Registered participants have just 48 hours to write an original horror script of 7 pages or less! The challenge is open to male and female participants located anywhere in the world. All entrants who complete a script will receive at least a page of script notes from the Jury.

Last year’s prompt was a quote from festival namesake Lois Duncan’s YA horror novel Stranger With My Face (“I blame you,” she whispered, “Only you”), and in 2013 from the brilliant Shirley Jackson. This year the prompt is even more challenging, but the goal is the same: to write a short horror screenplay with enough originality, energy and style to impress our Jury….

Entries for the 2016 Tasmanian Gothic Short Script Challenge are now open and will close at 8 pm on 2 March 2016 (Australian Eastern Daylight Time). 

The Challenge writing period is from 8 pm 4 March 2016 (AEDT) until 8 pm 6 March (AEDT).

The top 20 % of scripts will be announced and then the top two winning screenplays (Best Australian Script and Best International Script) will be read at a special industry event at the Stranger With My Face International Film Festival (14-17 April 2016), with four Honourable Mentions also announced.

The Australian Writers Guild will award the Australian winner in 2016 an AWG membership (or renew an existing membership for a year).

The 2016 Jury is:

  • Simon Barrett, Writer/Producer of You’re Next, The Guest and segments of V/H/S, V/H/S 2 and The ABCs of Death
  • Stephanie Trepanier, Director of Development for Snowfort Pictures, founder of The Frontieres International Co-Production Market in Montreal and Brussels and co-producer of Turbo Kid and Spring
  • Shelagh Rowan-Legg, Programmer for Film4Frightfest, Associate Editor at Twitchfilm.com and critic for Sight and Sound
  • Briony Kidd, Director of Stranger With My Face International Film Festival, film writer, script consultant and filmmaker

See full jury bios HERE >>


Past judges have included: writer/director/producer Brian Yuzna, screenwriting duo Shayne Armstrong and SP Krause, writer/director Ursula Dabrowsky and writer/script editor/story producer Vicki Madden.

Past winners have included:
Little Lamb by Heidi Lee Douglas (NSW), The Life and Times of Teddy Whalley by Mike Wedderburn (TAS), On Wednesdays We Wear Yellow by Michael Halford (NSW), Blood Sisters by Hannah White (VIC), Chompey-Changey by Scott McAteer (VIC), Rat Trap by Darren Swanson (TAS), Mrs Chang’s Perfect Teeth by Karen Lam (Canada), Trapeze by Carrie McLean (TAS), The Sewing Room by Scott McAteer (Victoria), Ryk Goddard for Oh Baby Baby (TAS), One Way Runway by Gabrielle Lis (TAS), Last Chapter of Our Story by Lucy Cruell (USA) and Vudu by Vince Bailey (TAS).