How it all goes down on regular Thursday evenings
I. The Roster, Rotation
Writers are listed on the roster in order of rotation.
A) A rotation is the cycle that begins with the first listed writer, and ends with the last listed writer on the roster.
B) Three writers will present material per evening.
i) Writers are selected to present material in a strictly linear fashion, beginning at the top of the rotation, and moving down the list. If a writer passes, the next writer on the list is selected, and so forth until a group of three writers has been defined.
ii) The next group of three presenting writers begins where the last left off.
C) New members will be added to the rotation so that they will present material their first evening of attendance.
II. Confirmation and Passing
At the end of each evening, the moderator will, reading from the roster, announce the three names which appear below those of the writers who have just presented material. At that time those named writers will either confirm their participation for the next week, or pass.
A) Confirmation means a writer positively will be presenting material the next week.
i) A writer who is confirmed for the following week may reverse his/her decision by no later than the following Sunday at 6 PM.
B) Passing means a writer will not be presenting material.
C) An abstention will be considered a confirmation.
D) If a writer is unable to attend the lab on an evening when he/she is due to present material, that absence is considered a pass.
III. Time Limits
Each participating writer will have 45 minutes maximum per evening.
A) A participating writer will have up to, but no more than, 30 minutes to present material.
i) Should thirty minutes expire before a presentation has ended, the presentation will terminate at the conclusion of the currently read scene (or paragraph). Any time used for presentation of material beyond thirty minutes will be subtracted from the time used for the critique. (Writers are strongly encouraged to PLAN CAREFULLY IN ADVANCE to ensure that readings will not exceed 30 minutes. If there is a question as to whether or not the chosen pages will present longer than 30 minutes, writers are strongly encouraged to present fewer pages. The critiquing portion of the lab is as important as the presentation, to both the presenting writer and the writers listening.)
B) Each participating writer will have 15 minutes of critique, or whatever time is left after the presentation has ended.
Writers will strive, whenever possible, to give critiques which are concise. Also, presenting writers may ask for (or limit the critique to) specific feedback (e.g. dialogue, plot, character development), or open the floor to any and all criticism. Similarly, the presenting writer may ask not to hear criticism of a specific nature.
A) Unless the presenting writer wishes otherwise, writers will give critiques first.
B) If time permits, actors and others may give critiques as well.
Presenting writers will strive, whenever possible, to share casting information (which actors have been called, which confirmed, etc.) with other presenting writers for many reasons:
A) So that calls aren't made to actors who already have said they can't make it
B) For info -- in case actors may have to leave early or arrive late
C) As a courtesy to your fellow writers that evening to ease the casting burden
D) And finally, generally to make life easier for everybody.
The overriding rule when determining what material is appropriate for presentation in the lab is: presented material must be story telling. Specifically, no non-fiction, no poetry.
Dues are calculated with the equation: (rent+ $6 bank fee)÷number of writers in the lab.
A) Dues must be paid on the last Thursday of the month.
B) Please don't make Molly beg ;-)
Full length readings
Each writer may present a full length reading of any work presented in the lab
VIII. Full Length Readings
A writer may present a full length reading of material at any time during the writing process. A full length reading temporarily suspends the regular rotation of writers. One entire evening will be devoted to a full length reading.
A) Each writer is limited to one full length reading per project.
B) Material to be presented in full must be developed in the lab, either before or after the reading, or both. However, at least one section of the work must be presented before the full length is requested.
C) A writer may announce and/or schedule a full length reading at any time, providing the date of the full length is one full month from day he/she announces it.
D) The nature of the reading (e.g. who is invited, scope of critique, etc.) is up to the presenting writer entirely.
E) The writer presenting the full length will take a courtesy pass the next time he/she comes up in rotation.
Miscellaneous other stuff
Auditing, application for membership, policy change and debate
Anyone may audit, sit in, or otherwise occupy a seat. Visitors who are considering applying VIII. Auditing
Anyone may audit, sit in, or otherwise occupy a seat. Visitors who are considering applying for membership may (and are encouraged to) participate in the critiques.
X. Application For Membership
Applying writers are asked to submit any form of dramatic writing that best represents their work (screenplay, teleplay, stage play, fiction). Final drafts of material are preferred (as opposed to work that may be in the middle of development, and might be presented in the lab itself). The five member board will read submitted work, and must vote in favor of admission by 3/4 or greater.
XI. Policy Changes, Additions, Debate
On the last evening of every month the board will hold a meeting to discuss whatever matters may be of concern or interest to the group.