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AFAC announces Writers Room Mentorship Program

AFAC announces Writers Room Mentorship Program

Deadline: 11-Jul-23

The Arab Fund for Arts and Culture (AFAC) is now accepting applications for the Writers Room, a new mentorship program.

The program is designed for series creators in the Arab region and aims to contribute to develop and support talents and compelling stories. The program focuses on the development of projects into full limited series during the program’s seven-month timeline, consisting of three in-person residencies, in-between mentorship, and follow-up, as well as input from experts in the field as well as from specialists in other fields.

Building on the few existing initiatives for series development within the Arab region, the Writers Room will operate on four levels to bridge some of the still-existing gaps: incubating projects until the development of fully fledged limited series; providing mentorship support, follow up, and input from specialists and experts during the residencies and in between period; creating a framework that allows for peer-to-peer learning and participation in the creative process; and partnering with a streaming platform (OSN) that will have the right to a first look at the developed projects, with the potential of choosing a project or more to be further developed beyond the residency.

The program aspires to achieve the above through: setting up writers’ rooms as an essential component of the program and as part of a strategy to grow talents who can ensure continuity in the development of new talents and quality content for the future; offering a timeframe for the series development and writing phase that allows for the creation of solid projects, hence increasing the chance of their commissioning; and providing a diverse pool of experts such as historians, social scientists, and researchers, who will enrich the development process and steer it toward the production of well-rounded, multi-faceted projects.

  • In its first edition, the program will incubate up to 5 series projects to be developed over a period of 7 months. The writers will benefit from:
    • Three in-person residencies (travel and accommodation to be covered by the program)
    • Weekly online working sessions and one-on-one mentorship with the program’s mentors
    • Support and input from experts in other fields depending on the series particular topics and themes
    • Final feedback on the fully written episodes from professionals in the industry
    • First look by OSN’s Originals Department
    • $2000 stipend for each writer
  • During the residencies, the writers will be required to work collectively on each others’ projects. Following each residency, each writing team will focus on writing the episodes of their project based on the work and feedback delivered during the residency and with the assistance of the program’s mentors and other experts where needed.
  • Selected writing teams must commit to physically attending all three residencies and to abiding by the writing schedule in between the residencies to ensure the completion of all episodes over a period of 7 months. Failure to do so will result in the disqualification of the project and cancellation of the writers’ participation in the program. The first residency is scheduled for November 2023, the second residency for February 2024, and the final residency for May 2024.
Eligibility Criteria
  • The Writers Room program accepts applications through an open call process. The program is open to Arab writers living and working in the Arab region, irrespective of age, ethnicity, gender, or religion. Applying writers must have prior experience in writing (preferably series writing) and must apply with a series project.
  • AFAC and OSN encourage the formation of teams of a minimum of 2 writers (and a maximum of 4 writers) to apply with a joint project. A project with a single writer is still eligible to apply. However, if selected, AFAC will assign co-writers to the project to work with the main writer. Potential applicants with a current open AFAC grant cannot apply to the program
  • Applications are only accepted through their online application forms available on their website. Applications submitted via postal mail or e-mail will not be accepted.

For more information, visit AFAC.

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