The CineStory Foundation believes in helping writers find their voice. We’re entering a world in which the ways to tell stories are limitless. Those stories always begin with a blank page. Our goal with the Television Retreat is to educate writers about the unique world of TV storytelling, from the collaborative nature of writing for networks or streaming channels to the independent realm of creating and shooting series for the web.
Structured like the CineStory Feature Retreat, the CineStory Television Retreat takes place over five days in the beautiful mountains of Idyllwild, California. Attendees receive three one-on-one, one and a half hour sessions with CineStory mentors. During these sessions, mentors will give attendees feedback on improving the craft of the script(s) they submitted in advance and will also discuss with writers various aspects of the business of TV writing to help writers better understand TV writers’ various roles in the entertainment industry.
TV writers also will experience what it’s like to sit in a professional writers room run by an experienced mentor. In addition, mentors and writers will gather for meals, drinks, screenings, and other special events.
April 26 – 30, 2024
DEADLINES & SUBMISSION FEES
Early Deadline – July 23, 2023 ($50)
Regular Deadline – September 4, 2023 ($65)
Late Deadline – October 1, 2023 ($75)
Extended Late Deadline – November 5, 2023 ($85)
- Final Deadline – December 3, 2023 ($90)
- Quarterfinalists – Late January
- Semifinalists – Late February
- Finalists – Mid March
- Division Winners – Early April
- Fellowship Winner – Mid April
- The retreat fee for the 2023 Feature Retreat is $2,200 for individual participants and $3,000 for teams (who participate in all retreat events as a team).
- The retreat fee covers meals (a light breakfast, lunch, and dinner) and all retreat events, including informal sessions, one-on-one meetings, social gatherings (cocktail parties, etc.).
- Click here for scholarship opportunities.
- Original Drama – 1 hour series
- Original Comedy – 30 minute series
- Original Sci Fi/Fantasy – 1 hour series
Pilots only. For division details, please visit our TV Submissions page.
Attending the TV Retreat
To earn the opportunity to attend the TV Retreat, writers must submit an original pilot episode teleplay in one of the TV divisions of the TV Retreat & Fellowship Contest. The division winners and finalists are invited to the attend the retreat for an additional fee. Any remaining spots are offered to category semifinalists and quarterfinalists.
TV Grand Prize Fellowship
The Grand Prize for the competition is the CineStory TV Fellowship, a 12-month educational mentorship program during which the TV Fellow works with 2 Hollywood professionals hand-picked to educate the Fellow about the craft and business of TV writing so the Fellow better understands the various roles TV writers play in the entertainment industry. The TV Fellow also receives $1,000 as well as free tuition and housing for the retreat.
An integral part of the TV Fellowship is becoming part of the CineStory community. Consequently, the winner of the TV Fellowship must attend the Television Retreat in order to receive the cash award and to benefit from all other aspects of the Fellowship.
CineStory is solely a nonprofit educational organization. It is not a talent representation service of any kind. It does not, nor does it seek to, manage and/or direct the development of writers’ careers in any way. Additionally, it does not, nor does it seek to, procure representation and/or employment of any kind for writers. Its sole purpose is to educate emerging writers about the craft and business of writing for the screen.
If you are considering submitting to our contests during the WGA strike, please note that our contests and fellowships DO NOT involve employment by or development with WGA signatory companies. CineStory supports the strike and, while it is ongoing, will not use judges or mentors who are employed by or actively engaged in developing projects with WGA signatory companies.