback out to its entrants, that just ain’t gonna happen.

To make up for that, I’ve expanded my online teaching schedule and will be offering Special Discount fees for the TVWriter™ Advanced Workshop or LB’s Master Class to qualified PP 2019 entrants. I also hope to be able to make a discounted Basic Workshop available to the remaining entrants, but that may take awhile.

An email with the deets will be winging its way to the involved parties next week.

That’s it for now. Stay healthy. Stay safe.

And don’t forget to WRITE!

LYMI LB

 

 

PEOPLE’S PILOT 2019 WINNERS!

28th PEOPLE’S PILOT WINNERS
For contest ending November 1, 2019

Here they are, the Best of the Best of the many fine entries in PEOPLE’S PILOT 2019, as determined by not one, not two, but three different judging teams composed of professional TV writers, feature film writers, TV producers, entertainment lawyers, entertainment critics, and, yes, creative executives.

COMEDY SERIES WINNERS

First Place
SHOOTING AT BALLERINAS by Hank Isaac (Web Series)

Second Place
DAMNED FOR ETERNITY by Paul Michael Lacy

Third Place
KING ELIZABETH by Henry Cline

1st Runner-Up
SINGLE #CRIME by N.J. London

2nd Runner-Up
MY RIGHT-HAND MAN by Anthony Moschetto

DRAMA & ACTION SERIES WINNERS

First Place
THE VILNA CHRONICLES by Ira Fuchs

Second Place
ESCAPE by Robert Tinsley (Audio Fiction)

Third Place
STRONGER by Mary Kate Allen

1st Runner-Up
CHRISTINA ON-CALL by Corinna Mendis

2nd Runner-Up
JB HICKOK’S WEIRD WEST by Robert Tinsley (Audio Fiction)

SPECIAL BONUS AWARDS

Best Web Series Pilot
SHOOTING BALLERINAS by Hank Isaac

Best Audio Series Pilot
J.B. HICKOK’S WEIRD WEST by Robert Tinsley

Attention, 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place and Special Bonus Award Winners, Larry Brody will be contacting you over the weekend regarding your prizes. 

For Team TVWriter™, the judging was anything but easy. After the first round, the top 5 scoring Comedy entries were separated by less than three-quarters of a point, and the top 4 scoring Drama/Action entries were tied, with two more entries tied at fifth and sixth place literally (in the true sense of the word) one-twentieth of a point behind.

Over the next few weeks, the top 5 in both categories changed every time a new judge divulged their rankings, and in the Drama/Action category several entries placed both first and fifth or even sixth on various ballets right up to the end.

In the Comedy category, ultimately the judges favored 1st Place finisher Hank Isaac’s SHOOTING BALLERiNAS for its originality, imagery, and subtlety. And the script’s demonstration of its mastery of the web series concept and exquisite prose added icing to an already delicious cake.

On the Drama/Action side, Ira Fuch’s THE VILMA CHRONICLES stood out for its immersive depiction of its historical setting and the intensity of the storytelling and dialog, which didn’t merely “jump off the page” as the old saying goes but leapt, danced, fought tooth and nail and for all practical purposes ripped every page to shreds.

Larry Brody and Team TVWriter™ congratulate our extraordinary Winners, Runners-Up, Finalists, Semi-Finalists, and every writer who entered. We Really Love You Mean It for all the work you’ve put in and hope you love yourselves for it as well. You are the possessors of extraordinary talent, courage, and perseverance and should be very, very proud!


Time now for a quick “What’s Next” re PEOPLE’S PILOT 2019.

Once again, not only the Winners, but all the entrants will of course be receiving LB’s personal Feedback on their work. He’ll be starting on this not-exactly-insignificant project early next week.

The boss flies solo on this, writing each Feedback email himself, which means it may take awhile for yours to arrive, so we hope you’ll be patient. Please, no angry “Where’s my Feedback, dammit?!” messages  – until at least the end of spring, okay?

LYMI

LB & Team TVWriter™

PEOPLE’S PILOT 2019 Finalists!

