Upcoming Doc Project Mentorship deadline February 1

A message from CBC Radio’s mentorship program The Doc Project:

It’s that time again! CBC Radio’s Mentorship applications deadline is Wednesday, February 1

In the past two years over 60 of your CMG colleagues gone through this unique professional development program,  working intensively with veteran CBC producers/mentors to produce unique, innovative radio documentaries.

Their work has aired on 10 different CBC Radio One programs and a number of local shows across the country and have been recognized by The New York Festivals, Third Coast, The imagineNative Festival and The Gabriel Awards.   

As a CMG freelancer all that stands between you and the chance to work on a long-form passion project is a two page application … and a really good idea.

If this is the first time you’re hearing about The Doc Project or the Mentorship Program, acquaint yourself with some basic FAQs.

If you’re familiar with the premise, here is a little pre-application checklist:

• Ask yourself: do I qualify? The Mentorship Program is open to CBC employees and Canadian freelance audio producers who have demonstrated experience in audio production, and are looking to develop a pre-existing skill-set. This is not an opportunity for folks to make their first audio doc or learn the basics of audio storytelling.

• Find a story. Easier said than done. Some basic things to remember: great documentaries are stories about people, not about issues. A documentary has action, scenes and movement. Even the most complex and nuanced docs can be boiled down to a concise focus statement: someone interesting doing something unique for a compelling reason. For more helpful tips on how to find a story and pitch is successfully, visit our blog.

• Ask yourself: Is The Doc Project Mentorship Program the right path to production? This program provides an opportunity to innovate and create something that otherwise might not fit into the confines of CBC Radio’s production process/schedule. We’re looking for artful, quirky, sound-rich, experimental and unique stories and treatments that push boundaries and take risks.

If you’re not genuinely excited and intrigued by your story, chances are mentors — and listeners — won’t be either. Find a story that’s weird, that’s unique … one that genuinely makes you EXCITED.

• Decide which mentor/show best suits your pitch. Check out our list of mentors. In your application, you’ll be asked which of these doc editors/producers you would like to work with. Each of our mentors is paired with a specific CBC program. Working with a specific mentor means that your documentary will air on their program. For instance, if you think your documentary is best suited for The Sunday Edition, then your choice of mentor is between Karen Levine and David Gutnick. If you desperately want to work with Iris Yudai, then you better prepare your pitch for Unreserved.

Please note: at this time Ideas Mentor Nicola Luksic is only accepting pitches from CBC temps/employees. Freelancers wishing to contribute to Ideas are welcome to pitch directly to the program. Not sure which show or mentor best suits your pitch? Email docproject@cbc.ca and we’ll figure it out together.  

• Run your pitch past your proposed mentor (optional). This is like an open-book exam! You’re welcome to reach out to your proposed mentor prior to the application due date to ask them to review your pitch either by phone or over email. They’ll let you know of any major issues or foreseeable challenges, and perhaps ask you to expand or focus on certain aspects of your story. If they don’t think the pitch is suitable for their program they might suggest another mentor.

There have been some changes and additions to our roster of mentors this year. Important things to note:  Shows accepting Mentorship pitches this round are: The Doc Project, The Current, The Sunday Edition, Now or Never, and Unreserved.

Now you’re ready to start on your application, here are some things to remember: 

• This is a professional development initiative, so page #1 (introduction, statement of intent) is considered carefully by the committee. We’re not only interested in just investing in your story … we’re interested in investing in you. Why are you someone the CBC should be investing resources and training in? What are your long-term goals? Help us understand why you’re fit for this opportunity.

• You’ll be asked to indicate whether your proposed pitch involves travel. The travel budget for docs maxes out around $750 Cdn and does not cover trips outside of Canada.

• You’ll also be asked to indicate a timeline for your proposed project. As a freelancer you will be paid for the final run time of your documentary, not the time it takes to complete the item. So just let us know when you hope to work with your mentor. Details re: length of production process are not necessary.

• Including a digital treatment plan/strategy is not optional. How will you work with our digital team to promote and add value to your audio doc online? In some instances additional resources/time can be allocated to see the digital iteration/promotion of your doc come to life.

• Ensure your application is the right format (.pdf, .doc or .docx) and length (application = 2 pages max, resume = 2 pages max). Email docproject@cbc.ca by 11:59pm, your local time, on Wednesday February 1.

 If you have any questions email docproject@cbc.ca or your proposed mentor directly.  We’re here and happy to help.

Here are a few of the docs produced by CMG freelancers through the Mentorship program in the past few months:

Culture in a Card Mentee: Rebecca Hass Mentor: Mary Lynk

The Story She Carries Mentee: Angela Sterritt Mentor: Iris Yudai

My Surrogate and Me Mentee: Kalli Anderson Mentor: Alison Cook

Tattooing Over Trauma  Mentee: Jessica Grillanda Mentor: Alison Cook

Posted on January 17, 2017 at 9:00 am by editor · · Tagged with: , ,

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