Script Coverage Services

Script Coverage Services

*Scripts & Scribes does not offer any paid reader services, nor any consulting services. *

We are frequently asked if script coverage services are “worth it” and if so, do we recommend any.  As far as the first question, of the value and worth of paid coverage service, the answer is “it depends”.  Most screenwriters could benefit from a second set of eyes who will read their screenplay and give fair and objective, but critical notes to help make the script as good as it can possibly be.

If you have people in your life that you trust to be honest with you about your work and have a good sense of screenplay format and the industry itself, then you likely already have this covered.  If you do not, then you might consider getting a second opinion from a good paid reader/consultant.

There are literally dozens and dozens of paid readers, script consultants and coverage services.  Some are incredibly experienced and can make a very positive impact on a screenwriter’s script. Others might be merely trying to cash in on novice screenwriters and have few credentials or the experience to truly help screenwriters succeed.  We have listed a few readers/coverage services below that are highly recommended by our readers/listeners for both their exceptional professionalism and quality of their services.

 

Scripts & Scribes is not compensated in any way by the listed individuals/services below and we take no responsibility for services purchased or rendered.  We created this list solely to assist screenwriters in finding reputable and professional script coverage services as a courtesy to our community.  Should you have a good or bad experience with any of the readers/services listed here, we’d love to hear about it.

Other questions about screenwriting?  Take a look at our FAQ.

 

Looking to read some screenplays from your favorite movies?  Be sure to visit our Sample Screenplays page.

 

Finished your screenplay and ready to get an agent or manager?  Check out our literary Agent & Manager Interviews first and get some inside tips.

 

 

EXT. HOLLYWOOD – DAY:

Bart Gold – Ext. Hollywood – Day

 

What are your qualifications?

I am a sold WGA screenwriter (features) who did coverage for the film companies for five years.  During that time I read scripts for Brett Ratner, Jerry Bruckheimer, New Line, Orion, Richard Donner, Wendy Finerman, Cinergi, Dreamworks, MPCA (Dumb & Dumber), Team Todd (Austin Powers), New Regency and more.  I made good calls as a filmco reader. I made strong recommends on American Beauty, Ocean’s 11, Antwone Fisher, Dragonfly and more. I’ve had film company execs with half a billion dollars in Box Office to their name call me at home to talk them into or out of buying specs.

Absorbing the lessons of thousands of spec script readings helped my own writing immensely- to the point where I landed a feature spec sale, (Universal) my guild card and some feature rewrites.  I’ve had 6 original script options as well, on a few different specs.  And my ‘My Name Is Earl spec was chosen from over 400 submissions for one of two open spots writing jokes for Jack FM radio.

 

How much do you charge for script coverage and what does that entail?

My story notes consist of page-by-page notes taken as I’m reading, followed by an overall analysis formed once I know the intended outcome of the entire story. Average 4x as long as studio script coverage. I think I’m offering valuable insight at a reasonable rate. $140.  $10 off for Scripts & Scribes readers.  Most folks these days paypal me using ExtHollywoodDay@aol.com as the pay-to.  Then they’ll email a PDF.

I’ll email back notes and then the writer’s free to email back and forth with me to discuss the notes or spitball solutions.  This is handy when the script’s tone is in question.  Not every script makes its imperatives 100% clear.  So sometimes there’s If Then questions that get resolved during discussion.

 

What other services do you offer?

I do offer phone consultations: $50/hr. Any script topic you need solved. Plot points, “Is this a good idea”, name it. E me to discuss. Available with or without a full feature read.

 

Average turnaround time for completed coverage?

Turnaround is generally in a couple days.  When you email me, I’ll let you know if I’ve got something going on that would make the wait longer.  (IE if I’m on one of my reality TV Story Editing gigs, or under a deadline, or in rare cases if I get multiple scripts submitted all at once.)

 

Success stories:

I have had clients come back to me to say they’ve won script contests.  One won the Scr(i)pt Magazine Open Door Contest, and got the writer cash, prizes and a manager.  Another placed in Project Greenlight.  I’ve consulted for a finalist who actually appeared on the show.  I’ve had a few folks tell me that their revised script got them lit reps.  But I think the most important kind of thing I hear-  and I hear it often- is ‘you finally illuminated for me what was not working about the draft.’  I’ve had compliments like ‘you convinced me of what my whole writing group couldn’t’ or ‘wow, this is a serious re-think, but I can see how it’ll be better after the rewrite.’   I take those moments as successes.

 

Website URL:  Ext. Hollywood – Day

Email Address:  Email Bart Gold

 

The Screenplay Mechanic:

Andrew the Screenplay Mechanic

 

What are your qualifications?

I’ve worked in development since the late 90s. One of my first jobs was an assistant at Silver Pictures. From there, I went to work for a producer at Paramount as a Story Editor. Next, I worked as a Senior Story Analyst at New Regency Productions (at 20th Century Fox). I did that for a decade until I started my own reading business in 2009. Today, I read 300 scripts a year for private clients worldwide. All told, I’ve read somewhere in the region of 7000 screenplays, cover to cover.

I’ve also worked in a producer capacity on several projects, so I’ve experienced development and production from both sides of the equation — writer and producer.

 

How much do you charge for script coverage and what does that entail?

My base service is $99. It’s a cover page (logline, box score, etc.) and two pages of evaluation and notes. It’s easily my most popular service due to its bang for the buck.

 

What other services do you offer?

Studio-Style coverage, which is the same as Notes-Only except it includes a synopsis, is $175.

Full Development Notes, which can range anywhere from 8 – 14 pages is $299. That includes a detailed synopsis, more detailed development notes, and page specific notes (typos etc.)

 

Average turnaround for completed coverage?

