This week's Answer:
Your Screenplay Afloat
I'm very glad to hear from you (or, rather,
"see" from you if you want to be precise.
And who doesn't want to be precise? I surely do, as
I'm sure you do, too. Right? Precisely.)
First off, don't worry about the reader of the agent
passing on one of your scripts. Just be glad it
wasn't the agent of a reader. (Did you know readers
have agents now? They really don't, but it's an
interesting thought. If they did I could put it in a
screenplay and tell my agent to show it to the agent of
his reader. Who might pass on it.) You're
fine. Everybody isn't going to love your work.
Especially readers. The last thing they want to do
is read (your script and like it. Maybe they should
call themselves "coveragers" so they don't have
to think about what they're doing or supposed to be
doing: reading.). It's a beautiful
business, wouldn't you say?
My advice to you is to stop listening
to anybody who has an opinion about your screenwriting
unless they have a check for you (and hopefully a
substantial one) for exactly that: your
screenwriting. I know you're probably thinking that
this is an extreme concept, that, at least you can listen
to those with positive comments about your writing.
I wouldn't. They're the worst kind. Now you're
probably even in more of a tizzy. Or a dither.
(I don't know which one's worse. I think dithers
might be, particularly when it's raining.) What do you
mean they're the worst kind? I'll tell you
why. Now this may come across as quite blunt so you
might want to put on some safety goggles or a catcher's
mask. Here goes:
long as you depend on kind words you're sunk.
illustrate my point, I'm including a lovely image to
remind you of this fact.
that helps. I don't mean to be harsh, but, if all
you're looking for is flowery accolades about your work,
that's all well and good; enjoy them to your heart's
content. But, without even noticing it, if you seek
other's opinions, hoping upon hope that they will (please,
please, please) like your screenplay, then you're not
believing in your own. You must ask yourself:
I writing to please them or me?
saying to not show your work to experts in the field who
can assist you in improving your screenplays. Not at
all. But, even there, you are not, or should not be,
showing your work to garner praise.
only purpose for showing your screenplays is to either
discover how to improve them or to sell them.
recovered from my direct statements, I'll tell you the
secret why this true. When
you're seeking opinions other than experts who can guide
you, notice one tiny detail:
one more following question (and I'll stop with the bold,
dramatic font in the middle of the page):
you writing to please or are you writing to sell?