Deborah Murad
Deborah Murad
Jan 08, 2015
A Note on Submission Fees

The Dramatists Guild of America denounces the practice by some theaters, festivals, contests and educational programs of charging excessive fees to dramatists who submit their work for consideration, as well as the unfair encumbrances they put on works they have not produced.

Members should understand that submission fees are not the norm and, when required, the festival should offer something significant in return for the writer’s investment, such as a cash prize, a residency, or a production.   Reading fees are in no case acceptable, as most festivals receive that money from other grant sources, and, in any event, writers should not be required to pay to have their work read or to have to fund a production themselves, either in whole or in part.  So, any request for submission fees should be accompanied by a complete explanation of how those fees are to be spent, and contests and festivals should always announce the names of all finalists and winners to all of the participants.

In addition to submission fees, The Guild disapproves of a festival’s placing any encumbrances on a play, particularly where the festival is only acting as a presenting organization and the organization is not actually the producer of the particular work.  A festival’s future participation in the life of a play, if any, must be earned by their actual production of it.   The organization should provide full disclosure on what encumbrances, if any, will be placed on a participant’s work, including any share of subsidiary income from the play or any future production options on it, and this information should be stated clearly in the organization’s printed and electronic materials related to the event.

However, in order to further the Guild’s goal of making our members as well informed as possible, we post most of the listings we receive, omitting only those listings from sponsors that charge exorbitant fees (in our view) or about whom we have received multiple member complaints.  So be advised that the inclusion or omission of a listing in the Guild’s publications does not constitute approval or disapproval of that organization by the Guild.   Guild members are individually responsible for their submissions and should fully evaluate an opportunity before submitting their work.

Please contact Business Affairs (businessaffairs@dramatistsguild.com) with any questions or if you need assistance in evaluating a particular opportunity.

Submission Disclaimer:   

Please be advised that the inclusion or omission of a listing does not constitute approval or disapproval of that organization by the Guild, its council, officers, employees, agents or affiliates.  Guild members are individually responsible for their submissions and should fully evaluate an opportunity before submitting their work.  Please contact Business Affairs (businessaffairs@dramatistsguild.com) with any questions or if you need assistance in evaluating a particular opportunity.

 

 

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