SRN 2013 Conference – Call for papers

Screenwriting in a Global and Digital World

6th Screenwriting Research Network International Conference
August 20 – 22, 2013
University of Wisconsin-Madison, USA

This is a call for papers for the annual international conference on screenwriting research, this year organized by the Department of Communication Arts at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, USA. The Screenwriting Research Network is a research group that commenced in 2006 within the Louis Le Prince Research Centre, at the Institute of Communication Studies (ICS), University of Leeds. The Screenwriting Research Network now consists of academics as well as practitioners interested in research centered on screenwriting studies. The network has achieved a critical mass in recent years with conferences taking place in Leeds (2008), Helsinki (2009), Copenhagen (2010), Brussels (2011), and Sydney, Australia (2012). The sixth conference widens the geographic spread of the network to North America, taking place in Madison, Wisconsin, USA (2013).

The Screenwriting Research Network is comprised of scholars, writers, and practice-based researchers devoted to rethinking the screenplay in relation to its histories, theories, values and creative practices. The aim of the conference is to continue, and expand, discussions around the screenplay and to strengthen a rapidly emerging, and global, research network. The Journal of Screenwriting, first published in 2009, stands as testament to the vitality of the screenwriting network across traditional and practice-based research. This is in addition to growth in the publication of screenwriting monographs by scholars in the network, including books on screenwriting by Steven Price, Steven Maras, J.J. Murphy, and Jill Nelmes, among others. The new Palgrave Studies in Screenwriting series grew out of this organization. The SRN is also building an online forum for scholars and practitioners interested in this subject.

The key theme of this next conference is “Screenwriting in a Digital and Global World.” This speaks to the complex and changing nature of screenwriting as a result of both digital technology and globalization. The conference hopes to raise questions about past, current, and future creative practices in scripting in various forms of media, both old and new.

Keynote speakers will be confirmed early in 2013.

The conference is interested in all types of research related to screenwriting in its many forms. We would like to invite abstracts for research presentations on (but not limited to) the following topics:

  • Cross-cultural collaboration in screenwriting
  • Screenwriting traditions in different national contexts
  • Screenwriting and transnationalism
  • Screenwriting and the pressures of globalization
  • Industry changes in the digital age and what it means for writers of film and television
  • Transmedia storytelling — “world building” and constructing narratives that reach across multiple platforms
  • Writing for online video as a new genre and profession
  • The history of screenwriting around the globe, including Hollywood
  • Questions of authorship in highly collaborative digital media projects
  • Database narratives and interactive, non-linear storytelling
  • Writing for games (including video games and ARGs)
  • Theorizing and analyzing screenwriting software
  • Screenwriting archival research
  • Theorizing screenwriting and the screenplay
  • Reflections on narrative theory and dramaturgy
  • Practice-based research
  • Case studies on individual writers or texts
  • Genre-orientated considerations of screenwriting and the screenplay
  • Adaptation in moving image screen works
  • The role of writing in non-fiction film, television, and other forms of media
  • Screenwriting for animation
  • Writing for episodic television
  • Screenwriting in independent cinema
  • Alternative forms of scripting

Call for Papers

Time allotted to each paper is 20 minutes plus discussion. Abstracts (250-300 words) may be submitted until January 1, 2013.  Earlier submissions are welcome. Please remember to state your name, affiliation and contact information. Include a brief statement (100 words) detailing your publications and/or screenwriting practice.

Please send your abstract as a WORD document, with the email subject heading “SRN Conference Abstract” to:

More information on the program as well as cost, traveling and accommodation details will be available on this website as it becomes available.

The conference is supported by a grant from the Anonymous Fund of the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and is being organized with assistance from the Department of Communication Arts at UW-Madison, the Wisconsin Center for Film and Theater Research (WCFTR), and the Screenwriting Research Network.

For further information, please contact J. J. Murphy, or Kelley Conway, at Department of Communication Arts, UW-Madison, USA.

Conference Co-Directors:

Professor Kelley Conway and Professor J. J. Murphy, Department of Communication Arts, University of Wisconsin-Madison, USA.