Aside from a brief run-through of some key scenes that I'll do before submitting it to the Copyright bureau tomorrow, "Steel Clouds" is finished. I will submit it to the contest once I've got a copyright application submitted, then after that I'm probably going to submit it to Amazon and at least one other contest, just to play the field a little.
If I can't get an easy breakout, then I've decided to put promoting "Steel Clouds" on hold while I build a reserve of a few different finished manuscripts. Generally, from what I've read it's better if you build a catalog. The producer who doesn't like your tame suburban comedy might ask you what else you've got, and they might go for your biopic about Isambard Kingdom Brunel instead.
I'm really looking forward to adapting "The Vimana Incident," and I've also got a biopic in mind (though it's not about Isambard Kingdom Brunel, sorry). These I'll promote more aggressively since I'll have more projects to promote.
Maybe this won't go anywhere. I have an extremely small chance of winning anything. Also, this isn't typical Nichol Fellowship fare; usually it's human interest stories like "Akeelah and the Bee" and "Finding Forrester" that come out of it. A period noir thriller set in a flying aircraft carrier? I hope it at least gets a fair read like they say it will. Even Amazon will probably pass on this one.
This is why I'm not giving up on graduate school just yet. I'm seriously doubtful that this will go anywhere. But with the kind of money that can be made if I get it right, I suppose it's worth the best shot I can give.