Derry, Northern Ireland

Derry, Northern Ireland
A book I'm working on is set in this town.

Friday, May 2, 2014

Promotional work...

That was this evening, after the day job. Pushing my books and scripts. I belong to a number of organizations that post or send out emails about people looking for screenplays -- but usually they're so specific, nothing I have matches up. Stuff like -- MMA, Asian lead, shootable in China or SE Asia, budget up to $1m -- or -- Christmas story, uplifting, family oriented, budget $200K. They all know that their project will make a hundred-million, and in exchange you get $1000 and a share of the profits.

I tried to write some things that would fit into those types of parameters. I even have one martial arts script that I had fun writing and making a bit silly. Lots of action, a dive off the 20th floor of a hotel into a pool, betrayal, unrequited love, a perfect hero, all very heterosexual. It's set in Manila but I wrote a version that would work in Shanghai or Hong Kong and sent its info to a few nothin'.

That's to be expected, however. 99 times out of a hundred what those characters are looking for is something so specific, they really ought to write it themselves. Or so unrealistic, they'll never get it made. Or they just want to option it for a $1 for 5 years, and you'll wind up with a script that's of no use except as a writing sample because it's now got a history. I have four of those; don't need any more.

Of course, I've also gotten the, "Change a few things and bring it back to us," stuff that means nothing. The changes "don't work for them, after all," and it sometimes hurts the script. I've got two of those. I don't shut down people who make suggestions; but I won't make any change unless I think it will make the script better, and I make sure they understand if that happens, the changes become mine.

I finally got to where, if they don't prove to me they're serious, I'm not interested in doing anything other than popping off the usual synopsis and logline. Sometimes I'll include my list of scripts...but not always. That puts the ball in their court, and if they're interested, they'll get back to me. If they don't, it means they weren't.

I know that's a heretical attitude in Hollywood. Writers are supposed to beg and grovel for someone to make their movie and piss all over them as they totally wreck the story and characters. Been there, done that, got me nowhere except close to crazier than I already fuck it.

Except...maybe this time...I'll be lucky...maybe this time...they'll pay.

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