28th PEOPLE’S PILOT FINALISTS
For contest ending November 1, 2019

COMEDY SERIES FINALISTS
(alphabetically)

ANTONIA ALLWAYS: ANTONIA JOINS THE UNION by Gordon Charles Phipps

ANTONIA ALLWAYS: WHO IS MERLIN by Gordon Phipps

DAMNED FOR ETERNITY by Paul Michael Lacy

FANTASIES FOR SALE by Jushua Kushner

I MEOW BACK by Sacha Kenton

KING ELIZABETH by Henry Cline

MY RIGHT-HAND MAN by Anthony Moschetto

MY SPASTIC MUM by Lark Lee

PAST THE BAR by Jim Norman

SHOOTING AT BALLERINAS by Hank Isaac (Web Series)

SINGLE #CRIME by N.J. London

THE PINSTRIPED PRIMATES by Kenneth Kleeman

DRAMA & ACTION SERIES FINALISTS
(alphabetically)

9 WILL FALL by Lee Hayes & Rufus Robertson

A CRACK IN THE SKY by Thomas Franey

CHRISTINA ON-CALL by Corinna Mendis

CITADEL by Robert Glenn Plotner

ESCAPE by Robert Tinsley (Audio Drama)

FLASHBACKS by Arthur Tiersky

FRANK AND BRUNO by Lonny Anger

HIGHLAND DRIVE by Rosalyn Rosen

J.B. HICKOCK’S WEIRD WEST by Robert Tinsley (Audio Drama)

MR.ZAK by Lewis Ritter

SERGEANT SMACK by Ron Chepesiuk

SHOOTING STARS by Jorge C Perez

SOONER by Jack Wood

STARCHART by Gino DeMarco

STRONGER by Mary Kate Allen

THE CONSULTANTS by Alasdair McMullan

THE LAKESIDE CLUB by Carl Hippensteel

THE VILNA CHRONICLES by Ira Fuchs

TRANSFERENCE by Mark C. Spera


Congratulations, Finalists. Your work is extraordinary.

Once again, in both the Comedy and Action/Drama categories, the Finalists are separated by mere percentage points.

The median score for Comedy Finalists is 8.60 out of 10.00.

The median score for Drama Finalists is 8.85 out of 10.00.

The difference between the highest and lowest of the Comedy Finalists’ scores is a mere 0.95 points.

The difference between the highest and lowest of the Drama Finalists’ scores is even smaller – 0.50 points.

As this is being written, a final group of 12 new judges is giving the top scripts in each category a final read and making the ultimate determination of which entries are the best of the best.

Which means–

COMING IN TWO WEEKS: The announcement of the PEOPLE’S PILOT 2019 Winners. This definitely is something you don’t want to miss!

PEOPLE’S PILOT 2019 Semi-Finalists!

28th PEOPLE’S PILOT SEMI-FINALISTS
For contest ending November 1, 2019

COMEDY SERIES SEMI-FINALISTS
(alphabetically)

ANTONIA ALLWAYS: ANTONIA JOINS THE UNION by Gordon Charles Phipps

ANTONIA ALLWAYS: WHO IS MERLIN by Gordon Phipps

DAMNED FOR ETERNITY by Paul Michael Lacy

DIANA & ALLAN by Karin delaPeña

DiNK by Langley McArol

FANTASIES FOR SALE by Jushua Kushner

HOOKED by Brittany Portman & Anthony Patellis and Rob Alicea & Scarlett Camargo

I MEOW BACK by Sacha Kenton

KING ELIZABETH by Henry Cline

MRS.MD by Mary Kate Allen

MY RIGHT-HAND MAN by Anthony Moschetto

MY SPASTIC MUM by Lark Lee

PAST THE BAR by Jim Norman

RESURFACED by Steven Gaskin

SHOOTING AT BALLERINAS by Hank Isaac (Web Series)

SINGLE #CRIME by N.J. London

THE C WORD by Evelyn Pitt-Stoller

HEROES GUILD by Dalton Short

THE LOST TREASURE OF SPENCER TRACY by Jared Reise

THE MOBSTERS BOSS by Dana Olita

THE PINSTRIPED PRIMATES by Kenneth Kleeman

DRAMA & ACTION SERIES SEMI-FINALISTS
(alphabetically)

#BASH by Richard Mansfield

9 WILL FALL by Lee Hayes & Rufus Robertson

A CRACK IN THE SKY by Thomas Franey

A NEW WORLD by Gregory Schroeder

CHRISTINA ON-CALL by Corinna Mendis

CITADEL by Robert Glenn Plotner

ESCAPE by Robert Tinsley (Audio Drama)

EVER LAKE by Christopher O’Bryant

FLASHBACKS by Arthur Tiersky

FRANK AND BRUNO by Lonny Anger

HIGHLAND DRIVE by Rosalyn Rosen

J.B. HICKOCK’S WEIRD WEST by Robert Tinsley (Audio Drama)

