Networks are seemingly bending over backwards to increase diversity, both in front of and behind the camera, and now HBO will compete with these diversity initiatives with the launch of the HBOAccess Writing Fellowship. According to an announcement, the program “will give emerging writers from diverse backgrounds an opportunity to attend a week of master classes held at the HBO campus in Santa Monica, California focusing on character and story development, pitching ideas and projects, securing an agent, and networking.” Afterward, each participant will begin a “eight month writing phase where he/she will be paired with an HBO development executive.” The program culminates with a staged reading in which the writers will network with industry professionals.
The program comes on the heels of the success of multiple diverse programs (Black-ish, Empire, Fresh Off the Boat) and a report stating that viewers demand more diversity on television. HBO Access Writing Fellowship is open to “diverse and female writers 21 and older who must be able to work in the US” and submissions open on March 4. You can find more specifics here.