The Writers Lab

Deadline Extended! New Deadline is Monday, March 5, 2018, at 11:59 pm EST.

The Writers Lab is a four-day writer’s workshop that gives women screenwriters over the age of 40 the opportunity to work intensively on their feature film scripts with the support of established film professionals. Through one-on-one meetings, panel discussions, peer workshops, and group meals, Mentors and Writers engage in a rigorous process to support intensive script development.

The retreat takes place September 25-29, 2018, at the Wiawaka Center for Women, on Lake George, in New York State.

The 2018 Writers Lab is funded by Meryl Streep​ and Nicole Kidman, and produced by IRIS ​and New York Women In Film & Television​ in collaboration with the Writers Guild of America​, East, with support from The Black List, Relativity Media, Stony Brook Southampton+Manhattan​ and Tribeca Film Institute​.

Register your script with the Writers Guild, if it is not already registered. Registration is quick and easy and the Writers Guild East has generously offered the discounted price of $17 to Lab applicants who are not members of the Guild. Registration will protect you and The Lab staff and volunteers. Choose the Student and NYWIFT/The Writers Lab option.

NOTE: SUBMISSIONS WITHOUT A LOGLINE WILL NOT BE READ. Please make sure your name is removed from all pages of your script, including the cover page.

We are now accepting international English-language scripts. Applicants must be female and at least 40 years old, that is, born on or before February 28, 1978. Submissions must be feature-length narrative scripts in English. (No script fragments, treatments, synopses, TV scripts, shorts, stage plays, book excerpts, or documentaries.) Scripts by more than one writer will be considered, but all writers must be female and over 40, and only one writer can attend The Lab. Applicants may submit up to three (3) scripts, with a separate application for each script submitted. The Lab seeks a broad selection of screenplays across all genres of fiction (drama, comedy, horror, action, thriller, science fiction, animation, musical, etc.). Scripts may be about any topic and do not specifically need to be about women. The Lab seeks submissions from all racial, ethnic, socioeconomic, and cultural groups.

Questions? Email ​​ ​or go to our​ ​FAQs

Awards & Prizes
The Lab is an intensive four-day script development retreat for women screenwriters over 40.

Meeting one on one and in panels with outstanding female film professionals, as well as in peer groups and directed discussion sessions, talented writers examine and refine their work while building a unique and powerful community.

Rules & Terms
The Writers Lab 2018
Terms and Conditions


I am submitting a script (Material) to The Writers Lab (the Lab). In connection with the Material submitted by me, this constitutes the agreement between NYWIFT (herein "you") and me, the undersigned.

I request that the panel convened for purposes of entry into the Writers Lab read and evaluate said Material, and you hereby agree to do so, and you will advise me of your decision with respect to the Material.

I warrant that I am forty (40) years old or over, born on or before February 28, 1978. Proof of age and residence may be required.
I warrant that I am the sole owner and author of said Material, that I have the exclusive right and authority to submit same to you upon the terms and conditions stated herein., and that I have registered this script with the Writers Guild of America.

I acknowledge that the only obligation undertaken by you in consideration of my submission is to accept the Material for review and consider me, based on the Material submitted, for the NYWIFT Writers Lab. No other obligation or duty on your part shall arise from or be implied by this submission.

I agree that any part of said Material which does not in itself constitute protectable literary property may be used by any member of NYWIFT or those participating in the selection process for the Writers Lab without any liability and nothing in this agreement or the fact of my submission of said Material to you shall be deemed to place you in any different position than anyone else to whom I have not submitted said Material.

The Writers Lab is not responsible for lost, late, incomplete, invalid, unintelligible or misdirected Submissions, which will be disqualified. The Submission Fee will not be returned or adjusted. Submissions that do not comply with the Submission Requirements will be disqualified, and the Submission Fee will not be returned or adjusted.
In return for participation in the Lab, should I be selected, I understand that I am asked to make the following commitments: (a) Make a tax-deductible contribution to The Writers Lab of $2500 should the Participating screenplay be produced with a total budget in excess of $1,000,000 on or before December 31, 2023; or, make a tax-deductible contribution to The Writers Lab of $5000 should the Participating screenplay be produced with a total budget in excess of $5,000,000 on or before December 31, 2023; and (b) The Writers Lab will receive a credit line and logo placement in the film's end titles should the Participating screenplay be produced at any budget level on or before December 31, 2023.
I understand that the Internet is not a secure medium and information submitted via it may be accessed by third parties. Further, I acknowledge and agree that the Lab receives numerous submissions of ideas, stories and scripts, and that my submission, and the ideas and stories embodied in the Submission, may be similar or identical to other material already received and/or developed by the Lab and that I am not entitled to any compensation or credit for use by the Lab of any such other material.
I specifically acknowledge that you would refuse to accept, consider or otherwise evaluate my Material in the absence of my acceptance of the provisions herein.

In further consideration of your evaluation of said Material, I and my successors or assigns hereby release NYWIFT, and its officers and employees, from any and all actions, claims and demands of any kind whatsoever, which I had, now have, or hereafter may have, by reason of any matter in connection with this submission and, if accepted, my participation in the Writers Lab.

I have read and understand this agreement and no oral representations of any kind have been made to me and this agreement states our entire understanding with reference to the subject matter herein. Any modification or waiver of any of the provisions of this agreement must be in writing and signed by both of us.


Films from the Washington Film Festival screening at the World Film Fair