MY WILD EYED BOY by Danny Matier

MR.ZAK by Lewis Ritter

OUT OF THIS WORLD by Darren Butler

PAPERWEIGHT by Michael Sokey & Katie Scrivner

PRIVILEGED by Kira Liva

RED SCARE by Christopher O’Bryant

RED SPY QUEEN by Leslie Lyshkov

REVAMP by Adam Graham

SERGEANT SMACK by Ron Chepesiuk

SHOOTING STARS by Jorge C Perez

SOONER by Jack Wood

SOULS FORGOTTEN by Langley McArol

STARCHART by Gino DeMarco

STRONGER by Mary Kate Allen

THE CONSULTANTS by Alasdair McMullan

THE JOY OF STEALING PARIS by Michelle Gordon

THE LAKESIDE CLUB by Carl Hippensteel

THE TROUBLE AT DEACON HILL by Megan Cunningham

THE VILLA by Ron Basso & Yana Gibbs

THE VILNA CHRONICLES by Ira Fuchs

TRANSFERENCE by Mark C. Spera


Everybody who entered PEOPLE’S PILOT 2019 deserves applause, but today we’re putting our hands together specifically for the Semi-Finalists above. They have demonstrated courage, hard work, and skill, and all of us at TVWriter™ agree that they should be very proud of what they’ve written, as we most  certainly are.

This is only the beginning. A new judges’ panel has slid into the seats vacated by the first round judges, and its members are almost finished  narrowing the field down) after which a third panel will determine the Winners and Runners Up.

Which means–

COMING IN TWO WEEKS: The announcement of the PEOPLE’S PILOT 2019 Finalists. BE HERE. Or, as one of LB’s favorite agents used to say back in the day, “Love you, mean it. Buh-bye!”

LB: 2nd Thoughts on my 1st Thoughts on the PEOPLE’S PILOT 2019 Writing Competition Entries

tv_writer_peoples_pilot_main

by Larry Brody

Last week – on November 5th, to be precise – I posted my preliminary thoughts about this year’s PEOPLE’S PILOT entries.

I still can’t go too far beyond that because I’ll need to have read all the entries to make valid comparisons and judgments about PEOPLE’S PILOT 2019 in relation to previous runnings of the competition, but I do have a couple of things to add in response to some questions that have come up.

So:

For those who’ve been wondering about the gender of the writers who have entered, here’s what I’ve got:

  • Comedy Series Writers
    Women 27%
    Men 73%
  • Drama Series Writers
    Women 30%
    Men 70%

Note:

The PP doesn’t ask for gender and probably would be breaking the law if it did, which means that the above figures have to be regarded with caution because they are only estimates based on pretty darn flimsy data – the writers’ names and my probably naive interpretation of the gender they usually are used for.

Similarly, I have no idea of how many of the entrants have eschewed binary gender identification and regard themselves in another way altogether.

In other words, my apologies for what seems to me to be a most inadequate response.

While we’re on the subject, I have to say that the percentage of women entrants has surprised me. I always assumed it was much higher because over the 5+ years I’ve been holding Larry Brody’s Master Class a full 64% of the students have been women.

Why do women account for almost 2/3 of my students yet less than 1/3 of the contest entrants? Anyone out there want to venture a guess? You can get in touch with me via the comments or email me at larrybrody@tvwriter.com .

For those who’ve been wondering about how successful TVWriter™s attempt to encourage Web Series and Audio Fiction Series, here are the stats:

  • Web Series Entries
    5% of the total entries were marked and paid for as web series.
  • Audio Fiction Series:
    2% of the total entries were marked and paid for as audio fiction series.
  1. Note:

I think this low turnout sucks and take full responsibility for it. I’m open to any and all suggestions for how to improve the “intended-for-emedia-response in next year’s PP.

Well, that’s not quite accurate. I’m open to more than suggestions. I’m ready and willing to accept genuine help in getting more of those involved in what I think of as next-gen TV into PEOPLE’S PILOT 2020.

If you’re interested in getting involved in this aspect of the competition – or any other aspect of it for that matter – by all means leave a comment below or email me at larrybrody@tvwriter.com .

Thanks to everyone who has been interested and excited enough to get in touch with me about the contest and, of course, to all those who entered.

LYMI

lboldwriter

 

 

LB