As Sparks reaches its 1st birthday, we have been overwhelmed by the number of submissions we have received over the past year. As a result, there have been a few recurring questions we have received about how Sparks works. So, we thought we'd put them in a handy FAQ page here. Hopefully you'll find answers to all your burning Sparks questions below!
How does Sparks work?
On each Sparks day, we ask writers to submit one script each to us from 8am by emailing it to [email protected]. A member of the HighTide team will then spend the day reading the script submissions and providing feedback on the same day. You can find out what dates are designated Sparks days here.
How many script submissions do you receive each reading day?
The number of submissions we receive varies each day but on average we receive between 50 - 80 scripts on each Sparks day.
How many scripts do you read each day?
Again, this varies depending on the reader, the script length, and the amount of feedback the reader has to give. As we are a small team, we tend to have one member of HighTide reading on each Sparks day who usually get through in the region of 5 - 10 scripts a day. With Sparks, we want to make sure we're giving each script that is sent the full attention it deserves, therefore, the aim is to read each play thoroughly and provide well thought out feedback instead of reading as many scripts as we can.
How do you prioritise the scripts you read?
For fairness, we start reading scripts that landed in our literary email account at exactly 8am, not 7.59 or 8.01am. Of course many submissions are sent at exactly 8am in which case, we start with the script that was the first in our inbox at 8am and work up from there.
I sent my script in at 8am on the dot and haven't had my script read, why?
The majority of scripts that are submitted to us each day are sent in at exactly 8am, often many more than we are able to read in a day so we start at the first one in the inbox and work our way through all that were submitted at 8am.
I emailed my script but haven't heard from you, why?
We receive a large number of submissions so cannot get through them all each day which therefore means that we're also unable to contact every person who submitted to let them know their script hasn't been read. This time is instead spent reading as much as we can.
I've sent in my script once, does that mean I don't have to submit it again if its not read?
Incorrect, each Sparks day is a blank slate and you will have to send in your script from 8am on each day to be in with a chance of your script being read on that particular Sparks day.
What happens when you read my script?
With Sparks, we don't have a set process or checklist when reading. At the very least, if we read your script we will offer feedback on your script in which ever way feels best for the specific script. If we particularly enjoy a script or are intrigued by a writer, we may ask for further examples of work or invite them in to HighTide HQ to find out more about them and their work. These actions are always completely dependent on each reader and writer.
Are there any particular types or scripts you look more favourably on?
We will read every script sent in to us regardless of genre, form or length. However, as a new writing company creating contemporary work rooted in today which often tackles political or social issues, we are interested in plays that showcase life in the modern day. HighTide would very very rarely pursue work that were historical or period pieces or adaptations. There is also no limit on the length of script, however, 50 - 100 pages is preferable as this means we are able to read more in a day and is also the usual ball park length for the plays we tend to produce.
Who can submit to Sparks?
Due to how many plays we receive, we are only accepting scripts from writers based in the UK.
I've submitted a script and received feedback, can I submit a different play for feedback?
If we have read and provided feedback on your script and haven't asked to you to send in further samples, we ask that you wait a year before submitting to Sparks again. As we receive so many submissions to Sparks, this seems the fairest way to ensure we're reading, engaging and providing feedback to as many writers as possible through this scheme.
Question not answered? Contact us here and one of the team will get back to you!
Information on our next Sparks days can be found here.