One of the strongest things about being a part of a writers group (and there are many) is the support and knowledge you get from your group mates. You can bounce questions and ideas off of one another, get feedback, and feel that you're a part of a community of other creative people. Of course, there are a lot of people who don't have access to like-minded and talented people, so a writers group might be out of the question. Luckily for anyone for whom this is the case, there's a new social networking site designed just for screenwriters that has recently been brought to our attention. (Standard League disclaimer - while we've perused the site, Leaguers have not yet uploaded material to Circalit.)
Circalit.com is a newly-launched, multiple hat wearing site for screenwriters. On on hand, Circalit is a means for getting unproduced scripts into the hands of industry professionals. Like other sites that do similar work in this regard, Circalit functions as a place for writers to upload their script (from 5% to 100% based on how much they want to reveal), loglines, and associate a genre. Unlike other sites, this service is free to users. Because I'm just as hesitant about putting material out there, I asked the folks at Circalit some basic security questions. They assured me that material posted on the site cannot be copied, selected, printed, or saved. Of course, they want to remind all writers that it's best practice to copyright anything before uploading.
Additionally, users can rate one anothers' work - this is where that neat remote writers group feature comes in. Highest ranked scripts jump to the top of the page (presumably for those industry insiders to seek out). Users can read other users' scripts - provided it has all been uploaded - and provide feedback, either publicly or privately. For people looking to get reviews from someone other than their mother, this could prove a great feature.
Another component of the "remote writers group" as I call it is the forum section. Writers can post questions, start groups, and associate with other people based on interest, location, and other things. Screenwriters from all over can ask one another how to do this or how to format that. I've checked out the forums a bit - they're definitely worth a look.
There are other features Circalit is building out. Check it out for more info. the opportunity for aspiring writers to have a site dedicated entirely to people like them, striving to make that first sale or gain a few pointers is a great idea. And at no cost to all users, it's certainly easy on the wallet.
If you've been on Circalit or have any experience with it, we'd love to know - just leave it in the comments section.