Thursday, June 11, 2009

WGGB Find A Writer

We're looking at ways to improve the Find A Writer database on the WGGB website.

It's a database of Full members of the Guild - who can log-in to add credits, agent information, web links etc.

There were more than 1,000 page views of Find A Writer results last month, so it's certainly being used - either by people looking for writers or for information about a particular writer.

The question is, how might it be improved? What additional functionality or categories would you like to see? It's a real benefit of Full membership, so do have your say in the comments below.


  1. I'm not a member of the Guild but a screenwriter nevertheless. It might be a good idea to have sub-categories in things like 'film'. Give an option to view every person who writes for film, but also narrow it down to comedy, horror, action, sci-fi, romance etc. So if someone is looking for an action writer, they can find people who have written that sort of material, or want to.

    Just a suggestion.

  2. Perhaps another database for candidate/student membership. Would this not create more interest still in the WGGB site?

    Give everyone a chance to compare notes on rejection letter filing.

  3. @Neil: Yes, sub-categories are certainly something we're looking at. The difficulty is where to draw the line...

    @Charlie: Interesting suggestion. It's always been for Full members only but I know Candidates & Students often have credits (albeit non-professional ones) they'd like to list. Question would be whether (and how) to distinguish professional from non-professional credits.

  4. I have written 9 screenplays since Graduating MA screenwriting from Screen Academy last November. Two are already in post-production and another two are going to be filmed over the next fortnight. Alas all of these are deferred payment!
    When I try to obtain funding to attend courses and events that would further my development, I'm told I'm not an Industry Professional and don't qualify. That includes Skillset and Screen Academy! Catch 22 or what...
    WGGB, judging from the comments above, also seem to be treating us as Pariahs.
    Stalwart ;(stuffily) "Ah but you're not a Full Member my boy..."
    Why can't we tell people of our CV's? Yes, OK, we can write Screenplays... but we're not Screenwriters?
    I live in Scotland, no distance from anyone given instant communications, yet it seems that the only meetings (or almost) of the Guild are in London.
    What chance do I have of attending these meetings, or Industry Events, which all cost lots of money? None!
    A diatribe? Possibly. Discrimination? Almost certainly!
    Best regards.
    Ken Matthews.

  5. @ Ken Matthews: Sorry if you feel that way. The distinction between Full and Candidate Members has been the subject of much debate within the Guild (see, for example, the most recent issue of UK Writer).

    Some feel that it's important to maintain a clear distinction to maintain the Guild's status as the union of professional writers - especially important in negotiations.

    Others argue that the distinction is artificial and out-of-date.

    Candidate Members are entitled to the same services as Full members but can't stand for election and vote at AGMs. (see recent article mentioned above). They pay a significantly lower membership fee, too.

    Access to the FAW database is certainly something that we'll look at, prompted by yours and other comments.

    As for events, as you'll have seen from the recent Annual Report, the Guild's branches are increasingly active around the country. Unfortunately Scotland is a bit quiet at the moment but it's down to Guild members to take the initiative. Contact the Guild office if you'd like to get things going.

    In recent years there have actually been high profile Guild events at the Edinburgh Books Festival, the Edinburgh Fringe and the Film Festival (all in one city, I know, but still).


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