Monday, July 31, 2006


Ladies and gentlemen, it is with great pleasure that we present the winners of the Writers on the Storm Screenwriting Competition. Co-Chair of the UCLA Screenwriting Program Hal Ackerman called our top ten, "a decalogue of fine, varied, extremely imaginative and well-written screenplays. Persuasive arguments could be made for any of them being winners, and its easy to see why they went to the finals of the competition."

But in the end, there could be only one winner and two runners-up. They were chosen for their crisp dialogue, well-developed characters, excellent pacing and inventive storytelling. But above all, each one of them is a Movie with a capital "M"--all three jump off the page and into your mind's eye as you read them. We suspect you’ll be hearing about all our finalists in the months and years to come.

Once again, thanks to every single person who participated. We hope that all of you took away something positive from the experience. We promise you'll be hearing more from Writers on the Storm very soon.

Jim Cirile
Founder, Coverage Ink
Writers on the Storm Screenwriting Competition

RATIONAL PANIC by Robert Rhyne

TRIO by John Unger Zussman & Patricia Zussman

THE DOLLMAKER by Ned James Beedie

THE OTHER WOTS FINALISTS, in alphabetical order:


FURY by Dane Edward McCauley


INK by Eric Andersen & Scott Smith

MASQUE by Kellen Hertz

THE NEWLY DEAD GAME by David Warfield


Sunday, July 30, 2006


Noon Monday... even now the leaders are jockeying for position...

Oh, the suspense!

Who's going to be $2,500 richer???

Stay tuned!

Monday, July 24, 2006

Producers... Agents... Managers...

I've gotten a few calls from industry folks who are tracking the Writers on the Storm contest, which is very nice to know! We have some awesome scripts coming down the pike for you folks -- you will not be disappointed. We're less than 1 week away now from announcing our winners.

If you're in the biz and would like to be added onto the list to see the winners, shoot me a mail at

We are sending all the companies on our list the winning script, along with the loglines of our top ten and a select few honorable mentions, plus a few comments on each. You may request to read any and/or all of them that strikes your fancy. We'll also keep you on the list for Writers on the Storm II.


--Jim Cirile

Friday, July 21, 2006

new website... almost ready!

We're about a week away from launching the new Coverage, Ink website! This all-new site features new services, articles and information, and some big news... but best of all... no price increases. Yep, you can get your script expertly analyzed for $129... less than it costs to gas up your Hummer.

The URL will be the same: We're also kicking off the launch with a SALE which will only apply to folks on our newsletter mailing list, so if you're not on the list, send us an e-mail at and we'll put you on the list. FYI, we will never spam you--you will only receive our monthly newsletters, chock full of (we hope) tips and inspiration.

Oh, and Writers on the Storm WINNERS... coming soon!

--Jim Cirile

Friday, July 14, 2006

The State of the Spec Market

I'm in the middle of writing my column for Creative Screenwriting, and boy, this is a weird one. It's my annual fall spec season column, and I am getting some wildly varying reports about the health of the spec marketplace.

Some of my panelists are reporting nothing but doom and gloom--nobody's buying jack. So then I point out the various spec sales listed in the trades, and say, how about these? Well, it turns out most of these are packages or scripts written by well-known writers with track records. Oh. Okay, so how are things for the emerging writer? Depends who you ask. Some of my panelists have had a great year and are excited for the fall. Some... less so.

I don't want to give away too much at this time (my editor would kill me if I did!) but this should be a do-not-miss column with a few surprises and hopefully a nice little sidebar on finding your screenwriting "voice."

Oh, and anybody who wants to know how the contest top ten are faring... heh heh heh. You'll get nothing out of me yet ;)

--Jim Cirile

Saturday, July 08, 2006


What a fantastic group of scripts we have here. And what a terrific assortment! We've got thrillers, horror, drama, comedy, animation, family, suspense--let it never be said we discriminate against any one particular genre.

The next three weeks, I will be reading these scripts along with UCLA Screenwriting Department Co-Head Hal Ackerman and a few other select industry folks. I am greatly looking forward to it. We will announce our WINNERS Monday, July 31st at noon.

Here are the awesome Writers on the Storm finalists in alphabetical order:

1) DANNY LONGLEGS --- Keli Rowley

2) FURY -- Dane Edward McCauley

3) HEAVENS TO BETSY -- Brad Hennig

4) INK -- Eric Andersen & Scott Smith

5) MASQUE -- Kellen Hertz
drama/period drama/romance

6) RATIONAL PANIC -- Robert Rhyne

7) THE DOLLMAKER -- Ned James Beedie

8) THE NEWLY DEAD GAME -- David Warfield

9) TRIO -- John Unger Zussman & Patricia Zussman
drama/period drama/romance


Thanks to everyone who entered for helping to make our contest a smash hit!

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

To Refer or Not to Refer?

Informal poll here, guys, as we await the WOTS top ten.

Some of CI's competitors, for example Script Shark, ostensibly refer scripts that do well to industry contacts. CI's policy has always been that we make no representations about helping you market your script (Writers on the Storm contest excluded, of course.) We simply give you a thorough analysis--usually much more in-depth than our competitors--and charge you less, but the marketing is up to you. I've always hated the carrot and stick approach personally. I think it's a bit disingenuous to hold that prize out for people and then hand out disappointment to the vast majority of clients.

However, we HAVE actually helped a few clients from time to time. We just don't make a big deal about it. In fact, we've gotten a small handful of folks agents and managers.

So the question is: do you guys think CI should change our policy or keep it as is? Would like like to know (stated publicly on our website) that if your script gets a strong consider AND we consider it marketable, that we will all read it, discuss our feedback with the writer and then, with writer's permission, give it to some industry folks--bearing in mind that's less than 1% of submissions? Or do we just continue to offer better service and cheaper prices and not dangle some imaginary carrot? We're rolling out our new website within the next 2 weeks, so now would be a great time to incorporate any changes... IF we are going to make any. The floor is open!

--Jim Cirile