TCG Dramatists Sourcebook
'For me there's a lot more responsibility in an adaptation. In an original piece I feel I could just do anything I want, but for an adaptation you have to pay respect to the source. You shouldn't adapt a story unless you have something original to say about it. . . . something should come out of it that pushes the work in a new and exciting direction.'
-- Migdalia Cruz
The Dramatists Sourcebook is the annual bible of opportunities for American playwrights. This is how to figure out what to do with your play after you've written it. And until your plays get that first recognition from Literary Managers or Competitions, it probably makes more sense than joining the Dramatists Guild for the Annual DG
An equivalent publication for Canadian playwrights is The Theatre List, published by PACT.
Here's what's in the Dramatists Sourcebook . . .
- Essay: A well-known playwright or Literary Manager discusses craft or script submission issues.
- Script Opportunities:
- Production: Lists of theatres wanting to read the script -- or at least look at a Synopsis -- of your latest play. Includes information on kinds of subjects or styles a theatre prefers, whether they'll look at one-acts, full-lengths or both, and response times.
- Prizes: All you need to know about nearly every major New Play Competition in the country. Includes subject interests, prize amounts, and response times.
- Publication: Magazines and publishers interested in scripts. Some will publish unproduced plays -- usually pieces for kids or family fare for dinner theatres and the like.
- Development: Workshop and play Development programs.
- Career Opportunities: Agents; Fellowships & Grants; Emergency Funds; State Arts Agencies; Colonies & Residencies; Membership & Service Organizations.
- And: Publications; Submission Calendar [deadlines]; Theatres & Competitions listed by Special Areas of Interest [subject, length, author ethnicity/gender].
If you can't find the Sourcebook in your local book store . . .
Note: Be sure to order the current edition (search Amazon by title & publication date). It's also available now for the Kindle, but make sure it's the most recent edition.
If you're writing in the UK -- or if you're a US playwright dreaming of the other side of the Atlantic -- the closest thing to the Sourcebook in the UK seems to be the annual Writers' & Artists' Yearbook. It has about 45 pages of listings on script opportunities in theatre, television, film, and radio. You won't find this in US bookstores, but you can order it from Amazon.com.
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