Writer Mike Gauyo (Insecure, Ginny & Georgia) and training platform Stage 32 are set to open submissions to the Black Boy Writes & Black Girl Writes Mentorship Initiative, under the Black Boy Writes Media banner. The initiative, which launched at the beginning of 2021, focuses on supplying industry access and resources to pre-WGA Black screenwriters.
In partnership with Stage 32, admissions for the 2022 class will open November 15, and close December 15. The first round of the application will require a bio, a one-hour or half-hour original script (of any genre) and a short essay. Those chosen to move to the second round will interview with Gauyo and the initiative’s chief of programming Ashley Aronson before 10 to 12 participants are selected.
Features of the mentorship initiative include monthly writer roundtables with established writers/industry leaders; past participants include Amy Aniobi (Insecure) Kay Oyegun (This Is Us), Kemp Powers (Soul, One Night in Miami), and The Black List founder Franklin Leonard. Each participant will receive the latest Final Draft to use during the fellowship, in addition to writing workshops and notes sessions to prepare mentees for fellowships, generals and staffing, along with general meetings with networks and production companies; past participants include Nick Jr., OutTV, Plan B and Array.
At the end of the program, each mentee will have the opportunity to be read by Gauyo’s agents at Culture Creative and lit managers at Writ Large for representation consideration.
“With the Black Boy Writes & Black Girl Writes Mentorship Initiative I aim to create a sustainable pathway program for up and coming black writers that not only provides them a way in, but amplifies their voices in the process,” Gauyo says. “Partnering with such an innovative platform like Stage 32 who is committed to serving underrepresented creatives allows us to increase exposure and opportunity for Black writers all over the world.”
In addition to the mentorship, Stage 32 has agreed to provide each mentee with one free webinar of choice, and one free pitch session of choice with an executive.
“We couldn’t be more thrilled to be joining forces with Black Boy Writes/Black Girl Writers in an effort to discover, mentor, and offer ongoing support and industry access to under-represented, pre-WGA Black writers,” says Stage 32 CEO Richard Botto. “For the last 10 years, Stage 32’s mission has been to democratize the entertainment business by presenting and facilitating opportunities for undiscovered talent across the globe, and this initiative will be another highlight of those efforts. On a personal level, and on behalf of my team, I’m excited to be working with Mike Gauyo on this powerful and important project and can’t wait to meet and begin working with the winners.”