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Screenwriting Help E-Mail (Previous)

Updated every Monday, one selected e-mail will be posted and answered here each week. With many years of experience in the film and television business, I look forward to providing answers to your questions (often with a humorous eye) about screenwriting or the entertainment industry in general.  Please send your e-mailed questions to: Script Advisor.  You may also wish to visit our Screenwriting Help E-Mails - The Archives.

This week's question: 

I have so many screenplay projects.   Just as I finished one screenplay, I need to start another one because of a deadline.  I don't want to stop enjoying writing, but it seems endless, DcH.


This week's Answer: 

Screenplay Without End

Arthur, I really do appreciate you contacting me.  I'd like to write to you, but I have an endless number of  e-mails to write before I can get to you.  Wait.  I'm already writing to you.  Well, okay then.

Here's my answer, dear Arthur.

It is endless.

Sorry to disappoint.  But it's the truth.  Screenwriting, just like many of our daily activities (or nightly if you're a night owl -- and, if you are, I feel sorry for those mice), is endless.  Until it ends, that is.  If you can accept that fact, work with that fact, embrace that fact, make that fact work for you, then you've got it made in the sun (which is endless, too -- well, at least "billions of years" endless).

One thing that you can do is to reward yourself when you reach a certain milestone such as finishing a script.  That's... no little thing.  You could reward yourself even before that.  Like when you type "FADE IN:".  Or "FADE OUT."  Either one will do.  The point is that you typed the word, "fade."  That's what counts.  No, that's not it.  The point is that you're moving forward.  That's it.  That's the point.  And you know what an endless bunch of connected points make if they all go in the same exact direction, don't you?  A line.  And lines are important to follow to get to your next destination, and to avoid getting in if you're in a hurry.  I hope that clears everything up.

I don't think that cleared anything up.  What I'm trying to say is that if you're going to continue to be a screenwriter, you'll move down that "screenwriter's line," which is made of many points, points that you will have to travel through.  Endlessly.  Well, not endlessly.  But, if you're serious, you'll be screenwriting for a long time.  So you might as well get used to it.  But go easy on yourself.  Take breaks.  Be with friends.  Take long walks on the beach or in parks.

And watch the endless sun set.

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