Newly updated for Fall 2017 Reading Series

New for Fall 2017:

  • We now ask what kind of reading you want.
  • A play over its lifetime is limited to two PCSF developmental readings and one PCSF staged reading.
  • Once a play has had a PCSF staged reading, it will get no more PCSF readings.

About the submission period

We make the submission periods available to submitters for plays 15 days before the deadline.

There are at least three submission opportunities each year. The Playwrights’ Center of San Francisco produces a Reading Series comprised of Developmental Readings and Staged Readings in the Spring and another in the Fall. Additionally we produce an annual benefit production, PlayOffs, each winter. The deadlines are as follows:

  • Spring Season: 11:59 p.m. Nov. 30, annually

  • Fall Season: 11:59 p.m. April 30, annually

We reserve the right to extend or change the deadlines as deemed necessary and at any time. You can always see a list of active PCSF submission opportunities, if any, at the PCSF Submittable website.

Watch the website and newsletter for guidelines for the PlayOffs when those are active.

General Guidelines for Spring and Fall Seasons

Important: The Submittable page will always have the most up-to-date rules. The following is to help you prepare during other times when it's not visible.

  • Only PCSF members are eligible for a slot in our reading series. Plays will not be read if membership is not current at the time of submission. Join PCSF here! Or contact to confirm your membership status.

  • Please read our Writers’ Guide to Staged Readings and Writers’ Guide to Developmental Readings to review playwright responsibilities. Make sure you understand the playwright responsibilities before submitting.

  • No musicals. If the play contains incidental song(s) or music, the playwright must own the rights or have express written permission to the rights or the song(s) must be in the public domain. This policy does not allow for "fair use."

  • You may resubmit a play that was previously not accepted or which has had a developmental reading. If you do, be sure to fill out the question about what you've changed.

  • There is a 2.5 hour limit. There is no minimum, although if your play is very short it may be read on the same night as another play or combined with another PCSF event.

What is the difference between a developmental reading and a staged reading?

Now that we ask you to choose what kind(s) of reading you seek, and have placed limits, you need to know the difference up front. Here's a quick comparison:

Developmental vs. Staged Reading
  PCSF Developmental reading PCSF Staged reading
Rehearsal None Up to 12 hours; you pay any space rental fees
Director None PCSF provides a director
Number of readings (across seasons) Maximum two ever (one per season); can still qualify for a staged reading Once a play has had this, it gets no more PCSF readings
Overview About developmental readings About staged readings
Guidelines and responsibilitise Writers' Guide to developmental readings Writers' Guide to staged readings

If I've submitted a work previously or had a reading, can I submit it again?

Please do! The development process for a play can often be a long one. Each of the various programs that PCSF offers can help you move your play through its various rewrites, but each has its own particular strengths.

Effective with the Fall 2017 reading series, a play during its lifetime can receive up to two PCSF developmental readings and one PCSF staged reading. Once a play has had a PCSF staged reading, it will receive no further PCSF readings.

While we can't give you details about plays that were submitted that weren't selected, we can assure you that playwrights before you have submitted, gotten feedback, rewritten and resubmitted before having their play continue on to a developmental and/or staged reading.

We recognize that a play that has had a developmental reading, read-through or staged rehearsal - and thus been publicly associated with the playwright - cannot truly be a blind submission, but the Literary Committee does its best to treat such plays fairly. Please follow the blind submission process anyway.

Do tell us on the Statement of Work what you've changed and what you intentionally haven't changed. This will help us determine whether the play would benefit from a(nother) reading.

The following plays were awarded a staged reading because the playwright resubmitted after a developmental reading and the committee determined the play qualified for a staged reading:

Updated 4/22/2017