This is going to be a bit of a departure from my usual blog posts. Rather than writing up a relatively objective explanation of a concept, I’m going to get a little theoretical and propose an idea I’ve had rattling around in my head about how writers are credited, particularly as it relates to the Writers Guild of America and its rules.
In particular, I want to explore possible ways to maintain the integrity of the WGA’s existing credit structure while also addressing the problem of so many Guild writers being excluded from receiving credit.
This is just a quick note to say that I strongly recommend checking out the Negotiations Special episode (#327) of The Writers Panel podcast, for anyone interested in what’s going on with the current negotiations between the WGA and AMPTP (and really, that should probably be everyone that reads this blog).
Ben Blacker talks with former WGA President Chris Keyser, as well as other guild members about what’s going on with the negotiations and the call for a strike authorization vote. It’s incredibly informative, and clearly addresses a lot of the questions and uncertainty that writers have over the upcoming vote.
In my most recent post about writing credit, I mentioned that one of the perks of receiving screen credit on an original project that’s signatory to the Writer’s Guild of America is the screenwriter is entitled to something called separated rights. This post will take a look at what separated rights are and why they’re so important.
For screenwriters, writing credit is a big deal. It’s a significant milestone that separates you from the majority of other working and aspiring writers out there, and there are often considerable financial benefits tied to receiving writing credit. This post will look at how writing credit is determined and what benefits are typically connected with receiving credit.
In my earlier post about script sale breakdowns, I promised a more in-depth look at options. This is that post!
The previous post about script sale breakdowns was a little bleak, so let’s talk about a more positive topic today… all the things you can do with your writing once you’ve created something! This post will only provide an overview, because it’s a very large topic.
In a previous post, I wrote about the Writers Guild of America labor union, which most professional screenwriters end up joining sooner or later when they do enough work on guild-signatory projects. But what about all the writers that work on non-guild projects and don’t have the protections of the WGA in place?
In order to make sure everyone’s on the same page for these blog posts, I think it’s important to outline some definitions that will be used frequently in my posts. A lot of these are taken from the Writers Guild of America‘s (WGA’s) Minimum Basic Agreement (MBA), with some other thrown in. Please keep in mind these are just general definitions and many will be elaborated upon in later blog posts.
The Writers Guild of America (WGA) is the labor union for professional writers of audiovisual material. It represents the interests of its members by collectively bargaining with producers and production companies to create a set of policies and minimum requirements that protect the working conditions of its writers. These include, among other things: defining the types of writing work performed, the minimum pay for that work, how writing credit is determined, benefits like pension and health plans, and a host of other little details.