Penned In Blood is a competition that is designed to help writers improve and market their screenplays in the horror genre. We do this by offering extensive feedback in contest categories for both full screenplays and standard script marketing tools. These comprehensive notes are typically 1-2 pages long.

All submissions will receive the judge's notes that will focus on problem areas.

Submissions in the full screenplay categories also receive an evaluation scorecard along with the notes. Our experienced judges focus on any potential problem areas as well as offer suggestions for either marketing preparation or future drafts.

We have five different contest categories:

SHORT SCREENPLAYS - Scripts no more than 30 pages long. All submissions receive scorecard and comprehensive notes.

MID-RANGE SCREENPLAYS - Also known as "Long shorts", scripts between 31-60 pages long.

FEATURE SCREENPLAYS - Scripts between 61-120 pages long. All submissions receive scorecard and comprehensive notes.

SCRIPT SYNOPSIS - The one-page synopsis is crucial tool for writers seeking representation or production consideration. Submissions into this category are evaluated on elements such as structure, flow, grammar, and the ability to garner interest. Submissions may not be longer than a single page and will receive comprehensive evaluation notes.

LOGLINE - A well-crafted logline is essentially the "calling card" of any script. All submissions for this category will receive evaluation notes.

Penned in Blood is a competition that is managed by Siren Productions Media LLC, who also run the all-genre film festival Siren by the Sea -

All submissions receive comprehensive notes that are sent out via email once the judging period concludes. (Screenplay contest entries also receive the evaluation scorecard used by the jury.)

Awards are given at the discretion of the judges. The winners will receive custom digital laurels.



Submissions that do not follow these rules will be disqualified, so please ask any questions before submitting.


1. All entries must be written in English and be in standard script format.

2. All entries must be sent via FilmFreeway. Please do not send any hard copies or downloadable files to us directly.

3. Submissions for Script Synopsis and Logline categories must send their work in as a script document on FilmFreeway.

4. Cover Pages are not counted as part of the total page count of a submission.

5. Entries are assigned to judges shortly after they have been received, so any updated drafts should be submitted as a separate entry. If you change the files on your original submission after entering this competition, we cannot guarantee that the newer one will be the one that is evaluated by the jury.

6. All entries must be original works. No sequels, prequels, “fan films” or adaptations unless adapted from the film-maker’s own original story/novel or a work that is the public domain. (For example, a re-imagining of "The Monkey's Paw" is acceptable while a speculative sequel to "Hereditary" would not be.)

7. There is no age restriction on screenplays. but they must be un-produced and not under option at the time of the competition.

8. Only the writer may submit. The person submitting a project to this competition affirms that he/she is the writer of the work and he/she remains responsible before the law. In the case of multiple writers, only one need to submit the work but all authors must be credited on the entry and have agreed to enter this competition.

9. You agree to indemnify and hold us harmless from any claim made by you or any third party due to or arising out of project(s) you submit to this competition. You understand that there are thousands of film-makers, writers and other artists and the similarities in story, characters, etc... of two or more submissions are certainly a possibility. The contest directors and judges will not knowingly share your submission with any third party.


1. All qualified submissions will receive an evaluation scorecard and the corresponding notes once the judging period has concluded. These are sent electronically via email, so please make sure that your email address on FilmFreeway is correct.

2. The jury decisions are final and may not be disputed.

3. Notes and scorecards are the opinions of the individual evaluator and are meant to offer the Submitter good faith advice on how to improve and/or market their work. Criticism is standard and should be expected for an evaluation that is designed to look for flaws and potential trouble areas in the submission.

4. The competition and its affiliated jurors do not guarantee acceptance into any other contest, festival, market, or sales agreement based on the advice given in the notes and/or evaluation scorecard.


1. Submission fees are charged because our professional jurors are compensated for their time to insure that each submission is carefully evaluated.

2. Submission fees must be in U.S. dollars. These fees are non-refundable, even in the case of disqualification or withdrawal of an entry. There are no exceptions to this policy.

3. We do not offer student discounts or hardship waivers for the submission fees. There are absolutely no exceptions to this policy.

4. You may submit more than one project, but each must be submitted with a separate fee. There are no discounts for multiple submissions.


1. A submission will be disqualified if it does not meet the criteria required for it to be evaluated as listed in the General Submission Rules section. The most common reasons for disqualification are the failure to attach a screenplay file to the submission or a script not being written in English.

2. Refunds are not issued to disqualified submissions, so please make sure that your entry is compliant with the competition rules before submitting.

3. In the event of a disqualification, the submitter will be notified as to the reason why the entry was not qualified for the competition once the judging period has concluded.

4. You will not be notified by us if there is a problem with your submission prior to judging, as it is usually the jurors who discover the issue while evaluating their assigned submissions.

5. In the rare event of a submission being disqualified due to a technical issue, such as being unable to attach the project file while submitting through FilmFreeway, a waiver may be issued for the project to be re-submitted to either the current or the next season's competition. If you suspect that your project was not attached while submitting through FilmFreeway, please contact us ASAP and we will check on it.

Overall Rating
  • Dan Kiely

    Thank you for taking the time to read my work.

    September 2022
  • James Ferda

    I was honored to be the winner of the best feature screenplay. I really appreciated the feedback and scorecard on my script. It really helped me improve what needed work and also showed me strengths about my script that I didn't realize. Will definitely submit in the future.

    February 2022