I work a little different than most coverage services. You contact me, I tell you my next date (usually 3-4 weeks out), then you tell if you want to reserve it. You’ll then send a PDF and payment the day before your reservation. I read it the date your scheduled for and send you my work that same day. This system allows writers to keep their material so they can continue rewriting and polishing right up until the day I read it. Whereas other services will sit on your script for a week or two and you have to guess when you’ll get notes back.

 

Success stories:

Since I left the studios, my biggest success story has to be BRAKE. I helped the writer go from his parents’ basement on the East Coast to the set of his own movie. A couple of other clients have had their projects go into production too. I’ve also helped clients find representation and many have placed well in competitions and optioned/sold their material. These days, if I find a script I love, I try to help it find a home. From time to time I also hear of small, private assignment work too and I try to connect those requests with talented writers.

 

Website URL:  The Screenplay Mechanic

Email Address:  Email Andrew the Screenplay Mechanic

 

The ScriptGal:

Amanda the ScriptGal

 

What are your qualifications?

I was a Hollywood Development Executive (which means acquiring scripts and properties and overseeing screenwriters) for over 12 years.  I was a Creative Executive at Walt Disney / Touchstone Pictures.  I ran development for Academy Award winning producer Mark Johnson (RAIN MAN, BREAKING BAD) and director Barry Levinson’s company BALTIMORE PICTURES.  I also ran development for producers Katie Jacobs (HOUSE) and Gail Mutrux (DONNIE BRASCO).  I left Hollywood to obtain a graduate degree and now am consulting with screen and television writers, as well as writing my own projects.

 

How much do you charge for script coverage and what does that entail?

Prices vary.  For studio style coverage – which includes a detailed synopsis and is generally only commissioned by writers who are ready to start showing their scripts to third parties – I charge $200.  Full Development Notes are 8-10 pages of detailed analysis of your script, including suggestions for revisions and page notes.  Those are $300.  I also offer a Comments Only version of notes which are 2-4 pages, and cover the major elements of your script for $125.  All coverage and notes come with a grid assessing the strengths and weakness of storyline, character, dialogue, etc. and offer recommendations on the script and the writer.

 

What other services do you offer?

I consult on television projects as well as manuscripts.  I do proofreading and advanced editing (prices vary depending upon the project.)  I also offer phone consultation.  And on a project-by-project basis I offer a more intensive development service which basically duplicates what I used to do with my writers in Hollywood – I am hands-on in the creative process, from consulting on an initial concept, to reading pages as the writer works, etc.  In those cases I exchange emails with writers on have regularly scheduled phone consultations.

 

Average turnaround time for completed coverage?

It varies, but usually between 10 -14 days.

 

Success stories:

My writers have gone on to win contests and awards – including placing in the top tiers of the Nicholls.  Jacqueline Fitzgerald found a manager and won  the Austin Film Festival’s Enderby Entertainment Award – for screenplays that can be produced for under $5 million –  for her comedy script HOOKING UP.  Many have found agents and managers and have screenplays optioned.

I don’t know if I can take any credit for his success, but Richard Cordiner is probably the biggest success story.  I read his script THE SHARK IS NOT WORKING. He got an agent and manager is currently writing a script for Warner Brothers.

 

Website URL:  The Script Gal
Email Address:  Email Amanda the ScriptGal

 

The Third Act:

Rob – The Third Act

 

What are your qualifications?

Writing and working with writers is my passion and my full-time job, not just a side venture. I hold an MFA in Dramatic Writing from Carnegie Mellon University’s School of Drama.

  • Have worked in development / evaluated submissions for OddLot Entertain, Paramoiunt, Cruise/Wagner, Disney, WB and ScriptShark.
  • Written over 2,000 coverage reports on the job as an A-list studio reader.
  • Taught screenwriting and story analysis at three educational institutions, including Carnegie Mellon University’s School of Drama.
  • Worked with over 200 private clients as a Screenplay Consultant
  • Been a paid screenwriter.

Our industry is incredibly tough and all writers face a lot of competition. Those who don’t want to hear a different perspective on their own work simply don’t survive. You’ll find I am very supportive, respectful and encouraging, but also candid and direct.These are specific and thorough offering constructive criticism and rationale for my observations without pulling punches, followed by positive strategies for solutions.

 

How much do you charge for script coverage and what does that entail?

Coverage ($150) Includes a logline, overall rating of major elements, 2 pages of comments on the major elements (character, plot, dialogue); story grid (at-a-glance rating of all key elements), final rating / recommendation.

Development Notes ($250)

A more in-depth look at your script that includes the services in the coverage package plus 3 to 5 pages of analysis and notes (instead of 2) and a 30-minute follow-up conference call to answer your questions and get a bit more clarity.

Development Consulting ($400)

This is my most popular and comprehensive screenplay analysis package and includes two readings; 4 to 6 pages of analysis; Detailed notes written on the physical draft showing my reactions and questions as I read it; Basic line editing; 1, one-hour phone conference; Story Grid worksheet.

 

What other services do you offer?

Outline and beat sheet development, editing / proofing, rewriting, ghostwriting.

 

Average turnaround time for completed coverage?

Standard turnaround is 3 weeks. Three rushes services are also available (2 week, 1 week, and 2 day).

 

Success stories?

Statistically, I can offer that I’ve had over a twenty clients get representation because of scripts we’ve worked on together and five have optioned or sold their work. (This is always a tough question because as a writer’s resource, I believe the work good development consultants do should be “in the background”. If a client wants to mention me, that’s fine, but I just don’t feel comfortable asking to list them for marketing purposes. They tell other writers and word of mouth works very well.)

 

Website URL:  The Third Act

Email Address:  Email Rob